click any photo to view this story's photo gallery
published: Sunday, January 13, 2013
SFSC Lifetime Learners Institute honors member
Special to the News-Sun
AVON PARK - South Florida State College's Lifetime Learners Institute presenter Barry Smith was recently selected as an honorary lifetime member of SFSC's Lifetime Learners Institute. "The Lifetime Learners committee wanted to recognize Barry for her dedication to the program, the many hours she's spent creating presentations for the program, and her willingness to step in when needed," said Lorrie Key, director, SFSC Corporate and Continuing Education.
Smith's Lifetime Learners presentations feature her time as a Women's Airforce Service Pilot (WASP) during World War II. "No one knew about women pilots during World War II," Smith said. "We flew every type of aircraft the military had at the time, including the B29 bomber. I was a test pilot for the AT-10. I flew them to make sure they were safe for the men to fly."
"There were 25,000 women interviewed for the service, 1,830 were accepted, and 1,074 of us got our wings," Smith said. "When I received my wings, I asked what my rank would be. They said, 'Pretend you're an officer. No one knows you're a civilian flying military aircraft. Don't tell anyone.' It wasn't until 35 years later that we finally received veteran's status, and in 2010, I was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. The Lifetime Learners Institute is important to me because it allows me the opportunity to talk about a part of history many people arenít aware of."
SFSC's Lifetime Learners Institute presents opportunities for intellectual and cultural exploration. Educational sessions and field trips provide a relaxed environment for adults to develop new interests and an opportunity for personal growth and social interaction. A variety of topics are covered including travel, science and technology, and art and culture.
Wow! (by: Blindman - 1/13/2013)
What a wonderful part of history, and what an amazing woman. Thank you Ms. Smith.
Small Banner Ads