Ready to Soar

by Kenny Clay

Kenny Clay is a certified flight instructor and is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering at UAB. He grew up in Trussville, Alabama, and graduated from Hewitt-Trussville High School in June 2017. After graduating from high school, he enlisted in the Air National Guard. His enlistment helped him obtain a solid work ethic and military experience. His ANG job in avionics helped him work with equipment dealing with electrical engineering principles. The job provided him with the technical job experience that a classroom setting can not duplicate. The enlistment opened many opportunities: College tuition assistance, the ability to climb through the ranks to become a guard pilot, and most of all the Red Tail Scholarship.

Kenny got hooked on flying the day one of his father’s friends took them flying in a Cessna 182. The pilot departed from the airport and cleared the controlled airspace. Once he leveled off, the pilot let Kenny take the controls and fly around. After they landed, Kenny knew he wanted to start taking lessons. Kenny started flying lessons in the summer of 2014. Through a lot of hard work and the struggle to fund his newly found passion, he obtained a Private Pilot’s License in the spring of 2017. Then, he left for basic training in June 2017. Once he returned from basic training and tech school, he started IFR flight training. The Red Tail Scholarship Foundation began to help him along his journey to earn an IFR rating, and more importantly, mentor and guide him to his long-term goal of becoming a commercial pilot. He could not be more grateful for the flying opportunities the Red Tail Scholarship Foundation has created.