Pennsylvania-Based Company Teaches Introductory Aviation Courses to Future Pilots
The NAVAIR Training Systems Division has awarded a $68 million contract to Fidelity Technologies Corp. (Fidelity) of Reading, Pa. to provide classroom and simulation training to the next generation of Naval aviators and flight officers. The five-year contract is slated to begin on August 1.
As part of a comprehensive contract, Fidelity will be providing flight instructors for the Navy’s Chief of Naval Air Training (CNATRA). Headquartered in Corpus Christi, TX, training is coordinated through five training wings around the United States. The locations are: Naval Air Station (NAS) Meridian, MS; NAS Pensacola, FL; NAS Whiting Field, FL; NAS Corpus Christi and NAS Kingsville, TX.
J. David Gulati, president of Fidelity, said the company already provides flight training to the Navy’s Pacific Fleet through a separate, five-year contract. However, he noted, this new contract is the largest of its type in Fidelity’s 20-year history.
“The Naval Air Training command is committed to providing prospective aviators with the best training possible through simulation, integrated syllabi and modern technology,” Gulati said. “I am pleased that Fidelity can play an important role in this effort, providing experienced flight instructors to help produce the finest pilots in the world.”
Instructors with Fidelity’s Field Services Division will be working with trainees in the first phase of aviator schooling, in which they will be taught such basics as wing dynamics and how to approach a runway. The instructors will run the curriculum in classrooms and flight simulators.
Gulati noted that all Fidelity instructors have served in the military in active duty and have at least 1,000 hours of flying experience.
CNATRA trains approximately 1,000 pilots and 300 Naval flight officers each year. More than 100,000 Naval aviators have earned “wings of gold” since 1910. The pilot training program for college graduates takes about 18 months to complete and the Naval flight officer syllabus takes about 12 months.
All students undergo common primary training of 66 flight hours in Pensacola, FL, where they are screened for one of three specialty pipelines: helicopters, multi-engine (propellers) or strike warfare (jets). These highly-qualified pilots then move on to fly from land bases and sea platforms to perform missions around the globe.