AVIATION: I am a 21year old lady. I stay around Pretoria. I would like to start a career in Aviation.
Here is an overview of all careers in aviation and which organizations offer apprenticeships and jobs.
This is a long email and we suggest you find a computer with internet (libraries offer free internet services) in order to read it more comfortably.
One of the ways you can increase the likelihood of getting an opportunity is to be sure about which job you want in aviation. Also do some research before applying. So we are offer you this list: Most of these require formal education so once you have chosen those you like, you can return to us for advice on studying.
A-Z OF CAREERS IN AVIATION
Aeronautical Engineer: He or she develops, designs and tests aircraft, missiles,
satellites and other systems.
Air Cargo Agent: It is this person’s job to supervise the cargo terminal, record air
freight shipments, and arrange for deliveries.
Air Cargo / Baggage Handler: He or she loads and unloads cargo and baggage,
drives baggage tractors, and operates conveyors, forklifts, and other air freight
Aircraft Assembler: He or she assembles, fits and installs pre-fabricated parts to
manufacture fixed wing or rotary wing aircraft or aircraft sub-assemblies. Aircraft
assembly inspectors inspect aircraft assemblies for adherence to engineering
specifications. They are employed by aircraft and aircraft sub-assembly
manufacturers. This may also include the manufacturing of all components on the
Aircraft Composite Structures Worker: With the advancement of technology in
modern aircraft materials such as graphite and Kevlar fibers, this trade has become
a very interesting and challenging trade. The Technician in this trade is responsible
for the maintenance, repair and manufacture of plastic, fiberglass and honeycomb
structure components such as flight controls (flaps, spoilers, elevators) nose
radomes and various other honeycomb construction components.
– Fiberglass skin repairs.
– Metal skin repairs.
– Rework of aircraft windows.
– Hot bond repairs.
Aircraft Electroplater: This trade entails the plating of a thin protective layer on
aircraft parts by means of electrochemical processes. Various metals are plated e.g.
chromium, nickel, silver, lead-tin, copper, cadmium. These metals are used as
protection against corrosion and to reconstruct worn parts to their original standards
and dimensions. They also use special processes for aluminum and magnesium to
treat against corrosion.
Training includes the following:
– Laboratory analysis as all electroplating solutions are prepared and tested in
our own facilities.
– Principles of electrochemistry and electricity.
– Surface treatment of different metals.
Aircraft Maintenance Engineers (AMEs): He or she diagnoses, adjusts, repairs,
replaces or overhauls aircraft engines and assemblies, such as hydraulic and
pneumatic systems, wings and fuselage, and functional components including
rigging, surface controls, and plumbing to ensure airworthiness. This career field
consists of the following:19
Aircraft Electrician: The satisfactory performance of any modern aircraft depends
to a very great degree on the continuing reliability of all electrical and systems. The
Aircraft Electrician must be able to diagnose faults on the electrical systems, to carry
out periodic inspections, maintain, repair and overhaul all electrical
components. The Aircraft Electrician is furthermore responsible for the repair and
installation of all electrical components, as well as the wiring of the aircraft, to
ensure proper power supply to all systems. Workshop Technicians in this trade
overhauls, repairs and tests electronic equipment such as generators, AC and DC
powers controls, temperature control and air conditioning units and various other
electrical / electronic components. Maintenance Technicians are responsible for
the maintenance, removal and replacement of components, testing and
troubleshooting of systems such as air conditioning, galleys, power generation
and distribution, aircraft lighting, wiring etc.
Aircraft Instrument Mechanic: The Aircraft Instrument Mechanic is actually an
electronic instrument mechanic. A person with a steady hand is required for repairs,
as they work with delicate and sensitive equipment. Measuring and testing
equipment are used for the tracing of circuits and the measuring of circuit values.
The Aircraft Instrument Mechanic is trained to repair, test and install navigational
and flying instruments, such as the automatic pilot and electronic compasses. The
formal training course includes principles of electricity, magnetic and
electromagnetic principles, the theory of aircraft instruments and electronics.
Workshop Technicians in this trade must have a fine eye – hand coordination and
are trained to overhaul and calibrate mechanical, analogue, digital and electronic
instruments. Data Computers and various electronic units are also tested and
repaired. Maintenance Technicians are responsible for the maintenance, removal
and replacement of components, testing and troubleshooting of various instrument
systems such as pilot static, sensors, quantity and flow indication, engine
Aircraft Radiotrician: This person’s responsibility is to carry out maintenance of all
communication equipment of the aircraft. To check, repair and test all radio
equipment, the aircraft radiotrician uses overhaul manuals as a guide to construct
all basic aircraft systems applicable to the trade. After repair and the necessary
tests, he is responsible for the installation of radio equipment on the aircraft.
