Applications for AOPA’s You Can Fly program 2021 scholarships opened on December 1. The 2020 program awarded 124 scholarships totaling more than $1 million, and with the help of generous donations to the AOPA Foundation, AOPA has awarded nearly $2.5 million in scholarship funding to 345 aspiring and enduring pilots in the past two years.
“AOPA’s mission is to protect your freedom to fly, and these scholarships bring this vision alive by opening the sky to more people with that passion,” said Elizabeth Tennyson, executive director of AOPA’s You Can Fly program. “These scholarships help current and future aviators at all points in their flying journey, especially those who may not have seen a path to the cockpit.”
With different goals for different aviators—and those aspiring to become pilots—AOPA is offering flight training scholarships in several categories.
Thanks to the generosity of the Ray Foundation, 80 high school students, ages 15 to 18, will receive flight training scholarships in 2021. In 2020, 80 students received a scholarship for $10,000 each.
“Our recent You Can Fly High School Symposium reaffirmed how exciting flying can be for a student,” Tennyson said. “Some past scholarship recipients mentioned how thrilling it was to have a pilot certificate, while everyone else their age was ‘only’ driving.”
Scholarship recipients will be able to use the money for direct flight training expenses to pursue a primary pilot certificate, such as a private, sport, or recreational pilot certificate. They must also complete a flight training milestone: achieving either a solo flight or earning a primary pilot certificate within one year of receiving a scholarship. Ninety-two percent of students who received scholarships in 2019 had achieved at least one of those milestones after one year.
If your questions have not been answered here, please email [email protected].
To complement AOPA’s support of student-learners, and thanks to the generosity of the Ray Foundation, 20 teachers will be awarded scholarships to pursue a primary pilot certificate (private, sport, or recreational pilot).
In 2020, 20 teachers each received a $10,000 scholarship.
To be eligible, a teacher must be:
Any questions about the AOPA Teacher Flight Training Scholarship can be answered by emailing [email protected].
These scholarships range from $2,500 to $7,500 and are open to current AOPA members who are at least 16 years of age by the application deadline. The scholarship money can be applied to training for a private, sport, or recreational pilot certificate. As with the other AOPA Flight Training scholarships, these are funded by generous donations to the AOPA Foundation.
For accomplished pilots who may have dreams of making aviation a career, the AOPA Foundation will award various scholarships, ranging from $3,000 to $10,000, to AOPA members seeking one of the following ratings or certificates:
“There’s no better feeling than seeing these scholarship winners seize their dreams and become pilots or earn advanced ratings. All of us at You Can Fly are honored to be part of their journey,” added Tennyson. “If you’re considering applying, don’t wait. February will be here before we know it!”
The You Can Fly program is funded by charitable donations to the AOPA Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization. To be a part of the solution, visit www.aopafoundation.org/donate.