For the fifth straight year the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) student aviation team, the Flying Mavs, will compete nationally after finishing second in their region at the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) contest held in Oklahoma City last week.
UNO also registered six top-three finishes across four individual competitions and placed first as a team overall in the Flight Competition category.
As a member of NIFA’s Region VI, UNO competed against six other schools including: Oklahoma State University, Kansas State University, University of Oklahoma, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, University of Central Missouri and Parks College from St. Louis.
“The team really pulled together,” said Scott Vlasek, director of UNO’s Aviation Institute. “Everyone was a team player and we are incredibly proud of all of them.”
The next step for the Flying Mavs is the NIFA national competition, SAFECON, which will be held Monday, May 12, through Saturday, May 17, in Columbus, Ohio with The Ohio State University as the host school.
UNO’s second place finish (420 points) came just behind first place Kansas State (473 points) and just ahead of third place team Southeastern Oklahoma State (405).
Individual placements in categories included:
2nd Place – Blake Zessin (Pilot) and Trevor Lindhorst (Observer)
8th Place – Kyle Broich (Pilot) and Zach Lundeen (Observer)
Power Off Landing
10th Place – Travis Huetter
Short Field Landing
3rd Place - Travis Huetter
1st Place – Jon Collins (Drop Master) and Zach Lundeen (Pilot)
3rd Place - Travis Huetter (Drop Master) and Kyle Broich (Pilot)
7th Place – Nick Lynam (Drop Master) and Seth Hunt (Pilot)
E6B (Manual Flight Readings)
1st Place – Kyle Broich
4th Place – Blake Zessin
7th Place – Dan Manning
SCAN (Knowledge of Rules/Regulations)
1st Place (Tie) – Trevor Lindhorst
9th Place – Kyle Broich
7th Place – Blake Zessin
“The competition went really well and we are psyched we got second place,” said Kyle Broich, a junior at UNO and Flying Mavs member. “We are hoping to make at least top 10 at nationals this upcoming spring. I couldn't be more proud of the team.”
The Flying Mavs are part of UNO’s Aviation Institute and sponsored by Jet Links Aviation. In 2012, UNO finished third at the Region VI competition, previously earning a string of three consecutive first-place finishes from 2009 – 2011.
In May of 2012 UNO’s Aviation Institute was named top program in the nation at the national NIFA competition and awarded the Loening Trophy, which was first awarded in 1929 with the first judges including Charles Lindberg and Amelia Earhart.
For more information on UNO Aviation Institute or the upcoming national NIFA competition, please contact Charley Reed, UNO media relations coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 402.554.2129.