From World War II pilots to astronauts and commercial airlines, Breitling has served the aviation community with reliable, efficient timepieces since the early days of flying. Now, the Swiss manufacturer is investing in the next generation of pilots with the Breitling Aviation Scholarship Fund.
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the special edition Breitling Navitimer watch commemorating AOPA’s seventy-fifth anniversary goes toward the fund, which will provide 10 $5,000 scholarships for student pilots in the coming year. The AOPA Foundation administers the scholarships through the AOPA Flight Training Scholarship Program and is accepting applications through 10 p.m. Eastern time Aug. 9.
“Given Breitling’s longstanding history and innovation in the field of aviation, we know how critical it is to support future generations of aviators,” said Breitling USA President Thierry Prissert. “Especially now, when most people must rely on private flight training which can be quite costly, we hope that these scholarships will encourage more people of all ages to pursue their flying dreams.”
Royal Air Force fighter pilots relied on Breitling’s onboard chronographs during World War II; a Breitling Navitimer wristwatch accompanied Scott Carpenter to space on his orbital flight aboard the Aurora 7 capsule; and the company’s onboard chronographs became standard equipment on commercial aircraft in the 1950s and 1960s. AOPA chose the Breitling Navitimer as its official timepiece and offered it at a special price in 1954. Navitimers were sold with the AOPA wings on the face for 14 years. Then, in 2014, AOPA and Breitling renewed their relationship; Breitling became a Strategic Partner and issued a Seventy-Fifth Anniversary Limited Edition AOPA Navitimer.
The Breitling Aviation Scholarship Fund, funded through sales of the special edition Navitimer, recognizes the watch maker’s aviation heritage while supporting aviators of the future. Student pilots may apply for scholarships in the AOPA Flight Training Scholarship Program online.