By Tori Mason

CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) — Many high school students are just trying to pass their driving tests, but Drake Robichaud is miles above the rest.

“I was 17 and 41 days when I got my private pilot’s license,” said Robichaud.

Drake Robichaud (credit: CBS)

Robichaud spent most of his junior year at Grandview High School with his head in the clouds, completing over 40 flying hours to receive his license.

“Flying lets you get away from the troubles of life on the ground if that makes sense,” explained Robichaud.

(credit: CBS)

He was able to receive his license at an early age thanks to aviation classes offered at his high school.

“They have an introductory class, then they have an aviation technology class. It’s a full-fledged FAA ground school, that gets you ready to pass your FAA written test,” said Robichaud.

(credit: CBS)

Technical courses in Cherry Creek Schools help students like Robichaud take off faster, without sacrificing life on the ground.

“With it being a full year-long course, we didn’t have to cram everything in a weekend. I could do things I wanted to, like play lacrosse, at the same time,” he said.

(credit: CBS)

Robichaud also participated in an internship with Southwest Airlines over the summer. He hopes to be a commercial pilot one day, but right now his focus is on college.

“It may be a lot of work, but it does pay off in the end. It really does,” said Robichaud.

(credit: CBS)

Robichaud’s aviation classes are just some of the career and technical courses offered at Cherry Creek Schools. The district is currently in the process of building an “Innovation Campus” for its students.

LINK: Cherry Creek Innovation Campus

Tori Mason