In the circles of business aviation, one topic that always comes up is the skills shortage. The fear is that fewer and fewer young adults are pursuing a career in aviation, meaning the industry is facing a critical shortage in the skills it needs to remain viable.
While others continue only to talk about this challenge, CEPA EXPO is taking action. The first CEPA EXPO Career Day brought nearly 120 future graduates and young aviation professionals from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and even Turkey and Brazil to Vaclav Havel Airport Prague where they had the unique opportunity to meet one-on-one with business aviation companies, learn about the diversity of job opportunities in bizav, and brush up on their job finding skills. Participating companies included: Air Navigation Services of the Czech Republic, Předvýběr.cz, Euro Jet, ABS Jets, Primus, Aero Vodochody, FlightSafety International and GE Aviation – among others.
“Students deserve to have a chance to get to know more about our industry,” says ABS Jets Director of Ground Operations Michael Pazourek. “We are here to show them the options and job opportunities they have.”
Throughout the course of the day, bizav owners introduced their companies and discussed the type of skills they were looking for. Many students noted their surprise at the diversity of job types found in business aviation. Instead of just pilots and engineers, there’s also a need for designers, mechanics, chefs and caterers.
“I had no idea that there were so many different job possibilities in business aviation,” says student Renata S. “It is really a broad, interesting and amazing industry.”
“I love aviation and want to become a pilot but also I want to have a family,” adds student Marek G. “I came to CEPA Expo to find out what else I could do in the aviation sector apart from being a pilot, and without having to be away for long periods of time. The speakers gave me a lot of ideas and showed me different paths I can follow; I am happy I am here today.”
Another university student was very happy that the CEPA Expo organised such a great event, noting that she was very pleased with the presentations and job-seeking services that were on offer. “After today, I would love to move to Prague and get a job immediately after I finish my studies,” she says.
HR professionals also provided a crash course on job seeking skills, including how to create a professional CV and cover letter, what courses one should study to become an ANS controller and tips and tricks to securing an internship or landing their first job in aviation.
In one session on how to become a pilot in business aviation, Pazourek emphasized the need to be flexible. “You have to be flexible and dedicated,” he explains. “In business aviation there is no fixed schedule.”