According to WUSA9, Christopher Ballinger, 17, is on track to become one of the nation’s youngest licensed private pilots. We can thank the Air Force Junior ROTC flying academy program for putting Ballinger on the path to success. It’s time to turn that 2% of Black pilots up a notch or two.
According to the story, Ballinger is a rising high school senior on schedule to graduate with a Private Pilot License and begin his first year of college (PPL). A private pilot license can only be obtained at the age of 17. He will be qualified to fly after passing his instrument “checkride” with the Federal Aviation Administration.
It has been intense, but overall this has been a fantastic experience for me. We get up at 6 a.m., and on some mornings at 4:30 a.m., to beat the winds and fly six days a week. It takes a lot of ground school and studying to pass all the exams, but it’s worth it, said Ballinger to WUSA9.
Ballinger hopes to join the Air Force someday and fly. Fortunately, a plan is being developed to increase possibilities for boys who resemble him.
The Air Force Times has more.
Ballinger has been enrolled in an eight-week Flight Academy course at Walla Walla University, according to WUSA9. He was the second cadet prepared to conduct a solo cross-country flight, a job that typically requires applicants to train for months.
Black people make up fewer than 12% of all pilots throughout all aviation sectors, including the Air Force and commercial aviation. Our youth will start to dominate fields where we have traditionally been underrepresented. Teenager Caleb Smith from the DMV was recently recognized by the Air Force, given the chance to fly an Air Force helicopter over Washington, DC, and is currently working on obtaining his glider pilot’s license, according to WUSA9.
It is very uplifting to witness children’s responses to the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?” come to life.
The top 5 Fall getaways in the Northeast
This story has been updated with new information. Fall brings a welcome respite from summer’s heat and humidity as well...
Giant Slide reopened in the US for the first time since going viral
Thousands of people showed up to the Giant Slide in Detroit on the first weekend it reopened since going viral.
This hiker falls to his death at the Grand Canyon
A hiker walking in Grand Canyon National Park fell approximately 200 feet to his death on Friday afternoon, according to...
Ford fixed a problem with the Mustang that caused many crashes
Ford Mustang prototype mystery of 'The Bulge' has finally been solved.
You can buy a 90s Porsche-inspired boat, if you really want to
Yes, this is a yacht made to kind of look like a 993-generation 911 cabriolet.