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Giving Wings to Dream of Careers in Aviation

A Different Point of View uses flight lessons to inspire young minds

Teens get first-hand look at work of a pilot.
Teens get first-hand look at work of a pilot. (Courtesy photo)

As the rate of new pilots being licensed continues to decline, and the aviation industry suffers from a pilot shortage, local organizations in Santa Barbara, with the support of Signature Flight Support, are working to engage youth interested in the aviation industry.

The only nonprofit in the region that trains youth to fly, A Different Point of View (ADPOV), in conjunction with Above All Aviation Flight School and Signature Flight Support, gave underprivileged teens the gift of flight this past weekend.

At Santa Barbara Airport, area youth were able to learn about the airport, career opportunities it provides and even go up in the air with professional pilots.

After discussing avionics and aircraft safety and maintenance, the teens were shuttled by Signature Flight Support from the airport’s visitors center to the flight school, where they experienced, first-hand, what being a pilot is all about.

A Different Point of View’s mission is to engage, inspire and transform young minds using flight lessons as a launching pad.

“This was definitely the case on Saturday, as the lucky passengers were very engaged in the conversations and inspired by the lessons provided, which focused on safety in flight and on the ground,” said Matt Long from Signature Flight Support.

Past events hosted by the nonprofit have proven to stimulate young people and pique interests in the aviation industry, as organizers believe the weekend’s event did.

Long-time students of ADPOV’s aircraft maintenance program, Lucas Graybill and Jacob Glasson recently finished their training and became certified aircraft mechanics at the airport.

Signature Flight Support recently donated $1,500 to CalPilots at its recent AirFest event in San Carlos.

Signature Flight Support said it looks forward to continuing its longstanding role as a community and aviation benefactor through its role in past and future flight training. It urges all aviation enthusiasts ages 14-19 to get involved in the program.

— Matt Long for Signature Flight Support.

 
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