AIR FORCE JROTC PROGRAM
Since 2003, Anderson Aviation has sponsored Aviation Orientation to Junior ROTC High School cadets. The program was initiated by Anderson Aviation Instructor Vic Bonfiglio, a retired Air Force colonel and fighter pilot, now serving as a JROTC Instructor and as a Certificated Flight Instructor (CFI). Colonel Bonfiglio, a 30 year veteran of Vietnam, El Salvador and Southwest Asia (421 combat missions) has been flying since 1968, teaching flying since 1972 and has logged almost 7,000 flying hours in more than 20 aircraft (and 321 parachute jumps !!).
Working with other Anderson Instructors, “Colonel B” has organized JROTC tours to the Anderson Aviation Flight School, to Honolulu Community College’s aviation campus, to Air Traffic Control facilities, to the C-17, KC-135 and F-15 squadrons at Hickam Air Force Base and to the FAA Flight Service Station. Anderson has sponsored JROTC with tours, aviation classes and orientation flights, including annual support for the Air Force JROTC Summer Leadership School in which every cadet gets an orientation flight in an Anderson aircraft.
Every year, Anderson Aviation Certified Flight Instructors fly approximately 100 JROTC cadets during the regular school year and 60 JROTC cadets as part of Air Force Summer Leadership School and do not charge for their time and effort. In addition, many cadets have been able to experience cross country flying to other islands and many are beginning to take flying lessons in preparation for attendance at aviation colleges such as Embry-Riddle and HCC.
The High School student response to Anderson Aviation sponsorship and mentoring has been overwhelming. Numerous students have requested “geographic exceptions” to study aviation at Moanalua High School. In addition to Moanalua High School, Anderson Aviation instructors have flown JROTC cadets from other schools on O’ahu and Kauai.
This mentorship is unique in the state of Hawai’i and is one of the few programs nationwide, which permits cadets to get a hands-on real world look at aviation and its career potential. Thanks to Anderson Aviation, Moanalua High School’s JROTC program is on its way to becoming a “magnet school” for aviation students