TWIN FALLS, Idaho — Working in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration, the Idaho Transportation Department is offering scholarships to 10 kids who are rising eighth to tenth graders to attend the National Flight Academy Camp in Pensacola, Florida.
The Idaho Transportation Department initially received this funding back in 2019, but the awarding of scholarships was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The program is designed for students that have a great interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) to receive an immersive educational experience.
“The park has themed park-style thrills," said Jessika Phillips, the Contract Compliance Officer for Idaho Transportation Department Office of Civil Rights. "Utilizing flight simulations and virtual reality, the missions get harder as the week progresses, it really challenges kids and puts them to the test.”
Students who receive the scholarship will have their food, transportation, and lodging paid for. Students will be staying on-board the world's largest simulated aircraft carrier while participating in these activities.
The reason the program is geared towards a younger age demographic is to try and motivate these kids to start thinking about their future.
“The curriculum that is offered is a little bit more targeted towards them," said Phillips. "It also is creating early inspiration for them so that they can start looking towards their college career paths, and getting involved, and trying to decide what it is that they want to do in life.”
There are several requirements that applicants must fulfill in order to be considered for the scholarship.
“Kids should have a very strong interest and a very strong passion for STEM," said Phillips. "They should enjoy hands-on type activities. They’re also going to submit either a video or essay and this video or essay prompt is going to answer the question of how would you set up a government on Mars.”
The program will operate from July 16-23 and applications are still being accepted at this time. The Idaho Transportation Department hopes to announce the winners in March or April.
For those interested, you can find the application here.