New female scholarship at Embry-Riddle University sponsored by Registry of Aruba

The Registry of Aruba is sponsoring an annual scholarship for a female student to study an aviation course at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Daytona Beach Campus. Each student will receive $6,000 every year throughout her studies at The College of Aviation at Embry-Riddle.

“Now is the right time to launch this scholarship because while there have been significant changes in governmental and industry policies,” Alexandria Colindres, the registry’s CEO, told Corporate Jet Investor. “The reality is that women in aviation remain under-represented. We want to help change that. We believe concrete steps are needed to advance gender equality in STEM [science, technology, engineering and maths] and aviation, which is why we have established the scholarship. The purpose is to encourage young women to enter the field and help them create a lucrative career in aviation.”

In addition to providing financial support, the registry will mentor recipients as they start their aviation careers.

While aviation has faced a pilot shortage over the past decade, the challenge has been exacerbated by the early days of the pandemic, according to the registry. One strategy many carriers adopted to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 was to offer early retirement to pilots. A study by global management consulting firm, Oliver Wyman, concluded that about 15-20% of the pilot workforce accepted an early retirement, said Colindres. The result is the gap between supply and demand is expected to surpass 10,000 pilots annually by 2023.

“With the rapid snapback in growth for travel, we’re re-faced with the demand for pilots,” said Colindres. “This is great news for student pilots and women in particular because the industry is eager to hire. Industry incentives, like ours, have come with the shortage to encourage aspiring pilots to join the industry, providing training programmes and financial support.”

The first recipient of The Registry of Aruba Scholarship, Masa Alkodsi, started her degree at Embry-Riddle in August 2021 and has already earned her Private Pilot’s Licence. Alkodsi said: “My end goal as a woman in aviation is to inspire young girls to think about a career in not just aviation, but the STEM field in general.” 

Colindres concluded: “With the establishment of our scholarship, we hope to encourage industry peers to step up their efforts in welcoming young professionals, particularly women, to the aviation industry.”


Licenced to fly: The first recipient of The Registry of Aruba Scholarship, Masa Alkodsi, started her degree in

August 2021 and has already earned her Private Pilot’s Licence.

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