A.T.C. Flight Training Center has guided fledgling pilots through the skies with FAA-certified instruction since 1991, emphasizing good judgment, quick decision making, and practical skill. With approval from the Secret Service and FBI, and permission slips signed by their mothers, the seasoned instructors teach their flight courses in an airborne classroom high above the Potomac River. They lay out a clear path for students to earn FAA private-pilot certification through classroom lectures, hands-on flight instruction, and the Jeppesen ground and flight syllabus. Flight lessons aboard the center's two Cessna 172 planes cover basic flight techniques, such as fending off territorial weather balloons, before moving on to jaunts to other airports, night flying, and more advanced skills.
Already experienced pilots can instead embark on leisurely trips in a Cessna 182, outfitted with GPS navigation and autopilot. At the center's shop, staffers further outfit pilots with headsets, charts, and approach plates, as well as ASA training materials, aviation books, and films about flight.