October 3, 2010

Wow, it’s October and that means I’ve been at Embry-Riddle for more than a month now. It has been a great experience so far. A lot of events have been happening on campus. We’ve had an activities fair which was a lot of fun. All the clubs and organizations had a booth and you could easily walk up to them and get more information. We have such a variety and diverse selection of clubs on campus. From Up ‘til Dawn who raises money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to the skydiving club, it really is amazing the number of choices you have. We’ve also learned of the wild weather Florida goes through. We’ve had days of pure sunshine to our first washout day where it was completely cloudy all day and rained for the majority. We also had our first tornado warning which was huge amount of fun. Our group of friends got our CodeRed phone call warning us of the situation and since we lived in McKay, which is the best dorm, it is also the most open; we decided to run through the rain into Doolittle, which is basically the oldest yet sturdiest building on campus. Sacrifice for having to share your bathroom with seven other people. We also dealt with our first Tropical Storm. It was supposed to come right over us and dump a couple inches of rain but decided to sneak off to the east into the Ocean and gave us a couple sprinkles and some humidity.

When it comes to the weekends, they tend to be a semi-blur. If you bring your car, which freshman are allowed to do on campus, you can drive and spend the day in Orlando or drive down the coast, basically go anywhere. Sorry for our roommate and I because we don’t have a car. So when it comes to the weekend we have to entertain ourselves around campus, which isn’t too difficult but not as fun as Disney World or Universal Studios.

Classes this past month have been pretty easy to say the least. I lucked out this semester and get to sleep in on Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays till 9:30 am and get up for flight on the other days varying between 7:00 and 9:00. It all depends on what activity I’m doing; flight activity can be a flight, an oral, or a simulator session. Speaking of flying, it has been an amazing experience. Now remember, I came to Embry Riddle with only my Discovery flight under my belt, so everything is brand new to me. I have been told by my teacher and my advisor and have seen it first-hand that every now and then you will have a bad flight. Things just don’t go right and you get out of the plane after completing your shutdown and secure checklist and just feel terrible. You just have to realize that it will happen and it’s ok. When mine happened, my flight instructor was showing me a maneuver and I tried it and it wasn’t too good. I tried again and nothing improved. You aren’t going to be a marvelous pilot over night. You’re going to have your ups and your downs, some more than others, but overall you will love the experience.

We actually just completed doing our stall maneuvers. A stall is a technical definition of when the airplane exceeds it’s critical angle of attack and doesn’t generate enough lift. In layman’s terms, the airplane is pitched up high enough and is going a certain speed that the plane begins to fall. So my flight instructor and I are performing the 2 types of stalls; power-off and power-on, which just configure the airplane into different settings. We had the airplane pitched up that you could only see sky and waited and waited until that speed showed up on the airspeed indicator. Then all of a sudden we hear the stall warning horns go off and then we pitch down and fall slightly. Then we go full throttle and recover from the stall. It is nerve wracking at first but it was one of the most fun maneuvers that we have done, and really good experience to have.

That pretty much wraps up my month at Riddle. I will be going home for fall break which is October 22, just a four day weekend, but long enough to see friends and family, and catch up on my brothers and his fiancés’ wedding. Again you can add me on facebook. Also, I encourage you to come to Embry Riddle’s Open House which is October 30. Here is the link to sign up and I also encourage you to join our official Class of 2015 group on Facebook.
Alex Munro, over and out!

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Alex

About Alex

Minor: Applied Meteorology
Career Goals: To become a pilot for a major airline, hopefully one day Southwest Airlines.
Why I chose Embry-Riddle: I was born in the United Kingdom and moved to the United States when I was six, traveling between the countries I became a frequent flier. Ever since walking into that cockpit when I was 5, I always dreamed about becoming an airline pilot. One day, I searched online for the best school to become a pilot. Result: Embry-Riddle.

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