HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Aviation is a pastime not often available to lower-income families. Founders of a new Huntsville organization have made it their goal to open up the world of flight to all young people, no matter their economic circumstance.
FlyQuest, in partnership with Wings of Eagles Flight School, hopes to offer free or reduced flight lessons for underprivileged Huntsville students.
Mark Spencer, co-founder of FlyQuest, says not only will FlyQuest offer an opportunity many students otherwise wouldn't have had, but it will open the door to future careers in aviation.
"There's a tremendous amount of demand for pilots, aviation maintenance people and operations people," said Spencer. "Here's an opportunity for a lot of kids to take advantage of those careers if they're given the tools they need to be successful in it."
FlyQuest will allow students to purchase flight training. But, for those who can not afford it, they will pay for their training through community service.
"Those hours will count toward their time in the airplanes, the simulator and ground school," said Spencer.
To curb the cost for training, FlyQuest, along with Wings of Eagles, has put a down payment on a full motion flight simulator, which will allow the students to gain flight skills before ever actually sitting in a cockpit of a real plane.
FlyQuest hopes to raise $150,000 within the next few months to fund its flight simulator. If all goes as planned, they hope to begin offering lessons and training as early as January.
You can learn more about FlyQuest or donate to the organization on its website.