~ Scholarship Corner ~
By Chris Nugent
In this month’s Scholarship Corner, we will wrap up our overview of the 2021 scholarship recipients. It is always great to see the enthusiasm and commitment they have made to pursuing a career in aviation.
Hello, my name is Elijah Olvera and before I begin my story, I want to say thank you to those who have allowed to take part in this wonderful opportunity. I am so grateful and excited for what is to come. I am currently a senior at the Phoenix South Mountain High School Aerospace Academy, and I have started my flight training aiming to get my private pilot's license before I graduate, which is something that is very unheard of nowadays.
However, I never knew this was possible until I decided to make a leap of faith and move to a school that offered an aviation program. I knew this was the best decision because my heart’s desire is to travel the world and experience new cultures. I always loved meeting people from other countries and learning their languages. I even applied to a foreign exchange program and got to speak Italian and experience the Italian culture for three weeks. It was such an amazing experience because I was able to understand the profound connections you create with people.
From this, I knew I had to find a career that would satisfy my hunger for travel and becoming a pilot would help me achieve this goal. However, not only is traveling one of the main reasons I want to become a pilot, but I also really love to go up in the sky and fly. Ever since me and my family took our first plane ride, I knew this was something that I could see myself doing. Aviation is such a fascinating world where there is not one day that is the same. There is always something to do and that is why aviation has become my main passion. There are so many encouraging people in the aviation field that being bored is unthought of. Each day is a new adventure in aviation, and I cannot wait to pursue it. Being a pilot will lead me to my goals of becoming a better person, speaking multiple languages, traveling all over the world, and making long lasting friendships. Therefore, I will do whatever I can to live my life to the fullest and live up to my dreams.
My Name is Sabrina Bailey, I would like to share a little about myself. In my mid-twenties, I decided to become a professional backpacking adventure guide leading commercial tours in the Grand Canyon and many other unique places in Arizona. In the middle of a very cold and snowy winter, I decided to backpack thirty-two solo miles in the Canyon. On that trip, I truly learned I could do anything I set my mind to. Never being content with complacency, I set off on a new adventure in 2020. The top of that mountain had led me to become the third generation of private pilots in my family. Born to teach and believing in the benefits of experiential learning, I aspire to be a career CFI. As an instructor, I will help students achieve their goals and reach new heights they only dreamt of previously. I am blessed to find a second calling in life and one just as fulfilling as the first. Thank you, APA for helping me reach the top of my aviation mountain!
The APA Scholarship Program is a great enabler for students in achieving their goals in aviation and it is only possible through the generous support of our membership. Thank you again and fly safe!