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Program News

Program News

February 13, 2017 - Tunisia Leads the Way in Aviation Safety and Security
Tunisia - from the crossroads of civilization to the modern world of aviation. Image Credit: Ludmiła Pilecka via Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

Tunisia boasts a long, rich, and storied history, but today this North African country is leading the way in their pursuit of Aviation excellence.  The FTPL (Federation of Tunisian Line Pilots), recently partnered with IFALPA to host a course in Aviation Security and Security Management Systems (SeMS) conducted by the University of Southern California’s Aviation Safety and Security program. This course was the first of it’s kind for some of the students, as SeMS is a subject that is at the forefront of aviation.  It applies the principles of system management to aviation security.  

The Aviation Security Program Management course was held on January 23-26, 2017 in La Marsa, Tunisia.  Attendees included pilots from Tunis Air, Air Algerie, Kenya Air and  Airlines from Senegal and Cote d’Ivoire.  There were representatives from Air Traffic Control and Airport administrators from the Tunis International Airport.  Also in attendance, was the Vice Chairman Security Committee representative from ALPA,  Jeroen Kruse.  Elyes Mnakbi, the CEO of TUNISAIR, and Khaled Chelly, the CEO of the Airport Authority, came to present certificates to students on the last day of the class.  Also there to celebrate the graduates, were representatives from the CAA, US and British embassies.  

The host organization, FTPL, strives to maintain the highest level of aviation safety in Tunisia.   It is a National organization headed by it’s dedicated and passionate president, Karim Elloumi.  Mr. Elloumi himself has completed all the required courses and has earned the Aviation Safety Program certificate from USC.  

There is a movement to bring continuing education to the area and it’s Aviation professionals. In 2015, they hosted a course in Human Factors.  And, some of the students have traveled great distances to partake in courses that count toward the University of Southern California’s certificate programs in Safety and Security. 

Tunisia’s commendable endeavor to lead the way in aviation safety and security set the example for other organizations to step forward to promote the integration of SMS and SeMS.

If you are interested in hosting a class for your organization, please contact our Contract Course Coordinator, Holly Inaba, at:


December 16, 2016 - USC Conducts a Systems Safety Course in the Netherlands


USC traveled to the Netherlands to teach the Systems Safety course for the Royal Netherlands Air force.  Attending the class were both military engineers and civilian engineers who support military aviation projects.  They were instructed in system safety engineering and management with emphasis on complex, high technology systems. 

If you are interested in hosting a class for your organization, please contact our Contract Course Coordinator, Holly Inaba, at:


November 11, 2016 - USC Completes Another Successful Safety Management for Remotely Piloted Aircraft Course

November 4, 2016 - USC Teaches Aircraft Accident Investigation in Dublin, Ireland


IFALPA hosted USC's Aircraft Accident Investigation course in Dublin, Ireland in November.  Our USC instructors were joined by professional pilots and airline administrators from 15 different countries, including: Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, France, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, South Korea, Lebanon, Netherlands, New Zealand, Senegal, Tunisia, and Ukraine.  Students learned all apects of the investigation process, from preperation for investigation through report writing.   Students learned investigation techniques, including data collection, wreckage reconstruction, and cause analysis.

If you are interested in hosting a class for your organization, please contact our Contract Course Coordinator, Holly Inaba, at:

November 1, 2016 - New USC Course, Data for Safety Management

The Aviation Safety and Security Program announces a new course, Data for Safety Magement.  This practical, hands-on approach to the handling and analysis of flight data will first run December 12-16, 2016, for four and a half days.  This course will feature actual collection and analysis of real-time flight data, and cover the following topics:
  • FOQA Programs
  • FDR's, QAR's, CVR's
  • ADS-B
  • Animation of Flight Data
  • Basic Statistical Tools
  • International Standards
  • Case Studies
  • Commercial Safety Data Services
  • Flight data in supporting accident/incident investigation
To register for this new course, please visit our online registration portal, or contact our Registration Office.

November 12, 2015 - Aircraft Accident Investigation Laboratory Hosts Panel Discussion on the Future of Drones
 From left to right: Andy Thurling, Dr. Nora Ayanian, Harrision Wolf, and Thomas Anthony.

On November 11, the Aviation Safety & Security Program's Aircraft Accident Investigation Laboratory hosted a panel discussion on the future of remotely piloted aircraft, or drones.  The event, organized by the Program and the USC Alumni Veterans Network, featured a panel discussion that answerd questions from and provoked disucssion amongst the venterans and the greater USC alumni community.

The discussion panel, moderated by Director Thomas Anthony, included the following experts:
Instructor and Unmanned Aircraft Systems Program Manager Harrision Wolf speaks during the discussion.

This panel discussion came about through The Aviation Safety & Security Program's Unmanned Aircraft Systems Program, which is centered around the semiannual Safety Management Systems for Remotely Piloted Vehicles course.  Anyone interested in this effor may enroll in the course, which will again take place April 18-22, 2016.

June 26, 2015 - Online Registration Now Available For All Classes Offered 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.