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The Eastern Echo Wednesday, June 12, 2024 | Print Archive
The Eastern Echo

EMU aviation program plane N525322

STEM Flights exposes students to careers in STEM and aviation

EMU, STEM Flights, and Crosswinds Aviation partner to offer aviation learning activities to 15 high school students.

Eastern Michigan University’s Digital Divas, a program that promotes STEM majors and careers to middle and high school girls, is partnering with STEM Flights and Crosswinds Aviation to host an aviation career learning event on Aug. 18, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Willow Run Airport. 

Dr. Bia Hamed, the Director of K-12 STEM Outreach at the GameAbove College of Engineering & Technology, seeks to offer opportunities for girls in the community to learn more about STEM and aviation careers.

“Less than 10 percent of all pilots in the United States are women,” Hamed said. “So there is a big lack of knowledge that girls can become pilots and go into aviation operation management. This is a very lucrative job, and we want to make sure that they know their options.” 

Pilots will be volunteering their time for this program. They will be taking the students on short flights in airplanes, talking one-on-one with them, and giving them further insight into the industry. 

Students will be paired with a pilot mentor where they will fly a mission and participate in many other aviation subjects related to a STEM flight. Both the student and the pilot mentor will complete a checklist that covers the learning objectives and tasks. Finally, the pilot mentor will offer follow-up career guidance and potential resource referral to the student. 

“This is a very expensive program to put together, and we are really excited about putting it up. It is such a unique opportunity for the right student; the student that really has that desire. This will be a deciding factor for them,” Hamed said. 

The cost of flying a plane and the activities planned out for this program are expensive, so space in this program is limited to 15 high school students. They will be chosen on a first-come-first-serve basis. 

To learn more about STEM Flights and to apply for this program, visit their website.