Do I need to be a rocket scientist? In his role as Chief Controller at Queenstown Tower, Clayton Lightfoot is often sought out by prospective air traffic control students for his advice about the ATC selection process.
His advice? You need to be a well-rounded person with a good amount of common sense. “New Zealand air traffic controllers tend to be very dynamic in their thinking and their abilities. Around the rest of the world, airspace design and the flow of traffic is very modular and you do the same thing every day. In New Zealand, we have a lot of different things happening all the time and you have to be very flexible.”
In this video about training and working as an air traffic controller at Airways, Clayton also shares his thoughts of what it's like to work side by side with a trainee and see them successfully become a qualified air traffic controller. “It’s a massive, fantastic feeling,” he says about the achievement of achieving a rating as a qualified ATC.
Has Clayton sparked your interest in air traffic control as a career? Learn more about ATC training in our Careers section.