A & M Aviation

130 S. Clow International Pkwy, Suite B
Bolingbrook, IL 60490

(630) 759-1555

Hours: 8AM - 7PM 7 days a week
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2011 Flight Training Grant Program Information

A&M Aviation, Inc. is proud to announce our Flight Training Grant Program for High School students in the South West suburbs of Chicago. The program is designed to bring awareness to the area of General Aviation and provide one individual student the opportunity to achieve a Private Pilot License.

The winner of the Grant for 2011 was Joseph Lempa, a Senior at Lyons Township High School.  This was announced at the 12th Annual Cavalcade of Planes on June 5th, 2011, and he earned his private pilot certificate on August 28, 2011. Congratulations to Joseph and all the other young people who submitted applications.


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The Winner!

Joseph won our A&M Grant at the Cavalcade on June 5, 2011. This was the first time A&M was able to offer this program and we were very excited to follow this young man's progress. The Grant provided him a Private Pilot Certificate, all expenses paid.  He is now a senior at Lyons Township High School and carries a close to 4.0 grade point average. He would like to pursue a career in aviation and become a scientific/meteorological pilot. He won the contest with the essay below. He earned his pilot certificate after training hard with his CFI Ross Healey with a checkride by Leslie Henninger even before he had his driver's license.  His family stood by his throughout the training, driving him to the airport and waiting on the ground as he learned to spread his wings.

Why did we offer this Grant? Actually for multiple reasons; to promote and preserve General Aviation, as the number of Pilot's over the years have been on the decline we hope to spark an interest in young people, in addition promoting our beloved Clow Airport and to pay it forward.

The essay speaks for itself, congratulations Joseph, good luck, get ready to start your wonderful journey and we will all be here to support you.  We have a request for Joseph and all future winners.  Pay it forward!  Read more about his training on the A & M Facebook page and on the note page.

Winning Essay by Joseph C. Lempa

April 20, 2011
A&M Aviation Essay

Throughout history, mankind has often wondered how birds soared the skies, and dreamt secretly of developing wings of their own. What are wings to the bird? They are the bird’s livelihood, its primary method of travel, and its ability to communicate. People in a community have many similar needs. If a bird can use wings for these actions, then why not a man? The bird’s livelihood depends on its ability to scan forests for signs of prey, and if possible satisfy its hunger and rejuvenate itself, a far more basic reliance than our own. The bird’s ability to travel long distances allows it to beat the earth’s climate in a fantastic race that occurs seasonally. It relies on strong, agile wings to pace itself along the journey.

Although many would argue that man was not meant to fly because “God did not give them the knowledge of how to do it. (or wings for that matter) [Roger Bacon, 13th Century]“, the opposite is actually true. Mankind’s observations of nature are what inspired us to give the modern airplane wings, and so airplanes are to us what wings are to the bird, completely necessary.

Joseph Lempa, 2011 A & M Aviation Grant WinnerGeneral aviation is beneficial to communities in a variety of ways, first and foremost as a social and economic instrument. In 1903 the first airplane was flown, and only 15 years later the airplane was utilized by the US Postal service. This allowed mail to get to its destination far more quickly albeit with a slight increase in price. Today in America, communities can still feel the benefits of this fusion of aviation and business. General aviation has led to advances that benefit communities in the long run, and it will continue to do so. UPS air cargo alone delivers 2 million packages and documents every day. Cargo aircraft benefit the community by enhancing commerce, business and trade. Small passenger aircraft do all of the above, but in addition they allow people to visit other communities and learn from them, providing pinpoint and personal transportation. They are critical in connecting cultures and enhancing human understanding of others. Passenger aircraft can also save lives, by delivering those that need timely medical assistance to the proper facilities. Air travel today allows the everyday man to touch the sky, and extend their freedoms. From this new perspective, the benefits are not only physical but mental as well. Pilots develop an increased awareness of the world, and therefore an appreciation for it. I myself have been mesmerized by the tantalizing cloud formations just out of reach. No doubt my imagination has been sparked from my exposure to aviation, and ideas will grow in my mind and the minds of many others because of it. Inspiration and creativity are two major byproducts of general aviation. This inspiration and creativity is spread throughout the entire community, because everyone from below can see the airplane soaring in the sky. Young children are given things to aspire to, and many succeed in their aspirations through hard work and discipline, which are required to fly an airplane. Overall, aviation is helpful to the community in a variety of ways. It creates jobs, spreads awareness, builds confidence and discipline, and allows people and cargo to arrive at distant destinations in a fraction of the time.

What is an airplane without its pilot however? As a passionate 17 year old I believe I would make a competent, safe, and reliable pilot. I would bring to the table my aviation knowledge derived from several short flights, a high-school course, and combine that with my enthusiasm to learn and deploy myself in the field. Evidence of my enthusiasm is my expertise in audio engineering and my prominence in Accelerated and Honors courses in Lyons Township School. As a student I would forego summer activities in order to study for the FAA exam, and in the cockpit I would pay close attention and perform all procedures in a serious and careful manner. As an eventual flight instructor I would directly give back to the community what I had learned from aviation, and responsibly spread the joy of flying to many other prospective pilots and beyond. My enthusiasm would be shared with the greater community through conversation that would spark more appreciation for nature, science, and education. My voice would be like a magnifying glass, focusing inspiration into the hearts and minds of students. I would influence general aviation in my community to be even safer, more reliable, and more widespread amongst the public. For example, in my own community as a non-pilot I have already spread awareness of the detriment of laser pointers. Not many know that the beam spreads out to a substantial width over a distance and can potentially blind pilots. The intervention of a handful of people could potentially prevent the disorientation of those in command of an airplane, and therefore prevent further disaster. I plan on conducting many interventions on the behalf of safety to benefit my passengers or copilots. During a future career I would practice safe flying and further encourage others to fly responsibly, and in doing so, potentially save lives. I am grateful for the opportunity to apply for this grant, and thank you for your consideration.

Joseph C. Lempa

Clow and A & M Aviation, Inc.

A&M Aviation, Inc. is located at Bolingbrook's Clow International Airport. Aviation started here in the late 50's when Boyd Clow, a local farmer and aviation enthusiast built a grass strip on his farm. Since then the airport has grown and continues to flourish. It is now owned by the Village of Bolingbrook and the future could not look brighter.

In 1973, A&M Aviation, Inc. opened an FBO and started to provide flight training to the local community. The flight training continued and the airport grew into what it is today. Our annual Cavalcade of Planes started in 1999 and continues to grow each year. What started as an opportunity for local pilots to see new aircraft has turned into a greatly anticipated community event in which we hosted 8000 people last year.

A&M Aviation, Inc. at Bolingbrook's Clow International Airport is your premier choice for personal and business air travel in and around the southwest suburbs of Chicago. Clow airport services the communities of Bolingbrook, Naperville, Plainfield, Romeoville, Joliet, Woodridge, Downers Grove, Hinsdale, Burr Ridge, and Oswego.

A&M Aviation, Inc's Cross Country Flying Club provides flight training to aviation enthusiasts both young and old. As a Cessna Pilot Center we offer programs designed to provide results and ensure that our students complete their training in a quick and efficient manner. We offer Sport Pilot, Recreational, Private, Instrument, Commercial, Airline Transport, Twin Engine, and Helicopter training. We also offer tailwheel, high performance, and complex endorsements.