International Students Flying The Tyler Skies

Olof Wendell has come a long way to learn to fly. He's come about eight thousand miles from his home in Sweden and with a world of choices; he came to Tyler School of Aviation for several reasons.

"First of all, the weather," Olof says. "We do a lot of flying over here. It's much easier over here. And it's much more expensive in Europe."

About forty percent of the students here are Europeans, taking advantage of the drier weather conditions to speed along their training. Training in Europe can be difficult because of rain and fog, and can take twice as long.

"You can work here until you can get a job at an airliner," Olof explains. "And for me, I can probably get enough hours to be hired back home in Sweden.

Most of the other students came from all over the country, like Tim Dowd. Tim came here after leaving the military. He finished his training, and now works as a flight instructor.

"We got the opportunity to fly a lot because of the weather here," Tim says, "and the availability of the airplanes. The next step for me would be a commuter airline, and I'll be ready for it."

Whether national or international, students are flocking to East Texas, where the skies are dry and friendly.