When we think of women in aviation, Amelia Earhart immediately comes to mind. In 1920, Amelia Earhart was hooked by her very first flight and, by 1928, she completed the first transcontinental flight by a woman. Like many women, Amelia pursued her passion for flying while having a working career as a social worker.
As March 2016 closes, in honor of Women’s History Month and International Women's Day, Northeastern Aviation Corp. would like to show its appreciation for the contribution of its women employees. There’s a rich legacy of women in the aviation industry and Northeastern is proud to contribute to the preservation and continuation of that legacy. Northeastern owes its continued excellence to the expertise of women who work diligently to ensure the safety and efficiency required of a private jet charter company. Whether ground-based or sky bound, their work is valued.
THE AVIATION INDUSTRY IS DIVERSE
Members of Women in Aviation International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the encouragement and advancement of women in all aviation career fields and interests, make up a diversity of professions and disciplines including astronauts, corporate pilots, maintenance technicians, air traffic controllers, business owners, educators, journalists, flight attendants, high school and university students, air show performers, airport managers and many others. Women in Aviation International, is 13,000 members strong and provides year-round resources to assist women in aviation and to encourage young women to consider aviation as a career.
According to data collected by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) over the last five decades, the largest growth in female pilots took place between 1960 and 1980. According to Women of Aviation Week , the number of women that held an “other-than-student” pilot license increased from 4,218 to 26,896, an 84% increase. The number of women with a for-hire pilot certificate went from 763 to 4,473, an 83% increase. When asked why she believes there was a significant increase in women pilots during that time frame, Carol Jones, Northeastern Aviation Charter Professional, conveyed that she “believes the 1960’s feminist movement and its messages had a lot to do with it, encouraging women to finally make an effort to come into their own and prove they can do whatever a man can do just as well, if not better.”
Carol Jones is a Private Jet Charter Professional at Northeastern Aviation Corp. who has worked in the aviation industry for almost 30 years. She got her start in the industry working for a law office as a paralegal, connecting to the aviation industry through a 3-year legal case that she was assigned to. The aviation case gave her tremendous insights into Long Island’s aviation industry and, based on her interest and proactive demeanor, she was hired by her aviation company client. Northeastern is the third charter company that Carol has worked for. She describes herself as a “nester – she will stay if she finds a career opportunity that she likes and people that she likes to work with.”
"Women must try to do things as men have tried. When they fail, their failure must be but a challenge to others." Amelia Earhart
Aviation is still a very male dominated industry. Woman of Aviation Week continues to report that, while the number of for-hire pilots continues to increase by about 3,000 each decade, the number of women with not-for-hire pilot certificates has remained nearly the same as in 1980. While we see an increase in career pilots, the number of women who ‘fly for the fun of it’ has remained unchanged. In total, women pilots still only represent about six percent (6%) of the pilot population.
However, as the membership of the Women in Aviation International organization demonstrates, the aviation industry is made up of a diversity of careers and interests. Based on statistics reported in 2013 by the FAA, women represented 23% of the total non-pilot careers vs. 2.6% in 1996; a 20% increase.
Traditionally, the main role society associated with women in aviation was that of the stewardess or flight attendant. That stereotype does not accurately represent the role of women in aviation today. Companies like Northeastern Aviation are supported by teams of men and women who maintain and manage the aircraft.
Professional, tenured women with tremendous knowledge of the aviation industry dominate at Northeastern Aviation Corp., with a significant presence in the private jet charter, flight, and accounting departments. Through their professionalism and expertise, many of these women have created and sustained the long-term client relationships that Northeastern Aviation prides itself on. As Carol Jones emphasized, “Aviation is an exciting and fascinating field, especially for women. You tackle something different and unique every single day!”
In the words of Amelia Earhart, "The most difficult thing is the decision to act. The rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life and the procedure. The process is its own reward." These compelling, motivational words should be an inspiration to all women in aviation and beyond.