How long have you worked for PSA? About 8 months.
How long have you been in the airline industry? Where did you work before PSA? I just started in the airline industry. PSA is my first airline position. Prior to that, I worked as an EMT for several companies, including Seals Ambulance in Indianapolis, Dublin Fire & Rescue in Dublin, IN, and Indiana Grand Racing & Casino in Shelbyville, IN.
What brought you to PSA? Several things. I’m a member of a Facebook page and one my fellow members was a dispatch coordinator here. She brought me in to observe the Operational Control Center and I pretty much made up my mind that this was where I wanted to work.
Give us a brief overview of what you do: I share joint operational control over flights with the Captain to ensure their safe and efficient completion. I determine flight routes, fuel needed, monitor the weather and advise the Captain of any changing conditions. I also have the ability to declare emergencies for Captains, if necessary.
What is one of the biggest challenges of your job? Oftentimes, time management, handling multiple diversions simultaneously or other problems while still dispatching aircraft when weather is bad, especially when you’re still learning your job.
Where’s your favorite place you have traveled? For me, it’s Hawaii, specifically the islands of Maui and Kauai.
What are some of your hobbies? Flying, I’m working on my instrument rating with a goal of getting my commercial pilot’s certificate. Also, reading, writing fiction and walking in the woods with my dog.
What do you love about working for PSA? The team environment. No one is ever really left to their own devices, we’re here to help each other. Working in the OCC, I get to be a part of the heart of the airline while working with the soul of the airline.
Would you recommend PSA and why? Yes, I would. I’ve found this is a great place to learn and to grow.
Tell us something about your role that most people don’t know? When things get busy, they get busy. When weather hits, we have our hands full and we’re handling many fires at once.
What has been the most rewarding part of your job? Knowing that I have helped crews get their passengers to where they are going safely.
Tell us something no one knows about you: I am working to build a non-profit organization for female pilots at all stages of flight training to develop flight scholarships. I want to see more women on the flight deck. Recently, I developed a calendar of female pilots doing what they do best, being pilots.
Evan Kerr is a junior at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a senior cadet in the PSA Cadet Program. He realized he wanted a career in aviation after he flew a Boeing Strearman for his 13th birthday. Learn more about Evan’s experience in the PSA Cadet Program:
Why did you decide to join PSA’s Cadet Program?
I decided to join PSA’s Cadet Program because of a former instructor who joined PSA. After contacting a pilot recruiter about the cadet program I realized the potential I had to grow within the program and become a part of the airline industry while still being in college.
In your opinion, what is the biggest benefit of having a Mentor?
The biggest benefit of having a mentor is having someone to reach out to when you have any bumps in the road throughout flight training or academic classes. Plus, they are always sharing information and cool facts about PSA and giving an inside look to what it will be like to be an airline pilot for PSA.
A general statement regarding your school, the Cadet program, or your Mentor?
Embry-Riddle now has the most students in the PSA Cadet Program and I am thrilled to be a part of it. With the PSA/American Airlines Group Cadet Club, our cadet program has been able to grow and positively impact students in the Cadet Program and even those who aren’t yet a part of it at Riddle.
Hector Sanchez is a PSA Captain and Cadet Mentor for ERAU. He has been a part of the cadet program for one year.
What are the best features of this program?
The best feature of the PSA Cadet Program is the opportunity for mentorship. The cadets have the chance to interact and learn firsthand experiences from PSA pilots, before becoming pilots themselves. PSA Leaders, instructors and pilots offer cadets support for their success at PSA and on their path to American Airlines.
What have you done, personally to ensure your Cadets are making the most of their involvement with the Cadet Program?
Just like in the flight deck, the most important thing is communication. I constantly communicate with my cadets either on a one-on-one basis or via group messages. I provide them the most up-to-date information not just about PSA but also the aviation industry. This is an evolving industry and communication is key to their success and growth. I also visit Embry- Riddle regularly and attend events where I can interact personally and share my stories.
Any statement you wish to include regarding your Cadets, the program or PSA?
My cadets are an outstanding group of individuals. They are determined and focused to better themselves by completing new certificates, becoming flight instructors, studying abroad and by giving back to their school and community. I am humble to be a part of my cadets’ life changing experiences and help them along the way. I know I will fly with them on day and can’t wait for that moment. These cadets are not only a great addition to the PSA family but to the future of our industry. They are our future chief pilots, instructors, captains, etc.