In this trade the Technician in the workshop tests, repairs and overhauls
communication equipment, aircraft navigation equipment and electronic control
systems, as well as test instruments which are used in workshops.
Maintenance Technicians are responsible for the maintenance, removal and
replacement of components, testing and troubleshooting of various systems such
as communication, electronic control, radar, satellite communication, etc.
Aircraft Mechanic: Workshop Technicians in this trade is responsible for the
overhaul and repair of various aircraft components such as fuel control units,
pneumatic and hydraulic components, landing gear, wheels, brakes, pumps etc.
Maintenance Technicians tasks includes the repair, removal and replacement of
components, testing and troubleshooting of systems such as engine, air
conditioning, landing gear, flight controls, etc.19
Aircraft Painter: Technicians in this trade is responsible for the protective and
decorative finishing of the aircraft, its engines and components. Highly sophisticated
spray-painting equipment as well as high technology paints and resins are used.
Although spray-painting covers the largest facet of trade, sign writing and silk
screening printing forms an equally part of his trade.
– Mixing of colors
– Multi spray systems
– Aircraft paint application
– Stencils, transfers, pounces, etc.
Aircraft Structures Worker: The Aircraft Structures Worker is mainly responsible
for the maintenance, repair, overhaul, manufacturing and modification of the aircraft
structure and its components. This involves crimping and forming of metal sections,
testing and manufacturing of solid and flexible tubing, shot peening and treatment of
Equipment such as guillotines, bending machines, crimping machines, drilling
machines etc. is some of the equipment used in this trade. Training includes riveting,
bending, manufacturing and repairing. Aircraft Structures Workers are trained to
mark off, develop, manufacture and maintain airframes and engine components and
parts. The formal training course includes basic fitting and workshop practice; sheet
metal works, including the development, flex and repair of stressed skin; design and
manufacture of components and modifications as laid down from time to time. An
interest in technical drawing as well as metallurgy plays an important role.
Aircraft Trimmer: The comfort of passengers is as important as their safety and for
this reason the aircraft interior must be of the highest standard. This trade is
responsible for the manufacturing, maintenance and repair of interior components
such as fabric covered panels, carpets, curtains and seat covers. Survival equipment
such as slide rafts and life vests used on aircraft are regularly serviced and repaired
Training includes the following:
– Leather work practices
– Aircraft insulation blanket practices
– Sewing machine practices
– Maintenance of survival equipment
Aircraft Welder: This Technician is responsible for the repairing of aircraft
components. The following welding processes and advanced technologies are
applied: oxy-acetylene welding, arc welding, shielded metal-arc welding, gas metalarc welding, gas tungsten-arc welding, heat treatment of ferrous, non-ferrous and
special aircraft alloys, plasma and metal spraying processes.
During his training this Technician must obtain a certificate of competence, which will
allow him or her to weld on aircraft material. This certificate is issued by the
Commissioner for Civil Aviation (CAA). Training in this trade includes the welding of
aluminum, magnesium, stainless steel and titanium.
Airline Station Manager: The station manager is in charge of all ground and flight
operations for his/her airline. These responsibilities could include aircraft handling,
passenger services, air cargo operations, ticket sales, making public
announcements, checking baggage, or operating computer terminals depending
upon the size of the airline or airport.
Airport Planner: It is this person’s job to plan and design airport facilities. It is also
his or her role to create a master plan for the airport, noting the increasing demands
of passengers and the airline services.
Airport Manager: Airports need to be efficiently run by trained staff. Depending on
its size, managing an airport can be a most demanding job, involving many
disciplines. The duties of an Airport Manager involve the management and coordination of the complete Airport including, amongst others: Safety, Fire and
Rescue, Maintenance and Engineering, Customer Relations, Airside and Landside
Air Traffic Controller: An air traffic controller’s job includes tower control, which
handles all aircraft movements, take-offs and landings, while approach control
monitors approaching and departing traffic, en route control and information and
Aviation Law: This is a highly specialized aspect of the law, and is very much
internationally orientated. Very few people in South Africa have qualified in this field.
It is recommended that you contact universities for more information.
Aviation Medicine: This is a highly specialized field of medicine. A course in this
field is offered by the Institute for Aviation Medicine. Aviation physicians are
employed mainly by the SAAF and by some of the larger aviation companies.
However, a number of general practitioners also take the course, to be in a better
position to deal with patients transported by air, or to carry out the required medical
examinations for the issue and renewal of personnel licenses.
Aviation Safety Specialist: Safety is crucial to aviation, and this subject is part of all
aviation training, with emphasis on preventive measures, standardization and strict
discipline. Aviation safety specialists report incidents and accidents and ensure that
their causes are made widely known to all that could benefit by the knowledge.
