The first Flight School Association of North America (FSANA) chartered “AeroChapter” took off recently at Mid Island Air Service in Ronkonkoma, New York. According to organizers, 14 kids from the local community attended the first AeroChapter meeting.
Gail Mancuso, vice president of Mid Island Air Services, stated, “We were overwhelmed with joy at the strong turnout for the first meeting of our Mid Island Air Service AeroChapter. The AeroChapter program will become one of the best aviation and aerospace bridge programs in the history of civil aviation as more young people become engaged.”
Chapter advisors in attendance included Dan Brooks, Don Lawrence and Mancuso. One of the first items on the agenda was the selection of chapter officers. Based on backgrounds and experience, the following youth members were announced as interim officers: President Dylan Diaz; Vice President Tanner Asordorian; and Secretary Alyssa Ardizzone.
Guest speakers included Nicholas D’Amato, who earned his private pilot certificate in 41 hours through the Eastern Sufolk Boces Program (trained by Mid Island Air).
Also speaking was Peter Stauffer, founder of the the local Coast Guard Aux flotilla, who spoke about the Coast Guard and their mission. He told the audience about how young people at age 17 can become involved with the Coast Guard as observers.
The youth members decided to hold their monthly chapter meetings on the fourth Thursday of each month. Their programs committee will begin to plan for future speakers and activities.
“It is exciting to see the youth of America starting to engage with our newly launched AeroChapter program. The FSANA AeroChapter program will afford young people the opportunity to take on positions of leadership, improve and learn new skill sets and become engaged aviation and aerospace participants,” noted Bob Rockmaker, FSANA president and CEO.