By SAVERN LAU
Campers and other students in the area can continue exploring the many aspects of aviation throughout the year, by participating in the Central Jersey Aviation Education Science Club (CJAESC).
Based at Alexandria Airport, the club educates students about Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) through aviation. The club is open to all Central Jersey students between fourth to 12th grades and is led by Castner and Delaware Valley Regional High School science teacher Jim Gessner.
This club has done many activities, such as visiting aviation-related facilities like the BASF hangar at Morristown Municipal Airport and MAN Diesel facility in Woodbridge, N.J. These were really great tours of the facilities and explanations of the companies. The club also has hosted events like the Hunterdon County Celebrating Tourism and Aviation Event on May 8, 2012, and an Aviation Education Forum.
Even with all these activities, the club has no membership fee. This is made possible by two major sources of funding. One is scholarships and donations from local businesses. The other source of income is the club’s Courtesy Car. The 2011 Sonata hybrid car was donated by Muller Hyundai and the decals by Mighty Monkey Media. The courtesy car is extremely important because it is the only source of regular income for the club. These funds are what allow the club to purchase materials and keep costs low.
The Courtesy Car works like this: Pilots fly into Alexandria Field and borrow the Courtesy Car. When they bring it back to the airport, they are only expected to fill the tank. However, donations are appreciated, large or small. This past year, the courtesy car has made more than $600 in donations from 15 people from across the East Coast who flew into Alexandria and used the car, plus food sales at the Tourism Event.
But why borrow the Courtesy Car? Well when you borrow it, the club gives you the Hunterdon County Adventure Package — an idea supported by the Hunterdon County Chamber of Commerce tourism members. It is a bundle of coupons to local businesses from restaurants to golf courses to hotels and shops.
The CJAESC is a great club for teens who want to learn about aviation. The club is really dependent on the courtesy car to provide needed funds, so if you are ever flying to Alexandria Field, please consider using our Courtesy Car!