Thursday, December 29, 2011

Time is running out!

Support Girls With Wings and secure your tax deduction now.

The year is almost is over but there is still time to support the nonprofit organization you love. We have just a few days to meet our $45,000 goal.

This is your chance to make a year end gift to Girls With Wings, Inc. Help us encourage girls to pursue aviation in the year ahead.

Thanks to supporters like you, we have had an amazing year − Presentations, Scholarships, Aviation Inspiration Days, and more! That means thousands of girls have been inspired by STEAM: Science, Technology, Engineering, AVIATION and Mathematics.™

But before we celebrate, we need your help by midnight December 31st. Your special contribution will help guarantee that Girls With Wings has the funding needed to launch our 2012 outreach events.

With one simple gift, you have the power to make a real difference in the New Year for a proven program that uses women in aviation to inspire girls to achieve their full potential. You can give with confidence knowing that Girls With Wings is classified as a tax-exempt educational public charity under IRS code 501(c)(3).

Please click here to make your tax deductible gift today using Paypal. To give the old-fashioned way, give us a call at 216.577.6131 with your credit card information or complete this form and mail it to our address below.

With thanks and best wishes for an amazing New Year,

Lynda Meeks
Executive Director

P.S. If you've already sent your contribution, please accept my sincere appreciation for your continued support. Forwarding this email to your friends and business associates will help even more!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Amy's Message to GWW

Hello Girls with Wings! 

My name is Amy Blechman and I am the 2008 Scholarship recipient. Winning the Girls with Wings scholarship meant the world to me because it allowed me to further my training and I was able to afford my first solo flight! That was the best experience of my life thus far and it gave me an overwhelming feeling of accomplishment and a smile from ear to ear that made it difficult to make my radio calls! I will never forget that day and the feeling that came with it, No one can ever take that from me, and that is a feat few people in the world (besides all of you lovely gals) will accomplish. We are few, but fine in company! I’m sure you ladies can agree!

Since then I continued my education, pursuing a bachelor’s of science in Aviation Management from Dowling College in New York. During my undergrad I was a founding member of Dowling’s very own Chapter of Women in Aviation International. I traveled with my Chapter to two annual conferences, most recently the 2011 Conference in Reno, Nevada during which time I was the Chapter President.

During my senior year I also pledged The Alpha Eta Rho International Aviation Fraternity and became a member of the Dowling College Zeta chapter in spring 2011. I also graduated from Dowling College on May 21, 2011! Since my graduation I have enlisted in the United States Army as a UH-60 (Blackhawk) Repairer (15T). Which I am very excited about! I have always wanted to join the Army and I am excited to begin this new adventure in my life!

As of late I have been focusing on preparing myself physically for basic training so I spend a lot of time running and at the gym since I will be heading down to Ft. Jackson soon to start my new career! My future goal is to finally obtain my Private Pilot License and also to earn a position with the Army’s Warrant Officer Flight Training Program (WOFT) and hopefully be able to fly the Blackhawks I will be working on during my Enlistment. I am so grateful to Lynda and Girls with Wings for showing me all these wonderful possibilities in Aviation and giving me the opportunity and motivation to realize my potential and chase my dreams!!I wish you all much success in all your future endeavors and hope we cross paths! Blue skies!

Amy Blechman

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Kate's Final Entry as the 2011 Scholarship Winner

Girls With Wings, Inc., would like to thank Kate for exceeding our expectations as the 2011 scholarship winner. From her application to this final essay submission, she has been prompt, thorough and accurate in fulfilling the requirements of the GWW scholarship. We look forward to her continued participation as a Girls With Wings role model. Great job, Kate!

This past month Ohio offered its share of challenges in regards to seasonal transitions.  Anyone from Northeast Ohio knows what I am talking about.  We get lake effect snow in April, summer temperatures in November, and then there are the pesky winds which seem like they will never go away.  With all the maintenance issues I had in the Ercoupe, the Skycatcher has provided a new skill set and experience using rudder pedals.  The problem with the last month though was rain cancelling my lessons, wind cancelling my lessons, poor visibility cancelling my lessons… you get the picture. 

Last week I took another half-day off work, woke up to check the weather and yet again it looked like I would be buying time to get my third cancellation notice in a week.  Between working two jobs, I was not looking forward to wasting a half day and my frustration was settling in.  Determined not to let a chance go by I drove out to the airport anyway, knowing that at least if I got there before cancelling I gave every bit of persistence I could for the week.  Surprisingly though, during the fifteen minute drive, the closer I got the more the weather cleared.  I was actually going to get a lesson in.

When we got in the plane and I started taxiing, suddenly the struggle of using rudder pedals over the last few weeks seemed to be lifting.  How to manage the plane on take-offs and landings kept getting better with each approach.  The rain stayed north of the field and the winds were remaining consistent.  It was the first time since switching aircraft that I saw a huge return in my confidence level.  On the last approach, Ron directed us south of the field to a clearer area where we could get up above the clouds.  All of a sudden I was above all the dreary weather that had been in my way the whole month and the view was breathtaking.  I got to spend twenty minutes just playing up above the clouds and it was an experience I so needed when I didn’t even know it. 

Since winning the 2011 GWW Scholarship I have learned so much.  I know that when facing obstacles, if you are truly passionate about what you are going after, then an obstacle is merely a small bump in the destination.  Most importantly though, I learned and remembered what it is like to play.  I could list a hundred reasons why learning how to fly is beneficial in any aspect of life, but when it comes down to it, flying is a chance to get up above the clouds with the sun shining and play. 

Without this scholarship I would have definitely had to put training on hold.  When my Dad’s Ercoupe failed on me, I had to switch aircraft which more than doubled my training costs and face the possibility of having to retake my written exam with the expiration date looming this upcoming April.  I have a great deal of gratitude because the GWW scholarship gave me the opportunity to make my way through some tough financial decisions over the last month.    

One of the things that really sticks with me about GWW is the phrase “Girls need flight plans, not Fairy Tales.”  I am guilty of it myself, but I notice that women tend to attribute our successes to luck.  Through all the mishaps with the Ercoupe, I can’t tell you the sighs I have gotten or the pity talks about my lack of luck.   People have discussed my plane almost like a tragedy case and I was a victim of its problems.  But when talking with all the instructors, we would discuss how helpful it is that I now have actual background in dealing with emergency procedures.  We even joke that after seeing my airplane torn apart so many times that I might as well go get my A&P certification.  What I attribute to my success at each step is not reacting to the obstacle, but working with it. 

I sincerely hope that when I get my license shortly, I can share flying outside of my local airport community and stay involved with GWW.  More often than not when I tell my female friends or family members about aviation, they are genuinely interested.  They just have not been introduced to the fact that there are women pilots.  The first thing I hear is, “That is so great, but I couldn’t do that”.  My goal is to instead hear the phrase “I could do that”.  When I get my license and as soon as I am comfortable, I plan to take as many friends and family flying that are willing.  It is not about trying to make them see why I love what I am pursuing, but simply for the fact that without exposure to new experiences, we can limit what we are actually capable of without knowing it.