When Noa was four-years-old she was introduced to Bessie Coleman while watching an episode of Disney Junior’s Doc McStuffins. Ever since then, she has sought out opportunities to learn more about the first woman of African American descent to hold a pilots license.
Currently in the 2nd grade, when Noa’s teacher assigned her Amelia Earhart for her school’s Wax Museum exhibit, Noa recalled another pilot of significance during the same time period and requested to dress up and do her report on Bessie Coleman instead.
After completing thorough research to properly present Ms. Coleman to her class, Noa’s mother emailed her final report to The National Aviation Hall of Fame and the National Women’s Hall of Fame as both organizations assisted Noa with artifacts and information to help authenticate her presentation.
What happened next is a case of proper preparation and perfect timing. The National Aviation Hall of Fame was so impressed that they flew Noa and her family to Ohio to meet Bessie Coleman’s great niece, Gigi Coleman, during her one woman show at the Air Force Museum Foundation’s Living History Series.
The experience has been life changing for Noa and her family.
“I want other kids to know that at times it’s not just an assignment, but it could be something that could change your life,” said Noa’s mother, Moniqua.
Kudos to Noa’s parents for advocating on behalf of their child and to Noa’s teacher for being willing to allow her to focus on a historical figure who inspired her. This is why representation matters.