Saturday, August 25, 2018

Pooler, Georgia: Local group seeks to fill nationwide pilot shortage

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -  Military helicopter pilots and maintenance workers learned about future career possibilities on Saturday in Pooler.

Rotary to Airline Group hosted around 700 people at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum to connect them with airlines and flight schools. Attendees received resume tips and even interviewed on the spot for open positions. Two veterans now working for American Airlines say regional and major airlines are recognizing helicopter pilots as an untapped resource. The group wants those pilots hired.

"When the two people meet, when the airlines and helicopter pilots meet, they have no idea how well-suited they are for each other," said Erik Sabiston, president of the Rotary to Airline Group. "The airlines don't really expect that much compared to what we've been used to delivering to the military, and the military pilots are so excited cause, helo pilots, we never thought we'd have this opportunity. So there's a ton of enthusiasm for this."

CBS reported in July, regional airlines expect a shortage of more than 14,000 pilots by 2026. This group hopes helicopter pilots can help fill those jobs.

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