by Bob Waunch and Rebecca Carter
Special to the Sounder
The Airhawks Flying Club, a non-profit organization based in Eastsound, is proud to announce the awarding of a $4,000 Flight Training Scholarship to Diego Rivera, a student at Orcas Christian School.
Rivera will begin his training this summer in a concentrated program with a certified flight instructor with plans to obtain his Private Pilot Certificate prior to beginning his senior year in the fall.
“I was excited and honored when I found out my application was accepted,” said Rivera, 17. “I am looking forward to seeing where this opportunity will lead me in life and how it will help me grow as an individual.”
Growth is a certainty for program participants. During his training, Rivera will be required to take a physical, complete an online ground school course with a written exam, fulfill 50–60 hours of flight instruction, and pass both a final oral assessment and a final flight examination with a designated examiner.
He will study and become proficient in the application of the mathematics and science of aviation including aerodynamics, weather, navigation, aircraft systems, and emergency procedures as well as Federal Aviation Administration regulations.
“Diego is an engaged, intelligent, and dedicated young man,” says Terry Pottle, principal of Orcas Christian School. “We are proud of him for pursuing this opportunity and confident in his ability to succeed in the program.”
Andy Rivera, Diego’s father, shared an overwhelming feeling of gratefulness for the role of the Airhawks and organizations like it.
He explains, “Countless island neighbors, having tasted success, are willing to invest their time, knowledge, and resources in our young people. That is part of the magic of Orcas Island. I am very thankful to the Airhawks for providing what is an opportunity of a lifetime for Diego.”
The funds for the scholarship are available through the generosity of local pilots and individuals who support aviation and educational opportunities for the youth of the San Juan Islands.
For more information about the Airhawks and the scholarship Diego received, visit Airhawks.org.