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Captain Judy Cameron

This scholarship targets young women in pursuit of careers as Commercial Pilots or Aircraft Maintenance Engineers, who may not have the financial means to do so. It is open to all women who are Canadian citizens and who have been accepted or are enrolled in a post-secondary aviation flight program or aircraft repair and maintenance program. Preference is given to those who volunteer to help other women in aviation or who have financial need.

Sponsored by Air Canada and CAE, who have partnered to provide scholarships for up to eight aspiring Canadian women in aviation.

2024 Recipients

The Northern Lights Aero Foundation is pleased to announce eight recipients of the fifth annual Captain Judy Cameron scholarship for Canadian women in aviation. Deserving women were chosen from all across Canada, who are notable not only for their own accomplishments, but also for their inspiration and encouragement of others. Thanks to Air Canada and CAE for their generous funding of $5,000 for each scholarship. “Past recipients have become flight instructors, maintenance engineers, and commercial pilots across Canada” said Captain Judy Cameron, Boeing 777 Captain at Air Canada (retired). “It’s wonderful to see the momentum Air Canada has created with these scholarships that began five years ago and were joined by CAE for the past two years.

Hear from the 2024 Captain Judy Cameron Scholarship recipients!

The 2024 Air Canada recipients are:

Harnoor Bagarhy, 18 of Brampton Ontario is working on a Commercial License at Brampton Flight Centre. Being a pilot was motivated by her single mother’s unfulfilled dream. A recipient of the Ontario Aviation Historical Society Award for the highest academic mark in the Air Cadets, her commitment to the aviation community has led her to volunteer at over ten events. She is an active member of Women in Aviation International and a Junior Girls in Aviation news anchor.“This scholarship is a gateway to my dreams of becoming a pilot” and “shows that gender is no impediment to success “.

Harman Bagarhy, 19, from Brampton, Ontario is pursuing her Multi Crew at Brampton Flight Centre, after graduating from her International Baccalaureate with the highest grade average n her high school. Along with her sister, Harnoor, she has volunteered for almost every aviation event in Southern Ontario, is a board member for Women in Aviation International and a news anchor for Junior Girls in Aviation. “Aviation stands as a beacon of opportunity for women everywhere. When more women join the aviation industry, it fosters an environment where no women feels less empowered”.

Emily Contos, 29, from Winnipeg, Manitoba is doing her Multi IFR at Harv’s Air. She has worked relentlessly over fifteen years to reach her goals by taking various roles such as lead de-icer, flight follower and freight loader. An active volunteer with the Ninety-Nine and Women In Aviation International, she belongs to the international Aerobatic Club and has judged aerobatic competitions. “I found this career to be a very dynamic field with constant opportunities for learning and growth and new challenges to overcome”.

Chanelle Wilson, 20, of Coldstream, B.C. is pursuing her Commercial License at Mount Royal University. She was fifteen when she realized her passion for flying after her first fight in a Cessna 172, and at seventeen, she started training for her Private License. In addition to school, and numerous part time jobs, she coaches her younger sister’s ringette team and volunteers with the Ninety-Nines, Women in Aviation International and Elevate. “There are so many amazing women that you will meet throughout your journey who will continue to support you during your career”.

The 2024 CAE Women in Flight Ambassadors:

Ashley Gellatly, 24, from Cargill, Ontario is completing an instructor rating at Genesis Flight College. She flew skydivers last summer but has moved farther north to help care for a disabled grandfather. A former air cadet and Jazz Pathways Award recipient, she is doing her Master’s in aviation safety at Embry-Riddle and serving as the Chair of the Waterloo on the Grand Ninety-Nines Chapter. “ I look forward to the many opportunities to encourage young women in aviation and offer support in the future in whatever ways I can, by continuing to volunteer my time”.

Nyssa Hansen, 24, of Delta, BC, is doing her Commercial License at Amy’s Flying School while completing her Bachelor of Business Administration Aviation at the University of the Fraser Valley. In addition to being president of the Sea to Sky Chapter of Women in Aviation International, she co-founded the 49th Degree Aviation mentorship program. “Flying is a great career for women. It’s exciting. It’s empowering. There is seriously nothing cooler than getting behind the control column and being able to fly yourself pretty much wherever you want”.

Chloe Muhl, 21, from Grimsby, Ontario is completing an Instructor Rating at Spectrum Airways after being the first female to graduate with an Astrophysics Minor from the University of Waterloo in a record three years. Her challenging cross country flight for her Commercial License was a cross border trip to the busy Teterboro, New York airport. She has volunteered for the Canadian Undergrad Physics Conference, Girls Take Flight and as Science Ambassador for the U of Waterloo. “This career is an amazing choice for women because it allows for the continuous opportunity to grow and challenge what you are capable of…There is always something new that you can learn”.

Trisha Virdee, 23, of Innisfil, Ontario is doing her Multi Engine IFR at Seneca Polytechnic while serving as a Canadian Armed Forces reservist First Aid Instructor/Examiner and recruiting liaison with over twenty certifications from the defence learning network. In addition to being a passionate music teacher, she is Vice president of Seneca’s Student council, leads the “Pilot 2 Pilot” Mentorship program, and is on Northern Light Aero Foundation’s Junior Board. “Because it is male dominated, it leaves that much more room for women to be able to prove their worth and show exactly why we deserve a seat at the table. I hope to encourage young female aviators to look toward the sky and take flight”.