Air-Borne This Way

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aviation

In a country that yearns to churn out doctors and engineers in hundreds and thousands every year, there also exists a plethora of options for those who wish to soar the skies and travel the world. Nancy Varghese takes a look into aviation courses that are slowly gaining popularity with the rapid boom in the travel industry

Clad in a perfectly tailored navy blue skirt suit with her short bob framing her beautiful face, Amelia Warren is a vision to behold, looking dapper and having the job of a lifetime: the airhostess of an international airline. ‘The Terminal’ was a movie that saw Catherine Zeta Jones having the opportunity to travel around the world and look mighty impressionable and experienced while at it. There was also Katrina Kaif having her graduating moment from Frankfinn Institute of Airhostess Training in the Bollywood movie ‘Welcome’. Becoming an air hostess or a part of cabin crew was quite a trend in the years gone by. These career options are making a comeback with India expanding its horizons with regards to several new airlines and airports recruiting staff and crew for their companies. We bring you a list of the top aviation courses and institutes in the country with the various graduate and post graduate degrees that they have to offer.

Frankfinn Institute of Air Hostess Training

With an exclusive strategic worldwide tie-up with ICM in UK, for accrediting all its vocational courses in aviation, hospitality and travel management, Frankfinn was founded over 30 years ago and is recognized in more than 130 countries. It has a proven track record of placing thousands of students in Aviation, Hospitality, Travel, Tourism and Customer Service Industries.

Courses:

Frankfinn Diploma in Aviation, Hospitality and Travel Management (FDAHTM)
Eligibility: 12th grade graduates and above (17 to 24 years)
Duration: 12 months

Frankfinn Diploma in Hospitality, Travel and Customer Service (FDHTCS)
Eligibility: 12th grade graduates and above (17 to 24 years)
Duration: 12 months

Frankfinn Post Graduate Diploma in Aviation And Hospitality Services (FPGDAHS)
Eligibility: Graduate or final year graduate students (19 to 24 years)
Duration: 12 months

Frankfinn Post Graduate Diploma in Airport Ground Services (FPGDAGS)
Eligibility: Graduate or final graduate students (19 to 24 years)
Duration: 12 months

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Aptech Aviation and Hospitality Academy

A short term course that will help you to lift off your career in the Aviation Industry as part of the Ground Staff at airports or on airlines. This course covers training on various functions such as cargo and transportation, customer service, airport branding and much more. The career opportunities that are available upon completion of the course include guest service agent, guest service supervisor, passenger service staff and cargo handling staff.

Eligibility: 12th grade graduates and above or a-three year Diploma from a State Board of Technical Education
Duration: six months

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Ahmedabad Aviation & Aeronautics

They are considered one of the best pilot training institutes in India, which operate from an International Airport apart from having user rights to conduct training at an self controlled airfield. With a placement record of over 150 students flying for various airlines and in General Aviation sector, AAA was also the first flying academy in India to import state of the art Elite-i Gate full projection Flight Navigation Procedure Trainer.

Courses:

Commercial Pilot License
Eligibility: > 12th grade graduates with Physics and Mathematics
> medically fit as per the standards of Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA)
Duration: 18 months to 24 months

Private Pilot License
Eligibility: > 10th grade graduate
> medically fit as per the standards of DGCA
Duration: six to eight months

Star Aviation Academy

This institute primarily focuses on the Aicraft Maintenance Engineering (AME) industry, continuously developing new ways to impart technical skills and knowledge to students. Established in 2006, Star Aviation believes in effective and optimum training of engineers who meet the safety standards in aviation. With a large number of airlines and airports scheduled to come up in the near future, the need for qualified AMEs is rising and will command an ever higher necessity in the international aviation job market.

