Toby Allen, Sidney resident and recent Claremont Secondary School graduate, is getting his private pilot license in Kamloops thanks to a Department of National Defence scholarship. (Courtesy of Comox Cadet Flying Training Centre)

Toby Allen, Sidney resident and recent Claremont Secondary School graduate, is getting his private pilot license in Kamloops thanks to a Department of National Defence scholarship. (Courtesy of Comox Cadet Flying Training Centre)

Scholarship sets up Sidney air cadet to soar the skies

Department of National Defence scholarship pays for flying lessons in Kamloops

A Greater Victoria air cadet aims to get his wings this summer thanks to a national scholarship.

Toby Allen, originally from Scotland, recently settled in Sidney after living around the region with his family for a number of years.

Allen grew up around aviation thanks to his father’s career as a commercial pilot. Joining the Air Cadets on his 12th birthday was a no-brainer – he couldn’t wait to fly.

“I’ve always been around aircrafts and it’s always really fascinated me, being near the airports and getting to see all the hubbub,” he said.

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After six years as a cadet with 674 KittyHawk Squadron, Allen is getting even closer to his goal of flying. The recent Claremont Secondary School graduate is one of 34 recipients of a Department of National Defence scholarship – a scholarship that close to 130 cadets applied for.

Allen has been spending the summer in Kamloops with the Comox Cadet Flying Training Centre earning his private pilot licence. The scholarship pays for his accommodation, travel and flying lessons.

“This is an absolutely amazing opportunity for me,” he said, noting that he is the first from his squadron to attend in the last two years. “The great thing about doing it through the cadet program – aside from it all being paid for – is once I finish the course and build up some more hours there’s a possibility for me to be a pilot and fly cadets up…”

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Having already spent a number of hours involved in the Computer Aircraft Simulation Centre at 674 Squadron, Allen has already developed flying skills without ever leaving the ground.

Now, he’s already reached the 150-mile solo flight milestone, and he’s ready to see his pilot career really take off.



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

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