Today: Jul 08 , 2020

ERAU & Universal Helicopters Flight Training Takes Flight

30 January 2010   Bill Thompson, Director Public Relations

Prescott Campus offers the best of fixed-wing and helicopter flight training with new program.


Universal Helicopters' Robinson R-44 & ERAU Cessna 172.

Prescott, Ariz., Jan. 29, 2010 – Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) is pleased to announce its selection of Universal Helicopters (UHI) as the exclusive provider of the Helicopter Flight Training Program to students at the University’s Prescott, Ariz., campus. The ERAU/UHI agreement brings together the experience of two of the most respected names in aviation flight training. The Embry-Riddle Flight Line will now be closely aligned with Universal Helicopters’ Center of Excellence facility at Prescott’s Love Field Airport.


The new contract with UHI simplifies the path for students seeking helicopter flight training while enrolled in Embry-Riddle’s Helicopter Flight or Helicopter Operation and Safety minors. The academic curriculum taken at Embry-Riddle helps prepare students seeking a career in the helicopter industry. Students will study aviation safety, environmental operations, crew resource management, flight management systems, flight planning, and advanced helicopter operations. Specific topics will include low-level flight planning, mountain flight, night-vision device operation, operations in adverse weather, and the management of operations, training, personnel, and maintenance.

Additionally, this agreement will allow students who are military veterans to receive the appropriate Veterans Administration benefits to attend Embry-Riddle and take helicopter flight training at Universal Helicopters. This agreement allows students enrolled in the program the opportunity to receive the appropriate student financial aid and VA funding to assist with the cost of their training. This program allows veterans who qualify for the Post 9/11 “Yellow Ribbon” GI Bill program to take their helicopter flight or their fixed-wing flight at Embry-Riddle.


Gordon Jiroux, President, Universal Helicopters & Dr. Frank Ayers, Executive Vice President, Embry-Riddle.

Graduates of the training program can pursue helicopter career opportunities with the U.S. Armed Forces, U.S. Departments of the Interior/Forest Service/ Homeland Security/FBI, certified flight instructor, state/county/local law enforcement, medical air ambulance companies, off-shore petroleum industry, fish spotting, tour operators, photography/cinematography, executive/corporate pilot, utility/heavy-lift industry, logging industry, fire fighting, search and rescue, heli-skiing, cattle herding, animal capture/control, and agriculture.


ERAU/UHI provides helicopter training for students to obtain the Private, Commercial, Instrument, Certified Flight Instructor, and Instrument Certified Flight Instructor certificates. ERAU/UHI will use a combination of the Schweizer 300C ™, Robinson R22, and Robinson R44 IFR helicopters in the student flight-training program. These helicopters were chosen based on their accepted and proven usage in the general aviation community as well as how they each fulfill the student’s specific and individual needs in primary helicopter training. 

 All students in the ERAU/UHI training program will attend the Prescott campus, which offers them the additional benefit of training in high-density altitude conditions/high-altitude environment, an experience most pilots can obtain only at extra cost. Similar to the Embry-Riddle fixed-wing experience, students in the helicopter program will train in an area that is world-renowned for its sunny climate and great flying weather, allowing uninterrupted flight training year-round.

To celebrate the new program, Embry-Riddle’s College of Aviation will host an open house for the new helicopter program with a campus fly-in and static display on Thursday, Feb. 11, 2010, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Contact Bill Thompson at (928) 777-6961 for additional grand-opening celebration details.   

For more information on Embry-Riddle’s new Helicopter Flight Training Program, contact Dr. Cass Howell, Dean of the College of Aviation, at (928) 777-6800 or Individuals interested in learning more about Embry-Riddle degree programs, admissions standards, and available scholarships should visit or contact the Admissions Office at (800) 888-3728 or (928) 777-6600. Universal Helicopters can be reached at (928) 776-0665,, or

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world’s largest, fully accredited university specializing in aviation and aerospace, offers more than 30 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in its colleges of Arts and Sciences, Aviation, Business, and Engineering. Embry-Riddle educates students at residential campuses in Daytona Beach, Fla., and Prescott, Ariz., through the Worldwide Campus at more than 170 campus centers in the United States, Europe, Canada, and the Middle East, and through online learning. For more information, visit