Background:

TeenFlight Puyallup is a Washington State based non-profit organization operating as a public charity providing educational services to high school aged students. TeenFlight Puyallup has been granted 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status by the IRS.

TeenFlight Puyallup is mostly made up of members from Chapter 326 of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) based at Pierce County Thun Field (KPLU) in Puyallup, WA. These experienced builders volunteer their time to serve as mentors to the students and as staff to operate the program.

TeenFlight Puyallup is currently working on our fourth Van’s Aircraft RV-12. The first 2 planes (TF1 , TF2) are being used for flight training and as static display at shows and conferences. Our TF3 aircraft, which was recently completed, is waiting for its FAA inspection and will be sold after flight testing is continue funding our build program. Our current build, TF4, was started Oct 2017 and the students are making great progress in completing it.

Mission Statement:

  • Provide an experience that opens a young person’s mind to new horizons whether in terms of personal achievement or career aspirations in aviation and aerospace sciences.
  • Foster teamwork between local citizens, civic leaders and businesses supporting youth in aviation and other aerospace industries.

Goals:

  • Instructing students using hands-on training in the technical skills, teamwork and leadership that is necessary in team building a Light Sport aircraft from start to finish.
  • Providing opportunities for the students to earn high school and college credits for participating in the program.
  • Providing students with job shadowing and internship opportunities.
  • Work with businesses to provide scholarship and grant opportunities for students entering aviation and aerospace career studies.

Program Description:

The TeenFlight Puyallup program is a 2+ year program designed to teach high-school level kids the vocational skills necessary to construct, maintain and fly the aircraft they built along with directly exposing the students to the various career opportunities through field trips, job shadowing and internships.

Key features:

  • Build a Light Sport category aircraft from start to finish
  • Earn their Sport Pilot certificate in the aircraft
  • Learn to maintain and inspect the aircraft
  • Potential credits for higher education
  • Expose students to a variety of aviation and aerospace opportunities

Target Students:

  • High School level students interested in aviation or engineering careers.
  • Start a new aircraft build each year with 20 new students.

Student Benefits:

  • Learn to work as a team and develop leadership skills
  • Learn a variety of vocational skills:
    • Metal fabrication
    • Electronics/Avionics
    • Reciprocating engines
    • Understanding technical drawings and instructions
    • Public speaking and presentation skills
  • Earn a Sport Pilot certificate
  • Job shadowing & internship opportunities
  • Potential credits for high school and higher education
  • Students become better candidates for prospective employers

Program Plan:

Year 1: Build Plane (Sept thru Jun)

Students will work approximately 200+ hours in the first year building the aircraft and participating in the flight-test phase. The students will also display their aircraft throughout the year at a variety of events and venues to show their accomplishments, help promote the program and to serve as outreach to other youths.

Students will learn the following:

  • Become skilled in the use of common tools used in aircraft construction.
  • Become knowledgeable in aircraft construction materials and hardware.
  • Learn how to read and understand technical instructions, charts and drawings.
  • Learn how each aircraft system works and how to install flight controls, brake systems, electrical system, avionics, engine/propeller, etc,
  • Perform weight and balance checks.
  • Prepare paperwork for aircraft registration and certification
  • Prepare a flight testing plan and record flight test data
  • Attend EAA AirVenture in Oshkosk,WI and display their aircraft

Year 2: Flight Training and Job Shadowing

The second year of the program is primarily focused on flight training, aircraft maintenance and inspection, developing leadership through participation in mentoring first year students and exploring career opportunities through additional field trips and jab shadowing.

Students will participate in the following:

  • Begin training for Sport Pilot Certificate
  • Participate in aircraft maintenance and inspections
  • Assist in mentoring first year build students
  • Experience various career options through field trips and job shadowing
  • Attend EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, WI