Category Archives: Aviation

Winter’s Back

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 24 January 2016

Spring semester officially started on the 11th of this month and, let me tell you something, it does not feel like spring. We’ve had temperatures at negative 14 degrees and phones have been buzzing with winter-weather-advisory warnings. Just a few months ago I was sitting in the sunshine sipping on frozen, fruit drink and enjoying the salty ocean waters with the soft sand in between my toes; there is nothing more that I want than to just go back and enjoy that for a few more days.

Sun

However, I know that once winter passes away for the year, I’m going to miss the magical, romantic feel of watching snow fall from the sky and the chance of spending that time with all my friends for one last semester. In fact, as I write this right now in my apartment that overlooks the University, the Summit, I’m watching fellow classmates sledding down the very hill that I live on.

Snow

With the start of the Spring semester, classes are taking off at full throttle, picking up everything academically from the previous semester. And since this is my senior year, I have conditioned myself to give 110% at the start of the semester. Now for some students, this may be difficult if this is their first time experiencing this–but with my experience–I have the perfect remedy for such a thing.

First things first, you have to work hard such that any free time earned is that much more enjoyable. The next step is to encourage your peers to do the same, because your friends also tend to be your best motivators. Likewise, once everyone is done with their work, you can all partake in the freedom of not having any work and have some real fun.

For example, as a freshmen, a leader board was set up in my dorm to tally wins against other students in different video games that everyone could see and participate. As a result, this competitive competition not only implemented the constructive nature of diligence through rank, but also begot and nourished what would be the foundations of stronger friendships and relationships. In fact, we played one of these video games so much, we burned out the disc and it became completely unusable. Despite this unfortunate event, it wasn’t long after that the sun finally broke through the winter clouds and dawned the initiation of outdoor activities.

Help from the CLDC

Gavin Whitehead

Gavin Whitehead,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 11 December 2015

Finals week is complete and now I have seven semesters down, one more to go! As a lot of Bobcats go home this winter break to rest their brains from finals week, I will be spending some more time here in Athens.

A few people asked why am I not going home right away and the thing is I enjoy it here and I also have a lot to do this break. There is one semester left then I will be unleashed to the real world. I want to make sure I am thoroughly prepared before I start interviewing for jobs. I have some studying to do and some interview preparation also. Athens being nice and quiet is perfect.

One very helpful place that helped me tremendously is the Career and Leadership Development Center. They are located in Baker Center and they do a number of things such as mock interviews, reviewing resumes, and holding leadership programs.

I used a couple of their services last semester: the mock interview and resume review. I received some great pointers on my resume. I made some changes and feel a lot more comfortable since it was reviewed by someone that has so much experience with resumes.

My mock interview was a great experience. It was good practice and a confidence booster also. The interviewer makes the experience feel legitimate and they give you genuine feedback to help you succeed. I told the person that interviewed me that they may see me again because I may be doing another mock interview spring semester!

Fall and Halloween

Gavin Whitehead

Gavin Whitehead,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 7 November 2015

Just past that halfway point of the semester, it’s starting to get a little cooler and I’m going to be wearing a jacket not too long from now. The temperature got up to 78 degrees last week which I feel never happens after Halloween.

Speaking of Halloween, this past one was awesome. It stayed around 50 degrees throughout the night and it felt great. My last 2 Halloweens were in the low 40’s so I was pumped about the temperature this year.

My tip is always plan your costume for the weather. Let’s just say I was very prepared this year for low temps. I turned out being a banana along with my 3 roommates and people got a kick out of it. I saw some very creative costumes–seeing some people’s creativity makes me feel like I should have been more creative than just getting a banana costume. My favorite one I saw was Shia LaBeouf and he yelled at me saying, “Just Do It!”

My “Transition to Industry” class is still the most exciting class this semester. Yesterday, we went to Port Columbus International Airport to visit Lane Aviation and L-Brands. They were pretty awesome and both companies told us some cool inside things about how the company is run and how to get into similar businesses. We even had a chance to go in some of the private jets such as the Global 6000 which cost $60 million. The cabins of those planes are amazing and it was very cool to get that opportunity.

Another cool thing was the people that worked there. They told the story of how they got there and mentioned how they wish they had opportunities in college like we have here at OU to visit different corporate flight departments. Sometimes in the business world it comes down to who you know and we have a lot of alumni that are out there in the industry.

Project for Business in Aviation

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 5 November 2015

With only about four weeks left in the semester, everyone on campus seems to be in the heart of all their classes–including myself, of course, particularly in my Business in Aviation class! For several weeks we have been analyzing the impact that aviation has on our economy and the driving business behind it. The class has been divided into small groups to expand on a more specific and personal basis in the realm of aviation.

Specifically, in my group’s project, we’ve been given the scenario of opening up a charter operation out of our airport here at Ohio University. For those of you new to aviation, a charter operation would be an on-demand service, which allow passengers to schedule their own personal flights. This is unlike a typical domestic airline, which has regular routes set to a particular schedule (that’s why you can book a flight well in advance).

The project is open ended and involves considering the countless possibilities and directions that a new business venture might take. This may seem a bit overwhelming, but the beauty of it all lies in the endless possibilities of creativity and a little bit of imagination.

Of course every project will have its obstacles–here are some that our team decided to tackle:


  • determining the need
  • selecting our destinations
  • selecting our aircraft (new or used)
  • deciding where we plan on storing our assets
  • determining the types of maintenance we’re able to perform or have to outsource.

