Baylor University’s Institute for Air Science Welcomed Renowned Pilot to Spring Banquet

Gene Nora Jessen
Gene Nora Jessen file photo.
April 28, 2015

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Media contact: Tonya Lewis, (254) 710-4656

WACO, Texas (April 28, 2015) – Baylor University’s Institute for Air Science welcomed renowned author and pilot Gene Nora Jessen to its sixth annual Aviation Science Spring Banquet last Friday, April 24.

Jessen, the former president of International 99s and a Mercury 13 test pilot, discussed her book, “The Fabulous Flight of the Three Musketeers,” at the banquet. Her memoir tells the story of the 1962 development and introductory flight of the Musketeer airplane.

“I was hired by Beech Aircraft Corporation in Witchita, Kansas, in 1962 to participate in the introduction of their new model of the Musketeer,” Jessen said. “We flew a flight of three Musketeers across the contiguous 48 states on a 90-day demonstration flight, which was quite the adventure.”

Jessen claims that the future of aviation is limitless, making it an excellent career choice for young people.

“When I learned to fly in 1956, we never dreamed of aviation today – just as my father told me of his amazement watching the first airplane fly over the farm 90 years ago,” Jessen said. “Of course the electronics will advance faster than we can keep up. The brilliant minds which design airplanes and space vehicles will continue to astonish us. The future of aviation is boundless, and I’m confident it’s a wise choice for young people looking for a challenging career.”

The Baylor Institue for Air Science’s annual Aviation Science Spring Banquet provided students with the chance to meet and mingle with honored guests, fellow program alumni, students, partners and friends of the program to help honor the accomplishments of future aviation professionals.

The mission of the Baylor University Institute for Air Science is to educate a new generation of dedicated aviation professionals, advance understanding of the aerospace environment and promote the academic and spiritual growth of students.

“I’m looking at aviation as a more fulfilling career,” Jessen said. “Transportation, military aviation and space flight can only grow exponentially. Though the Wright brothers were on aviation’s ground floor, it keeps moving, and we’re still on the ground today. We have to run to keep up, but what a fun run.”

For more information on Baylor’s Institute for Air Science, click here.

by Ashton Brown, student newswriter, (254) 710-6805


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution, characterized as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University provides a vibrant campus community for approximately 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions. Baylor sponsors 19 varsity athletic teams and is a founding member of the Big 12 Conference.

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