Local High School Students Learn that GoJet has Endless Opportunities for Aspiring Aviators

Our Recruiting team is passionate about bringing new talent to GoJet, and has always relied on flight schools, university aviation programs, and technical schools to provide a consistent influx of skilled new hires.  However, one of Recruiting’s newest initiatives aims to expose a different group of young people to careers in aviation – high school students.

“Over the years, we’ve discovered that students’ career  trajectories are pretty set by the time they’re in their late teens to early twenties,” explains Recruiting Manager Doug Franciscus.  “We realized that we needed to plant the seed of aviation as a career path earlier than college.”  As part of this new initiative, GoJet recently hosted an Aerospace Engineering class from Liberty Academy in suburban St. Louis at our corporate headquarters.

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Aerospace Engineering students from Liberty Academy in suburban St. Louis tour our facilities

Students were given a behind the scenes look at airline operations and were exposed to a myriad of different aviation career opportunities right in their hometown.  During their visit, students stopped by our maintenance hangar for an up close look at our CRJ700 aircraft, and learned about all of the different departments that work together in our busy ops center.

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Liberty High School students get an up close look at our CRJ700 aircraft.

They also toured our state of the art cabin trainer, which allows our flight attendants to train for emergencies they may face in the air in a realistic, but safe setting.  The students even had the chance to observe a cabin smoke evacuation simulation, complete with fake smoke.

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The GoJet cabin trainer

The students had studied how airplanes operate during class, and came to the tour with plenty of questions, impressing pilot recruiter Captain Anthony Portalatin, who accompanied the students during their visit.  “They really researched our planes before they got here, and were asking the same aircraft component questions that I hear from pilots in ground school,” he remarked.  “That kind of proactive behavior is exactly what we’re looking for in future aviators.”

Wyatt and Brendan, two Liberty Academy seniors, both appreciated how the visit tied in to what they were learning in class, while also teaching them about other facets of aviation.

“Seeing the plane up close is a direct correlation to our course,” says Wyatt.  Currently a private pilot, Wyatt says that he wants to get into a professional pilot program, and eventually fly for an airline. For him, one of the highlights of the visit was the cabin smoke evacuation simulation. “That was both fun and a learning experience for me.”

After finishing high school, Brendan wants to either enter the Air Force Academy or the ROTC, and eventually become an Air Force pilot.  “I didn’t know how much effort really went into the logistics of running an airline,” he confesses. “In class, we’ve been focusing mainly on what goes into aircraft operations. It prepared me for seeing the plane and instruments up close, but seeing how the airline operates was very eye-opening to me.”

After the visit, Captain Portalatin said that he was struck by the impact that something as simple as a school field trip could have on a student’s future.  “Seeing a student’s eyes light up from such a hands-on experience is really meaningful. Especially when they realize that it could be a possible career path.”

We hope to see those students from Liberty Academy again – in our crew loungers, in our maintenance hangar, and at our corporate headquarters.  We have hundreds of different career opportunities waiting for them.

Pilot Recruiter James Douvier Explains What it Takes to be a GoJet Pilot

When Pilot Recruiter Captain James Douvier meets with pilot applicants, he’s looking for more than just technical know-how.  He’s looking for pilots with positive personalities who are going to come to GoJet and make a difference.

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Pilot Recruiter Captain James Douvier

Being a great aviator is certainly a requirement to become a GoJet pilot, but there’s more to it than that.  Crews spend a lot of time together, so having an outgoing and positive attitude is important.  James says that during the interview process, he asks himself, “Is this someone that I would want to fly a four-day trip with?”

When James interviews pilots, he’s also looking at what they’ve accomplished outside of the cockpit.  “We’re looking for pilots who are going to do more than just fly their shift, make their money, and go home,” James explains.  “We want to hire people who are going to be involved and engaged in the airline.  If you’ve been involved in your school, community, or at your previous airline, it’s a pretty good indication that you’re going to make a positive impact at GoJet.”

However, the interview process is also about pilot candidates making sure that GoJet is the right fit for them.  That’s why James sets aside a portion of each interview to answer any questions that applicants may have.  One of the most common things that pilot applicants want to know is what their life will be like when they become a GoJet pilot.

