Growing up, I personally wanted to be a pilot and going by my early class, there were many of us. However, at the moment, none of us followed that career path. I can’t really tell what went wrong but for MTN Pulse, I encountered someone that I was able to ask basic information about how one can become a pilot.
Theo Estar, is a youthful social media personality that I have known as a pilot from the first time I encountered her. Her timeline is full of pilot work and on occasions when she is happy, she can even fly to an event. She says she flies better than she can drive and that just goes as far as showing you how passionate she is about her profession. We caught up with her and below are the excerpts;
Pulse: Hey, briefly talk about yourself. Who is Theo Estar?
I would say that I am a people-person. I love meeting new people and learning about them. I also like to make people feel comfortable in my presence. I am very passionate about my work and because I love what I do, I have a steady source of motivation that drives me to do my best.
Pulse: Is ‘Theo Estar’ your real name?
(Haha) No. Not really! My real name is Esther Kyokunda but I am best known as Theo Estar to many people.
Pulse: What is your educational background? Where did you go to school?
I went to Kabojja Junior for my primary education, then went to Maryhill High School for my O’level and Nabisunsa Girls’ School for A’level. From there, I enrolled at Flight Training College, George SA for my pilot training.
Pulse: So, what are you doing at the moment?
I am currently doing training to get my Instructors Rating which will allow me to train and teach aspiring pilots how to fly.
Pulse: Is it really complicated to be a pilot? For instance, how many years do you study?
It is not as complicated as people think because flying is more of a practical skill and anyone can learn how to do something practical. To get your commercial pilot license it takes an average of 2-3 years. On the way however, we do have theory tests which are passable if you know your content.
Pulse: Fresh from high school, which subjects are essential for one to study and be a pilot?
Well, subjects like Mathematics, Physics and Geography come in handy while in flight school, however, that doesn’t mean that if you did Arts you can’t become a pilot. You still can because at the end of the day its more of a practical subject.
English is also very important because it is the official language of aviation. You have to do a language proficiency test to prove that you can speak and understand English.
Pulse: This may be a hard question, but what is the average salary for a professional pilot?
I can’t really give you a figure because just like any other profession, it depends on factors like the company you are working for, your position, your qualifications, the sector in aviation you are working in et cetera. So as you can see, I can’t be able to give an exact figure.
Pulse: Do you do pilot work only at the moment?
Pilot work is my main focus at the moment. However, two colleagues of mine and myself are launching a business called Gqom (pronounced “Ngom”) Leather which will be dealing in the sell of pure leather products like jackets, belts, and wallets.
Pulse: What then is Wagga Resort that we have seen you constantly talking about online?
[Chuckles] Wagga Resort Is a family business. It’s a hotel located in Kyamugorani, Mbarara and I always try to help out and work there whenever I can. It has a website waggaresort.co.ug, and now that I have the chance, y’all can check it out and see what we have to offer.
Pulse: Alright. What advice do you have for Pulsers who aspire to fly?
Well first of all anyone can fly so don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t because of this or that. What you need to have is the passion because that passion will take you a long way.
And don’t give up on that dream. It’s never too late to start. As long as you are healthy and pass the medical, you can fly.
Lastly you have to learn to be patient (very important) because in aviation things don’t usually go as planned in terms of time since so many things can come up so you have to learn to sit tight and wait it out.