Professor Profile

Bryan Jones

The new kid on the aviation block here at Jacksonville University is Capt. Wayne Ziskal. He is the new Assistant Professor of Aeronautics in the Davis College of Business. He has a wife, four daughters, and three grandchildren.

Ziskal was born in Chicago and graduated from the University of Illinois. He has been flying for most of his life. He flew his first solo flight when he was 16.

“It’s a passion that once you have, you never lose,” Ziskal said.

Before college he spent nine years in England from the time he was 8 until he was 17. His dad was with International Harvester as a managing director of engineering.

In 1970 Ziskal graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and then embarked on a 21 year career as an officer in the U.S Air Force. In 1975 he received his Master of Education from Wayne State University in Detroit, Mich.

Now he has been with American Airlines for 35 years and a Captain for almost 25. He’s been a check pilot on four different airplanes and is currently the Captain of a Boeing 777, which he has a picture of in his office.

Ziskal is very passionate about his job.

“I like the sights, I like the travel, I like the fact that it’s a dynamic industry. I love the people I work with and I really enjoy having the responsibility for almost 300 people and a really big airplane.”

He is currently sixth in seniority at A.A, which allows him a very flexible schedule that gives him the time to teach classes here at JU.

In 2007 he began contacting all the nearby schools with an aviation program, as he was going to reach the mandatory retirement age of 60 in 2008. The retirement age has since been raised to 65, and Ziskal was hired by JU in 2010 with the stipulation that he would continue to fly for A.A.

“In fact they encouraged me to do so,” Ziskal said.

Ziskal has worked and taught in the aviation field in the three categories of civilian, military, and corporate airline.

“I felt very strongly that I could add to the very strong program that you have here, that my three career paths would be pertinent.”

So far he has taught classes at JU in airport management, air traffic control, and pilot programs.

“The instructors and students have been wonderful, I very much enjoy the enthusiasm of the students here,” Ziskal said. “I really believe this is a good program and it’s only going to get better, and I would like to help make that happen.