CFI Close-Ups: Flight Instructor Q&A with Kayla Dexter

We asked our flight instructor Kayla Dexter, CFI, CFII, about her experience and why she loves flying. Read more below!

Q: How did you get into flying?
A: I was introduced to flying when I was 17 by a family friend who owned an airplane. 

Q: When did you know you wanted to be a pilot?
A: I have known for the majority of my life that I wanted to be an astronaut. I have always had a desire to reach things beyond me and have always had a love for the sky. Being a pilot has been the first step in my career towards this. 

Q: What do you think is important when choosing a flight school?
A: Personally, I believe that the professional environment is the biggest factor when deciding on a flight school. Choose a school that will motivate you professionally and promote who you are training to become. 

Q: What do you like most about being an instructor?
A: During my time instructing, my proudest moments have been training students who know nothing about aviation and shaping them into professional pilots.

Q: What is your most memorable flying experience?
A: My most memorable flying experience was during a flight over the Smokey Mountains with my crew partner this Spring. Being at 9,000′ and watching the clouds cascade over the  mountains was a very beautiful sight. 

Q: What advice would you give students?
A: My advice to anyone training in aviation is to take one step at a time. The industry can seem extremely overwhelming when someone is first introduced to it. It may feel like you will never accomplish the things that you want to. Putting one foot in front of the other each day, you will look back and realize how far you have come in so little time. 

Q: What advice would you give individuals interested in instructing?
A: Future instructors, prepare to have good days and prepare to have bad days. Be humbled by your students and remember that you used to be where they are now. 

Q: What’s next for you?
A: I am currently pursuing my Bachelors Degree in Astrophysics while I instruct and build my flight time for my future astronaut career. 

Q: If you could fly anywhere, where would it be?
A: I would love to fly through the mountains in Europe or South America one day.

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