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Gogos Scholarship

Local Soaring Pilot Shares His Love of Flight With A New Generation

The Collegiate Soaring Association, Inc. (CSA) is pleased to announce the availability, for a limited time, of a set of youth grants for soaring study.  These will be administered under contract by a full service FBO, will enable in stages the full range of flight training in sailplanes from first flight to advanced FAI badges, and will cover all non site costs including flight charges, books, room and board, and local transportation.

This program exists because of the outstanding generosity of one extraordinary man, Bela Gogos, who learned to soar at age 15 and has seen the wisdom of mixing youth and soaring over fifty years.  A retired Colonel of the Hungarian Air Force, Mr. Gogos is a WWII pilot who started life over in North America after ten years of Soviet imprisonment.  Here in the USA, he avidly returned to soaring as a hobby but was surprised at its more leisurely status in our country.  Back in wartime and then socialist Hungary, flight training was always began with gliders and was far more comprehensive than the USA standard. With the scope and size of this grant program, CSA hopes to add Hungarian style strength to USA youth soaring.  The cadre of beneficiaries of the program, the "Gogos Scholars", should become important resources in the future of soaring.

Mr. Gogos is a resident of Haymarket, VA, and currently is an active member of the Skyline Soaring Club (see http://www.skylinesoaring.org/) which operates out of Front Royal, VA.  He has over 2,000 hours in his ASW-20C sailplane alone, all his FAI Diamonds and one Lennie, many long cross country flights, and much club mentoring to his credit.

CSA has already awarded four grants as a test of the process, and will award seven grants of $2,000 each in 1999, 2000, and 2001, at which point the funds will be exhausted.  Grants will be targeted towards training in the following categories  Primarily A (first flight to solo), but also C (solo to FAA private license), (Silver (SC to FAI badges), and Diamond (advanced badges, wave, racing).  Of the seven yearly grants, two will be earmarked for college students active in CSA and two more may be offered through youth partners of the SSA such as Civil Air Patrol and Exploring.  The rest will be open to the widest possible youth audience within these eligibility criteria:

  • US Citizen or permanent resident;
  • Student (full time at an academic institution within one year of grant);
  • Age limits 14-25 inclusive.

Application is to be in the form of a nomination from an FAI soaring badge holder within a sponsoring Soaring Club or Operator, by April 30 of each year, on a form downloadable from the CSA web (http://www.win.net/~greeley/coll/gogos.htm).

Principal judging criteria will be a strongly documented desire to soar, plans to help promote the amateur sport of soaring among young people in school, and financial need.  In the case of the beginner "A" category, additional consideration will apply to candidates with career interests in aviation or aeronautical science, and with above average scholastic or extra curricular achievement.  Previous grant winners may reapply for a future grant in any succeeding category.

CSA has selected Soar Minden in Nevada to administer these grants.  Soar Minden is an SSA business member that operates year round, every day of the week, and offers access to world famous ridge, thermal, and wave conditions.  They operate a large modern fleet of sailplanes and are very experienced with supporting cross country flights for FAI badges.  They have a tradition of incorporating young European pilots into their staff and already count one SSA Kolstad award winner, Paul Sabino, as a local product.

This program has a limited life of three years, which can be considered a trial period.  CSA hopes the example will inspire other donors and fostering organizations to continue similar efforts indefinitely.  CSA will be more than pleased to advise on and coordinate such plans.

[Official Announcement] [Official Application Form (in .PDF format)]
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