CAP Unit Holds Weekend Aerospace Education Event

Written by Maj. Matthew Congrove     June 6th, 2015

Cadet Airman 1st Class Tyler Hartwick launches his rocket while fellow cadets and Activities Officer Captain Chris Baker look on. (Photo by C/SRA Hannah Baker)

  • Cadet Airman Gregory Duesterheft makes measurements on a model rocket as part of a squadron aerospace weekend event. (Photo by Maj. Matthew Congrove)

  • Cadets set up a tent in preparation for the overnight stay outside of the squadron headquarters at San Marcos Municipal Airport. (Photo by Maj. Matthew Congrove)

San Marcos, Texas — Cadet members of the David Lee "Tex" Hill Composite Squadron spent the weekend learning about aerospace sciences, rocketry and history. Over a dozen cadets attended the two-day, overnight event that featured classroom education and quizzes alongside rocket building and launching.

The curriculum is part of a broader rocketry program in Civil Air Patrol's Aerospace Education initiative developed to foster interest in the STEM fields. Cadets who attended the event completed two of the three stages of the model rocketry syllabus required to earn the Civil Air Patrol Model Rocketry Badge.

"I believe [the cadets] accomplished a lot in a short amount of time," said Cadet 1st Lt. Ancel Atkinson, who mentored cadets throughout the evening. "When I took [the course] it took us a week to complete." Cadet 1st Lt. Chuck Baker said he and the other cadets had plenty of motivation to complete the syllabus. "We were all motivated; we challenged each other. We also had a lot of fun."

Lt. Col. Richard Ferguson, the squadron's Deputy Commander for Cadets, noted that the cadets will have the opportunity to complete the third and final phase of the model rocketry syllabus in the near future.

About Civil Air Patrol

Civil Air Patrol, the longtime all-volunteer U.S. Air Force auxiliary, is the newest member of the Air Force's Total Force, which consists of regular Air Force, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve, along with Air Force retired military and civilian employees. CAP, in its Total Force role, operates a fleet of 550 aircraft and performs about 90 percent of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 78 lives annually. Civil Air Patrol's 56,000 members nationwide also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. Its members additionally play a leading role in aerospace education and serve as mentors to more than 24,000 young people currently participating in the CAP cadet program. Performing missions for America for the past 75 years, CAP received the Congressional Gold Medal in 2014 in honor of the heroic efforts of its World War II veterans. CAP also participates in Wreaths Across America, an initiative to remember, honor and teach about the sacrifices of U.S. military veterans. Visit for more information.


Contact Information

Lt. Col. Ron Diana, CAP
Squadron Commander & Public Affairs Officer
David Lee "Tex" Hill Composite Squadron, SWR-TX-435, Texas Wing
(512) 710-8435 |

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