Students launch a chapter of Women in Aviation International
Kesha Williams November 11, 2014
ECSU's newly formed chapter of Women in Aviation International (WAI) recently reached
a milestone when they attained official, provisional chapter status. The chapter is
comprised of students, faculty, community partners and U.S. Coast Guard members.
WAI began in 1990 and was formally established in 1994 to encourage women to seek
opportunities in aviation. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, of the
nearly 600,000 active pilots in the United States, approximately six percent are women.
Slightly more than four percent are Airline Transport Pilot rated. Women account for
only 4.28 percent of the more than 700,000 non-pilot aviation jobs in the United States.
The charter members and executive board include ECSU Aviation Science students; Elisabeth
Golden, president; Eden King, vice-president; Victor Aguilera, treasurer, and Anjelica
Roverso, secretary. Orestes Gooden and Robin Mangham, lecturers in the Aviation Science
program, serve as chapter advisors.
Dr. Kuldeep Rawat, department chair and director of the Aviation Science Program,
said the student body and advisors worked extremely hard over the past year to obtain
this provisional status.
"The group committed tireless hours to community service and fundraising activities.
These activities included mentoring during the Aviation Career Education (ACE) summer
camps and chaperoning several Aviation Science field trips," Rawat said.
"Our goal is to increase membership and promote aviation opportunities for all interested
parties in the state."
WAI has regional chapters in ten countries. The Northeastern North Carolina chapter
is the only WAI chapter in the state. Rawat said the chapter will give ECSU students
and other members an avenue to network within the industry. It will also provide over
$500,000 in scholarships to qualifying applicants.
photo by Kesha Williams