Members of the Querbes Scholars are flying high.
For the sixth straight year, several scholars enjoyed a trip to the air show in Oshkosh, Wisc, run by the Experimental Aircraft Association. The unique trip provided them an opportunity for hands-on service and a bird’s eye view of some of its most historical aircraft.
The trip also counted toward Saint Viator’s STEM curriculum since students were immersed in aircraft engineering and teaching it to youngsters.
Mrs. Cate Majka has accompanied the Querbes Scholars every year. This year, she and staff member Donna Benedict accompanied nine juniors and one senior to the annual fly-in convention, which draws an average of 500,000 people each July and 10,000 airplanes.
In staying with tradition, Saint Viator students spent the morning volunteering at the KidVenture area, which is set up in three hangars and offers hands-on activities and learning opportunities to young, aspiring pilots.
Saint Viator students rolled up their sleeves and taught youngsters how to rivet (construct the standard aviation fastener using state-of-the-art rivet guns), shape props, and check electrical circuits.
The second half of the day was spent touring the show grounds and exploring the thousands of planes on display. They stayed long enough to take in the air show that night, which featured historic warbirds, B-52s, B-17s, two B-29s, and culminated with the Navy’s Blue Angels.
Students loved the day. In fact, junior Marcus Lannie returned for his second straight year.
“Oshkosh proved to be truly enriching and rewarding while fostering my love for aeronautics,” Marcus said.
His classmate, Kiana Resch, agreed, describing the day as “amazing.”
“I learned so much about airplanes,” she said. “I learned how to use a drill and rivet gun and then allowed to teach those skills to younger kids who made their own wing flap using the rivet gun.”
Junior Caroline Lavendar added: “This opportunity to learn about aeronautics and aviation, was one of the most enriching and intriguing endeavors of the Querbes Scholars program so far.”