Cascade Warbirds has just announced the winners of the organization’s 2022 scholarship program to further the aviation interests of qualified youth in western Washington.

The five new winners are:

  • Jacob Barnas of Edmonds is a senior at Edmonds High School and following this first step into aviation plans to go to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University at Prescott AZ to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Sciences.
  • Gabriel Michaud from Kent attends Kentlake High School and plans to continue his education at a four-year aviation school.
  • Ophelia Sullivan lives in Mukilteo and studies at both Kamiak High School and an Aerospace program at Sno-Isle TECH.
  • Ethan Wilkes of Lacey is presently a helicopter mechanic in the US Army at Joint Base Lewis McChord and hopes to become an Emergency Medical Services pilot.
  • Corey Zendejas of Auburn is in a Running Start program concurrent with his high school studies for an Associate degree and plans to transfer to a four-year aviation school which has an ROTC program.

For more than a decade Cascade Warbirds has teamed with several flight schools in the Puget Sound area to provide scholarship recipients with tuition, books, and supplies, and two introductory instructional flights. The ground school portion comprises classroom lectures, visual presentations, group discussions, practical exercises, and field trips over a period of approximately 55 hours. Classes meet two weeknights per week for two and one-half hours and one Saturday per week for four hours over a period of six weeks. Successful completion of this Private Pilot Ground School will qualify a student to take the FAA Private Pilot Written Exam.

This award also includes two instructional flights in a light aircraft, the make and model of which will be matched to the student. The first flight will occur part way through the ground school, based on the instructor’s recommendation, and the second flight will occur after the successful completion of the ground school course. Each flight will include a pre-flight briefing, actual taxi and runway procedures, introduction to radio communications, the take-off, a series of in-flight maneuvers, the return and landing, and post-flight procedures. These two flights will be logged in the student’s personal logbook and count toward the minimum flight time required to earn a Private Pilot license.

This scholarship is available for students between the ages of 16 and 21 at the time of award. This scholarship is valued at $1,350.

Recognizing the cost of the flight training required for a pilot’s license, the scholarship program offers an additional $2,500 Continuing Aviation Education Grant to one scholarship recipient who intends to earn their FAA private pilot certificate within the following year. Applicants must complete the ground school course, both introductory flights, and submit an essay by September 30 of the scholarship year. Funds are released to the winner of the best essay in stages as the recipient completes training milestones:  $1,000 after completing their first solo flight, $1,000 after completing their long solo cross-country, and $500 after earning the private pilot certificate.

Cascade Warbirds is Squadron #2 of EAA Warbirds of America. With over 250 members and the largest squadron in Warbirds of America, Cascade Warbirds is centered in the Puget Sound area. It normally meets at the Museum of Flight in Seattle from October until flying weather returns in April. Find more about them on the web at Cascade Warbirds.

Marcee Maylin has a degree in Editorial Journalism from the University of Washington and 30+ years media experience. She is currently the Editor of the Everett Post dedicated to providing current, relevant, and entertaining content for the local community.