Dragonair Aviation Certificate Programme is a unique educational initiative organised by the airline in conjunction with Hong Kong Air Cadet Corps (HKACC), and is an integral part of the Dragonair Youth Aviation Academy.
Aimed at nurturing future talents for the aviation industry, the Aviation Certificate Programme offers a series of extraordinary experiences through which participants are able to gain in-depth understanding of the world of aviation and further explore their interests in pursuing a career in the industry. Each participant is guided through a nine-month journey with a Dragonair pilot acting as their mentor. Programme members get the opportunity to attend lectures, training sessions, briefings and tours hosted by industry partners to help them develop a solid foundation of aviation knowledge and a deeper understanding of the workings of the industry.
Launched in September 2005 by co-founder and coordinator Captain Marcus De Santis, the Programme was initially open only to HK Air Cadet Corps members. From its eighth year in 2013, it underwent a major expansion to include applications from the general public and increased its intake from 16 to 24. The programme continues to get overwhelming responses with a lot of enthusiasm being generated from youngsters who seek a career in the Aviation industry. In order to let more youngsters benefit from the Programme, the programme intake increased to 33 participants starting from 2014.
The programme is now supported by twelve Aviation-related organizations. Among the 145 Programme Alumni who have graduated between 2006 and 2012, 40% of them have already embarked on a career in the Aviation industry, including working as air traffic controllers, aircraft engineers, ground handling operators and pilots for Dragonair as well as sister airline Cathay Pacific.