Choosing BSc Aviation Management / Aviation Management with Pilot Studies
Hello Prospective DCU students, my name is Stephen Kennedy and I am a graduate of the BSc Aviation Management/ Aviation Pilot Studies Pilot Studies. Back in 2012, I too found myself in a similar situation in choosing a college course, a daunting but exciting time for you. The opportunities each course provided is vast and module names confusing so I understand that you may find this time a little bit overwhelming.
I am delighted to have the opportunity to share my experience in DCU and how it has led to exciting career opportunities for me.
Why did you choose Aviation Management in DCU?
I was very fortunate in having the knowledge of what I wanted to do when I left school in 2012, but I wasn’t exactly sure on the correct path to take in achieving this goal. Becoming a Commercial Pilot was always a dream of mine, but the cost of training at the time was unfortunately unaffordable and Ireland was also experiencing a deep recession with very few job prospects at the time.
Nonetheless, I knew I wanted to be in aviation and had a great interest in business, so I felt that the B.Sc. in Aviation Management was the right course choice for me. DCU also has a great reputation worldwide and as a result I felt that this degree would be recognised and lead to interesting job opportunities worldwide.
The degree course offers specific aviation modules that are appealing to future prospective employers, but it also offers non-specific aviation modules which gives you the flexibility to apply to roles outside of aviation also. The course also has the option to complete flight training in your final year.
After placing the course as my top choice, I was delighted to receive an offer from the CAO in 2012. However, I felt I needed a year out from studying so I decided to defer my college place for a year. Thankfully, I did defer as the college points rose and had I not deferred I would not have been eligible to join the course in 2013.
What was your favourite aspect of the course?
One of the most enjoyable and worthwhile aspects of the degree courses is the opportunity to carry out an internship with an aviation company in year 3 as part of the INTRA internship programme. This not only provides you with necessary aviation experience and exposure to aid with your studies, but it is also a nice CV addition for future prospective employers and gives you an advantage over other job applicants.
The INTRA programme in DCU allows you to gain valuable industry experience and to grow your network. Many of my classmates were successful in gaining employment through the INTRA programme either during their studies or after graduation.
What career opportunities have you had since graduation?
I was fortunate to gain full time employment during my internship with Stobart Air an Irish regional airline and held various additional roles with them in customer care, operations and supervisory roles after graduating from DCU.
I was delighted to be offered a position in 2018, on the Stobart Air mentored cadet programme, in Atlantic Flight Training Academy in Cork, and my lifelong ambition to qualify as a commercial pilot was fulfilled in March 2020 following an 18-month intensive training programme.
Unfortunately, my flight career is currently on hold now as a result of the Covid19 pandemic. However, I have been very fortunate to remain in the aviation industry as I have recently moved to Malta to work for VistaJet, a private jet operator in crew scheduling, with the responsibility of ensuring that Vista Jet’s growing global aircraft are fully rostered in line with current regulations and standards. I one day look forward to the opportunity to join VistaJet as a First Officer.
There is no doubt in my mind that my experience gained from my Aviation Management degree and flight training with AFTA greatly assisted in being selected for this role with VistaJet.
I would highly recommend this course for anyone considering a career in aviation both in and out of the flight deck. The course content is interesting, and you have lectures with industry professionals which gives you a broad understanding of the aviation industry and often real-life anecdotes to further bring the content to life. The course equipped me with skills and knowledge that helped propel my career opportunities within the industry.
I have made great memories in DCU. The college campus itself is vibrant and there is always a college event to go to. The class size is quite small in comparison to other degree courses, so it is very easy to make friends and have greater engagement during lectures. The course has led to many exciting career opportunities for my classmates and I, many of whom are still working for airlines or leasing companies today.
I have no hesitation in recommending this course, and I hope it brings you the same enjoyment and career opportunities as it has brought me.
Best of luck with your results.
Author: Stephen Kennedy, Crew Scheduler at VistaJet Malta