Designs, construction and practices are reviewed constantly, and new findings and
techniques are incorporated.
Aviation Turner and Machinist: The Technician in this trade is responsible for the
modifications, repair and manufacture of aircraft parts. The manufacture of special
tools and jigs is also part of this trade. Equipment such as center lathes, milling
machines, grinders, horizontal and vertical boring machines are generally used. A
very high standard of accuracy is required and maintained.
Training in this trade
– Machining of screw heads
– Machining tapers
– Machining of gears on a milling machine
– Grinding of internal and external surfaces
Cabin Crew / Flight Attendant:
He or she checks passengers’ names and
destinations, enforces safety rules, serves food, oversees passengers’ comfort, and
directs evacuation procedures in the case of an emergency.19
The co-pilot assists the pilot in the operation of the flight controls, watches
the instruments and weather, handles radio communications, and keeps logs.
Electronics Mechanician: The Electronics Mechanician is required to repair and
maintain electronic as well as mechanical aspects of various equipment. This
equipment may be any of the following: CNC and NC machines; logic and microprocessors; PLC systems; AC and DC drives; synchro and servomechanisms; and
others. This is not a specific aerospace trade; Electronics Mechanicians are also
found in other industries.
Electro-mechanic: The electro-mechanic maintains teletype equipment, landing
lights, beacons, and stand-by generators.
Electronics Maintenance Technician: This person maintains navigational aids and
communication equipment, such as radar and radio beacons.
Fitter and Turner: The fitter and turner is trained to manufacture parts and aircraft
components. His/her training consists of fitting and machine work such as grinding,
milling, turning and shaping. Another important part of his training is the cutting of “V”
type and square threads. To be able to manufacture parts and components to very
small tolerances a high standard must be obtained.
Flight Dispatcher: The flight dispatcher works the with the pilot planning flight
requirements (fuel consumption, altitudes, traffic flow, weather, winds aloft)
authorizes take-offs or cancels flights, and advises pilots in the air on weather or
route changes. They frequently work under pressure in a noisy, busy atmosphere
surrounded by other airport workers, teletype machines, telephones, and intercom
systems. They use computers, calculators, weather charts, and loading reports,
sometimes also doing the job of a meteorologist or schedule coordinator. Experience
as a flight dispatcher could lead to promotions to air traffic controller or airport
manager. The job requires a college degree with a major in air transportation or
Flight Engineer: The flight engineer monitors the in-flight operation of the engines
and aircraft’s mechanical and electrical systems.
Flight Instructor: This pilot teaches student pilots how to fly. They demonstrate and
explain, on the ground and in the air, basic principles of flight, aerial navigation,
weather factors, and civil aviation regulations.
Flight Simulator Instructor: This person trains pilots and checks their skills, using a
Flight Line Mechanic: The airplane is prepared for test flight after final assembly by
the flight line mechanic
Ground Handling and Emergency Services: When on the ground, aircraft need to
be moved around, refueled, cleaned and so on. Also, emergency services such as
airport rescue and fire-fighting teams have to be available at all times to react to
emergencies. Paramedics and fire-fighters are employed by these services and
further information about them can be obtained from the Airports Company (ground 19
handling), and the aviation departments of the major oil companies (aircraft
Helicopter Pilot: These pilots can make flights to otherwise inaccessible areas.
Loadmaster: He or she supervises proper tie-down procedures of cargo and
calculates weight distribution of the load.
Meteorologist: He or she analyzes weather data and makes weather reports to the
pilot and dispatcher. He or she may also work with the flight dispatcher preparing
Navigator: The navigator plots the course, reports positions, and estimates arrival
Operations Agent: The operations agent oversees the loading and unloading of the
aircraft and checks the distribution of the aircraft load and fuel.
Radartrician: Radar systems are used in aircraft as well as on the ground. The
radartrician is responsible for this equipment in the aircraft. Repair manuals serve as
guidelines for the construction of all basic systems on and in the aircraft, and further
responsibilities are the routine maintenance, fault diagnoses and repair of radar
equipment. The formal training course includes principles of electricity, electronics,
digital techniques, radar transmitters, receivers microwave techniques and aerials.
Reservations Clerk: This clerk handles telephone inquiries about flight schedules
and fares and makes flight reservations for airline passengers. They usually work in
large central offices with access to telephones and computer terminals.
Ticket Agent: The ticket agent sells tickets, weighs and tags baggage, and answers
questions on schedules and fares.
Travel Agent: The travel agent promotes airline travel, calls on customers, and
arranges charter flights.
