Published on July 2nd, 2021 | by Mark Dwyer


BSc in Global Business & Pilot Studies with AFTA and MTU

Atlantic Flight Training Academy (AFTA) and Munster Technological University (MTU) have introduced a new Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Global Business and Pilot Studies. MTU President Professor Maggie Cusack joined Capt. Mark Casey in the AFTA Simulator Centre in Little Island, Cork to officially launch the programme, the first of its kind in Europe. The course will enable prospective pilots to gain an Honours degree as part of their flight training. This process allows students to commence flight training after just one year and be ready to seek employment within just three years, thus maximising the potential of graduates and providing the aviation industry with well-rounded, commercially aware, pilots. Applications for this new programme can be made at

Full details of the BSc course can be found at , along with details of the flight training aspect at

As part of a joint collaboration between AFTA and MTU, applicants will benefit from studying at one of Ireland’s leading universities before commencing an intensive commercial flight training programme at AFTA, one of Europe’s premier flight schools. The development of this unique programme is an important milestone in the training of new pilots for Europe’s aviation sector as it emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Capt. Mark Casey spoke of the need for a programme such as this for new pilots, saying “as Airline pilots advanced through their careers and moved to senior management positions within their respective airline, the individuals would invariably need to upskill through distance or part time learning in the additional aspects of business and management related disciplines. The MTU curriculum was carefully tailored to the areas identified through feedback from airline Industry leaders and the pilot body.”

AFTA were able to call on their industry partners for input throughout the construction of this degree, a network of Airlines, pilots and aviation professionals established during their 26 year history.

“AFTA is proud to partner with MTU for what can only be described as a Global Gold standard degree that will cater for and enhance the industry pilot entry standard. We are excited to work with MTU President Professor Cusack, Head of Department of Marketing and International Business Dr Pio Fenton and the faculty at MTU in providing new resources for the aviation sector. I look forward to seeing AFTA and MTU develop the industry leaders of the future”, said Capt. Casey.

This collaboration is the result of a successful partnership between MTU and AFTA. Dr Pio Fenton, Head of Department of Marketing and International Business at MTU said “here at MTU we are excited to be leading the way for HEIs in recognizing the significant effort involved in becoming a pilot.”

Developed with input from industry stakeholders, students will study areas of global business, marketing and communications before progressing to AFTA to commence flight training. The aviation sector is a dynamic industry and MTU believe that new pilots entering this sector can significantly benefit from having a degree along with their pilot’s licences to provide a greater awareness of the industry they will work in and to increase the options available to them as they progress through their careers.

Dr Fenton also highlighted the partnership between MTU and AFTA saying “we have enjoyed a successful partnership with AFTA for a number of years now and their considerable experience in flight training as one of Europe’s leading flight schools identified them as a perfect fit with MTU for this unique new offering.”

Speaking of the collaboration that has led to this new programme Professor Maggie Cusack, MTU President said “I am delighted to oversee the launch of this new programme which has the dual benefit of enabling prospective pilots to solidify their career prospects whilst also strengthening the links between MTU and the European aviation sector. MTU plays a central role in driving the development of a skilled workforce for many industries and this landmark offering for new pilots will see that role solidified for the aviation sector.” Professor Cusack also commended the efforts of MTU’s training partner AFTA in bringing this new programme to fruition, saying “the facilities and reputation of AFTA are industry leading, and MTU are proud to have collaborated with such an established and well-regarded partner.”

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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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