The Experimental Aircraft Association’s Young Eagles program, which introduces flying to youth ages eight through 17, is seeing growth in participation after a reduction during the Covid pandemic. With nearly 2.3 million free flights given since 1992, the Young Eagles program is supported by industry sponsors and has resulted in many young people becoming pilots.
During 2022, more than 49,000 youths received their introductory flight, carried aloft by 4,078 EAA member volunteer pilots. More than 1,000 of the pilots were new to the Young Eagles program in 2022, according to the organization.
“We are thrilled to see an increase in the number of pilots looking to help inspire the next generation of aviators,” said EAA Eagles program manager David Leiting. “For pilots, the rewards of flying Young Eagles are immeasurable. The only way we get more young people involved in aviation is to have more pilots participate, so the open invitation is always there.”
EAA welcomes more pilots to participate, and more information is available on the Young Eagles website. Pilots must be EAA members and complete the youth protection training and background checks, as well as comply with Young Eagle guidelines and have the Young Eagles registration form signed by the youth’s parent or guardian.