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Ready For Takeoff - Turn Your Aviation Passion Into A Career

The Ready For Takeoff podcast will help you transform your aviation passion into an aviation career. Every week we bring you instruction and interviews with top aviators in their field who reveal their flight path to an exciting career in the skies.
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Now displaying: May, 2020
May 28, 2020

Though nothing can bring back the hour

Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;

We will grieve not, rather find

Strength in what remains behind:

 

Many of us have faced, or will soon face, employment disruptions, layoffs and job insecurity. No one can forecast what the aviation industry will look like in the future. In the short-term it will undoubtedly be different. It may be that airlines and employers go out of business, and your dream job no longer exists.

At this critical juncture, don't lose sight of what is important in your life. Your loved ones will stand by you long after your employer has cast you aside.

If you are considering suicide, please call the National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255.

If you are a veteran considering suicide, visit here.

It takes an entire crew to get an airplane aloft. Don't handle this alone.

 

 

 

 

 

May 25, 2020

Judy helps coach pilots as they transition in their airline career paths. She has been successfully conducting interview preparation services for 17 years, including 10 years as Lead Interview Preparation Coach and Vice President, Global Strategies at FAPA.aero.

For over 40 years Judy has worked as an aviation consultant, writer and speaker specializing in the field of pilot selection and recruitment. Her career started with a American Airlines where she was responsible for facilitating the hiring of over 7,100 airline pilots. From AA, she was employed for six years as the President of a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Air Line Pilots Assn. (Universal Pilot Application Service). Since that time, she has consulted with several major air carriers along with government and industry aviation associations. She has been on two FAA Aviation Rule Making committees on pilot selection and has presented before organizations such as the NTSB, FAA, DOD and DOJ.

Author of Expert Witness: Wrongful Death and  Flight Plan to the Flight Deck:  Strategies for a Pilot Career and several magazine articles that have appeared in Aviation for WomenFlight TrainingAir Line Pilot and Airline Pilot Careers.

May 24, 2020

Armed Forces Code of Conduct:

Article I:

I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard my country and our way of life. I am prepared to give my life in their defense.

Article II:

I will never surrender of my own free will. If in command, I will never surrender the members of my command while they still have the means to resist.

Article III:

If I am captured I will continue to resist by all means available. I will make every effort to escape and aid others to escape. I will accept neither parole nor special favors from the enemy.

Article IV:

If I become a prisoner of war, I will keep faith with my fellow prisoners. I will give no information or take part in any action which might be harmful to my comrades. If I am senior, I will take command. If not, I will obey the lawful orders of those appointed over me and will back them up in every way.

Article V:

When questioned, should I become a prisoner of war, I am required to give name, rank, service number and date of birth. I will evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability. I will make no oral or written statements disloyal to my country and its allies or harmful to their cause.

Article VI:

I will never forget that I am an American, fighting for freedom, responsible for my actions, and dedicated to the principles which made my country free. I will trust in my God and in the United States of America.

From https://www.almanac.com/content/when-memorial-day:

On both Memorial Day and Veterans Day, it’s customary to spend time remembering and honoring the countless veterans who have served the United States throughout the country’s history. However, there is a distinction between the two holidays:

  • Memorial Day commemorates the men and women who died while in the military service of their country, particularly those who died in battle or as a result of wounds sustained in battle. In other words, the purpose of Memorial Day is to memorialize the veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.  We spend time remembering those who lost their lives and could not come home, reflecting on their service and why we have the luxury and freedom that we enjoy today. We might consider how we can support and safeguard their grieving families and loved ones who are left behind.
     
  • Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL who served—in wartime or peacetime—regardless of whether they died or survived. Veterans Day is always observed officially on November 11, regardless of the day of the week on which it falls. Read more about Veterans Day.

 
May 22, 2020

Five thousand feet up, pilots are flying some very important cargo across the country. It’s not people or packages these men and women have loaded into the back of their planes: It’s puppies – squirmy, soft and sometimes sad homeless animals who need a new leash on life.

