Monday, September 30, 2013

Alaina, 2012 GWW Scholarship Winner, West Point Cadet and more!

We wanted to give you this update on one of Girls With Wings 2012 Scholarship Winners. On Alaina's essay submitted to apply for the Private Pilot Scholarship, she wrote:

On an application form, I am known as a 17-year-old junior from the quiet suburbs of Kings Mills, Ohio. These words are true to a tee, but then again, do not describe me at all. To people, I am known as a wild adventurer, always ready to try atypical activities and explore unusual hobbies. Although young, I have developed two life philosophies: live life to the fullest, and make a difference in the world. I never pass up unique opportunities (which have led to some eyebrow-raising stories for sure!), so when offered an opportunity to take a ride in a tiny Aeronca Champion, I jumped at the chance—and I’ve been hooked ever since. My first official lesson was on October 17th, 2010, and the rest is history.

When you read the following, I think you can agree that we saw right through her and knew she was destined to a lifetime of accomplishments! Here she is updating us on her progress:

Hi ladies and gentlemen! I was one of the Girls With Wings scholarship recipients a few years ago, and I just wanted to show you the incredible opportunities this organization gives to others. When I was in high school, I earned my sport license, and then with the help of GWW, I went on to earn my private license. I currently attend the United States Military Academy at West Point, and because I love aviation, I tried out for the flying team. There were a LOT of people interested in joining the team; however, because I was already a private pilot and had so many hours, I scored an interview and an opportunity to fly. This past weekend I went up, demonstrated what I knew, and earned a slot to compete in the regional competition this October.

First off, a huge thank you is in order for the Girls With Wings Foundation. If it weren’t for their generosity, I probably wouldn’t have been given a second look without my private certificate. Instead, I qualified for a team that will help me develop my flying skills further in preparation for a career in Army aviation. Secondly, I want to stress the importance of aviation and encourage people to check it out, learn about it, practice it, support it, anything like that. Being able to fly gives you a unique skill that makes you stand apart from others; it also gives you a confidence boost to know you have a special skill set that not many others are able to say they have mastered. Flying also links you to a special community of fellow aviators that you instantly share a bond with. Regardless if you have ever met before, you know that you have something in common with each other: a love for the skies and everything that goes with it. If you have been considering taking a peek at aviation, or know anyone who would be interested in flying, GO FOR IT. Encourage your friend/mom/uncle/kids/neighbor’s cat to go pursue their passion. I promise it will be worth it. 

Again, I want to say thank you to Lynda Meeks and Girls with Wings; they are a wonderful organization I am blessed to be part of. I will let you all know how regionals goes in about a month! 

Congratulations to you, Alaina, we all are rooting for you and know that you will do amazing. We look forward to hearing all about it.

Read all of Alaina's essays here.

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