Date: 30 August 2017
"If there's one thing you can count on, it's that L3 Airline Academy know how to throw a party!"
Last year's graduation was a brilliant event with a grand total of 320 pilots graduating... even more impressive, 91% were already flying for airlines! With figures like that – and what we'd achieved between us – we had a lot to celebrate.
The day started with the opportunity to show our guests around the training facilities in Southampton, including the chance to take them for a quick spin in the simulator. My mum gets nervous when she's a passenger in my car, so imagine what she was like sitting next to me in the flight deck of an Airbus. Fortunately a smooth landing followed...phew! After introducing my parents to all the trainers and staff who had guided my through the last two-ish years of training, we then got on a coach to Dibden Manor for the main ceremony.
With 320 graduates a lot of clapping followed while awards for 'Pilot of the Year' and so on were distributed. We then heard from special guest Craig Kreeger, CEO of Virgin Atlantic, and Rob Clarke CEO of L3 Airline Academy.
The variety of Airline Pilot uniforms amongst graduates was incredible with easyJet, FlyBe, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Qatar Airways and more all represented.
After the ceremony we posed for numerous photos before returning to our hotels and ditching our epaulets for tuxedos... party time! After some brilliant food the live band began and we sang, danced and celebrated until the small hours. Unfortunately though I was in the simulator the following morning for an A320 type rating detail, so it was just orange juice for me.
Graduation is a brilliant occasion; here's hoping this blog post will secure me an invite to this year's party too? #HintHint!