Tony, I would like to thank you for arranging the Ten Day Instrument Course. I had over the years, attempted to start my instrument training several times before, only to let it slip away as a thought in the back of my mind. Now having 20 years on the Nassau County Police Department and starting the Homeland Security Business after being at the 9-11 WTC site I decided it was time to complete my flight training. The course was scheduled to coincide with my vacation, so I could attempt to get what I thought was an unobtainable rating due to the mystifying nature of the instrument rating, work and things that always seemed to arise. I decided the only way to get my rating was to do it in the shortest amount of time, thus the choice to use AFIT seemed to be the only logical choice. You set me up with an instructor whom you thought would be best suited for my needs, Mark A.

Mark and I spoke several times on the phone prior to beginning the training, we hit it off well (found out he also has a Law Enforcement background). He believed that with the majority of my flight experience in helicopters (in an airline and in law enforcement) with a few hundred hours in airplanes that I would accomplish my goal in only 6 days! The course was adjusted to reflect a 6-day time frame, however I still blocked out 10 days for the rating! The next change in the course came about when I tried to schedule an aircraft here on Long Island, New York. Most FBOs would only rent me an aircraft if their instructors would train me, citing clauses in their insurance policies. Mark made the suggestion to train near him in the St.Louis area, where AFIT had an aircraft available at a very reasonable rate compared to New York prices. We then made all the necessary arrangements. I still thought that 6 days was a rather aggressive task, but by total immersing myself in the instrument course could only help me to achieve my goal.

I arrived in St.Louis on Monday, late in the day, Mark picked me up at my hotel and we immediately got started. The hardest part of the exam for me would be the oral, which Mark did a great job of de-mystifying any doubts that I had on our daily drives to and from the airport. Once airborne, Mark polished my strong points and keyed in on what needed the most attention to make those maneuvers shine also. To my amazement, my Sunday morning check-ride went off with out a hitch, successfully obtaining my instrument ticket. However, I still had 4 additional days booked, Mark then helped me to begin my Instrument Helicopter add-on training that same day, through contacts he had in the area. By Wednesday morning, I successfully passed my helicopter instrument add-on with the same check-pilot, just in time to catch my flight home that afternoon.

It was a pleasure doing business with AFIT and flying with Mark. The course proved to be valuable with Mark arranging things so I could completely concentrate on my training, which ended with the successful gaining of my instrument rating. If you have any potential students requiring information on your program, I would be happy to speak with them regarding my experience with AFIT on your behalf. Thanks again.