The PSA Leadership team, including managers, directors and vice presidents met earlier this week for the second Annual PSA Leadership Meeting.
With a focus on the well-being of our employees, leaders had the opportunity to begin the day with stress-relief activities including guided meditation and massage. The highlight of the morning was a special visit from therapy puppies represented by 4 Paws for Ability. The puppies are currently in training to be service dogs for children with disabilities and offered the team a chance to decompress before kicking off the agenda.
The team kicked off the meeting by celebrating successes of 2017, recognizing important milestones and accomplishments. The focus on the strategy for 2018 was a key component and President, Dion Flannery introduced a new vision statement for the company.
“Our vision statement will help guide us every day and will help us make decisions about what is most important,” said Flannery.
People and performance are at the heart of the 2018 strategy. As an organization, PSA will continue to develop leaders and build programs to promote a culture of safety and performance. Giving back to the communities, where we live and work, is another big part of the PSA culture. Our Leadership team took that to heart and participated in a bike build to benefit local children in need.
The meeting ended with an open question and answer forum with PSA’s entire Executive Leadership Team.
At a time of tremendous growth, the PSA leaders took time to focus on what is most important, which is celebrating successes and focusing on a strong future that’s centered on people and performance.
Title: Designated Employer Rep (DER) / Compliance Supervisor
How long have you worked for PSA? 1 year, 10 months & 15 days
How long have you been in the airline industry? 1 year, 10 months & 15 days
What brought you to PSA? I was looking for a position to expand my experience in Human Resources. I had never heard of PSA prior to getting an email about a recruiting opening. I did some research on the company and applied immediately. I knew this was a company I wanted to grow with.
Give us a brief overview of what you do: Oversee the HR Compliance Department, which includes Employee badging, company wide drug and alcohol screening, PRIA (Pilot Records Improvement Act) and DOT (Department of Transportation) files, and maintaining FAA audit records.
What is one of the biggest challenges of your job? With PSA’s rapid growth and ever-changing aspects of DOT regulations, some days are more challenging than other to keep up with it all.
How many roles have you had at PSA? Which is your favorite? Two. I started in Recruiting (Pilots, Flight Ops, & Maintenance). After about 10 months, I accepted the Compliance Supervisor position. Each position I’ve held at PSA has its own set of unique attributes that I value as I continue to grow professionally.
Where’s your favorite place you have traveled? My favorite place to go is to visit my family in San Francisco & Santa Cruz, CA. It had been over five years since I had been able to travel out there to see them.
What are some of your hobbies? Travel, Baking, The Arts.
What is your favorite thing to bake and what Arts in particular do you like? I bake cakes, cupcakes, and cake pops. I enjoy theater, concerts and art exhibits; and yes, sometimes my craftiness is exhibited by decorating our HR office/cubicle area.
What do you love about working for PSA? The growth. I love being a part of the potential for great things. The travel benefits don’t hurt either.
Would you recommend PSA and why? I always boast about how great PSA is to work for to anyone who will listen.
What did you do before coming to PSA? I have been in the Human Resources field since 2006. Before that, I was in Healthcare.
Tell us something about your role that most people don’t know: It’s more involved than people think.
Can you expand on how your role is more involved than people think? Some may believe that the Compliance Department just sends people for drug tests and maintains files. It’s much more than that. Most may not know that I, as the Designated Employer Representative (DER), am on call 24/7 and it’s an FAA requirement for me to answer the company phone whenever it rings. If our drug and alcohol and PRIA programs fail, we as a company would be riddled with fines of thousands of dollars or more, more frequent federal audits and potential company closure.
What has been the most rewarding part of your job? The accomplishments I have been able to achieve thus far within the position. Being able to see the evidence of the work I have put into this position in a short amount of time.
What is the biggest change you’ve seen in the nearly two years you’ve been here? By far the biggest change would be the growth. Not just the amount of employees we’ve acquired, but all the things that have helped PSA become a sizable regional from a small “mom & pop” airline. From IT/Network expansion and capabilities to SOPs and Org Charts.
Tell us something no one knows about you: I have two boys, ages 13 and 8. We frequently have dance and freestyle battles in our living room.