COLUMBUS, Georgia — Less than four years after her first flight as a Young Eagle, Rachel Broom passed her private pilot check ride and earned her private pilot certificate.
Rachel took her first flight in a small airplane at a monthly Young Eagles Rally hosted by Chattahoochee Valley Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 677 in September 2013. She flew in a Cherokee 140 with EAA 677’s most experienced Young Eagle pilot, Ken Sines, and knew immediately flying was what she wanted to do for a living.
Rachel joined EAA 677, became a regular volunteer, attended the monthly meetings, and never turned down the opportunity for a ride. Before long, she was more than just a passenger — flying from the right seat and doing as well as many others youngsters who had more experience.Rachel earned a scholarship from the chapter to attend the Advanced Air Academy/SportAir course at EAA national headquarters in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, during the summer of 2015. In the fall of 2016, she began classes in the Aviation program at Middle Georgia Aviation (MGA).
Her progress was steady and Rachel soloed just before Christmas in 2016. Like proud parents, the members of EAA 677 presented her with a new headset at Christmas, in honor of her first major aviation milestone.
When asked how she felt before the check ride that led to this early milestone in career in aviation, Rachel, who had 47 hours at MGA at the time, said she was “surprisingly calm.”
“The only times I got nervous were when he [Designated Pilot Examiner Tom Burke] said ‘Ok, are you ready?’ for the oral and the flight portions of the check ride,” Rachel said afterward. “It was a really good flight. The weather cooperated perfectly!”