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Hundreds of fourth-grade students from Watsonville have been getting a first-hand look at what goes on at the Watsonville Municipal Airport for the past three months.
It’s all part of an “Aviation Adventure” co-created by the airport, aviation businesses on-site, volunteer pilots, and the Pajaro Valley Unified School District.
The goal is to introduce students to various facets of aviation while reminding them that there is no limit to how high they can fly!
“My favorite part of the field trip is seeing this helicopter from Vietnam,” said Carter Wollitz a 4th-grade student from Bradley Elementary.
For many of the students, this was their first field trip since COVID-19 restrictions began to ease.
“They’ve probably driven by this airport hundreds if not thousands of times but to actually be able to come and talk to the people who work here and get excited about maybe having this as a job opportunity when they get older,” explained Bradley Elementary School teacher, Rebecca Said
The idea of creating this exciting opportunity for students started in 2019 but was shuttered by the pandemic.
“We had to shelve it but what we did is we really didn’t shelve it,” said Watsonville Municipal Airport Director, Rayvon Williams. “What we did is we started working as if it was happening the next year.”
At the end of their field trip, the students will have learned about four of the major elements of the general aviation airport, all done right here in Watsonville.
“I really appreciate this opportunity,” said Said. “It was the first time we’ve done this and we didn’t really know what to expect. We were just kinda thrown into this but it’s been really great.”
The Watsonville Municipal Airport plans to continue its partnership with aviation businesses on-site, volunteer pilots, and the Pajaro Valley Unified School District to offer this one-of-a-kind experience to more students in the future.
“It’s my firm belief that there’s a great opportunity that one of those students in this area, a young lady or a young gentleman, could be the commander of a shuttle mission to Mars. It’s going to happen,” said Williams. “There’s no reason that a Watsonville community child couldn’t be that person.”
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