Justice Pak has always been interested in aviation. To push her dreams one step closer to reality, the Maryland teen-ager applied for a scholarship to attend the nine-day Experimental Aircraft Association’s Advanced Air Academy, from July 31 to Aug. 8 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, according to the Frederick News Post.
The EAA Air Academy allows young people between 16 and 18 to meet and work with aviation professionals while living and learning the art, science and lore of aviation in both classroom and workshop settings.
Justice is a member of EAA Chapter 524 at Frederick Municipal Airport. Her first attempt to get into the program was unsuccessful, so she sought assistance from local aviation veteran Charlie Abell, who retired recently as manager of Frederick Municipal Airport. He said he made a few calls and was happy that the EAA was able to find a slot for Justice in its program. “At 16 years of age, she demonstrates a real interest in aviation and a real desire to learn everything she can about EAA, aircraft mechanics, navigation and airport management, as well as flying,” Abell said.
Justice’s interest began with her mother, who has had a passion for planes since she was in high school, she said. “As I grew up, she introduced me to the different aspects of aviation by taking me to airports, museums, air shows and purchasing me books and software. I remember her taking me to Gravelly Point at the north end of the Reagan National Airport to watch planes land at very low altitudes over my head.” Her family has spent many hours standing in its front yard watching and identifying planes, Justice said.
Her interest in aviation grew from those experiences, she said. Membership in the Frederick EAA chapter, where she is the youngest person at the meetings, exposed her to aviation professionals and increased her knowledge, she said. She believes it is time to expand her exposure to aviation, and hopes her experience in Wisconsin will help, she said. “I hope that the academy will give me some direction as to which career path I want to take in aviation.”
“It has indeed been a privilege to know Justice and her parents,” Abell said. “She has a pleasant, outgoing personality and enjoys helping out with the chapter airplane building project. She digs right in without any hesitation.”
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