Some Chicago pilots are hoping to foster the creation of at least one new flying club in a place that needs and will support one through the offer of a "scholarship" and some practical advice. Ground Effect Advisors is offering the award, which includes about $3,500 worth of supplies and tools, to the group that rises to the top of a nationwide competition. Applications are being accepted here until May 1. In a podcast interview with AVweb, spokesman Todd McClamroch said there are plenty of scholarships for pilot training but none for mentoring those who want to keep certificated pilots engaged and interested in improving their skills.
McClamroch said flying clubs provide that outlet but they're complicated to create and maintain. Based on their experience with the Leading Edge Flying Club at Chicago Executive Airport, he and his three cohorts are willing to help the right applicant. There have already been 50 applicants since the project went live a week ago, and some prominent sponsors, including AOPA, David Clark and Cirrus, have hopped on board.