May 21, 2014

Worcester flight academy relocates, changes name

The former Worcester Regional Flight Academy (WRFA) has moved from the Worcester Regional Airport to the Southbridge Municipal Airport, and changed its name to AeroVenture Insitute (AVI), the organization announced this week.

The move to Southbridge was effective May 19. The flight school opened at Worcester Regional Airport in May 2010, and has achieved numerous recognitions, including being named one of the country's top 10 flight schools by the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, an aviation advocacy organization.

In addition to training and certifying local pilots, AVI also runs a STEM education center, which AVI said is expanding in Central Massachusetts, coinciding with the name change and the move. Programs will be added in Central Massachusetts schools, nonprofits and companies, including a new partnership with the EcoTarium, Worcester's nature museum. AVI said it will debut a "cutting-edge" aerospace institution at the EcoTarium on June 1.

In Southbridge, the AVI will expand its business with additional flight and aerospace instructors and programs, including a glider program and an air and spacecraft design and construction program, AVI said.

"We are excited about our new partnership with both The Town of Southbridge and the EcoTarium as we continue to expand our course opportunities," AVI President and CEO George C. Allen said in a statement.

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