View of inside helicopter cockpit from behind two pilots with Anchorage below.

Individual Certificate Courses for New Pilots

Designed for the student who has little or no flight time and wishes to obtain a Private Pilot Certificate. This Certificate is similar to a driver’s license; it allows the pilot to fly for recreation with or without passengers and to share operating expenses with them, but prohibits the pilot from conducting flights for compensation or hire.

Admission Requirements

A student must be 17 years of age and be able to read, speak, write and understand English. Before solo flight, the student must hold a valid third-class medical certificate from a Federal Aviation Administration approved physician.

Length of Program

Our private pilot helicopter training program runs approximately three months for full time students. Lengths of programs are based on a four-day-a-week schedule.

Program Minimums

Varies per student based on frequency of flying.

Private Pilot Certificate / Part 61 Minimum

  • 40 hours total flight time, including:
    • 20 hours dual
    • 10 hours solo

Private Pilot Certificate / Part 141 AH Curriculum Minimum

  • 35 hours ground instruction
  • 35 hours total flight time, including:
    • 20 hours dual
    • 5 hours solo

Stage I: You will take your first flight with your instructor and be introduced to the basic aerodynamics of flight and the various components of the helicopter. We will familiarize you with how to conduct a preflight and basic approach and departure procedures. Appropriate radio communication with ATC will be covered as well in preparation of your first solo flight. When you have sufficiently demonstrated that you are capable of performing the basic flight maneuvers, you will review and take your first stage check exam.

Stage II: Now that we know you have the skills, you will take your first solo flight! After the excitement has faded a bit, you will move on to instruction regarding aviation weather and how to interact with it. The Aeronautical Information Manual and helicopter weight-and-balance will be introduced as well. Practice of basic maneuvers will continue so as to build confidence before moving on to advanced maneuvers and off-airport operating procedures. At that point, you will take your second stage check exam.

Stage III: In the final stage, you will plan and prepare for your first cross country flight followed by your first night flight. VFR charts and how to read them as well as FAA regulations will be introduced. Competent plotter utilization and radio navigation will also be demonstrated. When your instructor deems you ready, you will undertake the final stage check and practical exam to receive the Private Pilot Certificate.

This program is designed for the student seeking a career as a helicopter pilot. While not universally required, an instrument rating will be advantageous for safety and employment purposes. It facilitates the students’ ability to fly referring only to the instrument panel. Students will learn to fly via instruments in an R-44 designed with an instrument panel.

Admission Requirements:

A student must have a FAA Private Pilot Helicopter Certificate and hold at least a valid third-class medical certificate from a Federal Aviation Administration approved physician.

Length of Program

This program runs approximately three months for full time students. Lengths of programs are based on a four day a week schedule.

Program Minimums

Varies per student based on frequency of flying.

Instrument Rating / Part 61 Minimum

  • 50 hours XC PIC (Pilot in Command), including:
    • 10 hours in helicopter
  • 40 hours actual or simulated instrument training, including:
    • 15 hours dual instruction with Alyeska Helicopters

Stage I: In the first stage, you will gain a working knowledge of the function and use of the flight instrument components and systems. You will become familiar with various other types of instrument navigation and all documentation dealing with IFR flight including IFR and VFR charts. Emphasis will be placed on the student’s ability to control the aircraft in a smooth and precise manner while doing instrument maneuvers.

Stage II: Approach charts will be introduced as well as the skills needed to utilize alternative methods for approach maneuvers. Once you are comfortable with these maneuvers, you will be instructed on instrument emergency procedures. When the instructor is comfortable with your level of competency in these areas, you will complete the stage two check.

Stage III: Heavy emphasis will be placed on weather factors and hazards in relation to instrument flying. You will be shown how to utilize and comprehend various weather publications and review previous maneuvers. You will learn to recognize the factors related to effective decision making to plan a successful IFR flight. You will then plan and then conduct a cross country IFR flight. After which you will take the stage three check and practical exam to receive you Instrument Rating.

This program is designed for the student who has a Private Pilot Certificate with Rotorcraft Rating and wishes to obtain a Commercial Helicopter Pilot Certificate. A Commercial Pilot Certificate allows you to conduct commercial helicopter flights for compensation or hire. It is recommended that students take the Certified Flight Instructor Program in addition to this one. This is to maximize employment opportunities; most often a commercial helicopter pilot’s first job is as a flight instructor.

Admission Requirements

A student must have a FAA Private Pilot Helicopter Certificate and hold at least a valid third-class medical certificate from a Federal Aviation Administration approved physician. The student must be at least 18 years of age prior to the Commercial practical test. Ask the office if a Part 61 course would be a better option for you.

Length of Program

This program runs approximately six months for full time students. Lengths of programs are based on a four day a week schedule.

Program Minimums

Varies per student based on frequency of flying.

