June 26, 2020
INDIANAPOLIS – The donation of a Gulfstream IV jet aircraft from the
pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly will help Vincennes University
provide a competitive advantage to Aviation Maintenance students
through honing their skills and knowledge with first-rate technology.
Photo of Gulfstream IV donated to VU
Lilly has donated the aircraft to students pursuing degrees in Aviation
Maintenance Technology at VU’s Aviation Technology Center (ATC)
ATC Director Michael Gehrich said, “I am proud to announce we are
adding a Gulfstream IV to our fleet of aircraft for our students to
train on. Lilly's donation of this GIV will be yet another important
way for VU to set our program apart from other aviation programs.
Michael Gehrich, VU ATC Director
“This plane will expand our student's training experience in the
corporate aircraft maintenance area and allow them even more
opportunities with employers who service these types of aircraft. This
is an area of our program that has been challenging to address in the
past simply due to the expense of these types of aircraft. Without the
support of Lilly and their donation of the GIV we simply wouldn't be
able to provide this type of training.”
Lilly delivered the jet on June 26 to VU’s Aviation Technology Center
located on the property of the Indianapolis International Airport.
“Lilly is a longstanding advocate for quality education in the STEM
disciplines – science, technology, engineering and math – especially
within our home state of Indiana,” said Scott Farrar, senior director
of aviation operations at Lilly. “Through this donation to Vincennes
University, we hope that students pursuing careers in aviation
maintenance will have access to additional hands-on learning and
application. It is a privilege to collaborate with VU to help prepare
future aviators and aviation mechanics.”
VU’s ATC has established an impressive reputation for its
state-of-the-art aviation facility and first-class aviation training programs.
Amy Pena, VU Student
“I was thrilled to know that we were receiving a donation,” VU
Aviation Maintenance student Amy Pena of Indianapolis said. “It's a
great learning opportunity for all of us students at the ATC and we
are so grateful. I am sure we'll all have a fantastic time having our
first look at it.”
Eli Lilly’s donation will allow students to put their training and
knowledge to practice before they enter the workforce.
“The biggest benefit is getting well-rounded experience on different
kinds of aircraft before we even enter the workforce,” Pena said. “We
are able to get familiar with aircraft we have never seen before or
worked on before. Having a variety of aircraft at our school allows me
to know what part of the industry I'd even be interested in! I can
take a peek at what general aviation is like, commercial, and now
In addition to the Gulfstream IV, the ATC is one of only a few
schools that houses a fully functioning Boeing 737 airliner used
solely for maintenance training. The facility is home to the most
advanced aviation labs, testing equipment, and fully operational
maintenance hangars along with full classroom and library facilities
and immediate airfield access.
“We are proud of our program and the demand for our graduates from
the aviation industry,” Gehrich said. “Employers are always impressed
with our graduates' abilities right out of school. Much of our success
is due to our curriculum, lab equipment, and trainer aircraft.”
To learn more about VU’s Aviation Maintenance Technology program and
Aviation Flight Technology programs, visit https://www.vinu.edu/web/atc/home.