Claire Melton – Private Pilot Milestone

Congratulations to Claire Melton for passing her private pilot checkride on August 24, which was also the day of her 17th birthday. Claire said a combination of factors, including her father getting current and a great experience at SUN ’n FUN International Fly-In & Expo, led her to flight training.

“I was definitely inspired by that to start my ground school and all the things that led up to my solo on my 16th birthday,” Claire said. “[SUN ’n FUN] was the definitive moment where I said, yeah, let’s go forward with this.”

Although school and extracurricular activities didn’t leave Claire much time for flight training and ground school, she was able to use her summers and Christmas breaks to get much of her preparation done.

Now that she’s got her private, next up for Claire is transition training to the Cirrus her flight club has acquired, followed by becoming instrument rated and getting her commercial certificate. She would also like to become a CFI during the summer so she could instruct in college, although Claire is well aware how much work that entails.

Even if she doesn’t end up being a professional pilot, Claire said she is happy she decided to learn to fly and believes it will help her in her current career plan.

“This has been a very beneficial experience for me to have as far as discipline and things like that,” Claire said. “I’m interested in pursuing a career in public policy and politics, I think it would be beneficial to have this accreditation under my belt and use it to help me with that career.”

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