Professional Organizations for Flight Instructors

I’ve been a Mapfi member for quite a while. Its been a very useful way to get together with other flight instructors and discuss teaching methods, safety, regs, and numerous other pertinant topics.

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Next week, the meeting is on glass cockpits. Since a vast majority of my flight time occured in airplanes using vacuum tube radios, and pre 1969 instrument panels, it should be quite interesting. Back then, the radio’s had a huge power supply in back, which reduced ones useful load. In addition, it usually took a minute or two for the radios to warm up, such that one could communicate. I still remember the old manual ADF, that spun an antenna on the fuselage, and then you had a spinning knob and dial to select the frequency. The equipment of the 50’s and 60’s worked pretty well, but no where near as convenient as the 80’s solutions. Now it will be interesting to see what happens with the latest and greatest glass cockpit technology.

The other organization I belong to is NAFI. I originally was hesitant, as I felt there was some duplication. Well actually not, instead of in person meetings, they have a number of member benefits, and their monthly magazine is really well done with a number of discussions on education processes. When I signed up, I had an issue with billing, and on the day I called, I was fortunate enough to talk with the big guy, as everyone else had left for the day. That was pretty cool in and of itself.

One other thing that NAFI offers is the Master Instructor Designation Program. Its a pretty cool solution for continuing education and involvement. By the same token, its a ton of work as well, but it is something I plan to start working on next year.

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