February 21, 2012

SHOWCASING CAREERS FOR A BRIGHTER FUTURE

 

We gathered our Central Florida community yesterday to introduce new math and science tools that kids need to pursue careers in engineering and aviation. Students were able to learn from the Tuskegee Airmen who were determined to persevere in the midst of adversity.  Just like the pilots were determined, the Y is determined to help kids reach their potential by developing programs and opportunities.

 

Hundreds, including many children and teens, gathered together at our South Orlando Y to hear about the airmen’s adventures. The pilots were encouraged to see so many young people learn about their careers. Lieutenant Colonel Leo Gray, Lieutenant Colonel Hiram Mann and Lieutenant Colonel George Hardy, were among the country’s first black military aviation pilots who escorted bomber planes in Europe during World War II.  Hardy, 86, of Sarasota, one of the youngest Tuskegee Airmen, flew 21 combat missions over Germany. Students were given the platform to ask questions to the airmen. The pilot’s stories encouraged students to be their best and that they could do anything once they set their mind to it.

 

Children and teens participated in the Lockheed Martin Trade Fair activities which include demonstrations of Lockheed technologies:

 

  • Joint Strike Fighter “Hot Seat” Simulator
  • Gyrocam sensor system
  • Laser scanning optics
  • Thermal Imaging

 

 

Defense contractor Lockheed Martin  presented both the Y and nearby Oak Ridge High School with donations to encourage students to pursue careers in aviation.

 

“We joined forces with the Y to invest in future leaders for this community and for Lockheed Martin,” said company vice president John Varley.

 

See Orlando Sentinel’s Video and Article about our event.