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Cabrillo High School Aeronautics class visits glider port

Thirty-two STEM students from Cabrillo High School in Long Beach visited Mountain Valley Airport on Friday, April 14. The students are a junior/senior aeronautics class from the high school. Their visit included much more than just a glider ride.

These students were analyzing flight data supplied by the engineering students in the air to the students on the ground who were compiling data. Just a few of the studies involved analyzing individual air speeds at take off and landing as well as the time and speed required to get to different altitudes.

The STEM program at Cabrillo is a partnership between the school and Edwards Air Force Base. Edwards engineer Victor Luguin, who is a former Cabrillo student, helped negotiate the five-year agreement between the high school's junior/senior engineering class and 412th Test Wing STEM Program. The program is currently in year two of the agreement. Luguin said the students learn various flight test engineering roles so as to connect their classes to the reality of engineering. The students also learn what education and employment opportunities are available in the engineering field and pathways to meet their employment goals. Luguin added that the program also receives support from some LA-based corporations, such as Boeing.

According to Cabrillo teacher Kenneth Fisher, on Thursday, April 13, the students visited Edwards Air Force where they were treated to a six hour tour of the base. He added that this trip gave the students the opportunity to experience what it is to be an engineer and to connect their high school classes to the reality of being an engineer.

"This is an amazing program for a school that is 98 percent minority," said Luguin, adding the Edwards Air Force Base is sponsoring the cost of half of the flights.