Paramount Holds Aviation Writing Contest

Aviation Writing Contest

As an industry leader, we have a responsibility to those that wish to follow in our footsteps and take pride in shedding light on the best and brightest minds in this highly competitive market. In an effort to further educate and develop young minds, we frequently host industry wide contests to help advocate research and development in the aviation industry.

One example of our commitment to continual educational development is our Aviation Competition for graduate and undergraduate students at accredited colleges and universities. This competition aims to foster young peoples' interest in the world of corporate and business aviation, encouraging their continued involvement in it and providing them with a exposure to the aviation community. Students are asked to submit a five-to-seven page report about their ideas and thoughts on a specific topic in the private jet charter industry. Each contestant was asked to choose their topic from a list of 15 possibilities on a first-come, first-serve basis. The winner of the competition will have the opportunity to be interviewed and published in a variety of aviation trade publications.

The 9 Contestants in the competition were chosen by PBJ executives, based on their high levels writing talent and knowledge of – or interest in – the aviation industry. In addition to the interviews and excellent grades in school, the contestants all have a proven record of successfully completing specific jet charter research projects with PBJ.

The contest will be overseen by a panel of professors and instructors from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University who will judge the submissions. Our current team of 4 judges are all Embry-Riddle professors from the Humanities and Social Sciences Department and the College of Aviation at ERAU. From the Humanities and Social Sciences department we are very fortunate to have Professor Mike Perez, Professor John Lamothe & Dr. Linda Straubel, and from the College of Aviation we have Dr. Marti Klemm who is specialized in corporate and business aviation.

Read about the contestants and their papers.

Read about this aviation contest in the news.

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Linda Straubel, Ph. D., Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences

Dr. Straubel teaches composition and creative writing, literature, speech and, occasionally, upper-level humanities classes in such topics as technology and modern civilization. She also chairs the Arts and Letters Committee, which brings in performers and lecturers for students and the general public.

Straubel says that she will judge the entries on cohesive organization and good rhetorical strategies.

“Besides communicating well at the macro-level, the piece should inspire trust and appeal to both my mind and my heart,” Straubel said. In addition, she will be looking for sound sentence structure and a minimum of grammatical and mechanical errors.

Finally, Straubel says she hopes that PBJ will sponsor more contests in the future to include more contestants, since, as she said, “It is vital that students understand how important clear communication is, both verbal and written, in all fields. This is especially true when lives literally hang in the balance.”

Mike Perez, Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences

Perez joined the Embry-Riddle faculty in January of 2008, after having taught for Flagler College, University of Houston, and Florida State University. At Embry-Riddle, Perez specializes in technical report writing and technical communications, Composition and Rhetoric, Southern Gothic literature and the American Grotesque.

Perez, the son of an engineer-turned-FAA-security-liaison-officer, enjoys the assessment, research, and instructional challenges that technical writing provides on a daily basis to him and his students. He also enjoys teaching the importance of effective communication and the usefulness of writing for any technical field where clarity, precise documentation and ethics are integral. Some of his ongoing objectives are to help students integrate their assignments with the overall awareness of their career’s bigger picture and to show how they – both the students and the assignments – can fit into any system of communication the aerospace industry requires.

Perez will look for clarity, conciseness, and rhetorical effectiveness when he judges submissions, but also whether or not the document’s audience awareness is consistently reflected by its content, levels of detail, diction and jargon and its overall specificity.

John Lamothe, Professor of Communications and Humanities

Lamothe teaches composition, Technical Report Writing, Business Writing/Communication, Introduction to Rhetoric and Studies in Literature. Lamothe says he volunteered to be a judge because he likes the idea of challenging students and professionals to write more clearly and effectively. He says that the language is often lost in the aerospace and airline fields because so much emphasis is placed on data.

“Clear and effective communication is often what separates an airline success from an airline disaster,” Lamothe said. Lamothe says he will judge contestants based on their abilities to communicate clearly and precisely while engaging the audience in a dialogue pertinent to the aerospace industry.

