“The only challenge between you and your dream is “You”. Nobody can stop you from becoming all you want to be except you.
To commemorate International Women’s Day 2022, we spoke to women who are #BreakingTheBias and inspiring us daily. Funmilayo Makinde is currently a senior first-officer pilot currently flying a Challenger 601 in the corporate sector. She holds a Commercial Pilot License in airplanes and is currently rated on the HS 125 and CL 60 with over 100+ Jet hours as well as a cumulative three years of experience managing clients in the Information Technology (IT) industry.
She describes herself as a “hardworking and self-motivated woman with a genuine love for the skies and technology”. Her duties as a senior first officer pilot include assisting the Captain in flight preparation/operation in all phases of the flight, swapping between the roles of Pilot Flying and Pilot Monitoring.
What does breaking the bias mean to you?
Breaking the bias to me is breaking the stereotype. I think I have seen women break the stereotypes placed on them by society and that’s very amazing to see especially as it concerns professional growth. I choose to believe that No job is gender specific. If you have the knowledge and the skill to do a job and deliver excellently well, then you deserve the role. Just keep being great at whatever role you occupy
What steps did you take to become a young female pilot?
I had to enroll in a flying school to get the knowledge and skills I needed. I attended Avia Flight Academy in Deland, Florida, USA. Being an aviator, especially a pilot knowledge building never stops. Each year I have to go for recurrent training, to refresh my knowledge of the type of aircraft I fly.
What advice would you give to young females looking to break the bias and make history in a male-dominated field?
The only challenge between you and your dream is “You”. Nobody can stop you from becoming all you want to be except you. Once you fix this mindset, nobody and nothing can stop you.
Do you experience any stereotypes or challenges as a female working in a male-dominated field?
How did you overcome such challenges?
Yes, it still happens now. I think the major stereotype I face is having to manage my job with my family life and eventually children. The truth is I must balance it out. Women are built to be homemakers so it can be quite some strain, but then there is a place of balance. I must be intentional about it.
“To every woman out there you are Phenomenal!!!. Don’t just celebrate yourself today but every single day”
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