Amy Silverbush ‘aims high’
2012 Ponderosa High School graduate Amy Silverbush left June 27 for Colorado Springs, Colo., to join the United States Air Force Academy.
Silverbush is one of 1,200 freshmen entering the academy for the 2012-13 school year, according to her acceptance letter. The daughter of Brad and Kristen Silverbush said she’s not certain how many girls are entering the academy. In spring 2016 Amy will graduate from the academy as a second lieutenant, holding a bachelor’s of science degree, then serve at least five years of active duty.
She is the third Silverbush to enter the Air Force and the second to enter the academy; her older sister Angela, a 2010 Ponderosa High alum, enters her third year this fall. Their grandfather, Lt. Col. Edward Silverbush, served in the Air Force and fought in the Korean and Vietnam wars.
“Makes me feel proud; sort of like I’ve accomplished something,” Amy said in an interview prior to her departure. “I have to work my way up a little bit harder than the boys.”
The times that the Silverbush sisters will see each other at the academy will be few and far between, Amy said. They will exchange regular e-mails and text messages. “I’ll probably see her once in a while,” Amy said. “There are 40 squadrons at the academy.”
Amy, who has another sister Jacquelyn, 13, and a brother, Eddie, 11, went through the rigorous process for acceptance into the academy that included obtaining a nomination from Sen. Tom McClintock, R-Roseville. She had to fill out an application with the Air Force both online and a printed version that had to be mailed, plus take part in interviews and a physical. The Air Force contacted her toward the end of February.
“The hardest part was waiting,” Amy said. “I wasn’t expecting to hear until early March. I was surprised to get the letter in the mail.”
Amy said she was “shocked” but filled with “happiness” upon learning of her acceptance and her career path for the next nine years. “I was relieved, too, because I was really afraid I wasn’t going to get in,” she added.
Amy will need to adjust to the climate in Colorado Springs fast. The elevation is more than 6,000 feet; the elevation in Shingle Springs is just higher than 1,400 feet.
Amy entered boot camp in good shape. She played on the Ponderosa girls soccer team this spring, playing in 19 of the Bruins’ 22 games. She also likes jazz and ballet dancing.
“Now I’m working on trying to do more pull-ups,” joked Amy. “Dancing to me is a sport. I did tap for a long time, and hip-hop.”
From fifth grade through her recent graduation, Amy said she missed only one day of classes — but with good reason. During her junior year she was visiting her sister Angela.
“I hate missing school,” Amy said.
After her recent graduation Amy spent time with family and friends before leaving for the academy and took a special family trip to Disneyland.