MCMINNVILLE, Ore.— Two local students were awarded The Captain Michael King Smith Educational Institute private pilot scholarship and are one step closer to their dream to fly. “These two scholarships are an incredible opportunity for students in the area. The students that were awarded the scholarship showed the desire to succeed and achieve, and the sincere desire to pursue a career in aviation,” said Erin Bosnjak, Education Coordinator. Philip Church of Newberg, Ore., and Sean Wilbur of McMinnville, Ore., were each recently awarded a $2,500 private pilot scholarship. Church and Wilbur will apply the award toward the cost of flight training at McMinnville Airport. Flight training includes ground school instruction, up to 20 hours of dual and solo flight instruction, 10 hours of pre- and post-flight instructor briefings, an FAA written test and Flight Examiner’s fee for Private Pilot check ride.
Church is a graduating senior from Newberg High School, and has been fascinated by aviation since a very early age. Church joined the Museum’s Corp of Volunteers as a Jr. Docent in late November of 2006 and has thoroughly enjoyed everything he has learned about the airplanes and the volunteers’ stories. He has started his flight training at Cirrus Aviation, and he plans to enroll in Portland Community College’s Aviation Program in the fall. Church has aspirations of being a commercial pilot.
Wilbur is a graduating senior at McMinnville High School. He was introduced to airplanes by his grandfather who was a fighter pilot in the Navy, and has actively researched the aerodynamics of flight, various airplanes, and has even taken a few rides. One ride on which Wilbur got to be a passenger was with Evergreen’s own pilot, Andy Benedict. They flew a Learjet from McMinnville to Hillsboro, so although the flight was short, the impact that it had on Sean was one that would last a lifetime. Sean has already begun his flight training at Cirrus Aviation, and has flights scheduled every day. After getting his four year degree from OIT in Klamath Falls, Wilbur plans to attend Central Oregon Community College and get his Associate Degree in Aviation Science. His long term plans are to fly as a commercial pilot.
Each scholarship winner completed the application and participated in panel interviews with the Scholarship Committee. Members of the committee who selected the winners of this honorable award include: Laurel Adams, Dave Bibbee, John Rasmussen, Bud Stordahl, Ian Jacobsen, Burkhard Gebauer, Robbie Sturm, Judy Newman and Monika Lautenbach. Winners were awarded on June 6, 2007.
Source: Evergreen Aviation Museum
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