We've all had a crazy childhood dream and mine was becoming an airline pilot. Many young people who aspire a flying career are unaware of the content of flight training and the preparations which are needed. On November 23rd, 2015 I started my ATPL(A) training. Time to realize my childhood dream. I'd like to take you along on an adventure and I'll happily answer all your questions on the way. Let's do this!
November 20th, 2015. The very first day at flight school! I was now part of Promotion 37, a class of 18 motivated students with one common goal: becoming an airline pilot.
Nov 21, 2015 - At 8:50 in the morning my housemates and I jumped onto our bicycles and went to flight school for the very first time. We gathered in the student lounge which offers a great panoramic view of Brussels Airport. An impressive and motivational view to start our day. Once everyone had arrived we were guided to our classroom. Time for the first briefing of the day!
During our first briefing, we received a lot of information about the school, how to communicate with the staff, general rules and so on. The whole training was also discussed in detail which offered us a clear image of what to expect during the next 18 to 20 months.
Internal rules were also a major part of the first briefing. The flight school has strict rules and there's a simple, yet important philosophy behind it. We want to become pilots so we have to act and dress like pilots.
After an informative and interesting morning, we had the opportunity to meet the students of Promotion 36. They started their training in September 2015 and were about to take their first set of EASA exams. During lunch, they told us more about their experiences with the training and how we could best prepare.
After our lunch break, we received a student-to-student briefing where someone from Promotion 35 gave us more info about the student pilot life. He gave us some tips and tricks for the theory phase which would start after our weekend. He also mentioned many times how important it is to stick together and to work as a team throughout the whole training period.
And by the way: what's a first day at school without introducing yourself? It was quite clear that most of us had a very different background. Some of us came straight from high school, others worked for a few years and some dropped out of university in order to chase their dream.
The diversity of our promotion was very noticeable. Belgians, French and even someone all the way from Guatemala! Since some of the students had previous working experience there was also an age difference. With 19 years of age, I'm the youngest of my promotion, which makes the oldest one 7 years older than I am.
At the end of the briefings, we received our flight bag, sweater and of course 15 kilograms of pure joy: the ATPL theory books. Now it was time for my last weekend off because on Monday we were going to jump into a whole new life!
I hope you have enjoyed this second blog post! Next week you'll read more about an average day in the life of a student pilot. If you have any questions, please feel free to let me know in the comments or via firstname.lastname@example.org!
Story series: Road to the Right Seat
Follow student pilot Bob's journey to the right seat of an airliner!