EDWARDS AFB — The Antelope Valley Union High School District recognized Edwards AFB this week for its contributions to the area’s annual Salute to Youth event. The 23rd Annual Salute to Youth was held Oct. 9, 2014, at the Antelope Valley Fairgrounds.
There were featured exhibits, static displays and demonstrations, all showcasing career paths to 8- and 9th-grade students in the Antelope Valley. Students were invited to engage in conversations with representatives from various career fields and learn about the education and training requirements.
A certificate of appreciation was presented by Betsy McKinstry, AV Union High School District College and Career director, to Brig. Gen. Michael Brewer, 412th Test Wing commander, at the beginning of the weekly staff meeting.
“We have a lot of students who don’t realize how important Edwards AFB is to our nation. For them to be able to really face-to-face talk to people who represent different industry sectors within the base is really important,” said McKinstry.
Lesley Smith, Airman and Family Readiness Services flight chief, was also there for the presentation.
“One of the young females that attended [Salute to Youth] came up to me and said she really wanted to be an engineer, but because she was a girl she couldn’t be one,” said Smith.
She was able to introduce that student to professional women who have engineering degrees, showing her that she was capable of pursing the career she desired. The event teaches students not only the careers that are available to them, but the road map they need to get to those careers.
“Edwards is a small city and it represents all these different industry sectors,” said McKinstry. “There’s an amazing amount of career opportunities within Edwards and to start that exploration in the 8th and 9th grade is really important in the Antelope Valley area.”
Edwards provided more than a dozen exhibits at the 2014 event including:
- Air Force Airman & Family Readiness Center
- Non-Appropriated Funding
- Human Resources
- Military Working Dog Unit
- Edwards AFB Aero Club
- Edwards AFB Child & Youth Program
- Environmental Management
- Office of Emergency Management
- Outdoor Recreation
- Sports & Fitness
- 412th Civil Engineering Division
- 412th Civil Engineer Energy Management
- 412th Force Support Squadron Marketing
- 412th Security Forces Squadron Combat Arms
- 412th Test Engineering Group
- 412th Test Wing Public Affairs