Hillsboro Aero Academy (HAA), a U.S.-based provider of helicopter and airplane pilot career training, together with Austrian-based training organization RotorSky, has received approval to conduct professional airplane pilot training in accordance with European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) regulations. The school launched its successful joint FAA/EASA helicopter program in 2020; with the approval for airplane training, HAA is the only flight school in the U.S. with comprehensive EASA certification for both airplane and helicopter pilots. Hillsboro Aero Academy has already begun accepting applications for the new program.
With the EASA approval, HAA will now offer students the opportunity to earn both FAA and EASA professional pilot licenses and ratings in one location, under one program. Program graduates will be prepared to pursue airline pilot employment across the globe. Combined with the school’s F-1 visa status, the program enables European students to continue building the flight hours they need and gain valuable experience as Certified Flight Instructors (CFI) while residing in the U.S. for up to 23 months after program completion.
The new program will provide a more direct path for pilots seeking employment globally, with proper global license acceptance. By taking advantage of flight hours that apply to both certifications, the program can offer significant time and cost savings, in addition to typically lower flight hour costs in the U.S.
All flight training will take place at HAA’s Hillsboro, Oregon, campus. Students in the program will complete all ratings in HAA’s Professional Pilot Program (including the Certified Flight Instructor Instrument and Multi-Engine Instructor ratings), the EASA Commercial (CPL), EASA Multi-Engine Piston Instrument Rating (MEP IR), as well as full credit towards EASA Airline Transport Pilot (ATPL) Theory. A graduate from this program will be ready to fly commercially in the U.S. and will need only to complete the Multi-Crew Cooperation training (MCC) and the respective type-rating to fly line-service in Europe and all other EASA license-accepting countries worldwide.
As with HAA’s FAA/EASA helicopter program, the airplane program is made possible by a partnership between HAA and Austria-based RotorSky. Under the program, RotorSky holds the Approved Training Organization (ATO) designation, with HAA acting as an ATO operational site. RotorSky will also provide the EASA Theory coursework.