Northeast Ohio Regional Airport Hosts Aviation Career Day for Local High Schools

April 28, 2022

Apr. 28—DENMARK TOWNSHIP — Students from seven Ashtabula County high schools visited the Northeast Ohio Regional Airport on Wednesday to learn about career opportunities in the aviation industry.

Kate Burke-Rosales, the airport manager and secretary of the airport board, said the airport works with Ashtabula County Youth Leadership and Ashtabula County Technical and Career Campus.

The idea for Wednesday's event was developed during a meeting between the three groups.

"We thought 10th graders were a good age group to start planting the seeds of aviation careers," Burke-Rosales said.

"All of these careers need the next generation of people to come fill those spots."

Burke-Rosales said the organizers hope to make this an annual event.

A short video was played for students at their schools about the event, and they were then given a chance to sign for the event if they wished.

Alana Encarnacion-Kushner, a Geneva High School sophomore, said she signed up to attend out of a desire to expand her palette.

"I've always been fascinated with planes," Encarnacion-Kushner said.

Attending an air show in Cleveland was a family tradition for some time, she said. Her father encouraged her to learn to fly.

"Ever since then, I've not wanted to stand on the ground so much," she said. "I always want to explore new things."

Attending Wednesday's event increased Encarnacion-Kushner's desire to become involved in aviation, she said.

She said she would like to be a pilot on her own time, as a leisure activity.

"Maybe that might develop into something, maybe not," Encarnacion-Kushner said. "It's just wherever life takes me."

Kim Fitchet spoke to students about her career as a flight attendant.

"I've been flying since 1986," Fitchet said. "I started with TWA, and currently work with American Airlines out of Charlotte, North Carolina."

She told students that American Airlines flight attendants go extensive training in Texas.

"When you go through training, you're there for six weeks, and they show you how to work on the different types of aircraft," Fitchet said.

Fitchet told the students that flight attendants are trained in emergency first aid, and their primary job is safety.

Knowing a second language can be very helpful for a flight attendant, Fitchet said.

"If we fly from Charlotte to Paris, we have to have two speakers on the plane who speak English and French," she said.

Other speakers at the event included pilots, mechanics, an aircraft manufacturer and others. Members of the U.S. Army were also at the event with a Chinook helicopter.


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