Seventeen year old Sam Irvine always loved aviation. He fondly remembers his grandfather who was an Air Force pilot and a captain for American Airlines, “My grandpa always encouraged me to fly, if I liked it.” Sam likes it and his whole family has been encouraging him. His Dad, Mom and brother will be the first passengers from his long list of family and friends to get a ride now that he has earned his Private Pilot Certificate.
A senior in high school, Sam is already looking forward to attending University of Illinois or Purdue and being a part of the ROTC program. His grandmother has always told him to get a degree in something other than aviation, so that he would have something to fall back on should ever be unable to fly and it may help secure future aviation jobs. Sam has been listening and though he’s not sure what direction he’ll go, perhaps a liberal arts degree or prelaw, he does know that he wants to be a Navy pilot after college.
Juggling flight training and school work was a challenge, but it was made easier by how much fun flying was… really fun! He advises student pilots, “Stay current. Don’t take time off, if possible.” Sam learned that it’s harder to catch up again, if you let yourself get out of practice.
When he’s not flying, Sam likes to play soccer, hang out with his friends and play disk golf. One of the first things he wants to do with his new Pilot certificate is see Chicago from above. Look up one of these days and you may see him fly by.