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Aero-TV At WAI 2008: How About That Pilot Shortage?

Aero-TV Network
Attendees and Friends of Women In Aviation Discuss the Pending Pilot Shortage As the 19th Annual International Women in Aviation (WAI) Conference drew to a close, all the statistics pointed to the organization's biggest Conference ever. Women in Aviation, International is a nonprofit 501(C)(3) organization dedicated to providing networking, education, mentoring and scholarship opportunities for women (and men) who are striving for challenging and fulfilling careers in the aviation and aerospace industries. "By all accounts, this has been one of the most exhilarating and successful conferences we've had," said WAI President Dr. Peggy Chabrian. Highpoints Attendance reached a new high with 3,320 women and men registered. More than 250 of the Conference-goers were from the military, also a new record. The Exhibit Hall was the biggest ever with 151 separate companies and organizations on display, representing all aspects of the aviation community Nearly $700,000 in scholarships was distributed to WAI members at every stage of life from university students to mature members seeking a mid-life career change to aviation. The WAI silent auction raised $28,000 for WAI's Endowment Fund, also a new record, bringing the total in the Endowment Fund to $563,000. The money in the Endowment Fund is used for scholarships. The 20th Annual International Women in Aviation Conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency in Atlanta, Georgia, from February 26-28, 2009. Great news, indeed... but all may not be well on the pilot front... especially with alarming studies suggesting that there is a serious pilot shortage on the horizon... one with the potential to impact the aviation and air travel world in dramatic ways. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that the airline industry may need as many as 17,000 new pilots every year... just to keep up with industry growth and attrition. And while IATA hopes that increasing the retirement age to 65 will help the shortage, it is but one ...

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