Young Eagles Works, Says EAA

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EAA says its Young Eagles program, which aims to introduce youngsters to general aviation, has been successful at inspiring those youngsters to become pilots. By checking FAA's pilot registry against its list of Young Eagles going back to 1992, EAA said it found that Young Eagles are 5.4 times more likely to become a pilot than those who never participated. "The numbers show that Young Eagles is making an impact on the pilot population that is unmatched by any other single program," said EAA Chairman Tom Poberezny. The EAA analysis also showed that 9 percent of those pilots are female, a gain of 50 percent compared to the overall figure of 6 percent of the pilot population.

EAA also said that the older a child is at the time of the Young Eagles flight, the more likely it is that child will become a pilot. Two out of every 100 young people who take their first Young Eagles flight at age 17 go on to earn a pilot certificate. The program has provided more than 1.6 million free demonstration flights to young people around the world, with help from 43,000 volunteer pilots and 50,000 volunteers on the ground.