From Savannah to the sky’s the limit


From Savannah to the sky’s the limit

Reach higher. Michael Williams ’80 says he started his company, Jetaire Group, at age 25 because “often, I was the youngest person and only minority in the room. I saw the glass ceiling and I had to break it.”

When he did, he began to rise. Today, Jetaire is a leading provider of aviation modifications, and Williams has business relationships at home—think U.S. presidents, NASA, and the Department of Homeland Security—and across 52 countries.

The former electronics engineering technology major credits his determination partly to Savannah State, where he developed his work ethic and learned how to educate and challenge himself. “SSU gave me the discipline to face problems thoughtfully and deliberately, and to advocate for myself. I needed to know how to do that, because when starting a business, the sky’s the limit.”

Now, more than ever, Savannah State is teaching its students to see opportunities, not limitations, starting with a new two-story, 30,000-square-foot building that will house engineering technology and chemistry labs. The $20.5 million facility will have spaces for electrical and civil engineering technology students, complete with digital systems, electronics, power systems, survey labs, and construction materials.

Savannah State’s civil and electronics engineering technology programs make SSU one of only 714 schools in the world certified by the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology.

SSU gave Williams the confidence to take on challenges. He coupled his newfound drive and know-how to found a company that hasn’t had a recall since its conception more than 30 years ago.

“The legacy I’m leaving is that I made aviation safety better throughout the world. It’s what you do after you earn your degree that matters.” Seriously Impressive.

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