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March 2018 Bulletin

March 2018 Bulletin

March 28, 2018

As we soar into the 2nd quarter of the 2018 calendar year, it’s an opportune time to reflect on past accomplishments, as well as describe how we’re impacting lives each day. Each success has positioned Pathways to Aviation toward an extraordinary future.

We set a record!

In 2017, we connected with over 6,000 students…a Pathways to Aviation record. Our quest to inform, inspire, and engage a record number of students, despite not participating in the Reno Air Races, was an incredible feat. We participated in many high school career fairs, elementary and middle career days, countless mock interviews, multiple aviation festivals. We also hosted four outstanding career mentoring workshops. Thanks to the endorsement of our board trustees, the assistance of many volunteers, and partnerships created with schools and corporations, we provided educational programming to many students in the northern Nevada area.


We are very thankful!

Pathways to Aviation was the recipient of very special donations in the 2017 calendar year. We are truly thankful to the following contributors for their belief and investment in our educational and career development programs.

Foundations & Corporations

E.L. Cord Foundation

ISTAT Foundation


Truckee Tahoe Airport District


Kathy DiCenso

Katie Greenwood

Tom Hall

Eric Henry

Kevin Huffer

Bob Larkin

Heidi Parker

Pete Parker

Keith Taylor

Rebecca Venis

Candace Whitfield



Pathways to Aviation provides solutions to the aviation industry’s growing workforce needs by informing, inspiring, and engaging young people through educational and career development programs and experiences.



The aviation workforce shortage is increasing!

Pathways to Aviation’s purpose of providing aviation education to young people has never changed since its founding in 2004. Roughly three years ago, our organization’s leadership recognized a decreasing number of commercial pilots and set into motion a plan to address the growing issue. It hadn’t quite hit the news, at that point. However, thirty-six months later the issue has grown into an international problem.


For example, did you know?????

  • In 2016, the aviation industry lost more than 48,000 workers through layoffs, attrition, and retirements.
  • There’s a projected 7,649 shortage of helicopter pilots between now and 2036.
  • Roughly 2% of the aviation maintenance technician population is new to the profession (under 1 year of experience), while 30% of the workforce is at or near retirement age.
  • 118,000 new technicians will be needed in North America over the next two decades.
  • There’s a projected shortage of 40,613 certified aviation mechanics between now and 2036.

There are more staggering figures and statistics, all of which can be found on our website – click here for aviation workforce news.


We’re on a mission!

There’s a large pool of skilled talent in our local communities. We know…we met well over 6,000 of these students at workshops, career fairs and expos, mock interview days, and other impressive events throughout the 2017 calendar year. Many of these high school and college students could easily thrive in the aviation industry.


We designed and launched a program which identifies interested students and builds pathways to guide them toward continued education and/or direct workforce employment opportunities. Futures In Aerospace is a career mentoring program providing career readiness tools, best practices, and mentors in fun, compelling, and interactive experiences. The ultimate goal of the program is to elevate each student’s chance of pursuing his or her educational and career goals.


We originally created the career mentoring program in spring of 2017 through three educational workshops, structured to culminate in an evening of networking. Each workshop was attended by a group of eight students. The reception was attended by 10 students, who met with twenty-two aviation leaders in a “speed networking” reception. Tremendously successful!


The 2018 version of the career mentoring program is represented through eight sessions, taking place in two locations. Thanks to the financial investment of the ISTAT Foundation and the Truckee Tahoe Airport District, the Truckee Tahoe Flight Plan and Reno Flight Plan have been incredible. We’re also thankful to the team at AviNation, a new magazine designed for young aspiring aviation leaders, for contributing its inaugural issue to all of our participants. Four sessions remain, two in each location. Each session is attended by no less than 15 students. Seventy students, in total, are participating in the program.


The program is attracting the interest of students who hadn’t originally planned to consider the aviation industry as a career path. Representing the majority of participants, these students are returning to each workshop to learn more about the industry and meet its top executives.


We’re tracking student interests and participation in this growing program. Here’s a snapshot of these students:

Career Interests

  • Avionics: 38%
  • Engineering: 51%
  • Flight Attendant: 13%
  • Mechanics: 22%
  • Pilot (Fixed Wing): 67%
  • Piliot (Helicopter): 25%
  • Technology: 25%
  • Unmanned: 32%

Career planning needs

Over 80% of students say…

  • Resume writing
  • Mentoring
  • Interviewing skills
  • Networking skills

Over 70% of students say…

  • Meeting executives


The program is working better than anticipated! We’ve attracted 13 aviation executives as session presenters, who are describing their professional journeys, announcing job opportunities in their fields and businesses, and sharing educational and career planning advice. Students are leaving each workshop with job shadowing commitments, interview appointments, and college recruitment information.



Attend an upcoming workshop!

The next two career mentoring workshops will focus on the topic of networking. Students will learn about first impressions, personal branding, meets and greets, conversations, and followup. They’ll also meet three exceptional aviation leaders, who will describe their professional paths.


Truckee Tahoe Flight Plan

Thursday, March 29


Truckee Tahoe Airport

Details and RSVP


Reno Flight Plan

Tuesday, April 17


Dassault Falcon Jet

Details and RSVP



We’re proud of our alliances!

Pathways to Aviation is fortunate to work with and/or receive the endorsement of many organizations, which are committed to our mission. Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development, Nevada Governor’s Workforce Investment Board (Aerospace & Defense Sector Council), Nevada Governor’s Office of Workforce Innovation, Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority, Truckee Tahoe Airport Authority, Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada, State of Nevada Department of Education, Washoe County School District, Truckee Tahoe Unified School District, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, University of Nevada, Truckee Meadows Community College, and Sierra College.


The list of partners grows regularly. In fact, the Futures in Aerospace program has attracted the interest of educational and aviation leaders in several states, including California, Utah, Illinois, Iowa, and Florida.



Looking to make a sound investment?

Pathways to Aviation is governed by a board of nine committed leaders. It’s operated by one, part-time, staff member. The vast majority of funds go to executing programs. At an annual growth rate of 1,000 students reached, a 500% increase in career mentoring participants, and expansion into multiple regions, the future looks impressive. The Futures in Aerospace model is scalable, attracts non-aviation students, and creates immediate impact in the lives of its participants.


Pathways to Aviation is not your everyday typical charity. The 501c3 organization is a resource to students of all ages, genders, financial capacities, cultural backgrounds, residential locations, etc. In addition, Pathways provides extreme value to aviation businesses and associations. Funding determines our ability to properly grow and create lifelong opportunities to those seeking fulfilling careers, as well as those looking to hire quality young people (aka talent). Since we do not receive state or federal funding, we rely upon the charitable generosity of businesses, individuals, and private foundations to manage the organization.



Every dollar received is well appreciated! 

Similarly, each contribution is also allocated to interesting, informative, and compelling educational and career planning programs.

We’ve made it extremely easy to make a donation. All that’s needed is a click or two and a donation can be made through our online giving platform. Click here to make an online donation. Those preferring to donate through traditional means may mail checks to PO Box 21433, Reno, NV 89515


Yours in Flight!


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Informing, inspiring, and engaging aviation's next generation.