Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Airline Transport Professionals
Preparing pilots for professional airline careers since 1984
Those who make the grade benefit from a flight-training program that has been tailored over the years to meet and often exceed the hiring requirements of the regional airlines. One area where the program really excels is in multi-engine cross-country experience.
"Our students and instructors fly in an FAA-approved crew environment, so we have two instrument-rated pilots in the twins," Arnold explained. We literally run our flights coast-to-coast so the students and instructors build cross-country time quickly. In the last six months, ATP airplanes landed at over 270 different airports. That's not your typical flight school operational model, and it provides the kind of real-world experience valued by airlines."
In 2010, congress tasked the FAA with improving airline safety by increasing experience requirements for Part 121 airline new hires. One of the most emphasized knowledge areas is professionalism in the crew environment. This is exactly what ATP trains from day one and puts into practice during the cross-country phase of the program. Every flight is conducted using standardized procedures. "Our students get a lot of diverse experience in all kinds of weather, ATC environments and terrain," Arnold said.
Airlines recognize that ATP offers a practical solution to the current pilot shortage. The school has invested millions of dollars in a growing fleet of trainers, giving them large-scale training capacity and capabilities. In October 2010, ATP placed an order for up to 30 new multi-engine Piper Seminoles, an investment totaling about $18 million. Recognizing the value of turbine flight experience in preparing airline pilot candidates, ATP entered into a fleet-purchase agreement and long-term investment in the Diamond D-JET program.
"It's a significant move for us," Arnold said. "Ultimately, we plan on phasing out some of our multi-engine cross-country time in favor of jet cross-country experience."
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