Ryan Cooney

“After graduating high school, I attended George Mason University for a year, took a year off, and then transferred to Vermont Tech. The transition from high school to college really made me aware of what it meant to be truly independent. It also made me much more social and outgoing. The transition from one college to another was actually easier than I imagined. That transition also showed me how I could make decisions that altered what I’d thought I’d wanted to with life, and was a real leap of faith. I’m happy with the change I made and wouldn’t change it at all.”

“I chose Vermont Tech because it was close to home, affordable, and provided a quality education. The high placement of graduates within their field of study was also a huge reason behind my coming here.”

“I’ve always been interested in aviation but never considered it a career until I’d already spent a year studying Government and International Politics. I realized I wanted to make a change, and being a pilot sounded like a really great way to spend a career.”

“The classes for our program are fantastic at preparing you for almost any career in aviation. The faculty are excellent. One in particular, Craig Popkess, has some great experiences he shares with students. His classes are some of my favorites as he always presents the material in fun and engaging ways.”

“The faculty all around have been very supportive. Bonnie Lord, in the library, took me on as a work-study student on day one, and I’ve been in this position for three years now. Robin Guillian, our program director, helped me to get an internship with the Airport Operations team at Burlington International Airport, and helped me get hired on as a tutor. Jason Enser, our Dean of Students, even recommended that I apply to be the Student Trustee on the VSCS Board of Trustees, a position I was very happy to apply for and be accepted to.”

“My hope is to one day fly cargo operations with FedEx and UPS being my top two choices of companies to fly for.”

“I’m not currently employed in aviation but stay near the airport by working with Hertz. My hobbies include reading, both for fun and to stay aware of what is happening in the transportation industry, golfing, spending time with my girlfriend and friends, traveling, and of course flying.”

Ryan’s advice to incoming students is to, “never be afraid to ask for help. The pilot group is a very tight knit one that takes care of its own. Even though you’re required, take Craig’s classes and try to get the internship with Airport ops, both are so fun and exciting opportunities. If you’re on the fence about whether aviation is for you or not, come and take a flight with a current student. Once you get in the plane, I guarantee you’ll want to come and do what we do almost every day.”

  • School

    Professional Studies and Management

  • Class of...


  • Hometown

    Springfield, VT