Most 17-year-old kids are still deciding what they want to accomplish with their life.

However, there are those kids who are not just aware of what they want but also making progress toward it.


Christopher Ballinger, a young man from Washington, D.C., is determined to get what he wants. As one of the nation’s youngest Black pilots, the 17-year-old is creating history. Thanks to the Air Force JROTC flying academy program, Christopher Ballinger is one of the nation’s youngest Black pilots.

The significant accomplishment was made possible through the Air Force JROTC Flight Academy Program. The program is an 8-week summer aviation school that is offered at affiliated colleges all around the country. A student receives a Private Pilot’s Certification after completing the course. It was developed to inspire young people to pursue careers in aviation.


Ballinger is now authorized to pilot any single-engine land aircraft thanks to this certification. His first step toward obtaining a commercial pilot’s license is this. He participated in an eight-week aviation program at Walla Walla University in Washington State.

The initiative, which is equal to a $25,000 scholarship, is a partnership between the aerospace sector and the Air Force to alleviate the national pilot shortage.

After successfully completing his instrument check-ride with the FAA medical examiner, he will get this Private Pilot License (PPL). Ballinger is at least 17 years old, which is the required minimum age for the license.


He performed a solo cross-country flight while participating in the program. One of just two cadets in his program that was prepared to do so was him. Throughout the program, he put in a ton of effort, and it paid off.

“This has been a phenomenal experience for me all the way around, but it has been intense,” he said. “We wake up at 6 a.m., some mornings at 4:30 a.m. to get ahead of the winds to fly six days a week, hours and hours of ground school, studying to pass all the tests, but it’s so worth it.”

Since just 12% of all Air Force pilots are now from minority backgrounds, the initiative also attempts to address the issue of diversity in the aviation sector.

Best of luck to Christopher Ballinger as he pursues a career in aviation! The young man will do great things, we’re convinced of it!

According to the GWR website, he broke two world records by being the youngest person to fly solo around the world and the youngest person to do it in a microlight aircraft, both of which were previously held by his elder sister Zara Rutherford.

Before travelling back across Europe and landing in Sofia, he completed his final leg through the United States, Canada, and Mexico.

The young man, who was encouraged to learn to fly by his family, became the world’s youngest pilot at 15 when he obtained his first pilot’s license.

Share Christopher’s motivational story of becoming a pilot at the young age of 17years.

Ballinger claimed to be certified to operate any single-engine land aircraft. It is the first stage, according to him, towards becoming a pilot. He participated in Walla Walla University’s eight-week Flight Academy course in Washington State.

The rising senior at Sidwell Friends School says that following graduation, he will apply to the Air Force Academy. Younger students should have an open mind regarding any chances that come their way, he advises.

The ability to fulfil your aspirations has no age restriction! You are the ruler of your fate, no matter how large or little! Christopher Ballinger, a 17-year-old high school student, is altering pilots’ perceptions. Thanks to the Air Force JROTC Flight Academy Program, he is one of the nation’s youngest Black pilots.

Chris reportedly told Fox 5 that he had a single-engine land aircraft pilot’s license, which is the first stage towards becoming a pilot. At Walla Walla University in Washington State, Christopher took part in an eight-week Flight Academy course. The institution offers three alternatives for aviation degrees, according to its website. The course will teach students how to fly, operate safely, and communicate in the world of commercial aviation.

Students will also take the wheel and experience firsthand the difficulties and joys of flying an aeroplane. The future seems promising for Christopher, a rising senior at Sidwell Friends School. After high school, the kid intends to apply to the Air Force Academy. He advised younger students who were considering following in his footsteps to have an open mind about all of the chances that come their way.

Recently, news stories about black employees in the aviation sector have been everywhere. As we previously said, a recent American Airlines flight made history as it commemorated Bessie Coleman’s 100th birthday, the first African American woman to obtain a pilot’s license. For the first time in the 96-year history of the airline company, Black women made up the entire crew on the ramp, at the gate, in the cockpit, and the cabin!

Bessie Coleman’s great-niece, Gigi Coleman, discussed her aunt’s legacy, saying, “My great-aunt obtained her license two years before Amelia Earhart. She didn’t have a place in history. Nobody was aware of her.

Well, Bessie is now widely known.

Roommates never give up on their aspirations or goals!



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