Hello! I am Mike Thielen, President of Glacier Aviation, Inc. I would like to tell
you a little bit about the aviation industry and what my company is doing to make
As you may know, the pilot shortage around the United States is very real, particularly in helicopters. Pilots trained for Vietnam and other conflicts are aging and retiring from aviation careers. Therefore, companies are having trouble finding pilots who have the training and skills they require. That’s where Glacier comes in. At Glacier, the unique flight training program not only teaches students how to fly, it gives them the training they need to find a job in the industry. From private to commercial, certified flight instructor (CFI) to instrument ratings, all pilots will get what they need from our top-notch instructors. Glacier also has an FAA examiner on staff to make check rides hassle free. We are an FAA Lasergrade written test center.
Since my instructors are experienced in all types of flying, it allows us to offer training for all types of flying. In addition to earning your licenses and ratings, you will learn how to perform some exciting real-life flying skills. At Glacier we give you practical flying experience. In order to provide such a wide range of training, a variety of aircraft are required. That is why the Glacier helicopter fleet includes the Robinson R22 and R44, Hughes 500, and Bell 206. The Glacier airplane fleet includes the Cessna 152 and 172/172RG, and the new Jabiru light sport aircraft.
Besides the different aircraft, Glacier also offers a variety of terrain and weather conditions due to its location. Western Washington is gifted with mountains, rivers, and forests. We don’t just simulate adverse conditions on the airport. Our instructors actually take their students to the local snowy areas, river beds, and logging roads, which are within minutes of the flight school. This allows our students to get the practical experience they need to be the most marketable in the industry. I have made it my goal to provide the best possible atmosphere for students as they learn how to fly. Our facility is comfortable and casual, yet professional. My staff and I encourage students and potential students to spend as much time as they need in our training areas. They are always free to use our lounge and study area or take practice tests on a computer at any time, free of charge.
Glacier is not a large “factory” school dependent on quantity. We are a mid-size school focused on quality. This allows me to get to know all of our students, not only on a professional level, but on a personal level too.
Another benefit of a smaller school is that I can personally provide job placement assistance to every new CFI who graduates from Glacier
with a motivated, professional attitude. With two convenient locations in Washington State, placing pilots in jobs within our own company
is very promising. In fact, most of our current pilots and instructors are former Glacier students.
Additionally, my unique flight training program offers some extra conveniences not normally seen at other schools. These include subsidized housing, courtesy transportation, and 100% financing available. We also assist students in finding part-time or full-time employment while attending our school, if they wish.
Please feel free to visit our “Contact Us” page or call any time to talk to me, an instructor, or even a student, to get a different perspective about what Glacier Aviation can do for you. I hope to see you flying soon!