Gatineau, 9th August 2021 – Select Aviation College received, today at the Gatineau campus, Mr. Steven Mackinnon, Deputy of Gatineau and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement.
Mr. Mackinnon was greeted at approximately 11:00 a.m by Patrick Richardson, Director General of Select Aviation College. After introductions, the Deputy received his student card with the college colors and his pilot’s wings, an accessory that student pilots acquire when they obtain their first airplane license
The Deputy then met with a group of student pilots taking a meteorology course in the main classroom. The Deputy greeted the entire class and four students introduced themselves by name and country of origin. These included Rhodyssa Peque from the Philippines, Daniel Madrid from Colombia, Anthony Gauthier-Vachon from Canada and Amani Gaula from Tanzania. Mr. Mackinnon warmly welcomed the students and thanked them for choosing Canada to pursue their flight studies. The worldwide shortage of airline pilots has only been temporarily camouflaged by the COVID-19 pandemic, however the shortage remains a reality that the industry must address. The Deputy informed the students that programs exist to continue their careers in Canada after graduation.
After this brief discussion, the Deputy followed his instructor for the day, Chief Flight Instructor Maxime Delage-Damon, to the simulator for a flight session where he took the controls of the aircraft. He performed a flight exercise well known to student pilots, a circuit, used to practice take-offs and landings.
The Deputy then proceeded to the ramp outside the terminal building where he was able to view some of the aircraft in the Select Aviation College fleet, a collection of over thirty aircraft, including C-FYSA, the Piper Seminole 2020 on site for the occasion.
The visit concluded with an interview during which the media questioned the Deputy on various subjects such as the economic benefits expected by the installation of a flight school of our scale in the region. These benefits include a contribution of 12.5 million dollars per year to the local economy in addition to creating 50 jobs. A reminder was made of the investments planned to build the new College premises adjacent to the present terminal building in order to offer a state-of-the-art learning environment that will allow for 100 students per year, 50% of which will be local students.
Finally, when asked why Select Aviation College attracts so many international students, the Deputy replied that it is due to the college’s international reputation, its competitive prices as well as the quality of Canadian licenses in the aviation market that attracts so many international students here!