“I think learning how to fly is an experience in itself, and it can definitely open up many possible future career opportunities.”
Meghana Kumar: Flying a plane is a new hobby I’ve picked up over quarantine because of just honestly having an interest in the workings of planes and airports in general ever since I was little, and largely just having a lot of time over quarantine to really think about it while watching airliners land in San Francisco International one evening. It just really made me want to fly.
Currently, I’m working towards earning my private pilot’s license, which I believe requires a minimum [of] 40 hours of flight training and [a] pass on the written and checkride exams. Since I started this summer, I have about 15 hours and I can takeoff, maneuver, and land a plane; maybe not all so comfortably, but so far, the experience has been [both] terrifying and euphoric.
Despite having mild fear of heights, flying itself doesn’t scare me at all. What does scare me the most while flying is, strangely enough, talking to the air traffic control. In fact, sitting in the backseat of the car while my parents drive is way scarier. But nonetheless, there are times where you need to be level headed and make quick decisions [when] your life depends on it. After all, you can’t really pull over at the next cloud. Although I’m not currently interested in becoming a commercial pilot, I think learning how to fly is an experience in itself, and it can definitely open up many possible future career opportunities.