Miami Dade College Students to Receive the Timothy E. Johnson, Jr. Scholarships at Awards Ceremony May 31

Miami, May 19, 2016 – In honor of the late South Florida pilot, the Miami Dade College (MDC) Foundation will host the Timothy E. Johnson, Jr. Scholarships Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, May 31, at the Wolfson Campus in downtown Miami. The event is by invitation only, but is open to the working media.

The Timothy E. Johnson, Jr. Scholarship helps students interested in becoming pilots who may not otherwise be able to afford the expense. The College’s pilot students not only pay tuition for their degree in the Professional Pilot Technology program, they also have the added costs to learn to fly, with limited outside resources.

Johnson was an avid aviation enthusiast. His generosity and kindness made him a dedicated pilot who devoted his free time to saving the lives of animals through the Pilots N Paws program.

The winners are Michael Coppo, David Cunha, Mason Marelia, Sebastian Metral, Jorge Sanchez and Guillermo Suarez.

The scholarship funds will assist Aviation students in reaching their goals and potential as professional pilots at an important time when the industry is beginning to experience a shortage of pilots. Federal mandates require all newly-hired pilots to have at least 1,500 hours of prior flight experience – six times the current minimum – raising the cost and time to train new pilots in an era when pay cuts and more-demanding schedules already have made the profession less attractive. Meanwhile, thousands of senior pilots will soon start hitting the mandatory retirement.

To be considered for the award among other requirements students must be enrolled in the Professional Pilot Technology Associate in Science Program and registered for minimum 9 credits. Additionally, students must have a cumulative GPA (Grade Point Average) of 3.0 or higher and must demonstrate an aptitude, likelihood, and willingness to complete a degree in aviation. The Miami Dade College Foundation supports the mission and values of MDC by encouraging gifts from a wide variety of sources, particularly in the areas of scholarships and program support.

For more information, contact Thomas Jargiello, school director, 305-237-591,; or Nairobi Abrams, senior director of development, 305-237-3247,