Continuing success for Airways’ Hong Kong partnership
Airways New Zealand’s fourth Hong Kong air traffic control class has graduated at Airways’ Palmerston North training academy in New Zealand, after an intensive ab-initio programme.
The students, from Hong Kong International Airport and managed by Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department, have this month completed their studies and training with Airways in Palmerston North, after starting the programme in November last year.
Sharon Cooke, Airways’ Head of Training, said the partnership with Hong Kong is beneficial for both organisations, with the Hong Kong students particularly relishing the opportunity to train on Airways’ Total Control simulator.
“Total Control offers unparalleled realism and sophisticated, real-world simulation which ensures our students thrive in their studies,” says Ms Cooke. “The simulator provides students with a level of realism equivalent to the ATC environment they will eventually work in,” she says.
The graduating students had worked with the Hong Kong CAD as tower assistants for two years
before being sent to New Zealand for ATC training with Airways. During their studies, they also complete their Private Pilot’s Licence, in order to fully appreciate a pilot’s interaction with air traffic control.
“The drive and commitment of these students to their study was admirable, and they also thoroughly maximised their stay by taking every opportunity to experience our outstanding tourism opportunities,” Ms Cooke says.
“As employed students, this group enjoyed quite a different experience to our regular students.
Our team hosted them on a wide range of New Zealand activities, including bungee jumping, sky diving, trout fishing, and parachuting.”
Ab-initio student Nicki Kwong says she particularly appreciated the small class size and the one-on-one practical training in the Airways simulators.
“Our training at Airways was fast paced and challenging but we always felt well supported and looked after. It was great see how much we improved in such a short time and how every exercise increased my ability and confidence. I am now feeling well prepared for the final part of my training and I can’t wait to start working as an air traffic controller,” Nicky says.
The students will return to Hong Kong this month to finalise their training before beginning work as fully qualified air traffic controllers.