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.
- 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.
- Kalvin Hildebrandt – 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
- Dallas Derksen – 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
- Janelle Atmore – 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 graduated from Prairie’s Mission Aviation Program in the mid- 90’s and appreciated so much how it prepared me for ministry. Over the 11 years I spent flying with Mission Aviation Fellowship in Northern Africa I often remembered the great lessons I learned while flying here in Three Hills. It’s a privilege now to be back at Prairie helping train the next generation of pilots for ministry. Whether they end up flying in remote parts of the world or here in Canada, it is PATC’s desire that students use their flying skills as an opportunity to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ wherever they go. Read More.