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The St. Mary’s Ryken Flight Academy is an interactive classroom space that provides all students with an opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding in the field of aviation.

Students on flight simulator computers

Kylan Burrell '25, Ryan Hupp '25 and Selam Taylor '25

Flight Simulators

In the Flight Academy, students will use flight simulators to get the feeling for what it is like to be a pilot and see how math and science principles are used in flight. 


Students enrolled in the Scholars Program Engineering Pathway, which focuses on Aerospace Engineering, benefit from the simulators which will be integrated into their curriculum.

"The Flight Academy allowed us to take what we learned in our Aerospace class, namely about how a plane moves and how its instruments function, and compare it to an actual simulation of a plane flying.It allowed us to understand the topics better by seeing how they would actually occur as opposed to just being told how they function."

Jack DeLucco, SMR '23 Scholars Program Engineering Graduate

Ryan Hupp, Class of '25

President Rick Wood with members of the Patuxent Partnership in the St. Mary's Ryken Flight Academy

President Rick Wood, Patuxent Partnership Board of Directors and SMR students during the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony in May 2022.

"I would like to thank Bonnie Green, Lyn Whitmer and everyone from the Patuxent Partnership that had the vision to bring this program to St. Mary’s County. We are blessed as a school to receive such a great gift of the flight simulators to connect our students to experiential learning through aviation and STEM. Your labor will bear continuous fruit for our student body and our community in educating our young people through challenging, story-driven experiences where they can solve real-world problems in a fast-paced, immersive environment. Not only is this a perfect marriage with our Project Lead the Way Aerospace Engineering program, but many other subject areas will be able to take advantage of this educational experience. Through summer camps and afterschool programs, our middle and elementary school students will have access to aviation and avionics. There are only a few opportunities in this country for students to have access to this curriculum and technology and St. Mary’s Ryken is proud to provide these experiences to our community because of the Patuxent Partnership’s generosity."

Dr. Rick Wood, St. Mary's Ryken President & CEO

The Flight Academy is also available for SMR Summer Knights Camps, middle school STEM activities and special programs open to the public throughout the school year.

Students exploring other curriculums also have access to the space through various club and extracurricular activities with a focus on sustainability, the environment and math.