On June 21,2022, Scott McComb, an educator at Raisbeck Aviation High School near Seattle, was presented the NCASE Crown Circle for Aerospace Leadership award at the Pacific Northwest AIAA Awards Banquet. Lisa Bacon, NCASE Director, was pleased to represent NCASE to present the award to Scott with friends and colleagues in attendance.
The National Coalition of Aviation and Space Education (NCASE) is a non-profit formed in 1993 to foster collaboration between government, industry, and academia to promote aerospace education on local, state and national levels. We present two awards a year, the Crown Circle Award for Aerospace Leadership, and the Dr. Mervin K. Strickler, Jr. Aerospace Leadership Award. Due to COVID, NCASE delayed presentation of these 2020 awards until this year.
The Crown Circle Award for Aerospace Leadership was first presented in 1979 by the FAA and the Civil Air Patrol to recognize those individuals or organizations who demonstrate sustained involvement and commitment to aerospace education, Outstanding leadership in aerospace education locally or regionally and have made a significant contribution to the field of aviation and space education. Previous awardees have been A. Scott Crossfield, Charles “Chuck” Yeager, Mary Feik, the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, the Civil Air Patrol -Aerospace Education Program and many other notables in aerospace education. McComb was recognized as the 2020 Crown Circle Awardee for his continued leadership in aerospace programs at Raisbeck Aviation High School.
McComb was nominated by his principal, Therese Tipton. “Scott has been educating high school students for the past 21 years. Over his past 17 years teaching, he has developed, enhanced, and implemented an outstanding program of aerospace educations of one of the top STEM prep schools in the nation,” said Tipton. “Scott is a teacher leader who is deeply respected in the aerospace community and is recognized as an exemplary educator by industry members, colleagues, parents, and students. Scott is a lifelong learner with a growth mindset, he works to improve his academic competences through a variety experience to enhance the aerospace education opportunities for all our students.”
He holds a private pilot license, has had internships with various industry partners and academic programs, and has been the Washington State Science Olympiad Chair, was the first faculty advisor for the AIAA-Pacific Northwest Student Branch. He has been nationally recognized as a Scott Crossfield Educator of the Year, is a National Board-Certified Teacher, among other accreditations and awards.
McComb starts his new 9th graders off the summer before 9th grade by initiating student inquiry and problem-solving skills by giving them a Heat Shield project. This allows the students to begin the design process and learn through trial and error that “they don’t know what they don’t know.”
Scott spends time sharing his knowledge by facilitating professional development with other teachers to demonstrate 21st Century skills; problem-based learning, equity and STEM career pathways. He inspires his students to go beyond what they think they can do.
In addition to these accomplishments. He also leads the Green Energy Team, which has built and entered a solar car into National Competitions, as one of the only high school teams in the country.
On June 24, Scott hosted the Epic (Electric Propulsion Innovation Challenge) STEM Challenge Coaches Workshop for anyone interested in coaching or hosting a team for the 2022 Challenge at Raisbeck Aviation High School.
In short, McComb is the teacher that every parent wants motivating their student. He prepares his students to learn from failures and prepare for success.