AV News: Dreams Soar
Description: If you could have one super power what would it be? I bet more than a few of you would say “to fly.” Kids all over the world would agree with you, but are afraid their dreams may never become a reality. Luckily for them, one woman has made it her mission to change that “never” into a “possibly?”
Shaesta Waiz was looking for a way to combine her two passions: helping others and flying. That lead to the concept of Dreams Soar. Shaesta focuses her efforts on getting women into STEM and aviation because so few of them are involved now. According to the Dreams Soar website, globally only point six percent of airline pilots are women.
Shaesta and her team, the Dream Team, hope to achieve their goals by engineering a historic solo flight around the world. A native of Afghanistan, Shaesta was born in a refugee camp. Her family immigrated to America in 1987 to escape the Soviet-Afghan War. Growing up in an underprivileged neighborhood, where sharing textbooks, substitute teachers, and dropping out of school were the norm Shaesta thought her future consisted of getting married and having lots of children. That is until she was 18 and boarded her first plane.
Throughout her life Shaesta has had good guidance. Her mentor was Jerri Mock, the first woman to fly solo around the world. Shaesta will be the first female civilian pilot from Afghanistan to achieve the same feat. Her route will cover 28 countries across 5 continents, in 90 days and is planned for a spring takeoff. Along the route other influential women in STEM and aviation will join her along the route. Comparisons to Amelia Earhart have been made, Shaesta hopes that her trip will not only be successful, but will inspire generations of women.
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