Printed on: September 03, 2013

Accelerated flight training offered

By NATE SUNDERLAND
nsunderland@postregister.com

REXBURG -- Aspiring pilots can earn a license in about two weeks through an intensive, accelerated training program starting in Rexburg.

California-based AFIT Accelerated Flight & Instrument Training is offering three training programs through flight instructor Todd Gilbert. The Rexburg native is a 26-year veteran aviator.

The primary training program is a 14-day course to earn a private pilot's license. The license certifies an individual to fly a single-engine plane with passengers. The license requires 40 hours of supervised and independent flight time, which the training program jams into a short period of time.

"A person can get a private license in just a few weeks here," Gilbert said. "We work you all day for eight hours for 14 days, instead of the couple hours a week you get with regular pilot's training."

Gilbert also is teaching a 10-day instrument rating course that certifies a pilot to fly in poor-visibility weather conditions. Additionally, pilots can train for a commercial license with a three- to seven-day course. The training certifies pilots to be paid to fly passengers.

Each course costs $595 per day, which pays for instructor fees, fuel and airplane maintenance. Trainees can fly their own airplane or use one provided through the program. The training aircraft is a Piper PA-38 Tomahawk.

The accelerated program is international and attracts people from around the world to American training sites, Gilbert said. He expects to serve one to two clients a month in Rexburg. AFIT also sends teachers to train individuals in areas not close to a training site.

Prospective pilots must be at least 17 and pass a written Federal Aviation Administration exam to enroll.

More information

For a course schedule or to register for an accelerated flight training program, visit www.afit-info.com. For information, contact flight instructor Todd Gilbert at (208) 270-4523 or trg56@yahoo.com.