ORLANDO, Fla., April 17, 2014 – Boeing [NYSE: BA] worked to inspire the next generation of aviation professionals by bringing them to the largest gathering of flight training professionals in the Americas, the World Aviation Training Symposium (WATS) in Orlando, Fla.
For the second year in a row, Boeing Flight Services, a business unit of Boeing’s Commercial Aviation Services, invited two Washington state high school students to attend the training conference. The students—with varied educational experience, including attending a traditional high school and matriculating in an online educational program—were selected based on compelling essays they submitted as part of a program sponsored by Boeing and Washington Aerospace Scholars.
“We speak often about the tremendous demand for aviation professionals we’re facing over the next 20 years,” said Sherry Carbary, vice president of Flight Services, Boeing Commercial Airplanes. “To meet that demand, we have an obligation to the next generation of pilots, technicians and flight crews. We need to show them what’s exciting about working in our industry, allowing our most promising students to get a front-row seat to the latest in aviation training techniques. We need their energy for the future, so we’re investing in them today.”
Ethan Baker, 17, of Battle Ground, Wash., attends Freedom Project Education, an online school, and hopes to receive his private and commercial pilot’s license upon graduation. He recently began logging the 40 hours of flight required for a private license.
“Flying is a career I have always had a passion to pursue,” said Baker. “I have completed my first hour of flight time. I have flown in a Cessna 172 out of a private airstrip. I have also flown a Commander twin turbo prop out of Portland International airport. Both experiences were amazing and I can’t wait to get up in the air again.”
Kacie Salmon, a junior at West Valley High School in Spokane, Wash., already plans to study engineering in college to better prepare herself for the highly technical field of aviation.
“I've lived my whole life in the city of Spokane, 15 minutes away from an airfield named Felts Field,” she said. “The field has a cafe within their main building, and every Saturday morning for most of my childhood, my dad would take me there and point out the small two-seater planes to me as they took off and landed. My dad has always held a childlike awe for airplanes, and I am glad that he passed his fascination with planes on to me.”
Boeing continues to inspire the pilots, engineers and scientists of tomorrow through innovative initiatives and programs designed to help them prepare for technical jobs and careers. By supporting parents and teachers, and by investing in the areas of math, science and literacy, Boeing is helping prepare students to meet future challenges.
Washington Aerospace Scholars (WAS) is an educational program for high school juniors from across the state of Washington, emphasizing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Students must have a minimum 3.0 (out of 4.0) cumulative grade point average to apply and participate in a NASA-designed curriculum and a summer program at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. Boeing has provided grant funding to WAS since its inception in 2006.
# # #
About the Boeing Edge
Boeing offers a comprehensive portfolio of commercial aviation services, collectively known as the Boeing Edge, bringing value and advantages to customers and the industry. Boeing Flight Services provides integrated offerings to drive optimized performance, efficiency and safety through advanced flight, maintenance and cabin safety training as well as simulator support and services through a global network of campuses on six continents.
Boeing Flight Services, Commercial Aviation Services