East St. John High School Celebrates Successful Aviation Awareness Event with $6,000 Grant

Published 2:32 pm Saturday, December 30, 2023

The students and faculty of East St. John High School recently marked a high-flying success with their innovative aviation awareness event, funded by a nearly $6,000 Service-Learning Award from the Joe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation. The event was a milestone for the school’s celebrated drone program and a leap forward in promoting careers in aviation.

Principal Tori Bazile and CTE Instructor Beverly Reed, flanked by their students, orchestrated the day’s activities which captivated attendees from East St. John Preparatory and West St. John High. The grant’s objective—to provide specialized opportunities in the school’s already exceptional drone program—was met with enthusiasm and engagement from all who participated.

During the event, the school’s certified drone pilots, trained under Ms. Reed’s tutelage, demonstrated their prowess. They led a series of interactive stations that included an obstacle course, a dodging area, and a hands-on experience where kids learned to fly drones. The search and rescue station showcased the practical applications of drone technology, emphasizing its significance in real-world scenarios.

Special guests enriched the experience, offering insights into the various uses of drones in fields such as law enforcement, insurance, and visual observation. Their presence underscored the event’s focus on the intersection of technology and community service.

Contributions from the community and industry leaders were instrumental in the program’s execution. Notable speakers, including Capt. Charles Wales from the St. John Sheriff Dept. and Capt. Cedric Grimes of United Airlines, shared their career experiences, inspiring a new generation of aviation enthusiasts.

Thanks to the concerted efforts of East St. John High School’s students and staff, the event was not only an educational triumph but also a testament to the school’s commitment to service-learning and community outreach. The Wildcats have set an impressive standard, positioning themselves as a beacon of STEM education and a driving force for innovation in aviation within the parish.

About Timothy Holdiness

Timothy Holdiness is a native of Louisiana and has been published in several state, national and international publications. He has earned two undergraduate degrees in Biology, most recently from Northwestern State University in 2022. Notably, Holdiness was the 2014 Microsoft Office Specialist United States Champion in PowerPoint 2010.

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