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ISTAT University

Interested in an exciting career in aviation finance and trading, one of the world's fastest growing and most dynamic industries? You're in the right place.




ISTAT University, or ISTAT U, was lauched in 2015; the program provides an overview of the many facets of the aviation finance and leasing industry and exposes students to real world concepts and methodologies. The course materials have been developed by the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) faculty working in partnership with ISTAT industry practitioners. The ISTAT U curriculum has been specifically tailored to help prepare students for internship as well as long term career opportunities in the exciting field of aviation finance, leasing and trading. The six credit hour course covers aviation finance topics such as:

  • Aircraft leasing
  • Risk management
  • Aviation legal framework
  • Aircraft funding
  • Maintenance reserves
  • Lease negotiation
  • Transaction modeling

ISTAT U is currently available in two different formats, ISTAT U 1.0 and ISTAT U 2.0. Both formats offer students the opportunity to earn six credit hours and a program completion certificate.


ISTAT U 1.0 is an on-campus format, available only to qualified students enrolled in ERAU, Daytona Beach, FL, USA. The two course format spans two semesters, and students can elect to enroll in January or September of each year. Completion of both courses is required to receive a program completion certificate.


ISTAT U 2.0 is available to qualified students from around the world by way of a web-based format. Students can apply in the spring up until two weeks prior to the start date of the first course. Three courses are offered between October and May; course one runs from October – December, course two runs from January – March and course three runs from March – May. The three courses must be completed in the specified order as each course is a pre-requisite for the following course. Upon completion of all three courses, students will receive a program completion certificate.

The ISTAT U 2.0 is facilitated by faculty members at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) Daytona Beach Campus through the ERAU Worldwide platform. All course instruction and assignments will be accessible online. The course is asynchronous which means that students will access the modules on their own time. The due dates for assignments and exams will be set in EST, and students from other time zones will have to submit accordingly. There are no on-campus course requirements. Students are eligible to receive course credit upon completion of the program.

Disclaimer: Course credit granted for both ISTAT U 1.0 and ISTAT U 2.0 is to be determined by your university.

View ISTAT U Brochure

How to Apply

Applications for the 2018 ISTAT U Programs will be available in spring 2018. Before submitting an application, please carefully review the admission requirements to ensure you quality for the program. If you do not meet the requirements noted below, we are unfortunately unable to accept your application. The ISTAT U 2.0 Program is geared towards graduate-level (master's) students. The acceptance criteria for undergraduates will be more rigorous.

Admission Requirements

  • Enrolled in the final year of an undergraduate-level (bachelors) program at an accredited college or university, or enrolled in a graduate-level program (masters) or above at an accredited college or university
  • Students must hold an academic ranking within the top 25% (75 - 100%) or United States Grade Point Average of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale
  • Previous coursework in finance and accounting
  • Area(s) of study to include finance, accounting, economics and/or business

Required Documentation

  • Official transcripts from undergraduate (bachelors) and graduate (masters) programs
  • Placement test scores (e.g. GRE, GMAT, etc.)
  • Resume/CV
  • Personal statement (not to exceed one page):
    Describe your interest in commercial aviation as it relates to what ISTAT member companies engage in.

Note: If your university's primary language is not English, then you must provide English proficiency test scores (e.g. TOEFL, etc.)


The tuition for the 2018 ISTAT U Programs will be posted in spring 2018. The Scholarship Program offers scholarships of up to $3,000 USD to select ISTAT U students. If you are interested in receiving scholarship support, be sure to indicate your interest in your ISTAT U application. Funding is limited.

Helping Students Thrive

It was quite an honor to be one of the first ten graduates of the ISTAT University Program. ISTAT U’s aim is to prepare of future leasing professionals by concentrating on all necessary perspectives, including finance modeling analysis, fleet-selection strategy, maintenance reserves, risk management, market trends, and so on. There is no doubt that I benefitted from the program, which allows me to think about the proper future career path, and pay close attention to the development of aviation industry.

– Di Qui, MBA, Aviation Management and MSc, Aviation Finance, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Daytona Beach Completed ISTAT U 1.0 in December 2015

The ISTAT U program online brought together aviation enthusiasts all around the world to learn about this fast growing branch. The video interviews with senior ISTAT contributors taught me about various areas of the industry.

– Joël Wagner, MSc, Cranfield University Completed ISTAT U 2.0 in May 2017