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Hood River Soaring Youth Program

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A child can begin learning to fly at any age and may earn the privilege to fly solo in a glider at the age of 14.  At Hood River Soaring we accept students starting at age 13.  They begin their practical lessons on the airfield assisting in ground crew operations under the supervision of a qualified instructor.  Once they prove themselves to be attentive and capable of responsible decision making, they can advance to aerial instruction.

The heart of Hood River Soaring is our commitment to youth, to make the sport of soaring more accessible and affordable.  To become a certified glider pilot is a tremendous accomplishment that fosters maturity and self discipline.  Many who begin with gliders go on to develop a career in professional aviation.  Most importantly, when young people learn to fly, their self confidence grows exponentially. 

Many young people who have the ambition to fly lack the financial resources to make it happen.  Hood River Soaring is a new organization with limited resources at this time, but thanks to the generosity of our donors, we are beginning to fund our Youth Program.  We are working to make our dream a reality.  The Youth Program offers assistance in three ways: Discounted fees, Work-Study plans, and Scholarships.

Discounted Fees apply to all youth members up until their 26th birthday. HRS membership initiation fees and dues are reduced by more than 50%. Youth members are exempt from rental fees for the ASK 21 training glider while receiving dual instruction by an HRS approved instructor. All glider rental rates are discounted by 50% when flown by a youth member as a solo student or certificated pilot. 

Work-Study provides financial assistance for the cost of glider flying lessons in exchange for the student’s service as ground crew on the airfield and for other work that contributes to the general operation of the club, including help with our scenic rides activity, grounds maintenance, and website & social media development. To get all the details and find out how to apply, click here: Work-Study Program.


Scholarships to help pay for Hood River Soaring membership fees, instruction, and glider pilot certification are available to exceptional young people who merit them by such means as academic performance, essays, nominations and recommendations from sponsors, and demonstrations of specific accomplishments and skills.   


Hood River Soaring is collaborating with local schools, social agencies, and civic organizations that share our dedication to empowering young people to succeed.  We welcome your contributions of ideas and any other ways that you may want to help us with our mission.


Your tax-deductible financial contributions can be designated to support the Youth Program Fund or go to our general fund that helps us build and maintain the infrastructure that makes it all possible.



Read more about us in the Hood River News and Hood River Biz Buzz!

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