Programs to Educate Youth

IAPG Education Mission

The future of Iowa aviation lies within its youth. The IAPG Board has set its focus on programs that will excite and educate our youth. There are several initiatives, some old and some new to bring aviation to youth: Iowa Aviation Youth Rallies which have been held since 2006, programs to support Boy Scout merit badge attainment, a brand new youth pilot training scholarship program, and finally, a joint program with the Air Force Association to recognize aerospace education Teachers of the Year.

Iowa Aviation Youth Rallies—Half-Day Programs

Iowa Aviation Promotion Group, in partnership with Iowa Space Grant Consortium, Iowa DOT Office of Aviation, and sponsoring airports, has held half-day Iowa Aviation Youth Rallies at various locations in Iowa. In over 80 events held 2006–2019, over 4,000 youngsters have attended.

The programs include: instruction on airplanes, aeronautical principles, airport operations, weather, flight planning, aviation careers and more. Where available, each youngster has the opportunity to take an EAA Young Eagle flight. Rallies typically conclude with a pizza luncheon and award of a T-shirt.

These event are absolutely FREE! Target age groups are 9 to 15.

Planned for 2021 are rallies at Ankeny Airport on July 17 and Ames Airport on August 12.

If you are interested in being a host airport for a rally or have a youth interested in attending a rally, please contact Chuck McDonald , email


Guidelines for Organizing a Youth Aviation Rally

IAPG encourages airports, pilot groups, EAA Chapters, and fixed base operators to organize a Youth Aviation Rally. Rallies should be offered free of charge and may or may not included flights for participating youth. The materials which follow may be downloaded and/or printed out for use by organizers of youth aviation rally events:

Boy Scout Merit Badge Support

IAPG has partnered with the Columbus, Ohio based Youth Aviation Adventures to construct a program to assist Boy Scouts to attain their Aviation Merit Badges at encampments or other venues. An Ankeny Airport Encampment is planned for October 15–17, 2021.


IAPG Pilot Training Scholarships

Find more information about the scholarship program here.

Teacher of the Year Recognition: Cooperative Program of IAPG and Air Force Association

Annually outstanding teachers who use aviation and space concepts to enhance the teaching of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) in K–12 classrooms, are identified and recognized with Teacher of the Year awards provided by the Air Force Association. IAPG assists in identifying deserving educators who receive recognition which includes cash awards.