Marti Klemm, Ph. D., Professor, College of Aviation

Dr. Klemm teaches aviation flight technology. She is also a corporate pilot who holds various ratings in single and multi-engine aircraft and has logged thousands of hours and has traveled and worked around the globe. Klemm is an expert in corporate flight operations, regulatory compliance, human factors, safety and training. Klemm is also a certified International Standard for Business Aircraft Operations auditor, a published author and public speaker.

Besides her expertise in communications, Klemm adds a wealth of knowledge about the technical aspects of the aviation industry to the contest. Klemm says she is no stranger to judging, especially events that have the goal to encourage and assist individuals in aviation.

Klemm also serves on the Paramount Business Jets Board of Advisors. She says she will judge entries on the authors’ abilities to communicate their thoughts and ideas through the use of correct grammar and syntax. “To set oneself apart, the author must show creativity and imagination, enthusiasm and desire,” Klemm said.

Kevin Rossignon, ERAU graduate student

Aviation Contest Subject: Market analysis of the private jet charter industry

Rossignon, originally from Belgium, spent 17 years of his life in the United Arab Emirates, primarily in Abu Dhabi. Rossignon earned a Bachelor of Science in aerospace engineering from ERAU in December 2006 and is on schedule to receive a Master of Business Administration from ERAU in May 2009. He also works with Paramount Business Jets as a marketing and research and development intern.

His long-term goal is to start his own consulting firm designed to optimize company operations in order to maximize profit.

Jonathon Hatcher, Mechanical engineering student, ERAU

Aviation Contest Subject: Air pollution and the private jet charter industry

Hatcher’s says his future lies in the private jet charter industry, mainly the potential for space tourism. He believes that private jet charter companies which become involved with civilian space tourism and transportation will have a huge impact on future markets, as well as improving and advancing human space exploration.

“While the demand for this service is not readily apparent as of now, it will be vital in the very near future,” Hatcher said. “Travel times to global destinations will decrease with the advent of faster aircraft and, as soon as the technology becomes less expensive and more available, space transportation and tourism will be a booming business.”

Hatcher’s other passion is in motorcycle road racing. He is a licensed amateur rider with Champion Cup Series Motorcycle Road Racing in the Florida Region. He is also an editor for an online motorcycling magazine.

“When I am not riding, racing or wrenching on bikes, I am definitely thinking about it,” Hatcher said.

Conlin Schultz, Bachelor of Science in Aviation Management, ERAU, 2004

Aviation Contest Subject: Aircraft options for private jet charters

Schultz says he was taken on his first leisure flight in a Decathalon at age 7.

"I remember seeing the ground slip away from the main gear, and I knew I'd chase that feeling for the rest of my life," he said. Schultz says he still enjoys his flight time in general aviation and hopes for a bright future in the aviation charter business.

Marco Harleman, Business undergraduate, ERAU

Aviation Contest Subject: The future of private jet charter (25 years from now)

Harleman is from Leiden, Netherlands. He came to the United States in fall 2006 to study at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. After a year at MSU, Harleman transferred to ERAU and expects to graduate next spring with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. He works as an intern with Paramount Business Jets, which he says is a valuable element of his education. “The aviation business has been a keen interest of mine for many years,” Harleman said. Harleman also plays for ERAU’s men’s soccer team.

Arman Motiwalla, Undergraduate student, ERAU

Aviation Contest Subject: The History & Development of Corporate & Business Aviation

Motiwalla, a Private Aviation Specialist with Paramount Business Jets is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Science at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Having lived and studied in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Arman has traveled extensively since birth, gaining significant international exposure. Through his work with Paramount Business Jets he has gained valuable insight into the corporate aviation market and aims to carve out a career in the aviation industry with a focus on corporate and business.

Brian Taranto, ERAU student

Aviation Contest Subject: Impact of private jet charter on air traffic control

Taranto was born in Staten Island, N.Y. and says his three passions in life are animals, physics and business. His interest in physics has spawned in him an interest in utilizing outer space.

