Flying solo marks milestone for Emirates academy

An Airbus A389-381 of Emirates Airlines comes in to land at Zurich Airport with the town of Dielsdorf, Switzerland in the background, March 18, 2019. (REUTERS)
Updated 21 July 2019

Flying solo marks milestone for Emirates academy

The big day had finally arrived, and Mohamed Al-Dosari spent the morning in eager anticipation of the moment he would make history. As soon as he strapped himself into the Cirrus, his trained mind took over. He finished the pre-flight checks, taxied, accelerated and took off into the clear blue skies, marking a milestone for regional aviation.
This was Al-Dosari’s first solo flight — a defining moment in his career. And importantly, it marked the start of solo flights by cadets at the Emirates Flight Training Academy (EFTA).
Al-Dosari, a UAE national, flew one of the academy’s 22 single-engine piston Cirrus SR22 G6 aircraft. He said: “My first solo flight was exhilarating and will remain etched in my memory forever — it was a dream come true.
“I overcame any initial nervousness with the full knowledge that I completely understood the aircraft, thanks to EFTA’s extensive on-ground training using advanced technology. My preparation was both in-depth and hands-on. We had focused on high safety standards and pre-flight checks, so on the day, I felt absolutely confident handling the aircraft.
“A big thank you to all my instructors — their experience and expertise has been invaluable.”


17 cadets at EFTA have flown nearly 270 solo flights so far, solidifying the academy’s credentials in regional aviation.

Since Al-Dosari’s first flight, 17 cadets at EFTA have flown nearly 270 solo flights so far, solidifying the academy’s credentials in regional aviation.
Cadets at EFTA benefit from the latest flight-training techniques, cutting-edge technology and a progressive curriculum, which help develop them into world-class pilots. They initially receive training on the Cirrus SR22 G6 single-engine piston aircraft and then progress to the very light jet aircraft Embraer Phenom 100EV.
Capt. Abdulla Al-Hammadi, vice president of EFTA, said: “Congratulations to Mohamed on his first-ever solo flight. It was a remarkable moment for everyone involved — both our hardworking cadets and our inspirational instructors.
EFTA’s strategy, commitment and investments are designed to make not just Emirates, but also the UAE and the region proud. Our cadets will graduate to become some of the finest pilots with long careers in the global aviation industry. We are building the aviation crew community of the future.”

New YouTube competition to support aspiring comedians

Updated 57 min 21 sec ago

New YouTube competition to support aspiring comedians

Comedy Jameel, a competition to support and inspire comedians in Saudi Arabia and beyond, was launched by Bab Rizq Jameel, an initiative of Community Jameel, in collaboration with Al-Comedy Club, and hosted by the Saudi content maker Turki Almohsen, on Community Jameel’s YouTube channel on Mondays at 9:00 p.m. KSA time, from July 6.

The YouTube show will include entertainment and interactive segments, during which selected videos will be broadcast for public voting, and the previous week’s winners announced. Applicants to the competition may register and upload their videos at the Comedy Jameel competition website, before midnight KSA time each Friday. Selected videos will be shown during the YouTube show and the audience may vote for their favorite videos online. The top three videos chosen by the audience are announced live on the show and awarded cash prizes of SR5,000 ($1,300) for first place, SR3,000 for second, and SR2,000 for third. A monthly grand prize of SR25,000 will be awarded for that month’s top-rated video.

Hassan Jameel, president of Community Jameel, Saudi Arabia, said: “Comedy Jameel will uncover a wide variety of comedy talents, bring them into the public spotlight and provide further job opportunities.”

The YouTube show’s host — Almohsen — is a celebrated Saudi artist, whose unique comic content on social media has attracted over 1 million followers to his own YouTube channel.

Al-Comedy Club, which is collaborating on the Comedy Jameel competition, is the first comedy club in Saudi Arabia, opening in Jeddah in 2012. Supported by the General Entertainment Authority of Saudi Arabia, the club was established and is managed by Yaser Bakr.

A key objective of the competition is to support the emergence of comic talent in the Arab world, and to provide opportunities for performance and mentorship for aspiring comedians. Providing opportunities for young men and women to achieve their dreams and achieve sustainable livelihoods is core to the mission of Bab Rizq Jameel, the flagship livelihoods initiative of Community Jameel.

The competition is open to beginners and amateur comedians of all nationalities, aged 12 years and above. The videos must be new, in Arabic, and must not include any material related to religion or politics, taboos, negative behaviors, or offenses to any person or party. The videos should also be of high quality and should not exceed one minute.