Hundreds apply for Jetstar Cadet Pilot Programme

Hundreds of budding aviators have applied for Jetstar’s Cadet Pilot Programme.

Jetstar’s programme is the only jet aircraft pilot cadetship offered in Australia. Candidates have until Sunday 4 December to apply, with 12 positions open for the March intake and 20 available across the following year.

Upon completion of the programme, cadets will become First Officers on Jetstar’s Airbus A320 aircraft, or Second Officers on Jetstar’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft.

The Australian airline has partnered with Swinburne University of Technology and CAE to facilitate the 18-month pilot training programme at the CAE Oxford Aviation Academy in Melbourne. Cadets will obtain an Associate Degree of Aviation as well as Private and Commercial Pilot Licences. The approximate total cost of the course is $145,276 AUD, applicants are able to apply for a Federal Government loan of up to $99,389 AUD, through the 2016 FEE Help system, designed to make the programme more accessible.

Jetstar Airways Chief Pilot Captain Georgina Sutton said successful candidates may have limited or no flying experience, but must meet Jetstar’s requirements for aptitude, quality and safety to enter the comprehensive training and development programme.

“Training to become a commercial pilot independently can be costly and take many years which can discourage many young people from pursuing it as a career,” Captain Sutton said. “We’re offering a unique pathway for young people to study with an internationally renowned pilot training organisation before starting their career flying with Jetstar. We’re looking for the best of the best from right across Australia, and we’re pleased that hundreds of ambitious young men and women have already applied for these highly sought-after positions.

“With Qantas expanding, we will see a number of pilots who were on secondment with us return to the flying kangaroo. This has freed up some First Officer positions which we are filling through a combination of experienced pilots and these cadets.”

Jetstar First Officer Samuel Chandra, a graduate of the cadet program, encouraged anyone who has dreamed of being a pilot as a career to apply. “I’d always wanted to be a pilot, so I jumped at the chance to be part the first cadet program Jetstar offered back in 2010,” Mr Chandra said.

“I was 19 years old and it was a lot of hard work, so I didn’t have a lot of spare time to do other things, but I went through with a great group who’ve become some of my really good friends. Since then I’ve flown on well over 1000 flights across Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia and I’ve never looked back. There really is no better way to accelerate your career as a commercial pilot. If you’re up for a challenge and you’ve been wanting to be a pilot, you won’t regret doing it.”

Swinburne University of Technology’s Chair of Aviation, Stephen Fankhauser said that this unique programme is an innovative and effective approach to training and tertiary educating the industry’s future flight crew.

“The cadet pilot programme will draw upon the high standard of professional training at CAE through its Melbourne Academy, the 23 years of experience that Swinburne has in delivering industry relevant aviation degree studies, and the expanding and exciting career opportunities that an organisation such as Jetstar can offer.”

Applications are open until Sunday 4 December. Candidates can apply through via the ‘Careers’ link.

Jetstar’s previous cadet program ran from 2010-2014, producing 168 qualified pilots flying for Jetstar. The airline currently employs around 700 pilots in Australia for its A320 and Boeing 787 operations.

Beyond the cadet programme, the airline has recruited 30 experienced pilots as First Officers in the last few months.