General Aviation

Published on June 19th, 2017 | by Mark Dwyer


Turkish Airlines Cadets graduate at AFTA

Turkish Airlines is one of the largest airlines in the world and also one of biggest employers in the airline industry. The airline trains over 300 pilot cadets annually and has entrusted Cork Airport based Atlantic Flight Training Academy (AFTA), as the only international pilot school outside Turkey to train Turkish Airlines Cadets.

Last week marked a significant milestone for the first large class of Turkish Airlines pilot cadets who commenced their training at Cork Airport 17 months ago, as they celebrated their graduation from Atlantic Flight Training Academy.

Guest speaker at the ceremony, Cork’s Lord Mayor, Cllr. Des Cahill, congratulated the Turkish Airlines Cadets for achieving such high standards in their pilot training and also noted the contribution of AFTA cadet pilots to the local economy and for enriching the cultural diversity in the city. A number of senior Turkish Airlines management and senior pilots were also in attendance to congratulate the cadets on their fantastic achievement.

Addressing Turkish Airlines cadets at the graduation ceremony, Captain Ambrose Blaine, Senior Training Examiner, Turkish Airlines, said “I am delighted that your training has been completed on time, on budget and to such a high standard. You are lucky to have trained at AFTA, an aviation centre of excellence and a world renowned academy located at a world renowned airport which has given you an excellent start to your career with one of the world’s largest and most prestigious airlines ‘Turkish Airlines’. I am extremely impressed with your achievement and with the continuous support from AFTA during your stay in Ireland. You have a bright future ahead of you with Turkish Airlines and your achievement is something to be very proud of. Well done, we are looking forward to seeing you flying with Turkish Airlines over the coming months.”

Captain Blaine also presented the cadets with their course completion certificates, in the presence of the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr.Des Cahill, Mark Casey, AFTA CEO & Head of Training, Captain Philip Smythe, AFTA Safety Manager and Captain Kyle Johnston, AFTA Training and Compliance Manager.

AFTA has been training domestic and international cadets since 1995, with more recent contracts coming from Turkish Airlines, Air Astana, Kazakhstan and the Libyan Ministry of Transport. Norwegian Airlines recently recruited 24 cadet pilot graduates from Atlantic Flight Training Academy (AFTA) and these cadets will soon be flying Norwegian Airlines new Irish-transatlantic routes, on the airline’s new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft.

Equipped with a modern training fleet of training aircraft, including next generation Cessnas and Pipers, AFTA also boasts state-of-the-art B737 NG JET and Advanced FNPT II Twin engined flight simulators.

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About the Author

Mark is an airline pilot flying the Boeing 737 for a major European airline. In addition he is also a Type Rating Instructor, Type Rating Examiner and Base Training Captain on the B737. Outside of commercial flying Mark enjoys flying light aircraft from the smallest 3 Axis microlights up to heavier singles. He is also an instructor and EASA Examiner on single engines and a UK CAA Examiner. He flies the Chipmunk for the Irish Historic Flight Foundation (IHFF). Mark became the Chairman of the National Microlight Association of Ireland (NMAI) in 2013 and has overseen a massive growth in the organisation. In this role he has worked at local and national levels. In 2015, Mark won ‘Upcoming Aviation Professional Award’ at the Aviation Industry Awards sponsored by the IAA. Mark launched this website back in 2002 while always managing the website, he has also been Editor and Deputy Editor of FlyingInIreland Magazine from 2005 to 2015.

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