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How to land your first flying job in business aviation

Citation jet sitting on the tarmac. Photography courtesy of Nicole Lund. Many pilots fresh out of their multi-engine commercial checkride have 300 hours and no job in sight. Networking plays a key role for low-time pilots getting a foot in the door. The following tips can help your chances of landing a job in business aviation. The sooner you practice these tips, the better the chances are of securing a job. Join your local NBAA chapter The National Business Aviation Association represents business aviation throughout the United States. There is a chapter in each region. Joining your local NBAA chapter will open doors to networking with others in the industry, scholarship opportunities, and mentorships. Attending chapter meetings can be informative and can plant the seed with a future employer. Attend aviation conferences The best conference to attend if you are in the market for a job in business aviation is the NBAA conference. The conference is hosted at the Las Vegas Convention Center each year. The keynote speakers, panelists, exhibitors, and forums are top-notch. Other conferences that will have business aviation exhibitors and seminars include the Women in Aviation (WAI), National Gay Pilots Association (NGPA), and Organization of Black Airline Pilots (OBAP) conferences. Many of these aviation organizations have an exclusive job board for members to easily locate and apply for corporate pilot positions. Business jets at the 2020 NGPA conference in Palm Springs. Photography courtesy of Nicole Lund. Apply for an internship with a flight department Many flight departments offer internships for undergraduate and graduate students. Internships are the best foot in the door for prospective employees. Oftentimes, job offers are given at the conclusion of an internship. In addition, interns are highly sought after due to their dedicated work ethic demonstrated by balancing work and school. Internships are also highly competitive, typically the brightest applicants receive the job. An internship in the aviation industry will stand out on a resume. Apply for a business aviation scholarship Receiving a scholarship from a business aviation company or organization is a great way to meet future employers. Several organizations that offer scholarships include NBAA, NBAA chapters, and Women in Corporate Aviation. The scholarship can assist the applicant in progressing in their flight training, adds to a resume, and can lead to relationships with important points of contact within the industry. Work at an FBO Working the desk or the line for a fixed-based operator (FBO) is a great way to get a foot in the door in business aviation. Whether you are fueling planes or welcoming pilots at the front desk, this is a great job for those working on their flight training. Working in an FBO has endless networking opportunities. It is a great way for future employers to attest to the work ethic of prospective employees. Networking never stops Whether you are a student pilot or actively looking for a flying position, make sure you have business cards. You never know where you will meet a good connection. It is essential always to carry a few business cards. Once you've networked with someone, connect with them on LinkedIn and shoot them an email. These are great ways to stay in contact and continue networking with others in the industry. Landing a job in business aviation largely depends on who you know. Business aviation is a tight-knit group. Getting involved in NBAA and in the local business aviation community will get your name out there. The best time to start making connections in business aviation is at the start of flight training.
Created 88 days ago
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