Guide to Your Future

Hundreds of organizations in the aerospace industry are ready to give you money—to train to fly, to learn their trades, to work for them as apprentices, or to study their subjects in school. Here is your Air & Space/NEXT guide to these sources. Know a resource we could add? Contact us at editors@si.edu.

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Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association

November 21st, 2016, 2:34PM

The AOPA High School Flight Training Scholarship is offered to pilot trainees ages 15 to 18. The AOPA Foundation Scholarship seeks pilot trainees ages 16 and over. And the AOPA AV8RS Scholarship is intended for teens from 13 through 18 for a number of aviation-related goals beyond flight training. Awards range from $2,500 to $12,000 and some require a membership in AOPA (the first six months of membership is free to students). All flight training applicants must hold an FAA student pilot certificate. Profiles of previous winners are online.

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The Ninety-Nines

November 21st, 2016, 2:30PM

Since 1929, the Ninety-Nines has promoted the advancement of women pilots, technicians and mechanics, and since 1940 has awarded scholarships to at least 400 women. Their Karen Johnson Solo Scholarship, in conjunction with the WomenVenture portion of the annual fly-in at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, awards $3,000 to women ages 16 to 20 to reach their first solo flight. The Amelia Earhart Scholarship Memorial Fund offers awards up to $6,000 in categories ranging from adding a multi-engine pilot rating to a full type-rating, to learning emergency maneuvers and spins, to women in a non-G20 “emerging economy country” to pursue an aviation career in their own nation. The Ninety-Nines also offer grants to research scholars for “the expansion of human knowledge in areas of specific differences faced by women in aviation: as pilots, as engineers, as administrators, and in military aviation.”

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The Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals is dedicated to the encouragement and advancement of minorities in all aviation and aerospace careers. In the last 40 years, the organization has coordinated donations from its 3,000 members to award more than $4.8 million in scholarships to 470 recipients. Scholarships range from undergraduate college tuition assistance for an “aviation related program” to graduate and professional advancement. Their website profiles a student who received $35,000 for training for a 737 type-rating with Delta Air Lines.

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Women in Corporate Aviation

November 10th, 2016, 12:48PM

The Women in Corporate Aviation networking group offers financial aid to women who work in aviation, as well as qualified undergraduates, so they can pursue career advancement in many aviation fields, from flying to management to flight attendant service.

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Alaska Airmen Association

November 10th, 2016, 12:46PM

Assistance with costs for training pilots, aviation managers, and maintenance technicians in Alaska. The Alaska Airmen will offer a total of $10,500 in aid in 2017 to five recipients to advance skills in flying, aviation management, and maintenance. As the website notes, there are more licensed pilots per capita in Alaska than any other state, and these scholarships hope to keep it that way. Eligibility requirements include the intention to use the maintenance or flight training to work in Alaska.

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Teens in Flight

November 10th, 2016, 12:37PM

Teenagers whose parent or sibling died or became disabled during the Gulf War can apply for scholarships for flight training and aviation maintenance at various military bases around the country; contact the group to find one near you. The organization requires a minimum GPA of 2.5, an essay, an oral interview, drug screening, and a recommendation from a school principal or superintendent.

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Idaho Aviation Association

November 10th, 2016, 12:10PM

The Idaho Aviation Association helps residents of Idaho, and occasionally from nearby states, to pursue their initial flight training or add a rating with companies based in Idaho under one of four scholarship programs.

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Experimental Aircraft Association

November 10th, 2016, 12:08PM

The Experimental Aircraft Association lists seven types of scholarship to help with training toward a first certificate, 11 types of scholarship funds for college-level study, along with 31 opportunities for tuition or attendance costs to “camp” at its summertime Air Academy program in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

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National Air Transportation Association

November 10th, 2016, 12:07PM

The National Air Transportation Association describes itself as “the voice of aviation business,” representing 2,300 companies in the general aviation market. The association offers scholarships in five categories including high school seniors just accepted into university, initial flight training for college students, and course fees for professionals who want to advance their current trade.

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Flying Musicians Association

November 10th, 2016, 12:04PM

The mission of the Flying Musicians and its solo program is “Bringing aviation and music together” by “educating youth in the science and art of education and music.” The organization helps high school band members with flight training to a first solo, up to 15 hours. Applicants must be at least 16 years old and nominated by their music or band director. Awards include flight hours and dual instruction, with materials donated by Sporty’s Pilot Shop.