Associate of Arts
If you have a love for adventure and desire a career that will take you places, Prairie College’s 2-year fully accredited Aviation Program could be your best decision!
Program at a Glance
What Makes This Program Different
Whether you are flying small charters through the Canadian Rockies, piloting airliners over North America, or flying for a mission organization through the plains of Africa, PATC’s flight training will help you excel as a mature, skilled, and competent commercial pilot.
Our desire is that students will not only become excellent pilots, but during their time at Prairie, grow in their knowledge and understanding of the Word of God. Flight training at Prairie College is conducted by a committed team of Christian instructors who care about the student’s well-being and are always available for support.
Our Students Say
As a licensed Commercial Pilot the world opens up to you with career options in both mission and commercial aviation.
Mission and humanitarian aid organizations continually seek to fill positions in countries where people experience desperate physical needs.
Current estimates indicate the pilot shortage across Canada is expected to increase through 2025, providing entry-level opportunities in regional airlines and smaller charter organizations.
International airlines are currently attracting many Canadian pilots to fill vacancies in their countries.
- Mission Aviation Pilot
- Charter Pilot
- Flight Instructor
- Cargo Pilot
- Agricultural Pilot
- Regional or Major Airline Pilot
PATC graduates operate in a wide variety of Canadian and International organizations including:
- Mission Aviation Fellowship
- Flying Mission
- AIM Air
- SEND International
- Mercy Air
- Fast Air
- Air Tindi
- Northern Air Charter
- Latitude Air Ambulance
- Moncton Flight College
- Calgary Flying Club
- Sunwest Aviation
- CanWest Air
- Discovery Air
- Canadian North
- Perimeter Aviation
- WestJet Airlines
PATC students are provided many unique training experiences not offered by many other flight schools. They will complete Flight Training Modules designed to fulfill Transport Canada requirements towards a Commercial Pilot License with multi-engine and instrument flight ratings.
We believe these specialized modules do more than generate pilots; they produce aviation professionals prepared for any career in aviation.
Dual Credit Opportunity
High school students enrolled in the Palliser Regional Schools division can take the AV100 Private Pilot Ground School course for both high school and Prairie College credit. Learn more by clicking here.
All courses are three credits unless shown otherwise.
Aviation students are required to achieve a 2.7 G.P.A in the programs non-technical courses.
The Aviation Diploma offered by Prairie College includes the following:
Bible & Theology (18 credits)
NT 112 Reading the Gospels & Acts
NT 221 Reading Paul’s Letters
OT 112 Reading the Torah
OT 221 Reading the Historical Books
ST 100 The Christian Life
TH 100 Introduction to Christian Theology
Arts & Sciences (15 credits)
HF 111 Thinking & Writing
SS 170 Christianity in the 21st Century World
IS 140 World Religions
SS 150 Interpersonal Communications
SC 160 Meteorology
Aviation (35 credits)
AV 100 Private Pilot Ground School (3 credits)
AV 123 Flight Practicum: Private Pilot License I (3 credits)
AV 124 Flight Practicum: Private Pilot License II (3 credits)
AV 130 Flight Practicum: Initial Time & Experience (2 credits)
AV 131 Flight Practicum: Type Conversion (2 credits)
AV 132 Flight Practicum: Complex Aircraft Conversion (1 credit)
AV 133 Flight Practicum: Mountain (1 credit)
AV 201 Instrument (IFR) Ground School (3 credits)
AV 207 Aircraft Systems for Pilots (3 credits)
AV 208 Commercial Pilot Ground School (3 credits)
AV 209 Intro to Cockpit Resource Management (1.5 credits)
AV 210 Introduction to Flight Line Operations (1.5 credits)
AV 230 Flight Practicum: Night (1 credit)
AV 237 Flight Practicum: Advanced Time & Experience (2 credits)
AV 231 Flight Practicum: CPL Flight Test Preparation (1 credit)
AV 234 Flight Practicum: Upset Recovery Training (.5 credits)
AV 235 Flight Practicum: Multi-Engine IFR (2 credits)
AV 236 Flight Practicum: Multi Engine (1.5 credits)
The following courses are an option following graduation and not a requirement for the Aviation Diploma:
*AV 312 Flight Instructor Ground School
*AV 333 Flight Practicum: Instructor
For course descriptions, see our catalogue here.
- Use effective and clear communication in a team environment, whether in a leadership or support role, in order to complete tasks.
