Initially the college came into existence as a result of an extreme necessity to solve a military problem plaguing the 5 Fighter Wing (the premier jet fighter unit of the Philippine Air Force) located in the terminal town of Floridablanca, Pampanga. The nearest town the community offering the secondary and tertiary level of education at that time is located in the town of Guagua, Pampanga which involved travel of seventeen (17) kilometers of rough roads from the Air Base. Travel is dangerous then beacause Basa Air Base in the midst of Huklandia (NPA). The 5th Fighter Wing is the only unit of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) handling jet fighter aircraft, and its highly skilled personnel cannot be transferred to the other Bases of (PAF) where the government can use them without wasting heavy investment in their training abroad. Request for the transfer and application for discharge among the military personnel were frequent because they and their children were desirous of pursuing higher education, had to go to elsewhere because there was no secondary available education with the vicinity. After repeated request to the DECS, the invitations to private sectors to establish a tertiary level education failed. The community pooled their resource to comply substantially with the initial requirements of the bureau of Public Schools and established a community schools. The base authorities repaired a dilapidated building to temporary classrooms, and extended the use of other facilities including their training aids and apparatus.
On 1977, President Marcos signed Presidential Decree No. 1078 converting Basa Air Base Community College to Philippine Air Force College of Aeronautics with its main campus in Villamor Air Base, Pasay City, Metro Manila. Although with state college status, its charter did not provide for government subsidy as it was considered as a non-profit and non-stock educational institution. Aside from Villamor Air Base and Basa Air Base, additional campuses was also created in Sangley Air Base, Fernando Air Base, and Mactan Air Base. During this period, it was envisioned by Philippine Air Force authorities to be the Philippine Air Force Academy to solve its problem in the procurement and training of its officer pilots through the merging of the Philippine Air Force Flying School and the Philippine Air Force Regular Officer Procurement Program. President Corazon C. Aquino approved the Republic Act No. 7605 converting Philippine Air Force College of Aeronautics to Philippine State College of Aeronautics. In 1994, its Board of Trustees approved the creation of its own flight school that will train students for private pilot and commercial pilot.
In 1997, it acquired its first trainer plane — a Tampico STB9-C aircraft (RP 2200) which was donated by Senator Raul Roco from his country-wide development fund and another Tampico STB9-C aircraft (RP 2204) was purchased for P10 million from PhilSCA Development Fund on June 3, 1992.
The original location of PhilSCA was located in Manlunas St. in Villamor Air Base, Pasay City (currently Newport City) but due to the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA), the portion of Villamor Air Base bought to the Megaworld Corporation.