02/29/2012 12:00 AM

Twenty-One Canoga Park High School Students Shadowed Aviation Pros


     (Van Nuys, California – February 29, 2012)  Today, twenty-one high school students learned about aviation careers via mentoring and hands-on activities on Groundhog Job Shadow Day at Van Nuys Airport.

     Students were first treated to an airport tour and then shadowed various businesses on the airfield including Castle and Cooke Aviation, Clay Lacy Aviation, North Valley Occupational Center, Orbic Helicopters, Pentastar Aviation, Signature Flight Support, Skybird Aviation, Syncro Aviation and the various airport departments such as Operations and Police.

     Three students with three different stories:

     Anthony Ojeda, sophomore, is an only child and will be the first in his family to graduate from high school.  He wants to be a pilot or an architect.  As a child from a small town in Mexico, Ojeda remembers seeing airplanes flying over his home.  “I’ve always been amazed at how airplanes fly.  If we can make airplanes fly we can do anything,” he said.

     Senior, Santiago Chapa, plans to pursue a career in aeronautics.  This past summer he participated in an audit for the school and realized opportunities to minimize waste. “I came today to observe and learn more about the airport so I can help airports save money by becoming greener,” said Chapa, the oldest of three children in his family.

     “I dream of becoming an Air Force and later a commercial pilot,” said Luis Amarales, sophomore.  He added, “I want to shadow today to observe and see how the airport works, what happens.  I’ve loved airplanes for as long as I can remember.”  Luis is one of nine children. 

About Van Nuys Airport:

     One of the world's busiest general aviation airports, VNY serves as a valued San Fernando Valley resource, providing ongoing leadership in general aviation, business and community service. Dedicated to noncommercial air travel, VNY had more than 310,000 operations in 2011. More than 100 businesses are located on the 730-acre airport, including five major fixed-base operators and numerous aviation service companies.

     Annually, the airport contributes approximately $1.3 billion to the Southern California economy and supports over 12,000 jobs. In addition, VNY provides programs to benefit local residents, along with educational initiatives and aviation-related career and training opportunities. For more information, visit or follow rel="noopener noreferrer" us on Facebook at!/vannuysairport.


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