The 2017 Flying Musicians Association Solo Scholarship Program is now open for nominations from band directors around the world.
Now in its third year, the scholarship gives the selected student a flight training scholarship up through the first solo. FMA members also will mentor the student in both aviation and music, according to officials.
Nominations are being accepted from band directors through Jan. 31, 2017. Candidates must be juniors or seniors in high school, active in their school bands, and have a passion for music and aviation. All nominees will receive a free one year FMA student membership, which includes a FMA shirt.
“FMA loves assisting others who share our passions of flying and music,” said John Zapp, FMA president. “To be able to assist and watch our student members grow through aviation and music is such a rewarding experience.”
The first scholarship winner, Drew Medina of Vero Beach, Florida, has accepted a full scholarship to the University of Florida to study aerospace engineering.
“I’m super thankful for everybody at FMA,” he said. “I think it’s cool that a group like that exists and is willing to help a guy like me achieve a dream I’ve held for so long.”
The second FMA Solo Scholarship winner, Sarah Coffelt from Tullahoma, Tennessee, is set to solo this fall while also attending her senior year of high school as the band captain.
Rich Chiappe, general manager at Sky-Tec (the makers of the FLYWEIGHT Starter) has agreed to sponsor one scholarship in 2017 after a successful 2015 and 2016 program.
“Let’s face it, without new pilot starts, the business of flying has no future,” he said. “We should all be planting seeds — constantly.”
FMA also raised funds at HangarJams across the country and concerts like the Heaven’s Landing Airshow & Concert in northwest Georgia last June.
Sporty’s Pilot Shop has agreed to again give all the finalists a free Learn to Fly course, while MYGOFLIGHT has agree to give the winners a customized Flight Bag PLC Pro along with tablet mounting hardware and case.