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Do Aussie flight schools want mature age but newly qualified instructors

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Do Aussie flight schools want mature age but newly qualified instructors

Old 1st Nov 2016, 13:21
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Do Aussie flight schools want mature age but newly qualified instructors

Most Aussie newly qualified flying instructors appear to be young and on their way to the airlines. So my question is what are the prospects for say a 55 year old CPL (never an instructor) who is considering a late career change to become a newly qualified GA instructor?

Do flight schools appreciate their maturity, life experience, strong work ethic, customer service skills and longer term commitment to the school (ie not time building). Or are mature new instructors seen as long in the tooth, not pliable (ie not yielding to authority) and wrong image?

On the face of it, the financial return for becoming an instructor don't justify the cost of becoming a cat 3 instructor. Would a mature newly qualified instructor but high hours, multi and instrument expect to progress quickly to ME IR training and presumably higher pay?
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Old 2nd Nov 2016, 02:52
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All I can say, having recently experienced just such an instructor as you would be, is that if schools don't want instructors like you, then they're fools.

Just saying :-)
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Old 2nd Nov 2016, 03:36
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I would hope so.
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Old 2nd Nov 2016, 06:42
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Worked for me at a little younger than you - so yes.

From what I've seen, most schools are run by reasonably senior people who appreciate experience, work ethic, non-gen-Y attitudes, actual flying ability, and some I've-been-there-learning.

You might find a few places headed by low on experience, low on confidence, big on ego type - you'll recognise them - just stay away. Probably not who you want to work for anyway.

Look for a good instructor rating school, and aim for best standards for you and your students. You want to develop a good name out there. You really need to be grade 2 and a few extra instructing bits (multi, night, IFR, etc) before people will talk to you. So if you can arrange initial work (perhaps where you do the rating) to get past grade 3, there is work out there.

All the best.
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Old 2nd Nov 2016, 11:09
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One of the best flying hours on the plank were I unexpectedly found myself learning so much was with a 70 y/o Keith Hose in his DH82 (ok double plank). Being a grumpy ol' git also gains respect if you got the chops.
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Old 2nd Nov 2016, 14:42
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Grumpy ol' git LOL!
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Old 3rd Nov 2016, 04:11
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I did just that

I was about fifty when I started instructing and found that all ages and both genders warmed to me. in particular the men who had missed out when young because of military service or university. I had a great time. My motto was treat them how you would like them to treat you. Good luck.
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Old 3rd Nov 2016, 07:25
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Most Aussie newly qualified flying instructors appear to be young and on their way to the airlines. So my question is what are the prospects for say a 55 year old CPL (never an instructor) who is considering a late career change to become a newly qualified GA instructor?
Your prospects are good to very good. An important part of the interview will be the 'no dickheads' component.

Do flight schools appreciate their maturity, life experience, strong work ethic, customer service skills and longer term commitment to the school (ie not time building). Or are mature new instructors seen as long in the tooth, not pliable (ie not yielding to authority) and wrong image
Your maturity will be valued, life experience even more so, strong work ethic will be appreciated greatly and longer term commitment even more so. Looking long in the tooth will most certainly not be a handicap or the wrong image, there will be lessons for you to learn in this environment so not being able to take direction or advice would be an issue.

On the face of it, the financial return for becoming an instructor don't justify the cost of becoming a cat 3 instructor. Would a mature newly qualified instructor but high hours, multi and instrument expect to progress quickly to ME IR training and presumably higher pay?
Short answer, yes, you will
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Old 3rd Nov 2016, 11:40
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It would be nice to think so because you have much more aviation exposure.

I've recently seen some attrocious flying in my local circuit with instructors seemingly unable to cope with inbound aircraft, and total disregard for other circuit traffic. I have zero confidence in brand new CPL students then becoming instructors with zero industry exposure.
Is it irony to spell atrocious wrong? I can't tell.

I've also seen some 'attrocious' flying in the local circuit from highly experienced pilots new to instructing, unable to cope with an unfamiliar situationn

I know I'm busting your balls a bit, but this kind of statement;

"I have zero confidence in brand new CPL students then becoming instructors with zero industry exposure."

Grinds my gears.

Having industry experience doesn't make you a good instructor. Often, it can make you a terrible instructor. I've said this before but i'll repeat;

Experience is great, it has its place. No question. Otherwise experienced but new instructors were typically best when used in the capacity relating to that experience. 99% of them who came back into instructing had come from an airline style environment, operating IFR. So in IFR training, they were great. They could impart so much more than someone who had only ever instructed.

But nearly without exception, they were woeful at everything else. The first problem is attitude. You're experienced, you know you are. So you view those who don't have your experience with thinly veiled contempt, make comments like having no confidence in CPL instructors. Great start.

Next, the experience you have quite often is entirely irrelevant to what you're actually teaching. Its all well and good to have 5 figures operating IFR in a multi crew aircraft with sophisticated auto flight systems. But that has SFA to do with instructing someone a PFL or indeed most ab initio sequences.

Conversely, even the most junior instructor has only ever been operating this category of aircraft, doing just these sequences for hundreds of hours. ASPT, picking and using reference features, using those pedal things down the bottom of the cockpit that most of us never touch above 50 feet, visual navigation, time map ground, doing 1/60s and the list goes on.

In all these sequences they, not you are the experienced ones. They're the ones who have been knee deep in this stuff for the last few years. They may have been learning it at some early stage, true, but they're engrossed and familiar with it. Under direct supervision of senior instructors, they're more than capable of teaching the first ab initio sequences and as they gain experience, can be put into more advanced roles. You (2nd person plural) on the other hand, haven't been doing this stuff for the last few years, or even flying these types of aircraft. You're starting from 0. They at least have a running start.

So far I've only dealt with very junior instructors. The differences magnify when we look at experienced Grade 1's. The ability to impart knowledge is a learned skill. An experienced G1 sits in the right seat and 'sees' so much more than even an otherwise highly experienced but new instructor. They have in their arsenal a wide range of tools they can implement to identify and address difficulties the student is having. A student has played a lot of flight sim, but is now having difficulty maintaining straight and level. I know why, do you?

The ability of an instructor relates to their attitude. There are woeful instructors, and great ones. The only correlative factor I've ever witnessed is attitude. 737 time wasn't one.

To the OP of this thread, I quote GlenB. "The experienced guys are great, BUT you must come into it and conduct yourself like a Grade Three. Be prepared to be mentored, supervised, and advised. If you really wont be able to accept that. Don't do it".
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Old 4th Nov 2016, 01:57
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Look for a good instructor rating school,
How can you be certain it is a good school? That is the problem for anyone looking to find "good" schools.
And even if you judge the school on how many gold stripes the instructors wear on their shoulders, the size of their mobile phone (used to be the size of their wings and watch)and only go for the most expensive (or the least expensive), you are still totally reliant on the personality and skill of the instructor who is allotted to you; or who answers the telephone first and grabs you as his student. Best of luck on that one
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