University Aviation Association Historical Timeline

1947 National Association of University Administrators of Aviation Education (NAUAAE) organized in Denver, Colorado, in order to encourage and expand the growth and status of aviation education programs nationwide. Merlyn McLaughlin of the University of Denver elected the first president. Edward Whittlesey, also of the University of Denver, elected secretary-treasurer. Six representatives of the newly formed NAUAAE are invited to attend the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) conference in Mexico City to discuss the formation of similar organizations internationally.

1948 First NAUAAE Annual Meeting held in conjunction with Denver Air Congress. Membership reported totaling 41, with $18.24 in expenses and a cash balance of $226.76. First organizational newsletter published under the name How Goes It? NAUAAE also adopts first mission statement: “It is believed that the work of the Association, conducted as it will be by leading educators of the United States, will be of basic and permanent benefit to aviation. A new generation of youth, graduating from the high schools and colleges each year, with a thorough grounding in and understanding of the airplane and its social, scientific, political, and economic influences upon living will, through the years, establish an informed public opinion on aviation which will go far toward eliminating many of the present day problems which beset the aviation industry and the national defense.”

1949 Organization name changed to University Aviation Association (UAA) and headquarters office established at United Airlines School and College Service (UASCS) in Chicago, Illinois. Raymond Mertes of the UASCS elected secretary-treasurer, replacing Whittlesey.

1950 UAA sponsors three trophies for the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) Air Meet, beginning relationship with NIFA. UAA annual meeting held in conjunction with NIFA Air Meet.

1955 UAA assumes judging responsibilities for NIFA Air Meet and establishes revolving fund for host schools.

1956 NIFA members reject merger with the National Aeronautic Association (NAA) and vote to accept the UAA as sponsor. The UAA establishes a NIFA ad hoc committee. Raymond Mertes, who has served as secretary-treasurer of the Association since 1949, retires. He is replaced by Harold Wood of Parks College of Aeronautics and Technology at St. Louis University.

1957 UAA headquarters moved from Chicago to Cahokia, Illinois.

1966 UAA office of secretary-treasurer split into two positions. Wood remains secretary.

1973 UAA headquarters moved to Wichita, Kansas.

1974 UAA accreditation subcommittee surveys colleges and universities with aviation programs to identify current practices and potential need for curricula accreditation.

1975 Task force formed by UAA to develop an academic standards manual.

1976 Task force, meeting in Wichita, develops College Aviation Accreditation Guidelines, the first standards manual for college and university aviation programs.

1977 Harold Wood retires as secretary after 21 years. UAA establishes the position of part-time Executive Director and hires Gary Kiteley to fill the post. Membership consists of 178 individual members and total annual organizational budget is $5,000. UAA headquarters moves to Auburn University-owned airport in Auburn, Alabama.

1980 Institutional Membership category established.

1981 Following a disastrous Air Traffic Controllers strike, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) contracts with the UAA for the development of a college and university curriculum targeting FAA managerial and technical occupations. The Airway Science curriculum, targeting five occupational areas: air traffic controllers, aviation safety inspectors (airworthiness and operations), aviation electronics specialists and airway computer specialists, is the result.

1982 First edition of the Collegiate Aviation Directory: A Guide to College Level Aviation / Aerospace Study published. UAA hosts its first Aviation Career Seminar at the Experimental Aircraft Association Convention in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

1983 First Collegiate Aviation Review published after a call for papers at the UAA Fall Education Conference.

1984 Corporate Membership category established.

1986 UAA hires its first full-time staff member, Office Manager Joyce Gannon, and moves into its current headquarters in the Auburn University-owned former InSouth Building on Skyway Drive in Auburn.

1988 UAA conducts survey of institutional members to determine if aviation education needs its own professional accreditation process, separate and distinct from government and FAA involvement. Survey results in the establishment of the Council on Aviation Accreditation (CAA)--“a body to begin the accreditation process”--by the UAA board.

1990 Position of UAA Executive Director becomes full-time.

1992 CAA formally organized and incorporated to oversee curricula standards and program accreditation. CAA shares UAA facilities and some personnel. First UAA Aviation Policy Seminar held in Washington, DC.

1993 National Business Aircraft Association (later renamed the National Business Aviation Association) seeks UAA collaboration in assembling an education/certification program. UAA task force develops the Professional Development Program (PDP), later implemented by the NBAA.

1996 NIFA Council assumes all governance responsibilities for the National Intercollegiate Flying Association.

1997 UAA celebrates its 50th anniversary. FAA terminates Airway Science program.

1998 The National Advisory Council, consisting of 22 representatives from a broad spectrum of the aviation industry, is formed to further enhance the relationship between the UAA and its corporate partners.

2001 Gary Kiteley retires after 24 years of service to the organization. Carolyn Williamson is named as the executive director. She is the first woman to hold the position. Newsletter changes name to Collegiate Aviation News.

2008 High School Membership category established.

2009 First Conference Proceedings on CD created.

2010 Collegiate Aviation Review accepted by major indexing services.

2011 Personnel-sharing arrangement between UAA and AABI concludes, giving UAA three full-time staff. Memberships number in excess of 500. UAA Facebook page is launched. Responding to changing aviation technology, UAA creates Unmanned Aerial Systems Committee.

2012 UAA celebrates 65th anniversary and 35 years at Auburn University

2012 Current leases for space at AU Research Park (Insouth) expire September 30, 2012

2012 AU Board of Trustees passes resolution to extend current leases for one-year period.