Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport plans to give out scholarships for aspiring pilots

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The Williamsburg Aviation Scholarship Program funds high school students pursuing a career in aviation. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Williamsburg Aviation Scholarship Program)

JAMES CITY COUNTY — This spring, local high school students with a passion for flight can apply for a scholarship that will cover training for a career in aviation. 

The Board of Directors for the Williamsburg Aviation Scholarship Program (WASP) will award the 2021-2022 aviation training scholarship to rising juniors and seniors attending high schools in Hampton Roads. 

Now in its seventh year, this program from the Williamsburg-Jamestown Airport has provided scholarships for thirty-five area students. 

Through a partnership with Federal Aviation Administration-accredited flight schools around the Tidewater area, the WASP scholarship awards funds for  high school students who are motivated to obtain their FAA Private Pilot’s License (PPL) and who could otherwise not afford the training, according to the airport’s news release on March 18.

If chosen, up to seven recipients will receive $11,000 towards fifty flight hours in order to achieve their PPL.

The license normally costs approximately $9,000-$11,000 based on 55-60 flight hours. However, the final cost depends on other factors such as “flying ability” and “training frequency,” according to the Williamsburg Flight Center’s website.

Class sizes are currently capped at six students, so WASP is dependent upon donations in order to fund future classes.

Those eligible for the scholarship must be Virginia residents attending high school in Hampton Roads and will turn 17 years old by June 1, 2022. 

The application window is open now through April 15. 

Those interested in applying for the scholarship can visit the Williamsburg Aviation Scholarship Program’s website.

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