Taylor Fritz: Fairchild Youth of the Year

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Sean Campbell
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
Taylor Fritz, a Fairchild teen, was awarded the title Youth of the Year for Fairchild Air Force Base by the Boys and Girls Club of America.

Youth of the Year is the Boys and Girls Club of America's premier recognition program, which started in 1947. Having won for the Fairchild community, Taylor will now go on to compete at the state level where she will present a speech, be interviewed and compete with other winners.

Many aspects contributed to Taylor's selection for the title. She currently tutors preteens and is a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math immersion advocate at the Fairchild AFB Youth Center. Taylor helped put on a STEM workshop for the adolescents at the youth center. She used Lego "We-Do's" to teach the kids about different applications for technology and how they are important.

"As a female engineer prospect, I find a soft spot in my heart for females using engineering concepts," said Taylor. "Through this immersion, and the Youth of the Year program overall, I hope to encourage young females to break the boundaries and gain a true passion for the field that I love."

Taylor's list of accomplishments is extensive. She was selected to be an intern for Lockheed Martin Skunkworks where she built F-35 wingtips. In 2014, Taylor switched to a high school that did not have an engineering program, so she laid the foundation for a First Robotics Competition team, started two underwater robotics teams and promoted engineering courses to be added to the curriculum. After moving to Washington, she joined an FRC team and is currently their Lead Outreach and Chairman Speaker.

"Engineering is my passion, and the opportunity to spread that fire to younger generations, especially those at Fairchild AFB, is amazing," said Taylor.

During the summer of 2015, Taylor attended a program called Girl's State, a summer program that introduces foundations of politics and government. While there, she proposed a bill titled The COVER Act (Children of Veterans Education Rights).

The COVER Act includes:
* Portability of Education Benefits
* Mandatory acceptance of single-enrollment education requirements
* Allowance of School-Choice regardless of domiciled address, to include inter-district transfer choice
* Athletic eligibility for varsity sports play at inter-district choice schools regardless of academic year
* Exemption from standardized testing if previously accomplished at another school or state prior to transfer
* Full and complete transference of GPA weighting and scale from previous state/school.

"Through the unique opportunity of Youth of the Year, I hope to gain enough support to push my bill to the next level," said Taylor. "Propositions, petitions and advocacy from those participating at the Washington State Youth of the Year could be the necessary factors in a review from the United States Senate and a newly resolved law."

In the future, Taylor plans on attending college. Her first choice is the Air Force Academy, for which she has already received two congressional nominations. She was also nominated for the Naval Academy, West Point and was accepted into the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in the Electrical Engineering College with an Air Force ROTC National Scholarship.

Her father, Col. Matthew Fritz, 92nd Air Refueling Wing vice commander stated, "Her accomplishments are every bit earned by her, she has gone out and sought this. I'm extremely proud she is my kid and that she received this award."