Program Overview

The Upwind Summer Scholarship Program was created to promote piloting and general aviation, cultivate interest in aviation as a career, and to address the national pilot shortage.  Over the course of the Upwind Summer, we transform a high school student into a licensed Private Pilot during the summer between their junior and senior year. 

Candidate Requirements

  • Must be a US citizen, and a high school student, at least 17 years of age at the time of the check ride in late August.
  • No criminal record prior to or during the program.
  • Maintain good grades and academic standing throughout the period.
  • Attend ground school classes and pass a Class 3 FAA medical exam prior to completing ground-school.
  • Obtain above average results in ground-school tests and written exams.
  • Participate in other San Carlos Flight Center activities such as the FlyOutGroup and monthly BBQs.
  • Write occasional articles for the monthly newsletter with respect to his/her progress.
  • Participate in the selection and mentoring of the next year’s candidate.


The entire program is provided free of charge to successful candidate. This includes everything a student pilot would need to complete the Private Pilot training, including ground school instruction with all necessary materials, books, charts, and basic flight planning tools; the FAA Knowledge Test; the Class III medical examination; flight instruction with expert instructors, and the Private Pilot Practical Test with FAA Designated Pilot Examiner.

2014 Timeline

  • February 28 - applications are due
  • March 9 - finalists announced
  • March 16 - winner is announced
  • April 1 – begin ground school, Tuesday evenings 6:30-9:00pm for 12 weeks
  • April/May – complete Class III medical examination
  • Mid-June (when school ends) – begin flight training, 3-5 lessons per week


To apply, download the 2014 Upwind Application and follow the application instructions.


We are actively pursuing donors for our 2014 Upwind Summer Scholarship Program fund.  To donate, call the San Carlos Flight Center office at (650) 946-1700 or download the 2014 Upwind Donation form.

For further information, please visit the Upwind Summer Scholarship's website.