Monday, 2 May 2011

Visa has arrived...

Finally all my paperwork is now where it matters with those in Waterford (PTC HQ).

On Thursday my passport was returned to me with a new addition. The middle page was affixed with a US M1 (student) visa. The turnaround time considering the bank holidays we have been surrounded by is quite impressive and being safe in the knowledge that I now have completed is a great relief.

The whole process started in February this year in Manchester. Below is a recap of the processes I've already been through having not yet left the country.

Assessment day

The assessment was run in Manchester and involved a number of group exercises, written exams and computerised tests. The latter focused mainly on exercising the required skills involved in becoming a pilot. These included hand-eye coordination, mental maths and multi-task problems. Quite fun actually! An interview later and you await your fate. The whole process takes the majority of the day and begins bright and early at 8am.

Flybe selection

Having completed the assessment day I was put into the 'pool' which I received frequent updates on the list being reduced more and more. I was then offered a mock-interview, again in Manchester, before finding out as to whether I receive a full interview with the airline. It was a fantastic experience to receive first hand not only experience of a full interview but also the feedback offered by three men in extremely credible positions to comment and coach. 

I then received an email offering an interview with Flybe. Having received my time and date I headed to Exeter before finding out the following week. 


A night in Dublin and a day of medical tests later I was back home awaiting confirmation that all had gone to plan. Three weeks later I received my Class 1 IAA medical.


To train in the USA a student visa is required. This, as previously documented, involved a trip to the capital which was possible to fit into one day. The visa arrived last week.

The above is only a snippet of what I've had to go through and for anyone reading this that is also thinking about going along the same/a similar route, time and dedication are paramount. Having said that - if those two aren't there then I guess you're looking at the wrong career path!

I now await this coming week further information on Florida including outbound flights.

Penultimately, although not a follower of the Royals it really was a day to be proud to be British. There are two 'Global Cities' in the world today. New York and London. Friday, for me, showed the difference between the two hubs. It was a day for London and the entire nation to show what kind of a show we can put on. And it seemed to go quite seamlessly! Maybe not that British after all!

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