AIRPORTS COMPANY SOUTH AFRICA (ACSA)
Telephone: 011 723 1400
011 921 6242
Address: Airports Company South Africa
PO Box 75480
AIR TRAFFIC AND NAVIGATION SERVICES (ATNS)
Private Bag X 15
Website : www.atns.com
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORT (DOT)
Telephone: (012) 309-3848
(012) 309 3760
(012) 309 3194
(012) 309 3039
(012) 309 3285
Address: Private Bag X193
159 Cnr Struben and Bosman Streets
SOUTH AFRICAN AIR FORCE (SAAF)
Address: Department of Defence
Chief Directorate HR Management
Directorate HR Acquisition
Private Bag x281
SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS (SAA)
Telephone: 011 978 3353 / 2643
Address: Cadet Pilot Selections
Private Bag x13
O R Tambo International Airport
SAA Technical (Pty) Ltd
Manager (Human Resources)
Recruitment and Selection
Private Bag X12
OR TAMBO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
SAA CADET PILOT
Telephone: 011 978 3353 / 2643
Address: Cadet Pilot Selections
Private Bag x13
O R Tambo International Airport
SOUTH AFRICAN CIVIL AVIATION AUTHORITY (SACAA)
Telephone: 011 – 545-1000
Address: Private Bag x73
16 Treur Close, Waterfall Park
SOUTH AFRICAN POLICE SERVICES AIR WING
The Constitution of the Republic of South African, 1996 (Act 108 of 1996) lays down
that the South African Police Service has a responsibility to –
Telephone: 012 421 8277
012 421 8454
012 421 8435
Address: Career Management
Private Bag X241
Should you require more information on a career in aviation, you may direct your
Request or application for an apprenticeship to any of the following organizations:
Air Traffic & Navigation Services
Private Bag x15, Kempton Park, 1620.
Tel: 011 961 0100 / 0243
Airline Pilots’ Association of South Africa (ALPA-SA)
P O Box 796, Kempton Park, 1620.
Tel: 011 394 5310.
Airports Company South Africa
P O Box 75480, Gardenview, 2047.
Tel: 011 921 6723.
Association of Aviation Maintenance Organisations (AMOSA)
P O Box 7283, Halfway House, 1685.
Tel: 011 659 2345
Association of SA Travel Agents (ASATA)
P O Box 1234, Saxonwold, 2132.
Tel: 011 327 7803.
Aviation Training Academy
Tel: 011 570 0449
P O Box 7015, Bonaero Park, 1622.
Tel: 011 921 0111
P O Box 393,Welkom, 9460
Tel: 057 388 2351
Commercial Aviation Association of South Africa (CAASA)
P O Box 7283, Halfway House, 1685
Tel: 011 659 2345/8.
Denel Training Academy
P O Box 8322, Centurion, 0046
Tel: 012 671 2700
Department of Transport
Private Bag x193, Pretoria, 0001
Department of Justice
Private Bag x81, Pretoria, 0001.
Tel: 012 315 1111
Engineering Council for South Africa (ECSA)
Private Bag x691, BRUMA, 2026
Tel: 011 607 9500
Private Bag x85, Pretoria, 0001.
Tel: 012 334 4500
National Airways Corporation
P O Box 293, Lanseria, 1748
Tel: 011 267 5000
South African Airlink
PO Box 7529, Bonaero Park, 1622.
Tel: 011 961 1700.
South African Airways – Cadet Pilot Recruitment
Cadet Pilot Selection, Private Bag x13, OR Tambo International Airport, 1627
Tel: 011 978 1000 / 5571
South African Air Force (SAAF), Air Force Headquarters
SANDF Recruiting Centre, Private Bag x281, Pretoria, 0001,
Tel: 012 312 2148 / 2609 / 2801,
South African Civil Aviation Authority
Private Bag x73 Halfway house, 1685
Tel: 011 545 1000
South African Express Airways
PO Box 101, OR Tambo International Airport, 1627.
Tel: 011 978 5577.
South African Police Service
Tel: 012 421 8277 / 8454 / 8435
South African Society for Professional Engineers (SPE)
P O Box 78433, Sandton, 2146.
Tel: 011 783 0765
Safair (Pty) Ltd
PO Box 938, Kempton Park, 1620.
Tel: 011 928 0000.
South African Society for Aerospace and Environmental Medicine
Private Bag x08, Lyttelton, 0140.
Tel: 012 664 5954
Transport Education Training Authority (Aerospace Chamber)
2nd Floor, Sonsono Building, 344 Pretoria Avenue, Randburg,
Private Bag X10016, Randburg, 2125,
Tel: +27 11 781 1280 . Fax:+ 27 11 886 2502
University of Johannesburg – Transport Economics
Faculty of Management, C Ring 613,
Tel: 011 489 2464.