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During a meeting of the Florida Cabinet in late March, Governor Rick Scott recognized eight outstanding educators with the “Shine Award”. One of the recipients was Robinson HS Aerospace Academy instructor Col. Jeff Kaloostian, USAF (Ret). The Shine Award is presented to teachers and administrators in Florida who make significant contributions to the field of education. The Governor presents medals to the recipients throughout the year, with the purpose of showing appreciation for Florida’s exceptional teachers and for their commitment to improving Florida’s education system. Governor Scott said, “I am proud to honor Florida’s incredible teachers who work every day to help students accomplish their goals and get a great education in our state. I especially want to thank the Florida teachers who have previously served in the military. The sacrifices they have made to keep Florida families safe and defend freedom across the world gives our students the opportunity to achieve the American Dream.”
Col. Kaloostian served in the United States Air Force for 28 years. For the past 11 years, he has taught Aerospace, Private Pilot Operations, Unmanned Aircraft and Aviation Physiology at Robinson High School. He is the only high school aerospace teacher in Hillsborough County and also serves as the CTE Department Head. He is passionate about his program and his school. As he says on the Aerospace program page on the RHS website, “This is my 11th year teaching Aerospace Technology and I thoroughly enjoy everything about it.” He adds that, “There are more opportunities to get into an exciting career in aerospace than you can imagine, and I'm not just suggesting pilot, mechanic or astronaut.”
The program at Robinson HS has very close ties to MacDill Air Force Base, local FAA and NOAA affiliates, and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, many of which have been established as a result of Col. K’s unique work history and ongoing relationships with the aeronautical industry, professional associations, and postsecondary institutions in the area and throughout the state and country. For a man who is a retired USAF pilot; who flew the KC-135 aerial tanker and B-1B bomber; who now flies general aviation Cessna-172s, it seems appropriate that Governor Scott saw fit to “shine” this award on a man who loves being in the sky!
To read more about the Shine Awards ceremony, please visit http://www.fldoe.org/newsroom/latest-news/governor-scott-presents-shine-awards-to-eight-outstanding-florida-educators.stml. To learn more about the Aerospace Academy at Robinson High School, visit the school’s website at http://robinsonhs.mysdhc.org/.View Full Album