A British woman recently given a significant promotion in the world of aviation has shown that the glass ceiling doesn’t reach 39,000 feet.

26-year-old Kate McWilliams has recently become one of the youngest commercial airline captains in the world and the youngest female captain – ever.

“Personally, I don’t think my age matters,” Kate told the Guardian. “I’ve been through the same training and passed the same command course as every other captain, so I’ve proven myself capable regardless of my age. I do now get asked how old I am on an almost daily basis, which didn’t used to happen when I was a first officer.”

“It clearly demonstrates to other young women that it is possible to succeed as a pilot in commercial aviation,” Julie Westhrop of the International Society of Women Airline Pilots

The WBPA states that out of the 130,000 pilots worldwide, only 4,000 are women. That’s only 3.1%. Furthermore, only a speculated 450 are captains.

Smaller figures for female employment in aeronautics elicits a greater appreciation for Kate’s achievements, but their numbers should also encourage change in the industry.

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EasyJet has noted this, and announced plans to encourage women in aviation.

“Currently 5% of the over 2,600 pilots employed by easyJet are female and women make up 5-6% of easyJet’s new entrant pilots. We plan to double the proportion of female new entrants to 12% over the next two years.”

Kate’s job is to captain commercial airlines – but in getting herself where she is now, she has a new purpose; namely, to serve as one of the few role models for young aspiring female pilots.

(WATCH the video below)


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