I’m an Air Traffic Controller and have been working at NATS for 25 years. Currently I split my time between the Operations Room, where I control aircraft, and the Development Department where I work on projects delivering new En-Route systems.
I kind of fell into the job and in fact before applying to NATS, I had no aviation background at all. I’d heard that NATS was a good Company to work for, so I looked into the opportunities there. I applied to train as an Air Traffic Controller and quickly caught the aviation bug!
To be completely honest, I didn’t really know this job existed until I came across it. I was teaching English in Japan for a few years, and then when I moved back to the UK I got involved with film directing. But I wanted a change of career, something that offered stability but was interesting […]
I’ve worked at NATS for 22 years now and have been an Air Traffic Controller for 19 of them! I trained for the first 3 years. I think in essence I’m still the same person that started all those years ago, and I still have the same passion for the job today as I did when I first “plugged in”.
I served in the Royal Air Force for around 7 years prior to joining NATS. Although Air Traffic Control was a career that I always wanted to get into, I assumed that I’d need to be super qualified, so I never explored it any further.
When I finally decided that I needed a new challenge in life, my attention drew back to ATC, and luckily by now the internet was readily available so I was able to carry-out some research. Realising the career was accessible I submitted my application and my first round of assessments were booked without hesitation.
Ever since I can remember I’ve been interested in aviation. I originally had plans to become a pilot, but after studying Aeronautical Engineering, I looked into Air Traffic Control and was instantly interested.
Following a study by the Institution of Engineering and Technology, which reports that only 9% of the UK’s engineering and technology workforce are women, we wanted to act. Last week we welcomed almost 60 teenage girls to NATS as part of our first Bring Your Daughter to Work Day.
As we set a course for the new year, we thought it was a good time to reflect on our most popular web content for 2016; it gives us the chance to look again not just at the blog, but also our popular Discover features and the Drone Assist app.
At NATS we employ hundreds of people in unique roles that support our air traffic controllers in managing aircraft flying in our skies safely and efficiently. From Analysts to Engineers and Project Managers to Technicians, our employees are passionate about their roles and the contributions they make to air traffic management.
To become an air traffic controller requires a specific set of skills and attitude, things that can’t necessarily be taught or learned. For every successful controller validated, many thousand wash out during the process. But as you may suspect, for those that have what it takes it’s rewarding in every sense.
Last night saw the final episode of Skies above Britain on BBC2. Keep up with the latest in air traffic control at NATS with our #dayinthelife on our Facebook Careers, Twitter and Instagram pages.