Let’s Hear it for the Air Academy Kadets!

The Air Academy High School Kadets have taken Colorado by storm this past year! So, let’s hear it for the Kadet’s!


Ratna Unnikrishnan

A group of Air Academy High School DECA students looking absolutely elated after receiving an event award! Students mentioned from left to right: Lauren Behar (12), Nate Lumaye (11), Finn Horsfall (12), Kian Jiang (12), Ratna Unnikrishnan (12), Paige Uebelhoer (12), Alex Gales (12), Abigail Weaver (11), and Erin Bailey (11).

Deniece Williams’ upbeat song, “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” embodies what Air Academy High School stands for! This celebratory song is indicative of all the accomplishments the AAHS Kadets have made from the start of the semester.


From notable academic achievements to exceptional athletic performances, AAHS has cultivated a positive environment that encourages success in and out of the classroom. However, how has this come to fruition? 


… the Admin team really just wants the best for kids…we really want AAHS to be a place that is responsive to staff and student needs,” assistant principal Liz Walhof noted. 


As Walhof stated, AAHS truly is a unique environment that is high-achieving and welcoming due to the intensive efforts of the administration team. In this regard, what achievements have the Kadets accomplished since the start of the school year? 


In particular, AAHS’s DECA (Distributive Education Clubs of America) program has witnessed tremendous expansion and participation this year.


“The business program at AAHS has grown phenomenally to include over 400 students for the 22-23 school year (nearly double last year)!” business teacher and DECA advisor Lindsay Bornhofen commented.


This growth has not only contributed to greater student involvement, but has also enabled monumental success at various competitions. For instance, on October 30th and 31st of this year, the AAHS team placed first at the DECA Alpine World Championships. In addition to this, on November 16th, 2022, 118 students qualified for the Colorado State DECA conference or qualified as alternates at the district level.


The success of the program is exceptional considering the increase in student involvement. Yet, is the success at AAHS only limited to DECA? The answer is undoubtedly no. 


Senior Emily Rodriguez (6) leading the kickoff for the mighty Air Academy Kadets, along side seniors Chase Corbat (44) and Jacob Biernacki (8). Photo provided by Emily Rodriguez.


Success is also found within our sports teams. One commendable program at AAHS is football, which made the playoffs for the first time in 15 years! These accomplishments derive from not only the continuous efforts of the coaching staff, but also from the commitment of student-athletes.


“I know this sounds cliché, but the time, effort, and dedication we all put into this program. It all starts in the summer. Lifting weights, conditioning, technique all start during the summer and from there we build up. Each day we focused on the today. Not the tomorrow, not the yesterday, the now,” senior football player Emily Rodriguez stated.


As Rodriguez mentioned, the dedication of student-athletes is truly admirable when considering the student-athlete balance. Cross country is a prime example of this considering the impressive accomplishments the team has made within the past year. For instance, the girl’s team this year won the Colorado 5a cross country championships. 


Air Academy was the new kids on the block moving up from the 4A classification this season. The Kadets made an impressive first impression winning the team title with a score of 76 points,” according to an article published by CHSSANOW.


The success of AAHS’s athletic programs is exceptional. However, the true success of AAHS stems from the incredible teaching, coaching, and administrative members who work to support the best interest of students. With this, AAHS’s successes within the past year are truly remarkable and worthy of accreditation. 


It’s crazy to think that an 80’s movie soundtrack song could represent a local high school in Colorado Springs so well. This cheery tune not only symbolizes the successes of AAHS, but ultimately serves as a beacon of accomplishment for future generations to come.