British Airways is preparing for the floodgates to open on Monday (23rd February) when its Future Pilots Programme opens for applications. This year the hopes are for more women will apply to be British Airways pilot who will see their careers take off!
The pilot cadet training course opens up once a year and has proved extremely popular in recent years attracting around 4,500 applicants with less than 100 places available for prospective pilots.
British Airways has been campaigning to attract more women to apply. While the airline has more female pilots than any other UK airline, women are still under represented in the profession with reports of just five per cent of commercial pilots worldwide being female.
In a recent survey British Airways found that sixty-three per cent of women said they were put off a career as a professional airline pilot when they were growing up for reasons including a lack of visible role models and being told it was a man’s job.
The British Airways Future Pilot Programme is an 18-month pilot training course open to anyone aged 18 to 55, with no prior flying experience required.
The airline expects to have approaching 4,000 pilots this year, more than it has ever had before and is looking for around 100 new cadets.
British Airways senior first officer Helen MacNamara, who is a mentor for pilot cadets, said:
“I absolutely love this job and cannot recommend it highly enough to anyone – male and female. The variety of people you work with and places you go to make it such a dynamic career.
“It’s important that we raise the profile of the career so that girls can be inspired to become pilots.
“We’re looking for people, regardless of gender, with the right technical ability but also great communication and customers service skills.”
The British Airways Future Pilot Programme helps applicants to gain a place at an approved flight training school, with successful trainees landing a job as a British Airways pilot. The programme helps students to secure funding to train as a pilot which they can pay back later in their career.
The top-flight cadets will start their training, at one of three British Airways approved flight training schools in Oxford, Southampton and Jerez in Spain. During their training, students complete their ground theory training, cockpit instrument rating and flight training, flying light aircraft in Spain, New Zealand or Arizona in the US.
BA have been upgrading their fleet with the latest airliners giving pilots the opportunity to get behind the controls of the largest and latest aircraft flying today including the A380 and B787 Dreamliner.
Applications to be a British Airways Pilot can be made through ba.com/careers from 23rd February 1015.