14-Day Private Pilot Training

Pursuing flying as a hobby has been a dream ever since I realized how accessible GA is in the States. I’d put in some hours towards obtaining my license 5 years back, but the skills erosion associated with trying to train on the weekends in Northeast weather along with demands from career and family made me put it on hold until I could figure out a more permanent solution.

When I decided to rededicate myself to getting my license, I decided to go for an accelerated program as I knew a full immersion in flying would be the most effective way for me to get the job done. I read various opinions on accelerated programs, and ultimately came to the conclusion that the demands of being willing to do the pre-work, as well as the personal attributes of being committed, driven and self-disciplined would be a very good fit for me personally.  Tony and the team at AFIT were super responsive and went out of the way to work out a schedule that would be a good mutual fit.

While I had read Andy’s reviews, the ease and professionalism blew me away right from our intro and the first flight. Andy is very adept at assessing which parts of your flying need work and focussing on them, and within just the first few days, I’d had more progress¬† and felt more comfortable managing the plane than I had in all my past months of training. Andy kept pointing out and sharpening my focus – right rudder! directional control! trim! – and within a week, I’d already completed my first solo flight.

Flying involves a lot more skills than just time in the plane, and our debriefings and discussions proved the wealth of wisdom Andy has accumulated over his decades in aviation. The easy accessibility of planes and hangars made usually dry textbook concepts like aircraft systems come to life and Andy made full use of all available resources when I said I wanted to understand something in more detail. He would just walk over to a plane with an open cowling and discuss the engine; he brought a spare magneto and showed how the magneto generates the sparks; we even replaced the wheels of the plane. For a newbie to aviation like me, this was all an amazing introduction to the nuts and bolts of how planes work and a much more easier way to grasp than just reading textbook descriptions. Likewise, with cross country planning, Andy would go to great depths to explain the particulars of airspace, terrain, route planning, and back all of these up with practical examples from his own experience to make these concepts stick.

Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention how patient, humorous, and personable Andy is. While the task of getting a license is genuinely work, Andy’s jovial company made the two weeks a highlight of my aviation journey so far. I’m sure I’m going to be back for my instrument and tailwheel very soon! As Andy’s fond of saying, I really love flying!

I cannot speak highly enough about Tony, AFIT, and Andy! I would highly recommend the course to anyone who fits the personal attributes above, and I would be more than happy to talk in more detail about anyone looking for any more details!

Amit Karan

New York, New York