In recent years, rescue-pilot programs have taken off in the South and Northeast. Pilots, almost all of them volunteers who give their time and money to the cause on the weekends, shepherd homeless animals from high-kill shelters in states where adoption rates are usually low, like Alabama and South Carolina, and fly them miles away to animal rescues in the northeast or Central Florida. The animals, many of them young dogs, are adopted or fostered in places where more people are looking to find a furry friend to take home.click to enlarge

Given their wings and the selfless mission to save lives, it might seem apt to compare these pilots to angels. But Michael Young, an Orlando rescue pilot who’s been transporting dogs via plane for the past seven years, says it’s all in a day’s work.

“It’s a chain of people working together and us pilots are just one cog in the big wheel,” Young says. “We’re not the angels. We’re just the bus drivers. The angels are the people who pull the dogs and the people who foster the dogs and put them up for adoption.”

Young has transported almost 1,000 dogs as a volunteer, flying the animals from Alabama to rescues around Florida. It’s a labor of love – one that doesn’t come cheap.

Pilots usually end up spending $10,000 to $12,000 a year maintaining their planes, and Young says it costs around a dollar a mile to fly due to fuel costs, although many of the expenses are tax-deductible because of the charitable cause.

Despite the cost, Young says it’s worth it to save the lives of animals who might otherwise not have a chance. Young says he even adopted two of the dogs he’s flown.

It’s this type of dedication that Kate Quinn, executive director of Pilots N Paws, a South Carolina-based organization that connects pilots with shelters looking for volunteers to transport animals, says she sees in all her pilots.

“These people are huge animal lovers. They’re so concerned with the animals and making sure they’re comfortable,” Quinn says. “We’ve learned that pilots are looking for a meaning to their flights. They’re looking for a reason to fly.”

Saving the lives of 4 to 6 million animals that would otherwise be euthanized every year sounds like a pretty good reason. Quinn says that without the planes swooping in to pick up the animals at the 11th hour, many of them would have to be put down.

There’s also an advantage to using planes as opposed to ground transportation to move the animals. When there are no pilots to help, dogs must be transported in car relays, constantly switching drivers and traveling in crates. On the planes, many pilots allow the dogs to roam freely. The trip by plane is much more consistent and comfortable for them.

“The animals do really well,” Quinn says. “People are surprised to hear how well they do in the plane. The sound of the engine seems to lull them to sleep.”

While the plane experience is better for the animals, the trips do present their own unique challenges, especially in Florida.

“Flying in thunderstorms during the summer here is a challenge. It’s like Florida has the measles if you look at the weather radar, with all the red pimples,” Young says. “But I’ve learned to do it. The best analogy is like a soccer field full of snapping turtles. … We go fast. We go around it. We don’t go through them.”

That’s not the only obstacle to getting the job done. Quinn points out that it takes a lot of hours and a lot of people working together just to save one dog.

To improve the process, Milwaukee rescue pilot Chris Roy invented a software platform to connect animal rescues with volunteers.

Doobert, named after Roy’s cat, includes a smartphone app to connect ground and airborne volunteers.

“The idea came to me because it was so difficult to keep track of which transport requests I was involved with, which animals were on which transport, and who to contact,” he says. “I kept thinking there has to be a better way to do this, and so I decided to create it.”

Even though he also works during the week as an IT project manager, Roy says that there is a major reason he and the other pilots give up their free time for this cause – to spread the puppy love.

“The pilots and ground volunteers donate their time, vehicles and gas because they know that these animals deserve a chance at a better life,” he says. “They don’t ask for anything in return.”

Young and Roy agree that the joy in the job comes from the love they receive from the animals they’ve saved. The thanks they get is spoken in the universal language of a wagging tail or a slobbery grin.

“Many people may think I’m crazy, but these animals in a rescue-relay transport know you are saving them and bringing them to a better place,” Roy says. “You can see the look of relief in their eyes, and see the smiles on their face when they meet you.

May 18, 2020

Many have called her a vanguard as one of the first women fighter pilots for the United States Air Force and the first woman to fly in the elite USAF Air Demonstration Squadron, better known as the “Thunderbirds”. Titles and accolades aside, Nicole Malachowski has lived life according to a simple mantra – “Live an unscripted life.”

