Flight Training - June 2020 - 51

LIKE EVERYONE ELSE IN MY CLASS, I STARTED OFF WITH
HIGH HOPES AND GREAT ENTHUSIASM FOR THIS NEW
CHAPTER. BUT ALL TOO QUICKLY, THE MOOD DECLINED.
in the day to attend class, then join
study groups and endure extra hours of
personal study time to memorize information and prepare for tests. I managed,
but was fighting exhaustion. I lacked the
energy of my simulator partner, 40 years
my junior.
While my younger classmates enjoyed
their free time, I was hitting the books
until I could no longer keep my eyes
open. I didn't dare fly home on weekends
because we were warned if we couldn't
make it back in time for class on Monday,
we would be dropped from the program. I
felt the stress of homesickness.
In the sim, I hit a wall. My most
recent flight time in 40-plus-year-old
flight school Cessna Skyhawks with
analog gauges was a disadvantage. My
24-year-old sim partner had glass cockpit, video game, and some sim time. He
excelled. With no sky pointer, flight director, and little glass experience, I did not.
I found flying the 75,000-pound CRJ-700
challenging. It would require time to get
up to speed. And time was not on my side.
I took my sim instructor aside and
admitted feeling overwhelmed. He said
what I was trying to accomplish, as a
mature learner with no previous jet time,
was extremely challenging with low odds
of success. From his experience with
older learners in the sim, he estimated
I had a 10 percent shot of passing the
checkride. He said he had no doubt I
could pass in time, but would require
extra instruction that would entail more
sim time than the airline would provide.
He was not discriminatory nor discouraging, just brutally honest after I asked
for his personal assessment. With his
encouragement, I stayed for a few more
sim sessions until it was clear I was too
far behind to catch up. After three months
with the airline, rather than set myself
up for a failed checkride, I decided to

head home voluntarily. I am glad I was
able to recognize my shortcomings. The
very next day two of my classmates who
thought they were excelling in the sim
were asked to resign.
Here's the take-away for mature
pilots with no jet time considering a
regional job:
Get plenty of glass cockpit time before
you apply. Be comfortable with the flight
director. Bring your super-sharp brain,
energy, and memory skills. You are training with pilots your children's age. You
cannot possibly match their energy, and
a lot is required to get through the long
days in training and on the line. I was
tired but pushed through. I did not enjoy
it. At times, it was downright painful.
That being said, I encourage you to
give it a shot. Go for it. Show up for
your life.
Hopefully my experience will help
you. And if things don't go according to
plan, the sun will still rise tomorrow. FT
MAYCAY BEELER is a 4,500-hour airline trans-

port pilot, longtime FAASTeam representative,
and founder of The Diva Flight Experience.
maycaybeeler.com

AN UPDATE

As fate would have it, after returning
to my flight school to resume my job
as chief (with my tail tucked between
my legs), I was surprised when a door
unexpectedly opened. An opportunity
appeared for me to fly jets as second in command for a locally based
charter/fractional ownership company.
Everything fell into place. And the really
neat thing: All that training on the CRJ
transferred over to my new bird. Nothing
is ever wasted. Things have a way of
working out. I am happy and at peace in
my new job.

AOPA.ORG/FT

51


https://finance.aopa.org/aviation-finance/first-time-buyers http://www.maycaybeeler.com http://www.AOPA.ORG/FT

Flight Training - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - June 2020

Contents
Flight Training - June 2020 - Intro
Flight Training - June 2020 - Cover1
Flight Training - June 2020 - Cover2
Flight Training - June 2020 - Contents
Flight Training - June 2020 - 2
Flight Training - June 2020 - 3
Flight Training - June 2020 - 4
Flight Training - June 2020 - 5
Flight Training - June 2020 - 6
Flight Training - June 2020 - 7
Flight Training - June 2020 - 8
Flight Training - June 2020 - 9
Flight Training - June 2020 - 10
Flight Training - June 2020 - 11
Flight Training - June 2020 - 12
Flight Training - June 2020 - 13
Flight Training - June 2020 - 14
Flight Training - June 2020 - 15
Flight Training - June 2020 - 16
Flight Training - June 2020 - 17
Flight Training - June 2020 - 18
Flight Training - June 2020 - 19
Flight Training - June 2020 - 20
Flight Training - June 2020 - 21
Flight Training - June 2020 - 22
Flight Training - June 2020 - 23
Flight Training - June 2020 - 24
Flight Training - June 2020 - 25
Flight Training - June 2020 - 26
Flight Training - June 2020 - 27
Flight Training - June 2020 - 28
Flight Training - June 2020 - 29
Flight Training - June 2020 - 30
Flight Training - June 2020 - 31
Flight Training - June 2020 - 32
Flight Training - June 2020 - 33
Flight Training - June 2020 - 34
Flight Training - June 2020 - 35
Flight Training - June 2020 - 36
Flight Training - June 2020 - 37
Flight Training - June 2020 - 38
Flight Training - June 2020 - 39
Flight Training - June 2020 - 40
Flight Training - June 2020 - 41
Flight Training - June 2020 - 42
Flight Training - June 2020 - 43
Flight Training - June 2020 - 44
Flight Training - June 2020 - 45
Flight Training - June 2020 - 46
Flight Training - June 2020 - 47
Flight Training - June 2020 - 48
Flight Training - June 2020 - 49
Flight Training - June 2020 - 50
Flight Training - June 2020 - 51
Flight Training - June 2020 - 52
Flight Training - June 2020 - 53
Flight Training - June 2020 - 54
Flight Training - June 2020 - 55
Flight Training - June 2020 - 56
Flight Training - June 2020 - Cover3
Flight Training - June 2020 - Cover4
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