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Fifteen Deserving San Diego County Students Receive $53,000 in Scholarships from the San Diego Air & Space Museum

San Diego, CA - July 06, 2021 – Over the past 34 years, a total of $994,500 in scholarships has been awarded by the Museum to 331 deserving students. The San Diego Air & Space Museum inspires young people to tackle the challenges of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics academic disciplines, and to make a difference in tomorrow’s world through an innovative, adventurous spirit. To further this goal, the Museum recently selected 15 graduating seniors from San Diego County high schools to receive a total of $53,500 in scholarships.

These scholarships are awarded annually on behalf of four Museum administered scholarship endowment funds, the Bill Gibbs, Convair Alumni Association, R.A. Rearwin and Jennings Kelly Scarborough funds. To date, 331 talented San Diego County high school seniors have been awarded a total of $994,500 through these scholarships.

“Every year we consider many outstanding applicants,” said Katrina Pescador, Chair of the Museum’s Scholarship Committee, “and each year, we continue to be impressed with these future leaders and their many accomplishments.” Jim Kidrick, Museum CEO and President commented, “These scholarship programs exemplify our intent to aid deserving students wanting to advance their education - our entire mission is all about inspiring our next greatest generations to excel in their lives.”

Bill Gibbs Endowment Scholars Megha Kannan, Rancho Bernardo High School, Justin Pendarvis, Serra High School, Kevin Salazar, Cathedral Catholic High School, David “Max” Scott, University City High School, Samantha Tinney, Mt. Carmel High School, and Jiayi “Gary” Wang, Rancho Bernardo High School

Convair Alumni Association Endowment Scholars Joshua Bay, Scripps Ranch High School, Amanda Botts, Del Norte High School, Casey Hild, Mt. Carmel High School, Samantha James, West Hills High School, Elsa Paulsen, La Costa Canyon High School, and Aaron Ploneda, Gompers Preparatory Academy

R.A. Rearwin Endowment Scholars James Priest, Valley Center High School, and Dylan Spiker, Classical Academy, Escondido

Kelly Scarborough Scholar Owen Colombo, Christian High School

Each of the scholars submitted an extensive application, listing their academic achievements, their extracurricular and community service activities, several teacher recommendations, and an essay. They were then interviewed by a panel of judges to determine the final winners.

Bill Gibbs Endowment: The late Bill Gibbs, a San Diego businessman, and founder of Montgomery Field, established the Bill Gibbs Scholarship Fund with a $10,000 gift to the San Diego Air & Space Museum in 1988. Students are selected for the Bill Gibbs Scholarship who are graduating from a San Diego County high school, and who express and demonstrate a desire to pursue a career in aviation or in an aerospace-related field. Since 1989, $277,000 has been awarded to 115 Bill Gibbs scholars.

Convair Alumni Association Endowment: In 1997, the Convair Alumni Association provided Convair Recreation Association funds, as well as funds from the General Dynamics Corporation, to support scholarships for San Diego County high school graduating seniors who are direct descendants of former employees of Consolidated Aircraft Corporation, Consolidated-Vultee Aircraft Corporation, or the Convair, Astronautics or Space Systems Divisions of General Dynamics Corporation, and who worked in the San Diego area. The Fleet Foundation also provides annual funding in support of these scholarships. Since that time, 148 scholars have enjoyed the support of a Convair Alumni Association Scholarship, totaling $513,600.

R.A. Rearwin Endowment: In 2000, the late Kenneth Rearwin and his family established a scholarship in honor of his late father, R.A. Rearwin, a noted aircraft and engine manufacturer. Scholarships are awarded to San Diego County high school graduating seniors who demonstrate a strong career interest in the aerospace industry and who love to “tinker” with electronics and engines. Since then, there have been 41 R.A. Rearwin scholars, who have received a total of $111,900.

Jennings Kelly Scarborough Endowment: In 2014, a new scholarship was awarded for a graduating San Diego County high school senior who professes and demonstrates a desire to pursue an aviation career as a pilot. The Jennings Kelly Scarborough Scholarship was established by Mary Scarborough in honor of her late husband’s love of flight, as both a military and civilian pilot. Kelly Scarborough also served on the Museum’s Scholarship Committee. Since then, six Scarborough scholars have received a total of $14,500.

San Diego Air & Space Museum Scholarship: Students are selected for this award who are graduating from a San Diego County high school, who have expressed a desire to pursue a degree in the sciences, technology, engineering or mathematics, and who have demonstrated an interest in exploring the outer bounds of what we can be. Initiated in 2014, six scholarships have been awarded, totaling $24,500.

The San Diego Air & Space Museum: is California’s official air and space museum and education center. The Museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and was the first aero-themed Museum to be accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. The Museum is located at 2001 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park, San Diego, CA 92101. The Museum and gift store are open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with admissions until 4:30 p.m. Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

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