Bill Poindexter Gold Country Media
Auburn Aviation, Experimental Aircraft Association offer air academy, pilot training scholarships
December 4, 2020
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  • Jack Bell is in flight school in the Navy. Christian Watt is a flight tech engineer working on CH-53K helicopters at Pax River Naval Air Station in Maryland. Ethan Glover is an Air Force Academy graduate and flies F-15s. James Jacobson flies for SkyWest Airlines. Renata Mackenroth studies at Utah State and serves as a mentor to other kids.

    All were scholarship earners with the Auburn Aviation Association and Auburn Chapter 526 of the Experimental Aircraft Association, and it’s that time again. Six scholarships are open for applications to people ages 16-23. Visit to apply.

    “Our success rate is phenomenal. We’re drawing quality young people,” said Don Wolfe, scholarship director for AAA. “We’ve have people go on to academies. They all move on and do very well. It’s just promoting aviation to successful young kids.”

    Flight scholarships of $2,500 each will be awarded to four applicants to receive pilot training at Auburn Municipal Airport’s plane and flight schools and online ground school. The scholarship is open to people ages 16-23 as of Dec. 31, 2021. Applications close Feb. 28, 2021.

    Two applicants will be awarded full tuition ($1,605) for EAA Air Academy 2021, a one-week session in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, with one reservation scheduled for July 20-28 and another for July 30-Aug. 7. People ages 16-18 as of July 20, 2021, are eligible to apply, and the deadline for applications is Jan. 31. 2021. Scholarship winners are responsible for air fare.

    “Those kids usually end up getting one of our flight scholarships when they get a little older,” Wolfe said.

    The EAA Air Academy includes ground school on topics such as fundamentals of flight science, aircraft and flight control systems, preflight, weather, aerial navigation and flight training requirements; welding, sheet metal work, composite fabrication, aeromodeling and woodwork. Students also tour the EAA AirVenture Museum and use EAA flight simulators.