March 8, 2022
A recent question about how long Cascade Warbirds Scholarship Program has been going on prompted a research project which uncovered some very exciting surprises. The Program began in 2007 with a single student being sent to the EAA Air Academy at Oshkosh. To date it has produced nine Private Pilots, 13 Commercial Pilots, and an amazing four who went all the way to Airline Transport Pilot!
The second year CWB sent two campers and
· Taylor Barrett of Seattle from that pair earned his private pilot license the very next year.
Two more went to the EAA Air Academy at Oshkosh in 2009. One of them,
· Brolin Graham, was inspired to go ahead and get a student pilot certificate a few years later.
In 2010 CWB expanded the program by teaming with Wings Aloft, a flight school located on Boeing Field in Seattle. Two again went to Oshkosh and three high school students were awarded scholarships for Private Pilot Ground School classes. Oshkosh traveler
· Katie Brueske of Olympia WA received her student pilot certificate that same year.
Only one of the ground school students advanced as
· Brandan Brink from Silverdale WA eventually received a student pilot certificate.
· Jessika Montgomery from Granite Falls WA didn’t pursue flying but did earn a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and is now a Product Review Engineer at Boeing Everett.
In 2011 the squadron awarded two scholarships to attend EAA’s AirVenture Senior Camp.
· Jason McCroskey of Lake Stevens WA went full bore earning a Commercial Pilot Certificate and along the way added a remote pilot license for small unmanned aircraft. Five high school students were awarded scholarships for Private Pilot Ground School classes.
· Dakota Lanning from Shelton WA earned her private pilot license in 2019.
But the star of the group was
· Max Wasser of Seattle who presently holds his Airline Transport Pilot Certificate with Commercial Privileges. (Type Ratings: A/CE-500, A/CE-560XL, A/ERJ-170, A/EJ-190), Flight Instructor Certificate and Remote Pilot Certificate for Small Unmanned Aircraft.
This was another banner year for Cascade Warbirds scholars. One of the two scholarships to attend EAA’s AirVenture Senior Camp went to · Alex Wencel from Des Moines WA. He presently holds his Airline Transport Pilot Certificate with Commercial Privileges (Type Ratings: A/EMB-145, A/ERJ-170, A/ERJ-190) and Flight Instructor Certificate.
And in the second phase of the annual scholarship program in May five area youngsters were named to receive the Private Pilot Ground School Awards at Galvin Flight Services in Seattle or Avian Flight at Bremerton National Airport.
· Kyle Clark, formerly of Kent WA, gave the squadron a presentation at its March 2017 meeting on his flying history (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KPLFim7OPw). Kyle now holds his Airline Transport Pilot Certificate with Commercial Privileges (Type Ratings: A/CE-500, A/CE-560XL, A/DHC-8), Flight Instructor, Ground Instructor, and Ground Instructor Advanced Certificates.
· Christine Chappelle from Renton WA earned her private pilot license and went on to graduate from MIT.
· Eli Everson got as far as his Student Pilot card.
· Jordan Parker of Bainbridge WA went all the way to Commercial Pilot with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings.
From a big group of Private Pilot Ground School award winners in 2013, two were outstanding. · Corey James from Puyallup WA followed his Private Pilot Certificate with a Flight Instructor qualification in 2020 and then earned his Airline Transport Pilot Certificate with Commercial Privileges (Type Ratings: A/DHC-8, A/ERJ-170, A/ERJ-190) in 2021.
· Alex Jones from Marblemount in rural Snohomish County WA earned his Private Pilot Certificate in 2020.
· Alex Yantis, Olympia WA, got off to a slow start, gaining his Student Pilot certificate in 2021.
CWB sent two youngsters to Oshkosh for the last time and awarded three Private Pilot Ground School scholarships. Outstanding from this group was
· Shirahn Pathy from Medina WA. Last year he earned his Commercial Pilot Certificate with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings. And he also holds a Private Pilot card with a Airplane Single Engine SEA rating.
There were four Private Pilot Ground School award winners in 2015. Two have earned Commercial Pilot licenses.
· Alex Jonson from Issaquah WA graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2021. He earnedhis Commercial Pilot Certificate with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings that Fall. He gained his CFI rating this January and is working at Scottsdale Executive Flight training in Phoenix, AZ as a CFI. Has signed up with Horizon Air’s pilot development program, and once required hours achieved, will be working for them.
· Kevin Nguyen of Seattle has earned his Commercial Pilot Certificate with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings. He recently added his CFI rating and is instructing in California.
Another four scholarships awarded in 2016.
· Jordan Villaluz from Tacoma earned his Private Pilot Certificate last year.
· Gabriel Bacerdo of Issaquah WA earned his Commercial Pilot Certificate with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings in 2019, and CFI in 2020. He graduated from Purdue’s Professional Flight Program in May 2021, and was hired as a flight instructor at Galvin in June. He reports: “I am very grateful to the Cascade Warbirds organization. In my cover letter and interview with Galvin, I was sure to emphasize that I completed private pilot ground school and my first two intro flights at Galvin through the scholarship awarded to me by the Cascade Warbirds. It really has come full circle. I now have the opportunity to provide intro flights to those hoping to get into aviation just as I was in 2016. I was able to fly with Liam Mullins last week and was happy to see Cascade Warbirds on my schedule. I wish him well in starting his aviation career at Big Bend. My ultimate goal, although highly selective, is to fly the C-17 in the Air Force Reserve.”
