Quarter 3 Highlight: A Father’s Aviation Background Set Beatriz’s Aviation Dreams into Motion
Phoenix East Aviation wants to congratulate all its pilots who completed their licenses or ratings in Quarter 3 of 2023. A lot of hard work and dedication is behind these achievements! PEA loves to share its pilots’ stories. Check out this month’s feature!
Imagine wanting to follow in your father’s footsteps of becoming a pilot, but didn’t know it was achievable as a female, until a random day in middle school when it clicked – females can be pilots! That’s what happened to Beatriz (Bea), a current Certified Flight Instructor at Phoenix East Aviation. PEA proudly represents a high percentage of female pilots. I wanted to dive a little deeper to see how her father’s career in aviation impacted her decision in selecting PEA as her flight school.
Give us a little background information about yourself, your family and their background in aviation, etc.
I’m Beatriz, I’m 26 years old. I have lived in 4 different countries, but I am originally from Brazil. I have completed all of my pilot training at Phoenix East Aviation. In the simplest terms, you can say that I grew up in an “aviation family”. My father is a pilot and my mom was a flight attendant. My husband, whom I met while completing my training at PEA, is the manager, an A&P with an IA in their maintenance department.
Did you always want to pursue a career in aviation?
Ever since I was a little girl, I have always been fascinated by airplanes. One of my favorite pastimes was watching the planes takeoff and land from my balcony. I would also go with and get my dad from the airport, and would ask to visit the tarmac. But at the time, I guess I never thought of it as a career for a girl. It wasn’t until middle school that I realized women could be pilots too and that’s when it clicked!
Your father is a pilot. What is the best way to describe his aviation career history?
My dad used to fly for an airline in Brazil. He has also been Chief of Training & Hiring, Pilot Support, Training and a Delivery Pilot at EMBRAER. It was during his time flying that he heard about Phoenix East Aviation Currently, he is a Corporate Captain.
You previously mentioned that he heard about Phoenix East Aviation. How did he hear about PEA? Why did you ultimately choose PEA to complete your flight training?
As Chief, it is important to always have high standards and expectations for the quality of pilots you train and hire. That was no different for my father as he flew with many pilots who came from different backgrounds. He flew with many pilots who had different levels of expertise.
My father would often share stories of his experiences while flying with different pilots, and one time he told me how he was impressed by a particular pilot and their skills and knowledge. He said that he began quizzing him on different scenarios, just to see how he would react and answer, and was blown away. My father said that he had to ask the pilot how long he has been flying and where he went to school. It turns out that this pilot shared with my father that he had recently finished his flight training at Phoenix East Aviation. My father was impressed by this Alumni’s skills and the knowledge he had. The alumnus spoke very highly of the quality of training and strong base he had received.
My father spoke of this experience many times, so when it was my time to choose a flight school, PEA became my top choice. My father was excited that I made this decision because he was confident that I would receive the same quality of training that he saw after flying with Alumni from PEA. Aside from the quality of training my father saw while flying with PEA alumni, there were other pros of PEA that appealed to me as a prospective student: PEA is an internationally recognized flight school with a heavy representation of the Brazilian and South American community and also has a very high percentage of female pilots and instructors. Those were the biggest captivating facts of PEA that made my decision easy to make.
Did your father give you career advice that has stuck with you throughout your career?
When I first started my flight training, my father told me that flying was not going to be the hard part, but that studying was and asked me if I was sure I wanted to study for the rest of my life. He told me I will have to always be prepared for changes in equipment, recurring training, regulations, workshops, etc. I told him as long as I still loved flying and got to fly often, I wouldn’t mind. He said that’s exactly how he always felt and that’s when he knew I was serious about it as a career and it wasn’t just a “dream” for me.
What were you most nervous about before you started your training?
I was the most nervous about ATC communication. Every pilot I spoke to, including my father, told me speaking on frequency was the hardest for them no matter how good their English was. I was fluent but it still made me a bit nervous. I found myself on liveatc.com for months prior to starting my training, and I feel like that helped because I didn’t really find myself struggling.
What is your most memorable moment of completing your training?
I have a couple memorable moments during my training and as an instructor. My first solo is my most memorable moment of my training because it was the first time I truly felt like a pilot. Also becoming a CFI was memorable because it was definitely the most challenging course and checkride. It felt so rewarding when I got it done. Then seeing my first student as an instructor, solo, was very special.
What licenses and ratings did you complete and currently hold at PEA?
I completed my Private, Instrument, Commercial and Instructor Ratings at Phoenix East Aviation. I am currently a CFI, CFII and an Instrument Ground Instructor.
What is your best advice for potential students?
Aviation is an amazing career if you absolutely love it and put the work into it! It can be very challenging, but never forget why you wanted to start flying in the first place. Stay 100% dedicated and humble. It is better to know that you will never know everything, but should always strive to learn more. That is the key!
Where are you in your career and what is your end goal?
My end goal is flying for the airlines. I would prefer one that flies to Brazil, so I get to see my friends and family more often!