NewsCovering Colorado


Three Colorado Springs high school students graduate with pilot licenses, pipeline to Air Force

One student accepted into US Air Force Prep School
Posted at 5:43 PM, May 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-19 17:19:33-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — COLORADO SPRINGS— It's quite common to graduate high school with a driver's license, not so much a pilot's license.

Three Harrison School District 2 students are doing just that.

"I hope to go on to the United States Air Force Academy after [graduation], be a class of 2028," said one Harrison High School student Linda McGoff.

McGoff can fly a plane but not yet drive a car. She got her private pilot license at 17 years old.

"We're not meant to fly and to be able to break the barrier and be able to go up into the sky, it's like awesome," said McGoff.

McGoff was accepted into the Air Force Academy Prep School- a ten-month program to get her closer to her dream.

"There's always a need for pilots and that's one thing we look at in the admission process," said the Air Force Chief selections of admissions Dr. Phillip Prosseda.

Prosseda said nearly all those who finish prep school get accepted to the academy.

"I would say the prep school is probably more competitive in some respects than getting into the Air Force Academy," said Prosseda.

Prosseda said more than 10,000 people apply to the Air Force Academy every year. About 234 are accepted to the prep school.

This is a big deal for McGoff. Women make up about 25 percent of cadets in the prep school and about 30 percent in the academy.

"I don't really think about going into a male-dominated field, I'm a woman and I am a woman who can do the same thing males can," said McGoff.

The lead instructor for the AFJROTC program at Harrison High School, Col. Scott Miller, said his three graduates are the most he's seen in his 6-year career.

"The whole program exists because there's such a deficient in pilots across the world so this is not only an Air Force initiative, it's an industry initiative," said Col. Miller.

Academy officials said they are the biggest pipelines of pilots for the Air Force.

"Words can't even like describe, I'm very grateful," said McGoff.


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