- Demonstrate knowledge and application of operating procedures, aircraft systems and operating environment.
- Develop confidence and proficiency in flying skills for the purpose of attaining Transport Canada licensing and rating standards suited for a career in aviation.
- Possess mature character attributes that assist in prioritizing, delegating and receiving assistance to manage a task.
- Be able to identify aviation threats, assess risks, implement action and evaluate safe outcomes.
- In many aircraft types: basic trainers, tail-wheel and advanced single and multi-engine aircraft
- In different flying environments: broad prairies, mountains, grass runways, controlled airspace and border crossings into the US
- Tail-wheel aircraft (Citabrias) challenge pilots in their precision, coordination and overall control of aircraft through various flight exercises.
- Advanced aircraft, like the R182, introduce students to aircraft with retractable landing gear that fly faster, higher and further.
- Airplanes are meant to go places, so our students complete many “cross-country” flights around Alberta, British Columbia and Saskatchewan in order to gain flight experience away from the comforts of their home base. A unique part of this training is the “650” that takes 2 or 3 students and an instructor on a multi-day excursion far from our local airport. This often includes the experience of a US border-crossing and flying in American airspace, opening up the option of visiting Alaska, Arizona, California or even Florida.
- Most schools train students to operate primarily from paved runways. PATC grads will have gained exposure to the challenges of operating on grass airstrips, both in the prairies and in the Rocky Mountains.
- Our breath-taking Mountain Flying module equips pilots to operate safely in mountainous terrain where the environment and conditions can be very unforgiving. Students complete both dual and solo flights in the Canadian Rockies where they will strengthen their skills in navigation, decision making and aircraft handling as they fly through deep, narrow canyons, land on mountain airstrips and cross high altitude mountain ridges.
- Emergency Maneuvers Training is a truly unique component of PATC’s flight training. Training with a fully qualified instructor, students are introduced to aerobatics and given the opportunity to become comfortable with the uncomfortable while doing loops and rolls! This module is crafted to teach upset recovery skills.
Our diverse fleet of aircraft provides our students with an industry leading depth of experience:
- 3 Cessna 172M
- 2 American Champion Citabrias (7GCBC)
- 1 Cessna R182
- 1 Cessna 210L
- 1 Piper Seneca II (PA-34)
- 1 Redbird FMX Full-Motion Simulator
Not only do we have an average student instructor ratio of 4:1, but our unique relationship with mission organizations has allowed us to provide our students with an exceptional crew of experienced pilots who have worked all over the world.
Our 2021 Instructor team has a combined experience of 50,000 flight hours and over 120 years in the aviation industry in Canada, Africa, Asia and Asia-Pacific.
- Dallas Derksen – PATC Director
- Richard Marples – Chief Flight Instructor
- Bert Thomas – Director of Aircraft Maintenance
- Michael Fox – Flight Instructor & Examiner
- Rick Rempel – Flight Instructor
- April Schlieck – Flight Instructor
- Nate Marples – Flight Instructor
- Ethan Cymbaluk – Flight Instructor
- Tim Huebner – Aircraft Maintenance Engineer
- Colin Gilmore – Aircraft Maintenance Engineer
- Kathy Thomas – Maintenance Administrative Assistant
- Miriam Skelton – Finance Assistant
- Abigail Hysop – Administrative Assistant
Program Tuition and Fees
Program Specific Costs:
It is essential for students to have a full appreciation of both the over-all program cost and the time-line of when funding will be required.
Please carefully review the Cost Overview for financial information (effective July 1, 2021).
Provincial Student Financial Aid varies from province to province and is restricted to college courses and aviation training carried out towards the Commercial Pilot License and other advanced ratings. Please note financial aid programs do not fund training towards the Private Pilot License.
Director of Prairie Aviation Training Centre
I received my initial flight training at PATC in 2004-05. Since then I have spent time flying with Mission Aviation Fellowship throughout east Africa and Mongolia. While flying in and out of remote and challenging airstrips around the world, I used the skills that were learned and developed here at PATC to ensure safe and effective travel for those I was flying. It was exciting to see first hand how God used my training here at PATC for His glory while I flew overseas. Now that I am back at PATC I am excited to see the growth and maturity of our students as they progress through their Bible and flight training. It is always encouraging and exciting to hear back from our graduates about how God is using them after they leave PATC and work for Him in Canada and throughout the world.