We had an AMA “Ask Me Anything” with Ryan Epps this Saturday in the ATC Education Group Workshop. Here’s the best questions and answers.
Ryan is a Commercial Pilot – Instrument Airplane, Airplane Single and Multiengine Land, Certified Flight Instructor — Airplane Single Engine and Instrument Airplane,
Ground Instructor — Basic, Advanced, Instrument, and a Remote Pilot — Small Unmanned Aerial System. For Infinite Flight he is the Airport Editing Manager, Chief Flight Instructor, Airport Surveyor,
Navigation Supervisor, and the Infinite Flight General Aviation Club Chief Flight Instructor.
What originally inspired your passion for aviation?
My family travels a lot, and on instance I got to sit right seat in a Caravan. That probably ignited the passion for something I already thought was cool.
What is your ultimate goal in the aviation industry?
I hope to fly wide bodies for a major. After touring a 777 and A350, I’m torn between the 2 of them. Shorter term, I hope to be at an airline within about 2 years.
How many years has it taken to acquire all of those real world licenses?
I got my most recent license about 24 months to the day after I started training for my private.
Which license was the hardest to obtain?
Initial CFI is the hardest for everyone to obtain, and I’m no different. CFII was actually the easiest one to obtain.
Is getting your CPL worth the time and money if you’re not planning to become a commercial pilot?
I wouldn’t specifically train for it, but if you’re at the time requirements, it’s not much extra to get the rating. If you do become a commercial pilot, then you have some more options and fewer restrictions.
What type of flight instructor work do you do with infinite flight?
Right now I’m trying to develop some programs to use with the upcoming C172. I’m thinking of doing some programs for private and instrument procedures and some competitions on the maneuvers and takeoffs/landings.
At what age did you get your first license?
I was 18 when I passed my private check ride.
Do you own any aircraft, if not are you looking into getting one in the future?
I would love to own an airplane, but do not currently. I’m a bit too picky to buy anything affordable.
What is the hardest part in obtaining all these licenses?
The hardest part with getting most of these certificates is having the determination to stick with it, even when it gets tough. Studying and being flexible with plans is crucial to succeeding.
How much time would you spend studying?
It really depends on what I’m studying for. Instructor is the least, since I already know everything I’m teaching. Jet procedures is the most, since it’s all new. That’s about 5-10 hours a week.
Will you chat a little about the airport editing work and some of the success you’ve seen develop.
Yeah. I have been part of the airport editing team for over 3 years (maybe more). There have been a lot of changes and milestones while I’ve been on the team and while I’ve been in charge of it. The biggest success we’ve reached has been the completion of all airports with A380 service. In the time that Moritz and I have been running the team, we’ve seen a really close group of people develop. Everyone’s determination to editing airports and helping new members has been great to see.
Our next AMA is with Julien Lim, a Real World Toronto Center Controller and Infinite Flight ATC Specialist. Learn together with the rest of our community by joining our Workshop, and get the chance to ask our guests questions during our AMAs.