February 27, 2024
The teen pilot’s family celebrated after Freeland was in the air for nearly an hour with the examiner before she landed—and passed.
High school senior Kamora Freeland, 17, is reaching new heights as she prepares to become one of the youngest African American aviators.
The Staten Island teen passed her check ride exam Monday, the final test to earn a private pilot’s license, according to ABC7. “I have a passion for it, and I love it,” Freeland said of flying.
During Monday’s exam, her family waited for nearly an hour as Freeland took to the sky with an examiner. Freeland landed to learn she had passed.
“I didn’t see this a year and a half ago, and to be here and see it with my own two eyes, I’m grateful,” Freeland’s mom, Lakema, said.
The teen’s cousin, Aaron Rice, also shared, “To see her doing this…and to be so young and mature at that age to even want to do it is just amazing.”
Freeland received congratulatory hugs from her father and even a Tuskegee airman. Her grandfather, Richard Greene, was also excited to share in the monumental accomplishment.
The Kingsborough Early College High School student has already completed solo flights and flown cross-country with her mother.
“She flew me, and I couldn’t believe that she was the pilot,” her mother said. Lakema took to Instagram in November 2023 to celebrate news of her daughter’s first completed solo flight. “My baby 16 year old Kamora Freeland takes her first Solo Flight,” the proud mother captioned a video of the flight.
Earning a pilot’s license at 17 is a major achievement for the honor student, and she is a living example that young women of color can succeed in flying. “It’s definitely amazing,” she said. “I’m a part of the change that’s definitely needed, and I want other little Black girls to do the same.”
With her laser focus and early successes, the exemplary teenager is quite literally reaching new heights in aviation. Freeland already has her sights on enrollment at Spellman College in the fall. She plans to continue her flight training and work toward a commercial pilot’s license.
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