At Vaughn College, we are an insatiable group of learners with curious minds, always looking to explore the dynamic aeronautical world around us. Our faculty and student body are continuously working together to discover―and overcome―limitations in the industries we serve and uncover new possibilities for the best possible future. And we are not alone in this quest.

Richard Branson is always seeking ways to redefine aeronautics―which is something we at Vaughn know a thing or two about. His recent “space-tourism” venture, Virgin Galactic, is planning to bring space travel to anyone who wants to go into orbit, experience the Earth from an unforgettable perspective, and fly with the stars―as opposed to the clouds.

The journey begins with the “SpaceShipTwo,” a rocket-powered plane that flies into space after it detaches from its mothership. The space plane travels at a speed of 2,300 miles per hour and reaches top speed in eight seconds. An interesting incentive to taking this scenic route is to reach 50 miles above Earth, which will earn each passenger astronaut wings from the USA. With the spaceship’s first successful test flight underway, Branson believes that the first flight could begin sometime this year. And many customers are ready, as Virgin Galactic already has close to 700 customers who have either put down a deposit on a ticket or have already paid in full.

And Richard Branson is not alone in outer space. Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin just completed its tenth test launch with a projection of starting flights later this year, and Elon Musk’s SpaceX Starship is currently being revamped with stainless steel. All three are orbiting in the same lofty vicinity, aspiring to be the first enterprise to bring their customers into space.

The curious minds of these three pioneers, coupled with the advances in aerospace over many decades is what―soon enough―will make space tourism an actual reality. From the first manned moon landing in 1969 via the Apollo 11 to sending robots (remember PUFFER?) to space to explore surfaces on planets such as Mars, to the groundbreaking research that crews discover in NASA’s International Space Station―space travel and discoveries have come a long way. Branson, Bezos and Musk are examples of those who are willing to go the extra mile to prove that something wonderful is just beyond the horizon.

At Vaughn, we are dedicated to challenging the current norms and naysayers to explore the possibilities of our world. We are committed to teaching, learning and growing in the fields of aviation, aeronautics, robotics, unmanned aerial vehicles (drones), and other future-forward disciplines. That’s because we know the journey is just beginning―and what a spectacular ride it will be.

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