Chasing Dreams Way Up High in the Sky
“What do you want to be when you grow up?”
This question was definitely asked to us by parents, teachers, or friends when we were still kids. Whether to be a doctor to heal the sick, a police officer to chase down criminals, or maybe a scientist to invent new things, we all have considered many professions that we looked forward of becoming. But most commonly, we end up taking a different field as we grow older by the year and see other potentials in ourselves.
But if you’d ask Justin Paul Velayo when he was young, he would have said he wants to be a pilot. And if you’re gonna ask him again today, he’s still gonna say he wants to be a pilot.
For him, his bursting passion of working in the aviation industry is still the same when he was a kid. But a high dream comes with a price and for Justin, it’s not that easy to reach for the sky.
“I cannot emphasize enough that this was the case for me, from something I aspire as a kid to having face the reality of not being able to put one’s heart and soul into it, is downright depressing,” the aspiring pilot shared.
It when he was in college days when he had realized to take the path he always dreamed of.
“I took BS Accountacy from University of Santo Tomas, at first I thought it was a great decision, until I finished my first year having 2 failing marks and 2 disappointed parents. Spending another year in accountancy, I was able to reflect if I will still push through with the program or transfer to an aviation related program.”
Justin started to build his dreams piece by piece when he transferred at PATTS College of Aeronautics to take up Bachelor of Science in Avionics Technology. It is then when his journey to become a pilot began. The next step he took was to expose himself further and expand his connections.
“I was specific in getting to know more about how the Philippine Airforce recruit their officers and train them to be pilots, with this in mind, I got into Airforce as an OJT for 205th Tactical Helicopter Wing. As I was learning how certain parts of a helicopter work, how to fix and replace electrical components, I felt happy. Happy to be engaged in what I was passionate about when I was a little boy.”
Love and passion drive Justin to be a pilot. Love brought him to the field of learning to be part of the aviation industry and passion is what keeps him in achieving this goal.
With the assistance and guidance of OMNI Aviation, Justin is in track of becoming a pilot. He claimed that the Academy possessed three vital strengths which are its proximity to Clark International Airport, healthy working environment, and its promotion of solo cross country flying. Solo flight is big deal for Justin as he considers it as his best experience yet in the Academy.
“The best experience that would top my list would be my first solo flight, my Flight Instructor Capt. Anthony Flores told me to request for a stop and go for I was to be released for my fist solo flight, as we’re rolling to make a stop and exit the runway, the right tire blew up and prohibited us to exit the runway causing other aircraft to divert or delay their approaches.”
“After the incident my instructor asked me if I was still okay and if I wanted to continue flying for my solo that day. I was more determined to get everything right, then after another round of touch and go and made sure that everything was in order, he released me for my first solo flight. That was one memorable life experience as a novice pilot.”
Truly, Justin never regrets training at the Academy and he treated his experiences as an investments for the future.
“The skills and knowledge that OMNI equipped me, the mentors that were patient enough to instruct me and the peers that I’ve met along the way, they are the reasons why I am happy where I am now, and continue to strive better.”
For those who are still holding on to their childhood dreams, Justin has a few words for them:
“Don’t lose sight on what you really want. Stay with the dream until it becomes a reality.”