A licensed pilot since 2006, Taranto continues to pursue higher commercial pilot ratings. Through his experiences with the aviation industry Taranto has developed an increasing fascination with its business aspects. “I find that the more time I spend around the industry the more I want to play a controlling role in it,” Taranto said. Taranto plans to graduate from ERAU in May 2009.

Daniel Quigley, Journalist/public-relations professional

Aviation Contest Subject: Private jet charter luxury options

Quigley earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University in May 2008. Though he is new to the aviation industry, Quigley is captivated with the endless possibilities of services and marketing opportunities available to the private jet charter business.

His long-term goal is to start his own newspaper, but he says working in public relations has broadened his horizons. “My true passion is writing, so as long as I’m writing about something that is meaningful to me and interacting with new people, there is no telling where I could end up,” Quigley said. Quigley was raised in Phoenix, Ariz. He moved to Palm Coast, Fla. last summer after enjoying it on a vacation the previous year.

Shaheryar Khan, ERAU student

Aviation Contest Subject: Private jet charter expansions and additions around the world

Khan, an aerospace engineering major, has an immense interest in man’s journey into space. “It was a revolutionary step, ‘a giant leap for mankind,’ which represented hard work, dedication, and sacrifice, embodied in those who believed in accomplishing the impossible,” Khan said. Khan’s main focus is the engineering of space systems, including engineering of ground systems, launch systems, space operations, space payloads and spacecraft.

Khan also enjoys outdoor sports, music and watching movies.

Yusuke Ishikawa, Graduate student, ERAU

Aviation Contest Subject: Marketing for the private jet charter industry in the U.S.

Ishikawa earned a bachelor’s degree in Aviation Business Administration with a concentration in Aviation Marketing from ERAU in December 2008. He still attends the university in pursuit of his master’s degree in business administration.

Ishikawa is interested in the marketing and strategy aspects of air transportation. “As air travel through airlines is becoming more and more leisure driven, I believe the private jet charter industry is set to grow at a very fast pace with the help of business travelers,” Ishikawa said.

A native of Japan, Ishikawa has spent most of his life in the United States and speaks both Japanese and English.

2009 Aviation Writing Contest Winners

Congratulations to the Winners!

1st Place Winner - Yusuke Ishikawa

“Marketing for the Private Jet Charter Industry in the US”

