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Build A Plane sees rise in donationsBuild A Plane sees rise in donations

High school kids, working with professional assistance at the Glasair factory, built a Sportsman 2+2 in just two weeks!High school kids, working with professional assistance at the Glasair factory, built a Sportsman 2+2 in just two weeks!

Build A Plane, a charitable organization that teaches kids science, math, and technology skills through hands-on experience in aircraft construction, has about 200 airplane construction projects under way and 300 youth groups awaiting donations, founder Lynn Freeman said April 15.

“This economy has been a wonderful thing for Build A Plane,” Freeman said. “We’ve seen a significant increase in aircraft donations. Some are flying. Some are not flying, but all of them are helpful.”

The organization was set to receive a flying Piper Twin Comanche April 15 in Lansing, Mich., and projects under way include aircraft in both Standard and Experimental categories.

A group of 11 children in a remote village in Alaska have a Thorp T-211 under construction and expect to fly it within one month. Three of the young people who helped build it have gone on to receive Airframe & Powerplant mechanic certificates, and two are in flight training. The group plans to fly the two-seat airplane to the EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., this summer.

Build A Plane also will host a Teachers’ Day at AirVenture on July 26; and the organization has formed a partnership with AeroScholars to offer online courses that students can use to gain high school and college course credits.

Dave Hirschman

Dave Hirschman

AOPA Pilot Editor at Large
AOPA Pilot Editor at Large Dave Hirschman joined AOPA in 2008. He has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates. Dave flies vintage, historical, and Experimental airplanes and specializes in tailwheel and aerobatic instruction.

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