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Chris

Second Officer

Airline Pilot Experience:

Second Officer

Most Recent Aircraft Type:

Airbus A350

Training Route:

Integrated ATPL

Aviation Specific Degree:

No

Languages:

English, French

Location:

Australia

Additional Experience/Qualifications:

Air Force Operations Mission Planner, Competency Based Training

Passions, Interests and Experience:

Wellbeing, Mentoring, Pilot Competencies, Transferable Skills, Stress Management, Peer Support, CV/Cover Letter Writing

Why did you want to become a pilot?

Being born in Switzerland but having extended family in Australia meant that we would travel across the globe at least twice a year. The most exciting part of each trip was always the flight. I would always ask to speak to the flight crew or to visit the flight deck when possible. My fascination for aviation came to fruition when I was offered a flying lesson as part of a high school program. From then on, I was hooked.

How did you fund your training?

My initial training was part of an Australian government loan program, which enabled me to obtain my CPL and MECIR. I was later selected for an integrated program and was trained by an airline.

Was training a breeze or did you find it a challenge?

Training was demanding as it required us to learn an extensive amount of knowledge in a short period of time. The theory is vast and might change over the years as new laws are passed, syllabi are amended and aircraft systems are enhanced. You need the right balance of study and ‘down time’ to achieve your highest potential.

What was most challenging?

During my airline integrated ATPL course, we were required to pass all ATPL subjects in a very short amount of time. The time pressure and wanting to excel was quite challenging at times but ultimately rewarding as it significantly enhanced my study techniques and my ability to work under pressure.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Operating an aircraft as advanced as the Airbus A350 was an enriching experience. While working as a second officer, I was able to learn the ins and outs of the airline industry from my fellow colleagues, SOs, JFOs, SFOs and TCs.

What is most challenging about your job?

Working in the airline industry made me recognise the great diversity of situations. The most challenging aspect as a young pilot is to prove your competencies through skill and knowledge. One should always strive for excellence and I am a strong believer that attitude will shape aptitude.

Which of the pilot competencies are of most interest to you and why?

Teamwork is an extremely important part of flight deck synergy and can more often than not impact performance of the individual or the crew as a whole. Good communication skills along with a wide set of knowledge and excellent situational awareness are paramount to success in the airline industry.

Why do you want to become a mentor for Resilient Pilot?

I was fortunate to integrate an airline soon after completing my flight training and did not initially have to go through the tedious task of building up thousands of hours. One of the most common methods to do so is by becoming a flight instructor which I would have enjoyed doing. Instructing combines both of my passions of aviation and teaching which I was able to do here with Resilient Pilot.

What do you believe you can offer your mentees?

When starting a career in aviation, a lot of pilots may be thrown into the deep end like I was, with very little to no guidelines on different options and pathways. The various aeronautical agencies and institutions can be overwhelmingly complicated and hard to navigate through. With my experience in the European EASA syllabus, Australian CASA syllabus and Hong-Kong HKCAD syllabus, I can offer help and advice on the process of converting licences from one agency to another, as well as give guidance on study tips and airline interview techniques.