Nothing like starting off the post with a funny airplane pun, huh?
Throughout my very boring and relaxing weekend (which I am very grateful for – haven’t had one of those in what feels like years), I mulled over how awesome this summer has been. It’s not very often anyone can say that they’ve been able to compete in 2 National Flight competitions, placed in Top 10 in one and won the other competition AND intern at one of the greatest and most influential Business/Private Jet design and manufacturing companies in the world.
I’m in the process of creating my final internship presentation to present in front of other interns, my boss, my supervisor, and the head of the overseeing department that includes my human factors department. Trust me, after all of the presentations that I’ve given over the last 3 years at Riddle, especially this past spring semester, this is going to be a piece of cake. But in writing this presentation, I can’t help but be in total awe of the opportunities that ERAU has given me over just these past 3 years. I’ve been able to compete in 3 National Intercollegiate Flying Association Safety and Flight Evaluation Conferences (otherwise known as NIFA National SAFECONs), 2 going on 3 Regional SAFECON competitions, 2 Air Race Classic races, and interned at a leading aerospace company. I have been one busy girl, but I am incredibly thankful for those at ERAU who have helped me along the way.
People often look at a university for what some pretty obvious factors, like a football team, majors (of course), family history maybe, in-state vs. out-of-state, retention rate, money ($$$), and a few others. What I wish I had done, but what luckily worked out for me, were the hidden programs within the university. Other opportunities besides the obvious and marketed aspects. Of course, Riddle has an amazing flight program which I absolutely love, and great students and faculty, and amazing sports and flying opportunities. All of that is absolutely true, but what is often overlooked my incoming freshman are the countless careers paths and opportunities only offered to ERAU students. Of course, we all know about the cadet programs and gateway programs for the pilots, which I have considered over the years, but what about us engineers and specialists? It’s amazing how just mentioning your involvement with ERAU can put you leaps and bounds ahead of other students. I have at least 5 co-workers that are ERAU alum in one way or another and it’s fantastic networking. We share stories, gather advice, and share our love of Riddle. Many companies offer special scholarships to ERAU-only students, which I have been lucky enough to have received one this summer from Gulfstream. Aerospace companies and ERAU take pride in their connections, whether it’s students, employees, activities, Greek life, sports, anything and everything. People in industry are amazed at what Riddle has done for myself and its students.
I’m definitely proud to have been able to represent ERAU and be an Eagle thus far in my college career and I’m so looking forward to continue representing this amazing university for one final semester this fall.
I think you’ve heard enough of my early week ranting, so enjoy your week and get excited for more (hopefully more hysterical) posts from me.
(For those of you unfamiliar with what a Phenom is, Phenoms are a series of business jets developed by Embraer out of Brazil. They’re very popular aircraft in the United States and around the world. They’re definitely one of my favorite series. I think I may like the Phenom 300 a little bit more than the Phenom 100, only because it’s a slightly bigger aircraft. They’re definitely on my flying-bucket-list!)