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Middletown Civil Air Patrol cadets place second in aerospace design competition

Amanda Parrish
Middletown Transcript

MIDDLETOWN -- Six Civil Air Patrol cadets from the North Chesapeake and Middletown Cadet Squadrons placed second in the national Air Force aerospace design competition called Agility Prime, according to a press release.

Six cadets formed a virtual team for Air Force design competition (top row from left) Cadet Senior Master Sgt. Madeline Mahan, Cadet Senior Master Sgt. Lars Trone, Cadet Senior Master Sgt. Haley Cranford, (bottom row from left) Cadet 1st Lt. Ariana Moretz, Cadet Technical Sgt. Robert Heinzelman, and Cadet Chief Master Sergeant Joshua Mahan.

Their task was to research Agility Prime’s recorded and documentary videos, exchange content and ideas in a virtual environment, and create an innovative video about the future of aerospace mobility. Agility Prime is Air Force’s non-traditional program seeking to accelerate the commercial market for advanced air mobility vehicles, according to its website.

The cadets said the competition was not only a great learning opportunity, but also a great opportunity to develop stronger friendships with fellow cadets during a time of social distancing.

"The thing I liked most about Agility Prime was the friendships I made during the time working on the project. The thing I think was most challenging during the process of the project was getting the audio sent in on time," said Middletown Cadet Technical Sgt. Robert Heinzelman.

First Lt. Daniel McCaffery, team advisor, said the experience was valuable for his cadets because nearly all education programs for Civil Air Patrol — the Air Force’s official auxiliary — were canceled due to the pandemic.

“This competition pushed cadets to better understand missions performed by Civil Air Patrol aircrews and sUAS teams, in order for them to envision how this technology could improve our capabilities,” McCaffery said.

The presentation can be viewed on the North Chesapeake Cadet Squadron’s YouTube channel.