Evelyn Batista, DHL Express, Panama
A childhood dream come true - she knew she wanted to be a pilot form the time whe was 12 years old. And become a pilot she did. Now flying freighters for DHL Aviation in Panama, Evelyn Batista describes how her career took off and the happiness she feels when flying.
How did you come to fly for DHL?
I wanted to train as a pilot when I left school, but my family couldn’t afford to send me to flying school. My mother suggested I train as a flight dispatcher to get my foot in the aviation door. I took her advice and joined DHL Aero Expreso S.A. in 2001. I trained for my commercial pilot’s license while working night shifts as a dispatcher in 2004. In 2007, I was promoted to flight engineer, moving from a ground job to one in the air. And in 2010 I qualified as a First Officer, co-piloting a Boeing 757-200 freighter. My dream come true! She had wanted to be a pilot since she was 12. And become a pilot she did. Now flying freighters for DHL Aviation in Panama, First Officer Evelyn Batista describes how her career took off and the happiness she feels when flying.
What does your work schedule look like? And what does your family think about mommy flying planes?
I fly in the LATAM region, working three days on and three off. The schedule can change according to needs, but I’m never gone for more than ten days at a time. It’s not easy trying to fit it all in with family life. My husband is my best support. He takes care of our two sons when I’m working, and even goes to the playgroups with all the mommies (laughs). He knows I love flying and that it makes me happy. The kids know I fly airplanes and are used to me being away.
So what do you like best about your job? And what would you say to others wanting to follow your lead?
II love the thrill of pushing the throttles and picking up speed for take off. The feeling I get when the engines' power presses me into my seat. To anyone thinking of training as a pilot, I’d say do it! Once when flying from Miami to Costa Rica during the day, we had a visit from a group of girls. The expressions on their faces as they watched us handling the plane, and as they realized that this was a job they could do in the future, were really humbling. They reminded me of myself back then - a young girl with a big dream.