Pilot Makers Advanced Flight Academy
Pilot Makers Advanced Flight Academy takes flight training to the next level. Our mission is to empower aviators across the Mountain West and beyond by providing unparalleled training opportunities. From private pilot to instrument, commercial, and certified flight instructor (CFI) ratings, as well as tailwheel, aerobatic, and upset recovery training (UPRT), we're here to guide you through every step of your aviation journey.
Founded in 2016 by aviation stalwart Barry Hancock, our academy was aptly named after the iconic T-6 Texan aircraft, renowned as the "Pilot Maker." This powerful aircraft played a pivotal role in training countless aviators, solidifying their skills and preparing them for the challenges of flight. In the same spirit, our academy aims to mold proficient pilots who are equipped with both advanced techniques and fundamental flying abilities, fostering safety and excellence.
In today's aviation landscape, the rise of Loss of Control In Flight (LOC-I) incidents is a stark reality. As aircraft technology advances, the unintended consequence is a growing dependence on advanced avionics. At Pilot Makers, we're on a mission to counter this trend, aiming to develop pilots who are not only skilled in handling modern aircraft but also equipped with the fundamental flying abilities that serve as a foundation for safe aviation.
From mastering tailwheel and aerobatic flying to navigating unusual attitude scenarios, our comprehensive training encompasses the entire flight envelope and ensures you're well-prepared for any flying challenge. Our academy equips you not only with technical expertise but also the confidence to handle unexpected situations.
Join us at Pilot Makers and embark on an aviation journey that redefines your limits, challenges the status quo, and builds safer, more proficient pilots who are ready to tackle the ever-evolving challenges of aviation."
To provide unique, full-spectrum flight training to build excellent pilots who are continually learning, possess a love of flight, and go on to impact aviation safety.
We aim to build polished, well-rounded aviators ready to fill a productive role in the aviation community. Beyond basic pilotage skills and the knowledge to operate an aircraft safely, we teach decision-making skills that allow our students to succeed in the demanding realm of aviation.
We teach beyond the test standards to higher proficiency, knowledge, and practical experience.
Our students leave our flight line and briefing rooms with a better understanding of their challenges, the humility to be ever-learning, and the confidence to face the unknown and unexpected.
Our instructor cadre shares and instills our passion for flight. With different experiences and diversity, we provide a breadth of instruction not found at other flight schools. We expect our instructors to be credible in their craft yet humble enough to remember they are still learning and searching for that perfect flight.
Additionally, our instructors are approachable to any level of the student, willing to take the time to share their experiences and help the student pilots grasp what they need to be successful in the air.
We promote instructor development through advanced courses and skills, incentivizing growth to enhance the quality of education across all levels of instruction. Furthermore, we award bonuses to instructors with a gold seal rating, aiming to maintain our school's position within an elite FAA category.
Our Training Approach
We aim to develop aviators with superior airmanship, not test takers and system managers. We fully invest in our students to help them achieve their highest level of competency in the aviation world. Beyond simple piloting skills, we create a training regimen that develops decision-making abilities and prepares students with a professional, seasoned approach to an aviation career or hobby.
We believe that even hobbies and passions require discipline, and our education philosophies reflect this thinking. Our syllabi offer flexibility, efficiency, and effectiveness with a baseline of professionalism and discipline. We emphasize the seriousness of what we do while promoting the joy of flight.
Our Facilities and Equipment
We have created a physical environment that instills learning through effective and efficient training. Hands-on training immerses our students in aviation from the start. Our unique fleet provides all that walk through Pilot Maker’s doors to experience different types of flying not offered anywhere else in Utah. Our approach to aircraft use is focused more on training opportunities than the bottom line. We use aircraft tailored to the specific training needs of our students. We maintain our aircraft in a way that ensures safe, reliable, and effective training flights.
The Pilot Maker Enviroment
We operate with this mission in mind: Combine slight business flexibility and disciplined mission-focused effectiveness. Pilot Makers is streamlined into an agile, flat organization where employees are empowered with decision-making authority and committed to making a difference. We need, expect, and allow each team member to be fully invested in our mission and our vision of aviation excellence. We consider anyone who walks in our door as a team member working toward this mission.
Collaboration inspires continuous improvement. Leadership at Pilot Maker’s encourages and exemplifies an "Open Door" policy. We are very interested in all team members' candid feedback, concerns, and ideas. We are a one-of-a-kind flight school and will remain in a class of our own by attracting the best pilots and students and keeping our eyes on the horizon of what could be. We invite you to join us.
What our clients are saying
I truly appreciated Barry’s approach to aerobatic training in the Pitts – he is knowledgeable, experienced, calm and confident. Flying was hands-on from my first takeoff, and as a pilot that learns best from his own mistakes, (as opposed to watching countless demos from the instructor) adapting his teaching method to my style helped me gain confidence and experience quickly. If you’re looking for some fun flying from initial tail wheel to advanced aerobatics, look no further than Pilot Makers flight school!
Dave Bernard, ATP 737, 747