Published on March 19th, 2020 | by Mark Dwyer


Six West and AFTA Announce Student Competition Winners

Six West, provider of flight operations services to aircraft lessors, airlines and private aviation in collaboration with the Cork-based Atlantic Flight Training Academy (AFTA) are delighted to announce the winners of the Student Initiative Competition, launched in September 2019.

The competition, which was open to all students in Ireland from transition to sixth year, was designed to create awareness of Ireland’s thriving aviation industry and to encourage students to consider a career in the field.

The winners, Ben Christy from Mount St. Michael, Rosscarbery, Cork and Evan Banable from Sutton Park School, Dublin, impressed the judges with their video entries. Evan’s submission focussed on the return of supersonic flight whilst Ben’s proposed a method to reduce fuel consumption during taxiing. They have both been awarded a simulator training session on a Boeing 737/800 and a flying lesson courtesy of AFTA.

Claire McCarthy, Project Manager at Six West, comments, “The judging panel was deeply impressed by the quality of the submissions received and it’s encouraging to see so many students taking such a keen interest in aviation. Both of the winners presented innovative ideas which sparked debate amongst the judges and I am excited to see what the future has in store for these two young men.”

“At AFTA, we are happy to support initiatives that engage and encourage young people to consider a career in aviation. This Student Initiative Competition is an example of how different areas of the aviation business can collaborate to create awareness of the many career options aviation offers. The two winners, Ben and Evan, clearly have a bright future ahead of them in aviation and we are looking forward to having them join us here in AFTA for their simulator experience and introductory flights”, says Captain Mark J Casey, CEO and Head of Training AFTA.

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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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