Arik Air sends 40 Pilots to CAE for assessment. Arik Air, West and Central Africa's largest airline is sending 40 pilots to CAE training facility in London for simulator assessment to test their skills for eventual selection and employment.
The 40 students were picked from over 130 applications received earlier in the year. After screening, the list was pruned to 120 and the candidates called in for psychometric analysis and aptitude test which was conducted electronically. Out of the 120 that sat for the aptitude test, 58 were successful and were further subjected to oral interview to pick the final 40 that is going for the assessment at CAE, London.
According to Arik Air's Acting Senior Vice President, Operations/Deputy Managing Director, Captain Ado Sanusi, the successful pilots after the assessment at CAE will be sent for initial type rating on the airline's Boeing 737NG, CRJ900/1000 and Q400 fleet. It is expected that Arik Air will be committing over two million US dollars to the training of the pilots who are expected to swell the number of pilots on the payroll of the airline. Similarly, the airline will this month conduct another round of interview for Aircraft Engineers and the successful ones sent to Lufthansa Technik training facilities in Europe.
Captain Sanusi disclosed that Arik Air is committed to developing local capacity and this explains the huge investment in the training of Nigerian pilots. He elaborated: "Since the demise of Nigeria Airways, there has been no concerted effort to employ and train such a huge number of professionals. This is another Arik Air's contribution to the development of Nigeria's aviation industry. "We recently entered into an agreement with Cranfield University, UK for the training of our staff. Also, we have sent 12 of our pilots to Airbus facility in France for a full initial type-rating and 80% of these are Nigerians."
Three of the pilots who are going to CAE shared their experience:
Olamiti Adegbenro Oluwakayode: "I feel great. I waited for quite a while for this opportunity to come. I have always wanted to fly with Arik, so I'm happy and excited to go on this training. I expect to get more experience, learn more about flying and then become a better pilot. I also hope to be good enough to start working efficiently with Arik. Arik is doing quite a lot of good job and not many airlines in Nigeria can do this. Arik is very concerned about Nigerian pilots. They are ready to pay for the cost of our training. It's a very laudable gesture."
Abdulkarim Ummul-Khair Yahaya: "Arik is doing very well. Not many airlines can do this because they can't afford the expenses. Arik is the best so I expect nothing but the best from this training." For Iwhiwhu Emmanuel Okeloghene, though this opportunity came after a long wait, it is worth it. He said he expects to get more experience from the trip to CAE.