Plane used in SJNMA Aviation program

Aviation Science

St. John’s Northwestern Academies and Spring City Aviation, Inc., in conjunction with Side by Side Aviation, LLC, have teamed up to bring this aviation program to the Academy. This program will train cadets toward earning their Sport Pilot License (SPL), a type of pilot certificate designed to get cadets safely and easily trained for recreational flying in Light-Sport Aircraft (LSA).

Meet Our Instructors

Lt. Colonel John Palese

Lt. Colonel John Palese, USAF (ret)

  • Retired American Airlines, Captain and Line Check Airman
  • Certified flight instructor (CFI) Pilot
  • Adjunct professor Aviation Science at Carroll University (Waukesha, WI)
  • Adjunct professor Aviation Science at St. John’s Northwestern Academies
  • FAA Safety Team Lead Representative and Remedial Trainer
  • FAA certified commercial drone pilot (Part 107)
  • Captain, Hartford (WI) Township Police
  • Wisconsin Department of Justice Police firearms instructor
CAPT Timothy E. Tyre

CAPT Timothy E. Tyre, PhD, USN (ret)

  • Certified flight instructor (CFI, LSA) Pilot
  • PhD Psychologist (Human Factors Research)
  • Director Aviations Science Program at Carroll University (Waukesha, WI)
  • Director of Aviations Science Program at St. John’s Northwestern Academies
  • FAA Safety Team Lead Representative and Remedial Trainer
  • FAA certified commercial drone pilot (Part 107)
  • Special Deputy Sheriff and Chief Pilot, Jefferson County (WI) SO
Student in the Aviation program flying

Students will earn 0.5 high school elective credit for each semester of completed work, 1.0 credit maximum. Academic OPS cadets will earn 0.5 high school elective credit and have all training at the Waukesha County Airport. Grades are based on goal completion, classroom work, flight instructor evaluations, flight schedule coordination, and exams.

Qualified students may also further their aviation training by working toward their private pilot’s license. An additional 20 hours minimum of logged flight time is required. More information is available upon request.

Eligible only for domestic students.

Training Requirements

  • 20 hours of ground school classroom training
  • At least 20 hours flight time
    • 15 hours of flight time with an authorized instructor
    • 5 hours of solo flight time
  • Flight training must include at least 2 hours cross-country flight training and 10 takeoffs and landings to a full stop
  • One solo cross-country flight of at least 75 nautical miles
    • Must include a full-stop landing at a minimum of two points
    • One segment must consist of a straight-line distance of at least 25 nautical miles between takeoff and landing locations
  • 3 hours flight training in preparation for the practical test
  • FAA knowledge test on applicable aeronautical knowledge areas
  • FAA practical test for the applicable Light-Sport Aircraft privilege


Costs include: Instruction, airplane rental, FAA medical exam (if needed), course supplies, examination fees and transportation to the airport. The total cost of the program has several variables, many of which depend on the cadet’s commitment and progress within the program. Funds paid to Spring City are held on account and withdrawn at each training session. Cadets missing scheduled flights or training sessions will still be charged in order to pay for the instructor and plane that was reserved.

School Year Program

Ground school – $3,740
Before first solo flight – $5,000
After first solo flight – $5,000

For more information, please contact the Academic Office at 262.646.7126 or at

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