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Welcome to the University of Southern California Aviation Safety and Security Program.  For over half a century the USC program has served as the gold standard of aviation safety management education.  The program has developed a reputation for excellence that is recognized nationally and internationally in the aviation community.

Our program was established at USC in 1952 as the first Aviation Safety program at a major research university.  We offer 20 courses to nearly 1000 students each year in a personal, hands-on, format.  Our instructors are skilled educators with extensive industry experience, and courses are taught in small classes to facilitate classroom interaction.  Students gain the knowledge to establish safety programs, investigate aircraft accidents, become expert witnesses, and deal with human factor issues.

Individual courses are designed to provide the student with expertise in a particular subject area. While each course is constructed as a whole and taught independently of the others, those interested in preparing for a full-time career in aviation safety should consider a program of courses that provides broad knowledge. We award the University of Southern California’s Aviation Safety and Security Certificate to those successfully completing the required program. It certifies completion of training in the multidisciplinary areas of Aviation Safety Management.

More than 21,000 aviation professionals have come from over 20 nations to attend, including:

  • All major U.S. air carriers and aircraft manufacturers.
  • Many International air carriers recognized for their outstanding safety records, including QANTAS, SAS and Lufthansa
  • U.S. government agencies managing air safety and accident investigations and recommendations – the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board, and the equivalent agencies of Canada, New Zealand, France, Great Britain, Italy, Singapore, Australia, Spain, Germany and Taiwan
  • Other agencies – Forest Service, Customs Service, DEA, FBI, INS, Bureau of Land Management, Border Patrol, all branches of the military
  • Local agencies across the country such as:  the Los Angeles Police Department, Los Angeles County Fire and Sheriff’s Office, the Orange County Fire Department, the Gainsville Florida Police Department, Columbus Ohio Airport Police,  New York City Police Department as well as many others.
August 24, 2015 - Job Opening for Manager Technical Health and Safety Compliance at JetBlue Airways

JetBlue Airways is accepting applications for a Manager of Technical Health and Safety Compliance at their Long Island City, NY offices.  JetBlue Airways has provided the following job summary:

The Manager leads and oversees JetBlue Airways’ Health and Safety compliance (OSHA) programs as they relate to Tech Ops, Corporate Real Estate (CRE), Aircraft Cabin, Support Center and Airports under the direction of the Director of Ground Safety.  The Manager promotes strong safety programs and practices related to health and safety and workplace safety throughout the JetBlue system; ensures compliance with applicable regulatory standards pertaining to ground safety and crewmember health; and serves as a subject matter expert for operational departments on issues related to health and safety compliance.
Read the full job description and submit your application at
June 26, 2015 - Online Registration Now Available For All Classes Offerd in Los Angeles

The Aviation Safety & Security Program now offers online registration for all classes offered in the Los Angeles offices.  New anc continuing students may use the online registration system by visiting  There you will find all of our currently available courses, register for courses, and pay tuition with a credit or debit card, or an existing purchase order.  A brief walkthrough of the online registration system may be found here.

If you prefer to register by email for fax, or for groups of three or more, you may find our registration form here.

April 6, 2015 - Photography Instructor Tony Gasbarro Marks 25 Years of Teaching at USC

The Aviation Safety & Security program would like to congratulate Tony Gasbarro, instructor of Photography for Aircraft Accident Investigation, on 25 years of service with USC.

Along with his position as the Senior Multi-Media Investigations Specialist for the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, Mr. Gasbarro has also worked as a photographer and filmmaker with civilian agencies and military branches in Canada, the United States, Australia, Germany, and Sweden.  He has decades of experience photographing aircraft, rail, marine, and pipeline accidents across Canada and the world.

Mr. Gasbarro’ s next course in Photography for Aircraft Accident Investigation will take place October 15-16, 2015.

March 3, 2015 - Instructor Dr. Dwight Holland Selected as a Fellow to the Royal Aeronautical Society

The Aviation Safety & Security Program would like to congratulate Dr. Dwight Holland, MD, Ph.D., an instructor in Safety Management for Remotely Piloted Vehicles, on his selection as a Fellow to the Royal Aeronautical Society.

Dr. Holland is a principal with Human Factors Associates, a fellow in the Aerospace Medical Association, and an academician in the International Academy of Aviation and Space Medicine. He has served as the president of the International Association of Military Flight Surgeon Pilots and of the Space Medicine Association. In 2003, he served as the technical co-chair of the largest International Systems Engineering Conference held to date. He has over 100 academic presentations, abstracts, book chapters, journal special editions, and papers to his credit. As a U.S. Air Force Reserve officer, he has taught and co-developed the Human Factors in Flight Test courses at the Air Force and Navy test pilot schools. He holds commercial and jet ratings with over 2,000 hours’ flying time in more than 40 civil and military aircraft. He also participated as a geophysicist on a remote field expedition to the Antarctic, later writing a study comparing the human factors issues of polar exploration to those of long-duration space flight operations.

Dr. Holland joins John Cox, an instructor in Aviation Safety Management Systems, as USC instructors who are also Fellows in the Royal Aeronautical Society.

February 18, 2015 - William Rankin, Ph.D., Joins Instructor Staff

The Aviation Safety & Security Program would like to welcome William Rankin, Ph.D., to our instructor staff.  Currently the president of Wm L Rankin Consulting, Inc., he will join Robert Gould in teaching Human Factors in Aviation Maintenance.

A holder of a Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from Washington State University, Dr. Rankin performed human factors engineering in the nuclear, liquefied natural gas, and chemical processing industries before joining Boeing Commercial Aviation Services.  At Boeing, he rose to the position of Technical Fellow and Leader of the Maintenance Human Factors Group in Boeing Commercial Aviation Services.  Here, he helped customer airlines implement the Maintenance Error Decision Aid (MEDA) process, the Ramp Error Decision Aid (REDA) process, a Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) for Maintenance, a Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) for Maintenance, Ramp Line Operations Safety Assessments (LOSA), and a Safety Management System (SMS) in Maintenance & Engineering and in Ramp Operations.

Dr. Rankin has over 50 publications and received the 2010 Flight Safety Foundation/Airbus Human Factors in Aviation Safety Award, and we are excited to add USC Aviation Safety & Security Program Instructor to his already impressive resume.

Dr. Rankin’s first course will be Human Factors in Aviation Maintenance, scheduled for April 27 – May 1, 2015.