Aerospace Education

Aerospace Education is one of the three mission elements of CAP. The mission of AE is to educate, inspire, and instill an appreciation for and an understanding of aerospace in today and tomorrow's world. We promote aerospace to our members and the general public.

Aerospace Education teaches about aviation in all forms. Whether discussing the aerodynamics of aircraft lift and thrust to the Wright Brothers or the NASA Shuttle Missions, cadets as well as senior members (adults) learn about various aspects of aviation. Cadets also participate in orientation flights flown by trained CAP pilots in general aviation aircraft.

If you are already a member, click here to go to AE's main page. Not a member? Continue reading, and consider joining as an Aerospace Education Member (AEM)! This unique membership category is designed for educators or others involved in promoting aerospace education in classrooms, museums, or other youth organizations.  

Teaching Ordinary Subjects in Extraordinary Ways

Civil Air Patrol (CAP) promotes and supports aerospace education, both for its own members and the general public. CAP educational programs help prepare American citizens to meet the challenges of a sophisticated aerospace society and understand its related issues.

CAP offers national standards-based educational products, including a secondary textbook, Aerospace: The Journey of Flight, and the middle-school-level Aerospace Dimensions. Teachers can get free classroom materials and lesson plans from CAP by joining CAP’s Aerospace Education Membership program.

At Civil Air Patrol, the volunteer auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, we're helping develop tomorrow's aerospace workforce.

Through our award-winning MARS program, we offer teachers:
  • Free national standards-based aerospace education materials (for homeschoolers, too!)
  • Awards, such as AEX, for schools that adopt aerospace education into their curricula
  • Grants available from Air Force Association to incorporate aerospace into the classroom
  • Low-cost aerospace textbooks for grades 6-12
  • Aerospace education newsletters full of useful information
  • Orientation flights in powered aircraft
  • Aerospace-oriented summer workshops
  • Aerospace education speakers and resources nationwide

We offer students (who are CAP Cadets):cadets w/ airplane
Click here for information about Cadet Programs.

  • Orientation flights
  • Encampment opportunities
  • Scholarships
  • Career Exploration Activities

CAP's aerospace education programs are nationally recognized:

  • Recipient of the Air Force Association's Vandenberg Award, the National Aeronautics Association's Brewer Trophy, and the Space Foundation's Education Achievement Award.
  • Website awarded USA TODAY'S Best Bet for Educators

Let Civil Air Patrol introduce you to MARS!

Become an Aerospace Education Member of CAP today! As a 501(c)3 nonprofit, humanitarian corporation, CAP more than returns your $35 membership dues in free programs, products and services.

2 men dressed as astronauts on Mars