‘Being a pilot, it doesn’t matter if you’re female or male’

A Jersey student is one of seven women training to become a pilot in an air school’s first majority female cohort.

Caitlin Winter, 18, decided to pursue her dreams in the aviation industry after completing her A Levels at Beaulieu School this summer.

Only 5-6% of professional pilots in the UK are women, according to the British Women Pilots’ Association.

Caitlin thinks it comes down to a lack of information being offered to young girls about the industry.

“We didn’t really have many talks about engineering, or STEM subjects, so for me it felt like I can’t really do what I can’t see,” she said.

Despite both her grandfather and father holding pilot licenses, Caitlin admitted it was only after conducting her own research she was convinced she could take on the career.

“I thought actually, if they can do it, so can I. Being a pilot, it doesn’t matter if you’re female or male, if you have those skills and the ability to do it, then why not go for it.”

The 18-year-old is one of 13 students training at the Leading Edge Aviation School in Oxford.

She plans to join a commercial airline after completing her course in 18 month’s time, and hopes more female faces will encourage future women.

“We’re all quite young, which is really quite inspiring.

“I think raising awareness of it and speaking more about it and battling the stereotypes is a good way to get girls into it.”

BBC Jersey News

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