Commercial Pilot Certificate / Part 61 Minimum

  • 150 hours as a pilot, including:
    • 100 hours in a powered aircraft, of which 50 hours must be in a helicopter
  • 100 hours as PIC (Pilot in Command), including:
    • 35 hours in helicopter

Commercial Pilot Certificate / Part 141 AH Curriculum Minimum

  • 30 hours ground instruction
  • 115 hours total flight time, including:
    • 30 hours dual instruction
    • 10 hours PIC/Solo

Stage I: The subjects that were touched on during your Private course will be expanded upon. You will review airspaces and advanced helicopter operations. You will go over pinnacles and confined area operations and increase competency on maneuvers that were previously taught. Various commercial pilot elements will be introduced and you will need to demonstrate response capabilities in simulated emergencies.

Stage II: You will continue to work on instrument flight and fulfill all cross country requirements. At this stage, you will expand on your aviation weather knowledge. Running commercial operations and their individual characteristics will be emphasized and you will conduct your solo night flight with VFR requirements.

Stage III: There is no ground training for stage three. Throughout this whole program you will be building the PIC hours needed to attain this certificate. You will fine tune your helicopter piloting skills to commercial standards in order to complete the stage three check and practical exam.

For the student who has a Commercial Pilot Certificate with Rotorcraft Rating and wishes to obtain a Flight Instructor Certificate. A Flight Instructor Certificate allows a pilot to give flight instruction to aspiring pilots and endorse the logbook of others while building up your flight time, experience, and credentials. This program is highly recommended to maximize your future employment opportunities; often the first step in a pilot’s career and a great stepping stone into many aviation positions. 

Admission Requirements

A student must be 17 years of age and be able to read, speak, write and understand English. Student must hold a valid third-class medical certificate from a Federal Aviation Administration approved physician, as well as a FAA Helicopter Commercial Pilot Certificate. The student must be at least 18 years of age prior to the practical test.

Length of Program

This program runs approximately two months for full time students. Lengths of programs are based on a four day a week schedule.

Program Minimums

Varies per student based on frequency of flying.

CFI Certificate / Part 61 Minimum

  • 15 hours total flight time in a helicopter

CFI Certificate / Part 141 AH Curriculum Minimum

  • 40.5 hours ground instruction
  • 27.5 hours total flight time in a helicopter

Stage I: Now that you have accumulated the necessary flight knowledge, you will switch seats and fly from the instructor’s position. You will demonstrate the capabilities of instructional flight for all maneuvers and the ability to evaluate a student’s flight skills. At this point, you will begin to learn the ins and outs of an instructor’s responsibility and conduct as well as various styles of teaching methods.

Stage II: Any time that is spent in the helicopter at this point, you will be giving mock lessons to your instructor. Basic and advanced flight maneuvers, autorotations and touch-downs are just some of the things that you will need to be able to demonstrate that you can instruct to another. There is a heavy emphasis on groundwork at this stage. You will need to create cohesive lesson plans and present them to the instructor. You will then take the final stage check and practical exam in order to receive your CFI certificate.

To flight instruct in a Robinson Helicopter, you must meet additional requirements:

Instructing in an R-22

  • 200 hours total flight time in a helicopter, including: 
    • 50 hours in an R-22
    • Endorsement

Instruction in an R-44

  • 200 hours total flight time in a helicopter, including:
    • 50 hours in a R-44 (of which 25 hours can come from R-22)
    • Endorsement

Prepares students to provide instrument instruction. The student will expand their situational awareness and ability to compensate for lack of ideal meteorological conditions. It is a very lucrative program to pursue as many employers require this rating.

Admission Requirements

A student must hold a third class FAA Medical Certificate and hold a FAA Helicopter Commercial Certificate with Instrument Rating.

Length of Program

This program runs approximately two months for full time students. Lengths of programs are based on a four day a week schedule.

Program Minimums

Varies per student based on frequency of flying.

CFII Certificate / Part 61 Minimum

  • 50 hours XC PIC (Pilot in Command), including:
    • 10 hours in helicopter
  • 40 hours actual or simulated instrument training, including:
    • 15 hours dual instruction with Alyeska Helicopters

Stage I: There will be a fair bit of experience under your belt at this point, and you will be given a more in depth instruction of the instrument panel and flying with the various other navigation techniques and maneuvers. You will need to demonstrate a substantial understanding of the airport environment and situational awareness.

Stage II: While maintaining said situational awareness, you must perform various approaches and orientation exercises. GPS approaches and departures, various charts and procedures are just some of the items that you will need to learn how to teach other students.

Stage III: We expand on every pilot’s favorite topic: weather. You will need to indicate that you are capable of instructing how to interpret the numerous reports and forecasts as well as any weather publications necessary when IFR is involved. You will review instrument maneuvers and planning cross-country IFR flights with students. You will then take the stage three check and practical exam in order to receive your CFII certificate.

To teach in the Robinson R-44, applicant must have at least 50 hours in the R-44 (1/2 of which could come from the R-22) and 200 total helicopter hours.