In addition to emphasizing the quality of life benefits that GoJet offers, including high pay, minimal reserve time, and fast Captain upgrades, James also tells candidates about GoJet’s unique, family-like culture.  For example, unlike “slam-clickers,” or pilots who stay in their hotel rooms after they finish a day of flying, GoJet crews frequently go out to dinner together or rent a car and sightsee during overnight trips.  “I have friends at other airlines, and the level of camaraderie that you see at GoJet is just different,” he remarks.  “All of our crews are interactive teams who just genuinely enjoy each other’s company.”

When asked if he had any advice for new GoJet pilots, James encouraged them to take advantage of every opportunity to get involved with the company, as it will benefit their careers down the road.  “Many of our pilots aspire to fly for mainline carriers one day, and all airlines, including mainlines, want to hire pilots who have made the effort to progress professionally as much as they can,” he stressed.  “Do as much as you can while you have the opportunity, and it will pay off for you later.”

Professional development opportunities that James suggests include:

  • Becoming a Check Airman
  • Getting involved in the union
  • Offering to be a committee chair, such as for hotels
  • Helping out with recruiting
  • Taking advantage of the Pilot Mentor Program – in addition to earning $5,000 for every pilot you mentor, you’re paying it forward by passing on your wisdom and experience to new pilots

Being a pilot recruiter means that James doesn’t get to fly the line as much as he’d like, but he loves what he does.  “I get to help make people’s dreams come true. Seeing someone’s face light up when they are offered a job as a GoJet First Officer, then seeing that person become a Captain, and then watching them move on to mainline, that’s just really special.”

There’s never been a better time to become a GoJet pilot.  Click here to get started.

Recruiting Offers Special Holiday Bonus to Pilots who Start Class in December

shutterstock_158474045Spread the word!  We’re offering a special holiday bonus to pilots who join us in December.  Not only will they receive an additional $1,000 bonus on top of any other signing bonus they may be eligible for, but they’re also guaranteed the week of December 21-25 off.  Not a bad way to start off a new job!

GoJet employees, remember that you can earn a $1,500 bonus for each new hire pilot you recommend that is hired and completes training.  Now is the perfect time to encourage any prospective pilot candidates you know to apply–they’ll get a bonus and you’ll get a bonus!

First Officer Chandra Steiner Featured in Pilot Recruiting Video

As part of a new campaign to highlight some of the amazing pilots who call GoJet home, Recruiting has launched a new video featuring RDU First Officer Chandra Steiner. Chandra is a University of North Dakota alum who made the move to commercial aviation after flight instructing, flying a private jet and working for an on-demand charter company.  She received a number of job offers from other airlines, but credits GoJet’s family-like atmosphere and small pilot group as reasons behind her decision to come here.

Everyone at GoJet has a unique story behind what brought them here, and we’re excited to share some of those stories with you!

GoJet Sponsors Aerosim Career Expo in New York City

Earlier this month, GoJet had the opportunity to sponsor the Aerosim “Be a Pilot Career Expo” at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City.  The museum is centered around the USS Intrepid, an aircraft carrier de-comissioned in the 1970s.  The event gave aspiring pilots the chance to learn about career opportunities in aviation against a backdrop rich with aviation history.

The agenda included an informational presentation on GoJet airlines, as well as a talk by Aerosim alum and GoJet Captain Eric Christensen, who spoke about his path from Cadet to Captain.  Given the industry’s current demand for pilots, Captain Christen told attendees that it’s a great time to be a pilot, and encouraged them to believe in themselves, embrace uncertainty and be fearless in their pursuits.

Those in attendance were also able to experience the NYC Fire Department’s, “Blessing of the Fleet,” which was took place at the same time. The Firefighter II boats gave a stunning water display to the crowd, complete with fountains of red, white and blue water spraying from their water guns.  The water display provided the perfect finishing touch to an already great event.

GoJet Participates in St. Louis Pilot Career Forum

Randy Bratcher

Last week the GoJet Recruiting and Flight Ops teams participated in a career forum sponsored by the Greater St. Louis Flight Instructors Association.  The event, entitled “From Student to Aviation Career,” gave Chief Pilot Randy Bratcher the chance to discuss pilot career opportunities at GoJet with prospective commercial aviators.  Click HERE to access the complete article regarding this event.