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OBAP events go virtualOBAP events go virtual

The Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP) is taking several educational events virtual this year.

Young girls sit in the cockpit of a JetBlue Airbus A320 during an OBAP ACE Academy. Photo courtesy of OBAP.

OBAP’s Aerospace Professionals in School (APIS) initiative introduces youth to the opportunities available through careers in aerospace and aviation beginning at an early age.

APIS curriculum has been designed to engage and attract the interest of elementary school age children and up through science clubs and career days, in-depth exposure at career fairs, community events, mentorship programs, and collegiate preparedness events.

This year, OBAP is taking APIS virtual and will continue to provide valuable outreach to students wherever they are learning. The event will take place from October 19 through 23; parents and teachers of interested students can register online.

Delta Air Lines First Officer Anya Kearns (foreground) and U.S. National Guard Maj. Michelle Scott (background) talk to students during a school visit. Photo courtesy of OBAP.

Another virtual event hosted by OBAP and designed to spark aviation interest in girls is Girls LAUNCH (Learning and Understanding New Career Horizons), October 24 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern time.

This virtual event will provide girls and women of all ages with interactive experiences and immersive conversations with female aerospace professionals to boost interest in the opportunities in aerospace.

“Girls LAUNCH is part of OBAP’s plan to introduce young women to the limitless possibilities in aerospace, which we hope, in time will lead to an increase in diversity throughout the industry,” said OBAP Programs Co-chair Tennessee Garvey. “It is my hope that we’ll continue to lead the way in gender equity in aerospace, and Girls LAUNCH is one step toward achieving that objective.”

Girls LAUNCH will feature:

  • Learning tracks for elementary, middle school, high school, and college students.
  • Behind-the-scenes virtual tours.
  • An interactive digital library and a magazine.
  • DIY learning activities, and more.

During an immersive afternoon, participants will interact with pilots, air traffic controllers, aerospace engineers, aircraft mechanics, meteorologists, flight attendants, and aviation business professionals as they share their own career stories and answer students’ questions to launch each participant into the possibilities of aerospace.

U.S. National Guard Maj. Michelle Scott shares time with young girls. Photo courtesy of OBAP.

Girls LAUNCH “is about helping girls see a path in aerospace,” said OBAP Board Chair Vanessa Blacknall-Jamison. “It’s about exposing them to the limitless possibilities they rarely hear about. Once they can see it, we know they can be it.

“Girls are probably as interested in aerospace and aviation as boys are, and if they have that interest and passion, they should follow it,” Blacknall-Jamison continued. “Girls LAUNCH is an opportunity to light that spark that will hopefully lead to lifelong learning and a fulfilling career.”

See the OBAP website to register for the Girls LAUNCH event and see the full event schedule.

Jennifer Non

Jennifer Non

Senior Manager of Media Relations and Public Affairs
AOPA Senior Manager of Media Relations and Public Affairs, Jennifer Non joined AOPA in 2017. A former traffic reporter turned media relations specialist, and native Washingtonian, she enjoys traveling and is working toward her private pilot certificate.
Topics: Aviation Education Programs, Aviation Organizations

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