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Distinguished Lecture Series: Barrington Irving

co-hosted by the Center for Aviation Studies and College of Engineering
Wednesday, October 4, 2017, 6:00 pm
The Blackwell Inn and Conference Center
2110 Tuttle Park Place
Columbus, OH 43210

Agenda for the evening:

6:00 - 6:30pm: Keynote Address by Cpt. Barrington Irving
6:30 - 7:30pm: Panel Discussion on Diversity and Inclusion in the Aviation Industry

Dr. Elizabeth K. Newton, Director of the Battelle Center


  • Captain Barrington Irving
  • Dr. John Horack, Neil Armstrong Chair in Aerospace Policy
  • Captain Bex Roman-Amador, JetBlue, A320/321
  • First Officer David Pettet- Executive Director, National Gay Pilots Association (NGPA)
  • Dr. Aimee Kennedy, Senior Vice President, Philanthropy and Education, Battelle

Captain Barrington Irving has traveled to 50 countries, conducted more than 30 STEM expeditions, and successfully challenged middle school students to build a car faster than a Ferrari 430 and then high schoolers to build a plane he flew on its test flight. In 2007, he set two world records—at age 23—as the youngest person and first black pilot to fly solo around the world. He has a passion to explore, inspire, and educate others. Now 33, Barrington is an explorer that investigates real world STEM problems across the globe. Launched in 2014, the Flying Classroom is a K-8 STEM+ digital curriculum that challenges students to design innovative solutions to the problems he investigates.

Before launching the Flying Classroom, Barrington created a nonprofit, Experience Aviation, which offers hands-on, STEM-based programs and career guidance to middle and high school students in Florida, Texas, Georgia and Detroit.

Born in Kingston, Jamaica and brought up in inner-city Miami, Barrington was inspired to pursue aviation at age 15, when a Jamaican airline pilot offered to mentor him.  He rejected college football scholarships to pursue a career in STEM and never looked back.

A Magna Cum Laude graduate of Florida Memorial University, Barrington was the recipient of a Congressional Resolution acknowledging his pioneering work in aviation education.