Bring Aviation to Elementary Schools
As part of The Foundation’s commitment to promote aviation careers, we’ve decided to work with disadvantaged schools in the New Jersey area initially, to educate kids about what it takes to become a pilot. We are planning to take this message to the schools beginning in September 2009. As we tried to come up with creative ideas and the best way to present the information, we discovered a New Jersey base company that creates educational materials for kids. CATAVIA KIDS was created by Teresa Villareal, an aeronautical engineer, who attended MIT, and has an impressive resume, working with Boeing for many years, she became aviation consultant before deciding she wanted to start her own company to educate kids about aviation. After we contacted Teresa, she was enthusiastic about we were doing and offered to donate copies of her Black Box CD ROM. Her award winning Black Box CD ROM teaches kids how airplanes fly, how air traffic control works, as well as the basics of flying, and recognizing different aircraft. No CD ROM would be fun for kids if it didn’t have games and prizes for completing various tasks. We are so grateful for CATAVIA KIDS sharing this technology with us.
We also discovered a great book for the really little kids called “Amelia and Emily Go for a Ride’. This children’s book is based on a flight Amelia Earhart took with Eleanor Roosevelt, a great book for inspiring young girls. There will probably always be fewer minorities and women in aviation. But what we’ve noticed in the seven years we have operated The Foundation is that we need to inspire young kids, so they realize if they are interested in becoming a pilot, they can achieve their goal, no matter what neighborhood they are from. Most pilots I have met, including my husband, knew they wanted to fly when they were really young. We want to try to make an impact as soon as we can. I want to see more minorities and women in aviation. And we need you – If you are a pilot who would like to make a difference in a child’s life – to give us a call, to help us out with our awareness program. One school visit every couple of months is all we ask. Try to remember when you were a kid how much it would have meant to have a “real pilot” come and talk to your school. It’s time to pay it forward.