Press Release
Esther Q.

OSAGE NATION RESERVATION, OKLA. (March 14, 2024) –  Osage Nation proudly announces the launch of the Osage PathFinders Development (OPD) program, a remarkable initiative designed to cultivate the future of aviation and aerospace leaders. Inspired by legendary Osages in aviation, such as General Clarence Tinker and Esther Quinton Cheshewalla, the Osage PathFinder program aims to blend the Osage Nation’s unique history with state-of-the-art aerospace training, fostering a new generation of Osage leaders in STEM, aviation, and related aerospace industries.

“The Pathfinders program promises to be a one-of-a-kind STEM education and apprenticeship program backed by university, tribal government, and industry sponsors,” said Osage, LLC Chairman Galen Crum. “It will provide a platform for Osage youth to launch into some of the most challenging and financially rewarding careers in advanced aviation. Osage, LLC is proud to support these budding entrepreneurs and looks forward to a steady stream of these graduates entering the workforce in OK and Osage-owned businesses.” 

The Osage PathFinder Development program is more than an educational venture; it aims to empower the Osage youth to excel in innovative aerospace fields while staying deeply connected to their culture. Through this initiative, participants will gain technical proficiency in applying STEM in aerospace and receive all their FAA certifications to fly and instruct in unmanned and manned aircraft commercially, representing an enduring legacy of the Osage Nation.

Osage Nation is thrilled to partner with aerospace industry leaders Oklahoma State University, Riverside Flight Center, and WindShape to kick off this groundbreaking program to meet the high demand for STEM-related careers developing in Osage Nation’s SkyWay 36 Drone Port & Industrial Park located on the Osage Nation Reservation. 

Guillaume Catry, co-founder and CEO of WindShape, says, "WindShape is grateful for the opportunity to join the Osage Nation in their educational mission to set new standards for aviation and aerospace excellence. WindShape is committed to incubating the potential of the Osage Nation youth through the Osage Pathfinder Development (OPD) program, blending WindShape's leading-edge drone testing technology and experience with the rich cultural heritage of the Osage Nation. The OPD partnership at the WindShape Skyway36 Testing, Inspection, Validation, and Certification (TIVAC) Oklahoma facility will empower a new generation of aviation pilots and engineering pioneers to rise as leaders in aerospace, equipped with the application of hands-on STEM experience.” 

The Osage Nation recruitment strategy is structured to identify and select candidates who embody Osage cultural values and demonstrate their fervent interest in aviation and STEM. A comprehensive action plan, spearheaded by dedicated Osage Nation members and industry experts, will guide the PathFinders from recruitment to an immersive learning experience and eventual aerospace industry readiness. 

The Osage Nation invites the aerospace industry to witness this transformative journey as we select the inaugural cohort of PathFinders. The program promises to be a replicable model for future recruitment, evolving to meet the cultural and professional growth needs of Osage Nation youth. 

For more information about the PathFinders program and other Osage Nation initiatives, please contact @email