Throughout her career ranging from combat fighter pilot to commander, to White House Fellow, and duty as a personal advisor to the First Lady concerning military service members, veterans and military families, Nicole sought opportunities that she had passion for, rather than ones that followed the expected progression in her career field.

While that passionate, adventurous us spirit yielded a successful military career, Nicole’s flight path was not always smooth. Along the way, she learned how to use undaunted determination to overcome adversity, break some barriers, and live with a higher compassion for humanity. Sometimes you have to yield to a big obstacle in order to be able to overcome it.

Nicole is a leader, an igniter of passion and purpose. She is an advocate for those who have chosen to serve their country and for those who have endured personal challenges, to include complex medical journeys.

In this new chapter of her life, as a retired Colonel from the U.S. Air Force, Nicole looks to share her stories and what she has learned, to help others find and ignite their own unstoppable spirits in order to succeed far beyond what they had dreamed.

May 14, 2020

When you apply for a medical certificate, you are required to complete FAA Form 8500-8. Falsifying any information on this form can subject you to a five of $250,000 and five years in prison. If you have concerns about your ability to obtain a medical certificate, I recommend consulting an advisor before applying for your medical. One such advisor is David Hale, who you met in RFT 364.

There are several situations in which a pilot can find himself/herself without a medical certificate. One such case could be where the pilot has simply allowed his/her medical certificate to lapse. Another case could be where the pilot applies for a certificate and is denied due to a medical issue that the FAA considers disqualifying. In that case, the pilot may not use any of the other strategies, such as BasicMed or Sport Pilot medical.

Even with a denial, the pilot may continue to fly with a certificated pilot acting as Pilot In Command (PIC), as long as the aircraft does not require a copilot. The pilot may operate the controls, from either seat, but the pilot without a medical is officially a passenger. Many aircraft owners who have lost their medicals use this strategy.

If there has not been a denial from the FAA, there are other avenues available to General Aviation (GA) pilots. The pilot may operate as a Sport Pilot, flying a Light Sport Aircraft (LSA). An LSA is an aircraft that:

Has a maximum gross takeoff weight of 1,320 lbs.

Has a maximum stall speed of 51 mph (45 knots)

Has a maximum speed in level flight of 130 mph (120 knots)

Has two-place maximum seating

Has single, non-turbine engine, fixed propeller, fixed landing gear.

With a Sport Pilot certificate, the pilot may use his/her driver’s license in place of a medical certificate. See more at https://www.flysportusa.com/med_cert.php.

One step up from the Sport Pilot medical is BasicMed. Under BasicMed, pilots can get an authorization from their personal medical providers rather than from FAA Airman Medical Examiners (AMEs). The pilot completes a BasicMed Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklistand gets a physical exam with a state-licensed physician. The pilot then completes a BasicMed Online Course. That’s it – nothing else required.

Under BasicMed, the pilot may operate an aircraft with:

a maximum gross weight of 6000 lbs

up to 6 seats

capable of flying at a maximum speed of 250 knots

maximum altitude 18,000 feet

VFR or IFR

Using BasicMed, the pilot cannot operate for compensation or hire.

One additional avenue for a pilot is to fly a glider, since no medical is required to fly a glider.

Above all, common sense should prevail – if you’re not healthy enough to fly (whether or not you have a medical), don’t fly!

May 11, 2020

Captain Pamela Carel, a Dallas, TX, native, graduated from the University of Texas, Austin, in 1986 with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering. Commissioned in December 1986, she was designated a Naval Aviator in 1988. She holds a MBA of Business and Management from Webster University, St. Louis, MO., and a M.A. in National Security and Strategic Studies from Naval War College, Newport, R.I. She completed Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) I with distinction through the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, 2008, and JPME-II at the Naval War College, 2011.

 

Captain Carel completed her first assignment as a Selectively Retained Graduate (SERGRAD) Instructor Pilot with Training Squadron (VT) 23. Her next two operational assignments were with Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 34 and Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, flying the A-7E and F/A-18C, becoming the first female to qualify in combat in the F/A-18C. Operational tours included deployments in USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) and USS Kitty Hawk(CV 63)  for combat Operation Southern Watch.

