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CFI Close-Ups: Flight Instructor Q&A with Chris Clement

We asked our flight instructor Chris Clement, CFI, about his experience and why he loves flying. Read more below!

Q: How did you get into flying?
A: Luckily I was able to use my GI Bill. I used to work at Blue Sky next door, and was always watching the planes fly, so I decided to come talk to people at the airport about learning. Somebody told me about Sterling and here I am.

Q: When did you know you wanted to be a pilot?
A: I knew from a very early age I wanted to be a pilot! As soon as I was old enough to watch airplanes I just knew! Top Gun was definitely the movie that lit the fire.

Q: What do you think is important when choosing a flight school?
A: Instructors who care about the individual and seeing them improve, not just gaining their hours.

Q: What do you like most about being an instructor?
A: I love seeing the growth and development in my students. Watching their skills develop is not only a huge achievement for them, but for me as well!

Q: What is your most memorable flying experience?
A: It would have to be my first solo. There is no greater feeling than flying an airplane by yourself for the first time. The adrenaline is unmatched.

Q: What advice would you give students?
A: Study study study! For a lot of students the flying isn’t the hard part.

Q: What advice would you give individuals interested in instructing?
A: Shop around at schools and really research everything you can find out about each school. Also talk to current and past students when possible.

Q: What’s next for you?
A: My next goal is to start my CFII and finish my degree so that I can teach more students.

Q: If you could fly anywhere, where would it be?
A: It would have to be back home in north Arkansas in a seaplane so I could land on the lake next to my parents house. I’ve always wanted to take my parents flying, and what better way than in a seaplane!

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