So we at the booth had to be a bit aggressive about reaching out to women passing by. In fact, I have gotten a little spoiled by the enthusiasm with which people come to US at Oshkosh. I learned very quickly that the purpose of our booth was going to require a bit of explanation. After the first day, I decided that we would wear our pilots' uniforms (those of us who had them) in the booth so we'd grab attention. And I put up some self made signs that explained that "We inspire girls to achieve their full potential." We had hoped to do some fund-raising here, but it seemed we needed the real estate for better causes than the t-shirt display behind us. A white tri-fold board was placed up on top of the table behind Abby, Courtney, me and Nancy so that people could see the pictures of Girls With Wings representatives doing presentations. And so people started asking us questions and we were able to do what we needed: reach out to the community so we could find more opportunities for outreach with our presentations and website. It offered great insight on how to modify the message of GWW to appeal to the general public. Thank you to all that volunteered that stuck it out and kept those brochures flying out of the booth!
The other opportunity Girls With Wings has had to let others know of our public awareness project was a two day blog entry from Av8rdan's World of Flying. Dan Pimentel is in advertising and specializes in Ad Campaign development, graphics and photography. We've been following each other for ages on Twitter, me as @girlswithwings and he as @av8rdan. We even were able to meet each other in person at Oshkosh - if only briefly (remember, the GWW booth there is crazy busy!). Part one was entitled:and part two is Venus and Mars: GWW's Meeks on Gender Differences on the Flight Deck
Dan had sent me a long list of questions to answer about my background and experience and the history behind and mission of GWW. He also let me know that the GWW material gave his blog the LARGEST BOOST OF TRAFFIC in months...almost twice the number of unique visitors the day it was published as most days. As he says, "I think this validates (in a very small way) what you are doing with GWW since it appears so many people want to read what you have to say."
I also received quite a few emails from people that have read his blog. My favorite was this one:
Dearest Lynda,I tell you, emails like this just make my day. Again, I thank everyone for their continued support and enthusiastic participation in the Girls With Wings organization.
Last night, as I was finishing up my homework for Aerodynamics, I really started doubting myself and what I want to be come in the world of Aviation. After spending more time thinking than doing hw, the more sad I grew. Airfoil, boundary layer, viscosity.. I would even comprehend the littlest of words anymore. I dozed of thinking that maybe this Airplane thing isn't meant for you; It's a Dream that I've always had, but not all dreams are meant to come true.
I woke up feeling very discouraged. Thought, "Why am I even going to Aerodynamics class if I'm doubting myself? This is more of a Man's dream anyways.." I then signed on to Facebook. Your status came across my news feed and I quickly and eagerly made my way to your page.
That eArticle I read was literally my INSPIRATION & MOTIVATION to get my engine going again. And for that Ms. Meeks, I commend you. Thank you so very much for your inspiration not only for Aviation, but for GIRLS in Aviation.
I don't know what I would have done with my life after today if I had not read that interview article. Thank you for pulling me back in! I am now off to Aerodynamics class with a positive head and new sense of inspiration and motivation!
You are truly appreciated!