Pilots and musicians,

I have some very exciting news. Saturday, October 11, which also happened to be the day of my school’s homecoming dance, I performed my first solo flight! I was
anticipating a routine hour or so of further perfecting my landings,
but after a few very solid ones, my instructor asked me if I
would like to do the next one by myself. I didn’t understand what he
meant at first, but after figuring it out and contemplating the idea
on my downwind leg, I decided to give it a go. I hesitated at first
because of the unexpected nature of the proposition, but the conditions were
good and I knew I was ready. It was an incredible feeling. On my first landing, I was substantially high on final. I utilized a forward slip and managed to lose enough altitude to bring the Archer in for a decent landing. My second and third landings were both good, though my next goal is to land shorter. I’ve included a video of the event. I want to thank everyone at FMA for your help and words of encouragement. I am honored to be part of such an amazing group of people!


Drew Medina

Update 9/20

Sorry for the delay in my updates. School is in full swing and finding time for anything between classes, band, college applications and flight lessons is proving difficult. Nonetheless I am thoroughly enjoying my senior year. My training is going great. I’ve included a flight track from one of my recent lessons (as a picture because I had trouble with the Google Earth file), which have been a lot of pattern work and perfecting my landings. I should be soloing within the next two weeks for which I am both excited and nervous. On the musician side of things, myself and a few members of our high school jazz band have gotten together to form a jazz combo, in which we will play everything from classic jazz standards to contemporary arrangements (if we can find the time to rehearse). I look forward to posting some musical updates in the near future.

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Update 8/24

Today was the first day of school of my senior year. Throughout most of my classes I’ve found myself yearning to get back in the air. I am now up to 8.3 hours of flight time, with which I’ve begun to get a good handle on power-on and power-off stalls, ground-reference maneuvers, and steep turns. I’ve also become much more comfortable on the radio, and I am now making the majority of calls during flights. Being a member of the Air Force JROTC at my school also allows me another outlet for aviation advice and knowledge; one of my instructors, Col. Zoller, is a retired Air Force C-5 pilot. Below are some more pictures from my training.

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Update 8/18


This past week I began my flight training with the Cherokee Flyers Association. I’ve been able to get airborne twice between band and bad weather, and I’ve loved every minute of it. I have become very fond of the beautiful aircraft I am so lucky to be able to learn in, a Piper Archer III with Garmin G500 avionics. I am starting to get a good handle on preflight, startup, and taxiing procedures, as well as level flight, turns to headings, and climbs/descents. I have also begun to work on stall recovery and understanding the physics involved. Sporty’s Learn To Fly course has also been a huge asset in my training, with engaging videos and coursework. I’ve included a few pictures from my training.IMG_20150816_071239544_HDR IMG_20150816_103759 IMG_20150816_091046111


Hello all,

I’d like to begin by saying that I am extremely grateful for this scholarship and the generosity of its sponsors. I am greatly humbled by the immense collective talent and experience of the Flying Musicians Association and look forward to meeting new pilots and players in my travels. I hope that in the keeping of this blog I can encourage more young people to bring their own aeronautical and musical dreams to fruition, as the wonderful people at FMA have helped do for me.

Best regards,

Drew Medina