Memorial Youth Scholarship Program

Private Pilot Ground School with Introductory Flights

One of the missions of Cascade Warbirds is to inspire today’s young people to become the aviation pioneers of tomorrow. To give our flight-inspired youth a leg up on taking their first steps toward a career or life-long avocation, we offer the following scholarship opportunity.

Cascade Warbirds has teamed with several flight schools in the Puget Sound area to provide the scholarship recipient with tuition, books and supplies, and two introductory instructional flights.

This scholarship is available for students between the ages of 16 and 21 at the time of award. It is valued at approximately $1,350 and several awards are made each year.

Ground School

The ground school portion comprises classroom lectures, visual presentations, group discussions, and practical exercises over a period of approximately 55 contact hours. Classes generally meet two weeknights per week for two and one-half hours and one Saturday per week for four hours over a period of six weeks. Successful completion of this private pilot ground school will qualify the student to take the FAA’s private pilot knowledge test.

Instructional Flights

This scholarship also includes two instructional flights in a light aircraft, the make and model of which will be matched to the student. The first flight will occur partway through the ground school, based on the instructor’s recommendation, and the second flight will occur after the successful completion of the ground school course. Each flight will include a pre-flight briefing, taxi and runway procedures, introduction to radio communications, the take-off, a series of in-flight maneuvers, the return and landing, and post-flight procedures. These two flights will be logged in the student’s personal logbook and count toward the minimum flight time required to earn the FAA private pilot certificate.

Continuing Aviation Education Grant

This scholarship program is also structured to appeal to those who are ready to continue their flight training in the immediate future. An additional $2,500 Continuing Aviation Education Grant is available annually to one scholarship recipient who intends to earn their FAA private pilot certificate within the following year. Applicants must complete the ground school course, both introductory flights, and submit an essay by September 30 of the scholarship year. Funds are released in stages as the recipient completes training milestones: $1,000 after completing their first solo flight, $1,000 after completing their long solo cross-country, and $500 after earning the private pilot certificate.

Apply Now

Requirements are listed on the application form below. Please fill it out, sign it, and send it as instructed on page one. Thank you for your interest in our scholarship program and we wish you the best in your future aviation career!

2022 Scholarship Application

Applications are due by February 28, 2022

If you have any questions about the scholarship program, please contact our Scholarship Committee Chair.


We are able to offer this youth flight training scholarship only because of the generous financial support of our donors. Since 2010, Cascade Warbirds has provided nearly sixty outstanding young people the opportunity to grow, find a career, and learn a lifelong avocation through the magic of flight.

Becoming a pilot builds upon and expands core STEM skills of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. It pushes flight students to grow emotionally and build self-confidence. Minor or adult, learning to fly changes a person and opens them to a world of possibilities.

If you are interested in supporting our youth education efforts with a tax-deductible financial contribution, please contact our Finance Officer. You may also be able to donate directly from your tax-advantaged retirement account without it flowing through your income calculation; consult your tax advisor for details. Cascade Warbirds is a 501(c)(3) recognized nonprofit organization.

Thank you for your vote of confidence in Cascade Warbirds, your generous support, and your investment in our youth!

“Today I mailed our donation to the scholarship program in the name of my father, Captain Karl Mehrer, WWII vet recently deceased at 92 years old. He spent his last 40 years restoring historic sailing schooners on Puget Sound, and putting those ships to work training young people about the joys of the sea, many of whom he channeled into maritime careers. Thank the Warbirds for their fabulous formation flyby at the Captain’s memorial service over Lake Whatcom. We will never forget that tribute.”
 – Kathleen Mehrer

You may also contribute to Cascade Warbirds’ general programs through everyday purchases at popular retailers.

Recent Winners


2021 Continuing Education Grant Winner

Congratulations to Alexandra “Alex” Szrama, who has been awarded our 2021 Continuing Aviation Education Grant in the amount of $2,500. She is a student at Eastside Catholic School, a member of…

2021 Scholarship Winners

Congratulations to our 2021 Cascade Warbirds Memorial Scholarship winners! What a wonderful group of young people who applied for our scholarships this year! We are pleased to introduce the following…

2020 Continuing Education Grant Winner

Congratulations to Harry Pulido, one of our 2020 memorial flight training scholarship recipients, who was chosen to also receive our 2020 continuing aviation education grant! Having completed the ground school…

2020 Scholarship Winners

Congratulations to our 2020 Cascade Warbirds Memorial Scholarship winners! It is our pleasure to introduce our next crop of aviation students. Candace Do lives in Bellevue and is a senior…

2018 Scholar Update

Congratulations to 2018 Cascade Warbirds memorial scholarship recipient, Devin Graves, who passed his FAA private pilot check ride on January 18, 2020 after great patience with weather delays!