Five Private Pilot Ground School scholarships were awarded in 2017.
· Ryan Check from Woodinville WA and
· Austin Mix of Black Diamond WA have both earned their Private Pilot Certificates.
This was the most remarkable year in the program: twelve young people received Private Pilot Ground School scholarships.
· Gada Ahmed of Seattle, and Jake Anderson from Monroe both got their student pilot certificate that year.
· Logan Delapp from Bonney Lake WA entered the US Air Force Academy and is on track to graduate this June with a degree in Geospatial Science.
· Devin Graves from Des Moines WA joined CWB, came to several meetings, earned his Private Pilot Certificate, and is presently at Utah State University in their aviation program. This year he finished instrument and commercial training, and is working on multi-engine rating; also working on aerobatic training in the Super Decathlon. Both of the young women from this group have excelled.
· London Holmes from Renton WA earned her Private Pilot Certificate with a scholarship from The LeRoy W. Homer Jr. Foundation, attended the US Air Force Academy Preparatory School (Official), and entered the US Air Force Academy in 2021, Class of 2025.
· Mackenzie Rennhack of Mill Creek WA received her Private Pilot Certificate just two months after graduating from high school, her Commercial Pilot Certificate in January 2020, and her Flight Instructor Certificate that August. Mackenzie is a senior in Professional Flight within the Aviation Programs at Arizona State University and a Flight Instructor at Sierra Charlie Aviation. Recently she was named First Officer at iAero Airways.
· Jeffrey Spaeth from Seattle earned his Commercial Pilot Certificate and Remote Pilot Certificate last year. Then added Flight Instructor Certificate early this year. He reports, “As a student at the University of North Dakota, I have been actively pursuing two Bachelors of Science degrees in Commercial Aviation and Unmanned Aircraft Systems Operation. To date, I’ve accumulated roughly 280 hours of manned flight experience with dozens more operating unmanned systems. It is a privilege to maintain both a Part 107 Small UAS Certificate, Commercial Single/Multi Engine Land Certificate with an instrument rating, and a CFI/I Certificate. Being about a year away from graduating, I am currently job searching for UAS related positions in the greater Grand Forks, ND or Huntsville, AL area.”
· Michael Zendejas earned his Private Pilot Certificate in 2019 and his Commercial Pilot Certificate with single engine, multi engine, and instrument ratings in 2019. He reports, “I am proud to say that I am a senior at Purdue University majoring in Professional Flight and I am in Army ROTC as well. I am President of the Purdue Polytechnic Student Council and President of the National Society of Leadership and Success. I will be taking simulator courses to finish up my degree. I plan on graduating with a BS from Purdue and my commission as an Army Officer. My plan is to go Army Guard (one weekend a month and two weeks in the summer)and fly commercially full-time. I am just starting to research where I can apply to help me build my flight hours so that I can reach 1000 hours and then apply to a regional airline. At this point, I am open to anything to build my hours. Once again, thank you so much for the scholarship opportunity your organization bestowed upon me, it really helped me and my aviation endeavors. In fact, my younger brother has decided to apply for it as well because he wants to follow in my footsteps.
There were five Private Pilot Ground School award winners in 2019.
· Lukas Holloman from Auburn WA graduated from Auburn Riverside High School with Honors and was 2/3 of the way to an associate degree in Aviation Technology at Green River College. He earned his Private Pilot Certificate last year.
· Keith Steedman, Woodinville WA, was the winner of the 2019 Supplemental Aviation Scholarship Grant – an additional $2,500 to aid in the completion of the Private Pilot certificate. He is still working at completing the last requirements for his license.
The year saw four Private Pilot Ground School award winners.
· Harrison Pulido from Lynnwood WA won the Supplemental Aviation Scholarship Grant, soloed in February 2021, and finished his private pilot training. Unfortunately, he had to leave for college before he found a DPE. He is now at Embry-Riddle in Daytona Beach and expects to get his check ride done at the local FBO.
Four more Private Pilot Ground School scholarships were awarded in 2021.
· Alex Szrama of Lynnwood WA won the Supplemental Aviation Scholarship Grant. She finished her ground school and flew her two flights and has until December 2022 to complete the program.
· Liam Mullins received his Student Pilot Certificate in October 2021. He finished his ground school and did his second introductory flight at Galvin Flight Services with CFI Gabriel Bacerdo, a former CWB scholar. Liam moved to Moses Lake to start training in the Big Bend Community College Commercial Pilot program.
While the squadron’s 2021 students are still works in progress, a review of the accomplishments of all the CWB Scholarship winners shows that the pipeline is fluid in motion. Though the goal for many is that Private Pilot Certificate, it is just a next step for others. There are students in the line who will show up as private pilots, commercial pilots, and more. Three of the past successes even added Remote Pilot to their résumés.