Just wanted to take a moment and say thanks to AFIT and John for helping me obtain my Instrument Rating, on the first try.

I acquired a new Skylane 182 in 2005 with the intent of obtaining my instrument rating so that I could be more efficient in the business use of the airplane. I would occasionally do a couple of hours of training and get motivated to finish, however, something always seemed to interrupt the process and with each new motivation came the reality of starting over again.

A pilot friend suggested that I go through an intensive 10 day session and get the process over with. That seemed fine to me, however, having to leave home and business for an extended period was not very appealing to me. I came across AFIT where you send the instructor to my location and decided to go for it.

I scheduled the 10 day course and chatted with John my instructor a couple of times along the way. When John and I met for the first time at the airport, he put me at ease and I became comfortable with him very quickly.

After our introductory session, we went on our first flight and did some approaches. My overwhelming thought on that first ride was that there was “no way” I was going to be able to do this. You can imagine my surprise when we discussed our first flight and John said, “you’re going to do just fine.”

Over the next few days, things started coming together and by the end of the first week, my attitude had gone from “I can’t do this” to “It will be hard but I can do it.” In the last few days, things really came together and my confidence level went up considerably.

When the check ride was scheduled, we met the examiner, did the oral and went to the airplane with much anticipation. Weather conditions were not ideal for the check ride but they were safe. After doing some maneuvers but before the execution of the first approach, the examiner commented that “someone has taught you well.” From there, with my confidence boosted, the check ride was one of the most pleasant flying experiences that I have ever had. I had complete control of the system and the approaches were “easy.” I knew I would pass the check ride during the ride and recognized that I was indeed well prepared.

Summarily, I would recommend AFIT and John without reservation. John and I became friends, he is a great teacher, an outstanding pilot and I never felt unsafe when I was with him. The training was very demanding but he always knew when to back off and he was always accommodating to my requests when I needed a bit of space. This is the “only” way I could have ever achieved my IFR rating and getting the ticket was certainly a “top 10” event for me. My ability to use the airplane and make life easier for my traveling experiences and business was well worth the time and investment. Thank you.