By ELLEN RANDOLL
OVERGAARD, Ariz. — Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 1044 has selected two local teenagers to receive fully-paid scholarships, including tuition and roundtrip airfare, to the EAA Advanced Air Academy summer 2016 program.
The Air Academy offers young people the opportunity to meet and work with aviation professionals, while living and learning the arts, sciences, and lore of aviation in both classroom and workshop settings.
Several days of the academy take place during the world’s largest and most exciting aviation event – EAA AirVenture 2016, which is slated for July 25-31. Participants in the EAA Air Academy come from around the United States and several foreign countries.
EAA Chapter 1044 chose as its first two scholarship recipients Tobias Tomlinson, a freshman at Mogollon High School, and Tristen Martineau, a senior, also attending Mogollon High School.
Larry Driver, Chapter President said, “These scholarships would not have been possible without the generous support of the community, including the Heber-Overgaard Chamber of Commerce.”
Chapter Vice President Curt Randoll added, “One of the missions of our chapter is to provide youth with an educational opportunity to learn about aviation and aviation history. This isn’t about sending kids to summer camp – it’s about opening their eyes to new experiences and potential new career paths. The Air Academy fulfills this mission, and being able to send two youths this year, the first year we offered the scholarship, is fantastic.”
Funding for the scholarships is through various fundraising efforts. EAA Chapter 1044 has recently received tax exempt status as a non-profit charity under IRS section 501(c)(3). That means donations to the chapter are now tax deductible.
EAA Chapter 1044 is based at Mogollon Airpark. In addition to the aviation scholarship, which is part of its youth education program, the chapter has a very active homebuilder community with about a dozen aircraft in various stages of construction or refurbishment — everything from experimental Super Cubs to Bearhawks to RVs and Rans.