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Board Liaison: Ursula Richards (contact form)


The AAAA Education Committee provides the necessary support for seminars and ground schools. Its mission is to provide quality training to AAAA members and the public on various aspects of ballooning. Contact the Education Committee Chair for more information.

It takes more than just getting your pilot’s license to become a good, safe pilot. It requires more than just crewing a few times to become a good crew member. Our educational programs and ground schools promote continued learning and increased crew and pilot safety and awareness.

Our goal is to keep the AAAA members informed and educated on the safety, operational, and regulatory aspects of hot air ballooning at a reasonable rate. Our seminars are continuously updated with state-of-the-art presentation techniques.

All AAAA Instructors and Volunteers donate their time and expertise to help educate you. Please thank them for taking valuable time off from ballooning!

Seminars and Ground Schools

To fulfill the mission, the AAAA Education Committee produces ground schools for both private and commercial certificate-seeking individuals and a safety seminar during the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

Ground Schools

We now offer two options for ground school, in-person and online. The in-person ground schools are held in February for private certificates, and April for commercial. If there is a sufficient demand, we may offer a June private certificate session. These in-person sessions are held over a weekend, starting Friday night, and continuing all day Saturday and Sunday. The online versions are available whenever you are ready to start. Once enrolled you’ll have 6 months of work at your own pace to complete the ground school. If you complete the course in 6 months, we will extend your access to the material to one year from your original enrollment day. Both the in-person and online versions come with a 60-day endorsement to take the written FAA test and include the books and other materials you’ll need for the course. Registration for both in-person and online courses is through the AAAA Online Store.

Balloon Fiesta Safety Seminar

The Balloon Fiesta Safety Seminar is usually held on the Tuesday of Balloon Fiesta each week at the Sid Cutter Pilots Pavilion on Balloon Fiesta Park.  The 4-hour session is BFA-sanctioned and is always well-attended. The sessions are recorded and the recordings are available for viewing at a reduced price at the AAAA Online Store.
Note:  For 2024 the date is Tuesday, Oct 8, 2024, at the Sid Cutter Pavilion.


We offer an excellent selection of books and supplies about ballooning, regulations, ground school requirements, and aviation so you don’t have to travel all around to get what you need. We bring these items to AAAA meetings for your convenience or you can order them online with shipping or free local pickup.

More Education Resources

Additional resources can be found on our resources page.

Youth Committee

The Youth Committee is a sub-committee of Education. Read more about the program and activities on the Youth Committee page.

Committee Meetings

The Education Committee meets at 6 PM on the second Monday of every month (except for October ) at the Balloon Fiesta Office and over Zoom.
We’re always looking for people interested in ballooning education. If you’d like to assist with AAAA’s educational events, please contact the Board Liaison.

Education Calendar

View or subscribe to the Calendar

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