When you earned your pilot’s certificate, your CFI probably said something like: “congratulations, you now have a license to learn.” And that is precisely what we do all the time at PFC.
At the most formal level, the club maintains a list of approved CFIs—instructors who are authorized to instruct our members in our aircraft. Most of our members arrive with just their private certificates, but many go on to earn their instrument ratings and beyond. There is also the ever present need to be “current” and “proficient”, and our CFIs offer members everything from refresher courses to BFRs and IPCs.
We also often have presentations at our monthly meetings. From time to time we invite aviation industry notables to give us a formal presentation on their area of expertise. In one such presentation, a well regarded CFI-I offered a presentation on how to think about missed instrument approaches. In another presentation, a petroleum chemist offered a fascinating presentation on engine corrosion, oil and oil additives. Often, one of our members would contribute a presentation on topics ranging from international operations to the correct operation of our avionics.
Recently PFC decided to start the Teterboro Chapter of the IMC Clubs. At each month’s meeting we discuss topics pertinent to instrument flying. Our members find this both engaging and interesting, even if they do not yet have their IFR rating.
We also offer training courses on everything from soft field operations, to the advanced use of our Garmin 430W GPS.
More informally, everyday is a learning opportunity at PFC. We have an active and lively e-mail discussion list where members discuss everything from flying techniques, information about particular airports, airplane upgrades, ask “how would you handle…?” questions, or just trade stories (or increasingly YouTube videos) about flying. We also meet once a month to share our experiences and knowledge.
And if you become involved in the work of maintaining the fleet or running the organization, you will quickly learn the ins-and-outs of aircraft ownership and operation.
Bottom-line, each member has access to the collective wisdom of our membership and alumni network. And believe us when we say that this is a deep well of knowledge and experience. Many of our members have been involved with both the club and aviation for many decades.