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Summer Youth Aviation Programs

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Hello all,


I have started this thread in Hangar Chat in hopes of receiving quicker responses to accommodate any potential sign-up deadlines (please read context below).


I am a high school student interested in attending a youth aviation program in North America this summer. Ideally, this program would be fun and somewhat casual, but challenging and enriching—more immersive than FSX, real-world training materials, and Wikipedia can be, but not on a formal training level.


I am more interested in experiencing lots of flight from the cockpit and learning how to operate GA aircraft than I am in learning about aviation careers, commercial operations, engineering and maintenance, etc. While I have a considerably generous budget (compared to those of typical summer camps), saving money is always desirable.


I am hoping for some unbiased advice and recommendations, as Google and the web sites of each program have been my only sources. I have found the following candidates. Please notify me of any inappropriate choices (e.g., programs too advanced to be considered somewhat-casual summer camps).

From the information I have found, it seems that EAA Air Academy and Premier Flight Summer AeroCamp are on the basic side, while Randolph-Macon is very serious. I am unsure how “serious” the others are and whether they will feature ample flight opportunities. My primary concern involves paying large program and travel fees, only to find very little flight time.


I would greatly appreciate any comments, personal experiences, and/or safety concerns regarding the above summer programs, as well as additional recommendations. General advice is always helpful, as I am new to exploring real-world aviation!


Please notify me if you need additional information, and thank you in advance!

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