Boos and Bravos: March 5

Bravo to cool pilot technology. For those of you who dreamed of flying when you were little, consider checking out the Polytechnic campus. Flight instructors in training are working with a new device this semester that allows them to practice various flight and training techniques on one of the most realistic simulators the campus has seen to date. Cool? We think so. Not only are there plans to integrate classes in order to take full advantage of the techology, it’s just awesome that students have access to a program developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory. We’re wondering if we can use it to train for our dream aircraft — State Press One.

Boo to Arizona education being left behind … again. Arizona was not selected as a finalist in the federal Race to the Top competition to get part of a $4 billion education grant, the largest education grant ever awarded by the U.S. government, according to The Arizona Republic. The state could have received up to $250 million to go toward education improvements. Forty states and the District of Columbia applied for the grant. Arizona created a 300-page proposal to reform education in the state, which, as we who have grown up in Arizona’s public school systems ought to know, is desperately needed. As we can clearly tell from the tuition protests happening, the state does not have the resources right now to improve education on its own. Fortunately, Arizona will have the chance to reapply in June. Let’s hope the state will move up in the class.

Bravo to Arizona for being near the top of something — tourism. Occupancy of Phoenix hotels was 56.2 percent in January, higher than the national average of 45.1 percent, according to reports conducted by Smith Travel Research, Inc., a firm tracking supply and demand in the hotel industry. While Valley events contribute to this much-needed tourism boost in tough economic times, you can also thank the very thing you’ll hate come August — the weather. With pleasant skies and warm temperatures, Phoenix is an ideal escape from winter storms right now. Let’s appreciate it while it lasts — it will be above 100 degrees before we know it.

Boo to the upcoming week before spring break. We still have a week to get through before we have a much-needed respite from going to class, but that just makes us all the more anxious to get to next Friday. With professors scheduling midterms and projects for this next week, we’re definitely feeling the pressure to get work done before we take the time for some major stress relief. It might be just a few more days before we’re free of school, but in the meantime we’ll keep asking: Is it spring break yet?

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