Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Training With A Passion

Michael Goulian’s flight school makes dreams come true

Aerobatic champion, air show superstar, Red Bull racer—Michael Goulian is all of these. But in his day job, if you will, he’s president of Executive Flyers Aviation, a second-generation flight school founded by his father, Myron, in 1964.

“Flight training was my dad’s entire life,” Goulian says. “He started with one airplane and a little kiosk in the lobby of the terminal of Hanscom airport,” and went on to become a noted aviation figure in the northeast, training hundreds of pilots in the process.

Now with a second location at Lawrence Municipal Airport in Massachusetts, Goulian and his brother Matthew, director of maintenance, carry on the Executive Flyers Aviation tradition with a combination of professionalism and passion. “You’re not going to make a million dollars in the flight school business, so you have to have a passion for the industry and, more importantly, a passion for people and wanting to watch people fulfill a dream,” Goulian says. “Making dreams is more important than making money at Executive Flyers. If you accomplish the first goal, the second one will take care of itself. That’s what my dad believed in, and he passed that on to my brother and me.”

Flight Training Done Right

At a time when general aviation is struggling and AOPA reports that 70% of student pilots drop out before completing their instruction, Executive Flyers is more successful than most in gaining and retaining students. So their operations, and Goulian’s perspective on flight training, are instructive for students, flight school operators and instructors alike.

The positive impression of Executive Flyers starts at the door. Its clean and new, purpose-built office-hangar complex in Lawrence has a bright, modern reception area and plenty of office space for students and instructors to powwow. The school’s fleet is impeccably maintained. Aircraft are cleaned after each flight. A detailer is on staff to buff surfaces, clean leather and shine prop spinners.

“We have really great equipment, and we want people who can’t afford or don’t want the hassle of owning an airplane to still be in love with our planes like they were their own,” Goulian says as we walk through the main hangar, the floor polished to a mirror-like shine. “We take as good care of our equipment as a person would if this was their personal dream plane.”


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