A young girl unexpectedly finds her dream job and continues to pursue it

Michelle Fong

Staff Writer

    Most people at the age of 16 have not yet decided what career path they want to pursue for their future. However, junior Varsha Penumatsa has already taken steps to chase after her dream of becoming a pilot.

    Prior to attending an air show, Penumatsa had never considered doing anything related to flight, let alone becoming a pilot. Joining the Civil Air Control was a last minute decision which later sparked her interest in flying.

    “I actually did not consider joining the Air Force at all until I joined Civil Air Patrol,” said Penumatsa.

    Initially, Penumatsa was hesitant about joining the Civil Air Patrol, but the environment of military discipline and the presence of her fellow cadets motivated her to stay in the program. Within the program, there are numerous camps which are dedicated to personal growth and leadership skills. Of those camps, Penumatsa participated in a camp called “Encampment,” which is similar to bootcamp in the military environment. She also wished to attend flying camps, but those camps are out of state and interfere with her academics.

    “Although it can interfere with academics,” Penumatsa began,“it helps me a lot when it comes to disciplinary ideas such as time management and enhances my knowledge [on] various topics.”

    Her parents are supportive of her career choice, they also feel that academics should always be first priority no matter how passionate she is. Penumatsa still wishes to attend Civil Air Patrol, but her parents stated “It is a voluntary program, and school is needed to fulfill her future career dreams.”

    In the future, Penumatsa is interested in the Air Force; however, she would rather join the Reserve. She reasoned, “I want to help people everywhere, but not as a full occupation” because she wants to become a pilot for either a commercial airline or work in law enforcement later on.

    Without her parents’ constant push for her to take part in something out of her comfort zone, Penumatsa would have never considered something like Civil Air Patrol or anything related to flight. Now, she is disciplined and puts in a lot of effort to pursue her goal.

Caption: Varsha Penumatsa poses in a plane named “Black Hawk” from the army. Though she did not actually get the opportunity to fly in it, she commented,“I loved the opportunity to experience being in a real plane which was used in part of history.”

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