MSU, ATP to offer joint aviation degree

By Matthew Everett

Mountain State University students have a new degree option thanks to a recent academic services agreement with Airline Transport Professionals. The agreement, signed by CEO and President of MSU Charles H. Polk and ATP President Derrick Dennis, provides the foundation for the Bachelor of Science in Airline Transport Professional Pilot Operations. Under the agreement, students will complete flight training through ATP at one of their 22 locations across the U.S. and college curriculum through MSU.

MSU, based in Beckley, West Virginia, is a not-for-profit educational institution with several campuses around the nation as well as a number of online degree programs. MSU chose to partner with ATP based on their proven record of professional multi-engine flight training, flying over 6,000 hours and providing 300 FAA pilot certifications a year.

According to David Robbins, director of aviation at MSU, “Airlines hire the most qualified pilots, preferring that applicants have a bachelor’s degree and high quality flight experience.” The program, which is intended to provide airlines with qualified pilot applicants, will allow students to build required flight experience, certifications and work as flight instructors while completing their bachelor’s degree. Additionally, students will study leadership, business and management, communications, and aeronautics.

“What makes this degree so unique is how the college coursework complements students’ flight training and professional pilot careers. With recent legislation requiring more flight experience of airline pilot applicants, it’s important that career pilots build high-quality flight experience as quickly and economically as possible. Graduates of this program will be the first of a new generation of airline pilot applicants,” said Derrick Dennis, president of ATP.

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Source: MSU

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Matthew Everett is a private pilot, aviation writer, and frequent contributor to You can follow him on twitter @leaving_tf or find his blog at

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One Response to “MSU, ATP to offer joint aviation degree”

  1. […] through strategic partnerships with stable flight training providers. Agreements like the recent Mountain State/ATP partnership would allow universities and colleges to focus on academics while allowing the flight schools to […]