 

Captain Carel served two shore tours as a flight instructor. She transitioned to Selected Reserves in 2001, serving tours in Mine Counter Measures Squadrons (MCMRON) One and Two and as Officer in Charge (OIC) of Naval Information Bureau Detachment 310. She returned to active duty for Commander, Navy Region South (CNRS) as OIC and Battle Watch Captain in support of JTF KATRINA and HURRICANE RITA (2005), subsequently serving as Commanding Officer (CO) of CNRSE ROC (West), 2006. She reported to NR COMSEVENTHFLT (C7F) where she served as OIC of Manpower and Readiness; OIC, Intelligence and Information Operations, and directly supported C7F as Maritime Operations Center (MOC) Chief in USS Blueridge (LCC-19) 2007-2010. Captain Carel completed her in-residence Master’s degree at the U.S. Naval War College, Newport, R.I. Captain Carel then served as Chief Staff Officer of Naval Reserve Naval Mine and Anti-submarine Warfare Command 0194 in San Diego, CA. 2011-2014. In her final assignment, she served as MOC Chief for COMPACFLT, Pearl Harbor, HI. Captain Carel retired 1 January, 2017.

 

Captain Carel accumulated over 3400 flight hours and 352 carrier landings in Navy aircraft. Her awards include the Meritorious Service Medal (3), Combat Strike Air Medal (2) and Navy Commendation Medal (2).

May 7, 2020

Leeham Co LLC was formed by Scott Hamilton in 1999 after the sale of the company he co-founded, Linkraven Ltd. Linkraven was formed in 1989 and published Commercial Aviation Report and Commercial Aviation Value Report and produced global conferences under the name Commercial Aviation Events. Commercial Aviation Report quickly became a leading source of news in airline and aircraft finance while Value Report brought to the forefront the world of aircraft appraisals. Events produced 60 conferences in 10 years, including the first aviation finance conference in Eastern Europe following the fall of the Iron Curtain; the first in Moscow; and the first in Beijing.

Leeham is a globally recognized expert in aerospace issues, focused on the Big Four airframe Original Equipment Manufacturers (Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier and Embraer) and the engine OEMs. Leeham provides aviation consulting focusing on business strategy, competitive intelligence. Clients seek industry trends and forecast for their strategic planning. The Washington State Dept. of Commerce retained Leeham in 2009 to create an aerospace policy. Leeham Co. services only the aerospace industry.

Hamilton was on the Board of Directors for the Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance, Seattle, from 2010-2013. PNAA is a supplier trade group servicing Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, British Columbia and Alberta. Hamilton created PNAA's first Business Plan that enabled the group to increase its revenues and cash position by 1,000 percent in three years and position the association to employ its first executive director. The annual conference attendance increased by 300%.

Leeham Co. (www.leeham.net) also publishes Leeham News and Comment (www.leehamnews.com).

 

May 4, 2020


When Jessica was born, both of her parents were shocked to find out that their baby did not have arms. They had no idea that she would be born differently because the pregnancy tests all showed average results. With the shock and unexpected news, Jessica’s mother Inez had a tough time accepting the truth and became quietly anxious about Jessica’s future.

Jessica’s parents decided to integrate her into a regular environment as much as possible. She was enrolled in a public school, not a private or special needs school. Never thinking she was different, she did whatever the other children would do. But on the playground during recess, Jessica felt limited as people around her were overprotective and prevented her from climbing up the slide. In anger and frustration, Jessica sat on the swings dreaming of flying.

Jessica graduated from the University of Arizona with a
degree in Psychology and Communication. From the challenges she has overcome, she became an inspiration to many. Jessica realized her words and experience are a natural source of encouragement and optimism for many, which gave rise to her motivational speaking business. Around the same time, she decided to pursue flight lessons to overcome her greatest fear: flying. After an arduous three years, Jessica became a certified pilot, earning the title of the first woman to fly an airplane with her feet.

For almost 20 years, Jessica has initiated many inspirational connections with people with disabilities, especially children, through one-on-one mentoring and more recently through her YouTube show Toe Talks. To date, Jessica has personally mentored over 100 children with disabilities and touched more than half a million people with Toe Talks. In January 2017, the US government legally recognized her efforts with the approval of Rightfooted Foundation International (RFI) as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit headquartered in Tucson, Arizona.

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