After 10 months of intensive training, the cadets are graduating with a Commercial Pilot Licence with Instrument Rating – Multi Engine Aeroplane issued by the Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
As APPA is accredited with the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam as well as Vietnam Airlines, the graduates will now be eligible for admission into Vietnam Airlines as airline pilots after their aircraft type endorsements.
The training at AAPA is the result of a partnership with VFT, a company of Vietnam Airlines, whereby the cadets first undergo theory training to an Airline Transport Pilot Licence level in Vietnam at VFT before coming to AAPA to undergo their flight training and complete all the CASA theory and flight tests.
AAPA Chairman Chris Hine said: This is a special time and AAPA is extremely proud and honoured to have been trusted to train future airline pilots for Vietnam Airlines, and this reaffirms AAPAs position as one of the best pilot training facilities in the world. The cadet pilots from Vietnam are a wonderful addition to AAPA, and it is rewarding to be part of the international aviation environment.
VFT CEO Captain Nguyen Nam Lien in turn said: This graduation is very special and is the culmination of many months of hard work by the graduating cadets. I know that these cadets have been trained to the highest standards and I express my appreciation for AAPAs professionalism and efforts.
This graduation is a significant first achievement for both organizations, AAPA and VFT, as it demonstrates that a high-quality, self-sponsored commercial pilot training scheme can work for aspiring Vietnamese cadets and it lays the foundation for a fruitful collaboration ahead.
It is a great honour to be celebrating what will be an unforgettable milestone in the life of seven Vietnamese young men. I can promise them from my personal experience that this is just the beginning of an exciting time ahead, Captain Lien added.
Since 2007 AAPA has enrolled 21 classes – approximately 200 cadets – under the Rex Pilot Cadet programme. Of these 158 are currently checked to line and flying as fully qualified First Officers on scheduled operations within the Rex group of companies and a total of 56 have progressed to become Captains.
Regional Express Airlines is Australia’s largest independent regional airline operating a fleet of more than 50 Saab 340 aircraft on some 1,500 weekly flights to 58 destinations throughout all states in Australia.
In addition to the regional airline Regional Express, the Rex Group comprises wholly owned subsidiaries Pel-Air Aviation (air freight and charter operator), Air Link (Dubbo-based regional airline) and the Australian Airline Pilot Academy.