infographic-thumb300When Ground Effect Advisors (GEA) announced a scholarship focused exclusively on Flying Clubs on February 15th, the expectation was that approximately 40 – 50 people would submit applications seeking assistance in starting a flying club. One hundred twenty six scholarship applications from 37 states were received, showing an impressive level of interest and need for support in forming flying clubs in the United States. On May 15th, Ground Effect Advisors will announce ten finalists for the scholarship which provides the winning applicant with over $3,500 worth of products, services, and support, all of which is geared towards getting the next great Flying Club off the ground. The winner will be announced on June 1, 2013.

“We are inspired by the quality and volume of applications we received for this scholarship”, comments Todd McClamroch, a GEA Executive. “The overwhelming response sends a strong message of the common thread that runs through the pilot community. Our scholarship will help one of these applicants get a flying club off the ground, but we don’t plan to stop there. We see great potential at airports across the country and we are dedicated to working with our partners to help as many of these applicants as possible.”

Ground Effect Advisors has released an InfoGraphic that communicates some of the interesting statistics that came through the application process. View the full size infographic.

The Flying Club Scholarship, the first of its kind, is meant to assist in starting America’s next great flying club and benefit a community of pilots in the process. Because Flying Clubs have proven to be an effective method to foster general aviation growth, several aviation organizations, including the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) have thrown their support behind the effort to leverage the Flying Club community. AOPA has donated $1,000 in seed funding for the scholarship winner. Adam Smith, Senior Vice President of AOPA’s Center to Advance the Pilot Community stated, “the stakeholders of general aviation are finally beginning to realize the vast potential offered by flying clubs. The opportunity offered by GEA is very promising and certainly will garner the industry’s attention and enhance momentum. I love the idea of scholarships to help start flying clubs. Like a scholarship to help someone learn to fly, but a gift that keeps on giving back to aviation for many years to come.”

Ground Effect Advisors would like to thank their partners who have contributed funds and goods to support the formation of the next great flying club. Our partners include: Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association (AOPA), David Clark, Sporty’s Pilot Shop, Signature Flight Support, Cirrus Aircraft, Schedule Master, PilotEdge, LiveATC.net, Heading 370 & Simple Flight Radio.