Once we’ve collected all the pertinent information, then we will need to break down every cost associated with our operation. The project has become more analytical than I anticipated at the beginning, which is a good thing, because the whole objective of the class is to expose us to the real world scenarios that charter and airlines both face today.

Enough about the “technical stuff”, let’s talk about something more fun: HallOUween! So despite the great abyss of homework, there is always time for a little bit of fun and relaxation and Halloween weekend couldn’t be a better time. This year, the weather was beautiful – well above average for a late October’s day in Ohio – and quite inviting for the annual block party at O.U!

OU Campus

I dusted off the old dinosaur costume and headed out into the night with my fellow friends and classmates to celebrate our last Halloween together as Ohio University college undergraduates.

Cat and Dinosaur

Academically and socially, Ohio University has shaped me into a better student and pilot.

Transition to Aviation Industry

Gavin Whitehead

Gavin Whitehead,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 20 October 2015

Senior year is here. I can’t believe it is, but if I look back at my time here…it’s believable. These past three years I met a lot of people and have had a lot of memorable experiences. I will miss this place, but I am going to focus more on the two semesters I still have and I am going to enjoy it while it’s here.

So far my class schedule is extremely easy. I’m only taking 3 classes–tough right? That’s called “planning ahead” and getting the tough classes out of the way before the inevitable senioritis kicks in. Spring semester is going to be similar: 3 classes and an online class. I’m loving senior year already.

One thing I really like about my classes is that they are focused more on transitioning from college out to the workforce. The classroom setting feels more like a discussion amongst everyone rather than a lecture which I really like.

My favorite class by far this semester is called Transition to Aviation Industry. The title pretty much says it all. We are learning how to build a resume, practicing interviews, learning how to network, and actually doing a little networking as part of the class. How do you think we go about networking? Field trips!! I haven’t been on a field trip since high school and it was about time for one!

This year we have been visiting airlines and different companies. We even visited control towers. My favorite so far was visiting PSA airlines. I really would like to work for an airline and that was a great way to get my foot in the door and I really liked their facilities. We have four field trips and 15 different guest speakers coming in to talk to us. I’m liking this whole senior year thing.

Precision Flight Team

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 12 October 2015

Seeing the faces of young and old alumni during Homecoming here at Ohio University struck me with one of the more eye-opening revelations than I’ve had before: how little time I have left to enjoy being a student! The weekend in its entirety flooded me with many good memories of my past here in Athens; in fact, the more I reminisced, the more it felt like I was still only getting started and four years ago sometimes still feels like yesterday, still finding my way around campus. It’s a strange reality to finally grasp the fact that this time next year – OU will be a thing of the past.

Recollecting some of that past, however, I can safely say that one of my best and most gratifying experiences I’ve had here would have to be participating as a member of the Ohio University Precision Flight Team. Consisting of not just flight majors, but any student interested in aviation, the flight team is an inspired group that utilize the knowledge they’ve gained in the course of their college career to compete against schools around the nation in a variety of events.

Flight team

In and through this team, I have met some truly amazing and unique individuals, who are not just a “team member,” but they’re part of the student body. It’s exciting to hear other folks’ stories on how they have gracefully fallen into aviation to the schools they’ve studied at and ultimately – all the places they plan on going!

It’s a little cliché, I know, but a quote that has always stuck with me in the aviation program is: “A mile of road will take you one mile, but a mile of runway will take you anywhere.” So despite how similar one student may compare to the other in where they are now, I’ve realized that everyone really does have their own twist and flair to their book of life–past and future.

As of right now, everything is looking good here at OU. Classes are in full swing and oddly enough it’s already at the halfway mark of the semester. Summer packed her bags and left for vacation while Fall arrived right on time.

Flying and Art

Drago Cvijetinovic

Drago Cvijetinovic,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 14 September 2015

So it’s the start of week four of Fall Semester and everyone is still trying to get settled in here at OU. The streets and classrooms, bustling with students, radiate enthusiasm and excitement.

However, while everyone is just settling in, I’m going “full throttle” academically.

I decided to stay here in Athens over the summer to get ahead in my flight training. The start of the summer moved slowly by because of the rain, but once the sun came out, so did I. In the past 90 days, I’ve been able to log over 50 hours of flight time, 25 of which were solo flights. I spent most of my summer flying all over Ohio and her neighboring states.

Flying

My best flight had to be a solo flight to Smyrna, Tennessee, located approximately 10 miles southeast of Nashville. The whole flight took over 6 hours, but it challenged my aviation skills to the fullest extent.

Besides spending my time in the air, I spent a great amount of time on the ground working on small personal projects. I’ve always loved doodling, so I tried to branch out into the art scene. I studied some current artists and different styles. As a result, I did something that I wasn’t very familiar with: spray paint art.

The LeBron painting was the very first painting that I’ve ever done. I hand painted that about four years ago.

Lebron

The Yoda painting was the first full spray paint painting that I’ve done. That was this past summer.

Yoda Beats

I think that I mastered spraying on canvases, and I’m now considering painting the graffiti wall located on the top of the Richland Bridge.

This fall, I’m going to get an opportunity to fly a complex aircraft and complete my commercial license. Shortly after that, I’ll start my training to become a flight instructor here at OU and teach incoming aviators new skills that my past instructors once taught me.