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‘Dare to Soar’ Essay Contest Extended to April 15 for Local Middle School Students


Little boy against a chalkboard with pics of various aviation machines
Transportation Federal Credit Union Dare to Soar Essay Contest

ALEXANDRIA, VA – Transportation Federal Credit Union (TFCU) has invited area middle school students interested in the fields of aviation and engineering to ‘Dare to Soar’.

Open to all students between the ages of 11-13, the Dare to Soar writing competition is designed to support their dreams of flight, while raising awareness of the thousands of science-, technology-, education-, and math- related careers available at the US Department of Transportation. To enter, an original essay must be submitted by April 15, 2024 that describes what transportation would look like in 2050 and beyond. Students do not need to be a member of the credit union.

One lucky winner will receive the grand prize of an all-inclusive trip for two to the Annual EAA AirVenture event in Oshkosh, Wisconsin to learn more about the innovative technology and unique aircraft across the history of flight. Two runner ups will receive ground transportation and tickets to the Virginia Spaceport Authority in Norfolk, Virginia to learn about the people and technologies that enable the FAA missions. In addition, TFCU will donate $250 to the winners’ schools or organizations.

“We are honored to support those interested in furthering their STEM education and pursuing careers in transportation-related fields,” said Sharmaine Bucknor, TFCU Chief Marketing Officer. “For 85 years, we have proudly served the transportation community. Developing programs like Dare to Soar, that help support the next generation of leaders, is a natural extension of our commitment to making a difference in the communities we serve.”

Contest winners will be announced in April and invited to the TFCU headquarters grand opening celebration in Alexandria, VA. To download an application and learn more, please visit

Transportation Federal Credit Union has for over eight decades proudly served the transportation community, including the Department of Transportation, Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Highway Administration, Federal Railroad Association, Department of Maritime Administration as well as 100+ employer groups. For more information about the organization, visit or call 202.366.9400.

Mary Wadland

Mary Wadland is the Publisher and Editor in Chief of The Zebra Press, founded by her in 2010. Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Mary is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Hollins College in Roanoke, VA and has lived and worked in the Alexandria publishing community since 1987.

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