Courses:

Mechanical Stream (Heavy and Light Aircraft/ Piston and Jet Engine)
Eligibility: > 16 years and above
> 12th graduate in science subjects (PCM) or a higher qualification in science from recognised Board/University or three years Diploma in any branch of Engineering
Duration: three years

Avionics Stream (Radio Navigation/Electrical System/Instruments System)
Eligibility: > 16 years and above
> 12th graduate in science subjects (PCM) or a higher qualification in science from recognised Board/University  or three years Diploma in any branch of Engineering
Duration: three years

‘DISCIPLINE, SINCERITY AND FOCUS’

To be able to pilot commercial jets and be exceptional at it is not child’s play. We bring you the details of the working of an aviation academy straight from the experts, as Ammeet K Agarwal, President and CEO of Supreme Aviation Inc, tells us about what goes into the training and educating students at the academy

How does your institute stand apart from all the other aviation courses in the country?

We offer the Commercial Pilot’s License (CPL) course in USA. Out of 42 approved flight training academies in India, only 3 are operational. Besides, there is a serious lack of infrastructure, regulations and resources in India and hence we prefer to keep our location in the USA. We offer a 6 month full time Pilot’s Programme with 255 hours of total flight time. No other institute across India offers more than 200 hours in less than 2 years. Besides, a USA CPL is accepted almost everywhere across the world, compared to an Indian CPL.

How many students do you recruit each year and what are the various courses offered in your academy?

We are graduating about 200 pilots from 35 countries every year. We only offer Commercial Pilot’s License course. We had a lot of enrollments from India between 2006-2009, followed by the Middle East from 2009 -2012. After 2012, we saw high enrollments from South America. We are now focusing on Africa.

Does your institute guarantee job placements in the industry, and if yes, what are the job opportunities that they can avail once a graduate?

No flying club gives job placement guarantee. One doesn’t wants to be a passenger in an aircraft where a pilot was simply assured a job irrespective of his skills. However, 99% of our pilots have secured jobs in leading airlines of the world. There is always a huge demand of pilots in some or other part of the world.

What kind of characteristics do you think defines an exceptional pilot or cabin crew?

Discipline, sincerity and focus. A pilot who is disciplined and follows the rules, seldom leaves scope for any error. A pilot who conducts his duties sincerely, would always be prepared for the unseen. A pilot who is focused, would always learn, grow and continue to march towards success and progress in both – career as well as personally.

In this day and age, how popular do you think are aviation courses and what scope do they hold in the future? Being a pilot has always been a glamorous career. Apart from which, it is considered to be perfect. High salary, luxurious lifestyle, travel across the globe, a responsible skill set combined with mastering the art of flying an airplane.  Scope for being a pilot would always increase in the coming years. With each single airplane added to airlines fleet across the world, a demand of 32 new pilots is created. Industry anticipates a need of 5000 more pilots in next 5 years.

Does your institute have the infrastructural facilities for your students to gain hands-on experience?

Pilot’s training is all about flying the actual airplane. We offer a brand new fleet of Cessna 172 with G1000, the most advanced avionics available in the world. We also offer a Diamond 20 Eclipse to build experience and a Piper Seneca for the Multi Engine rating. A combination of these 3 different types of airplane, prepares a pilot to face any situation, flying with any airline in the world.

Supreme Aviation alumni speak: What is your current job profile and for how long?

Prunveer Sethi: “I am flying with Jet Airways since past 6 years!” Sherdeep Matta: “I am a first officer with Spice Jet since past 4 years!”

How did you manage to get your current job?
Upon returning from USA with the American CPL, we converted to DGCA license and applied with all airlines across India. During interviews, we performed much better compared to 3000 other candidates, due to our training at Supreme Aviation. The syllabus which was offered by Supreme, was very practical and taught us pretty much everything a pilot should know.

What has been the most memorable part of studying in the academy?

Every day was memorable. Our first solo flight, our first night flight, the first time when we flew the airplane to other cities of USA, flying to all different states and airports from North to South and East to West across USA. Apart from flying, the lifestyle in the USA due to Supreme’s location left us with memories we would cherish throughout our life.

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