As air travel through airlines is becoming more and more leisure driven, I believe the private jet charter industry is set to grow at a very fast pace with the help of business travelers.
  1. What is your greatest strength?
    My greatest strength is my drive, determination, and desire to succeed in whatever I choose to do. I have never been the one to give up on something, and I am always determined to do the best I can in any activity. Whether work or play, I like to be successful and proud of my accomplishments.
  2. What qualities do you think are necessary to make someone successful in this industry?
    I firmly believe that in order to succeed in this industry, one must be very determined, ambitious, and patient. Compared to other industries, the aviation industry is very harsh, and is under the influence of many uncontrollable factors. Therefore, one must be strong at will and persistent in order to succeed in this industry.
  3. What extracurricular activities were/are you involved in?
    As an undergraduate and a graduate student at Embry-Riddle, I have been involved with the ERAU Kendo club and volunteering at the Halifax Medical Center. With my instructor ratings, I have been the instructor for the Kendo Club since my first year as an undergraduate, and I have helped to teach and develop the skills needed in kendo. Also, I have been volunteering at the radiology department at Halifax Medical Center, helping the technicians in various tasks.
  4. What activities do you enjoy the most?
    Outside of academics and aviation, I enjoy music, including playing the guitar, playing the piano, and editing music electronically. I have been involved with music my entire life, and I wish to continue this into my future. I also enjoy swimming, as I have swam competitively throughout my life. Finally, I am an avid motorsports fan, and like to do anything dealing with cars and racing. I follow the Formula 1 races very closely, and I enjoy karting whenever I am in Japan.
  5. What class did/do you enjoy the most? The least? The two classes I enjoyed the most as a student were Aviation Economics and Airline/Airport Marketing. I took these classes while pursuing my undergraduate degree, and I believe these two classes taught me the most about the aviation industry. Not only was it highly informative, it helped to further grow my interest in the industry. I was able to see the challenges and opportunities that aviation has to offer, and it has inspired me to keep pursuing a career in this field. The class that I enjoyed the least was one of my University 101 in which I was required to learn how to survive the college life.
  6. Why did you choose your major?
    I chose my undergraduate degree, aviation business administration, because of my interest in the aviation industry and my desire to pursue business. Also, I have always had an interest in experiencing different parts of the world and international business, and I knew that aviation business dealt a lot with international transactions. The reason I chose my current major, a MBA in aviation, is because I wanted to expand on the knowledge that I acquired from my undergraduate degree.
  7. Are your grades a good measure of your ability? As I was able to graduate with my undergraduate degree with a 4.0 GPA, I do believe my grades measured my ability as a student getting ready to enter the aviation industry. I was able to learn a lot from the program, and I believe my grades represent the dedication I have towards my career.
  8. How does your degree prepare you (a) for a career in aviation or (b) to excel in corporate and business aviation?
    My degrees, one already acquired and one currently pursuing, will prepare me for a career in aviation through its insightful professors who bring their experience to the classroom. I have learned much important and interesting knowledge from many of my professors, and I have learned to view the aviation industry from a different perspective. I am now able to see some of the industry’s weaknesses as opportunities, and the challenges to be exciting.
  9. What qualifications do you have beyond academics that qualify you to make transition into business?
    Beyond my academic knowledge that I acquired from various classes, I believe that my personal qualities will help me in my transition into business. Along with many of my peers in Paramount Business Jets' writing contest, I have been able to live in and experience various cultures. This exposure to different people from different backgrounds has led me to develop good interpersonal skills in truly understanding others. I believe this is an important skill to have in business. Further, growing up in a family in which my grandfather and father have operated businesses, I have been able to observe and learn fundamental business from an early age.
  10. 10. What is your ideal job?
    My two ideal jobs, one with a large, well-established firm and the other with an up-and-coming company, would both be dealing with marketing a product or service in the aviation industry. I do not have any interest in working with the big airlines, but I would definitely like to work with aircraft component manufacturers and smaller jet services. I would love to be with a company such as Rolls-Royce, playing a significant role in the marketing department. As for a smaller company, I would like to be part of the marketing department of a jet service operator, watching the company grow and advance in the industry.
  11. What is your favorite kitchen utensil and why?
    My favorite kitchen utensil would have to be the kitchen knife, because of its sharpness and its ability to alter the size and shape of a particular food item. While an onion is simply and onion, a knife is able to change the onion’s length, width, and thickness to be whatever the recipe calls for. This utensil transforms one thing into many different variations. A knife can cut a piece of bulky cucumber into smaller pieces that are easier to eat.

2nd Place Winner - Dan Quigley

“Private Jet Luxury Options: The Sky Is The Limit”

My true passion is writing, so as long as I’m writing about something that is meaningful to me and interacting with new people, there is no telling where I could end up,
  1. What five adjectives describe you best?
    Passionate, Diligent, Empathetic, Positive and Enthusiastic.
  2. What is your greatest strength?
    My greatest strength is my ability to communicate effectively.
  3. Do you prefer to work independently or on a team?
    I prefer each at different times. I believe every team member is on his or her team because of talents he or she brings to the table. Sometimes those talents manifest through independent work, but the product should fit into the team’s goals like a piece of a puzzle. It takes teamwork and the sharing of ideas to decide most effectively how each product fits together.
  4. What interests you most about corporate and business aviation?
    The fact that there are endless possibilities as to the products that can be offered to clients is what interests me most about corporate and business aviation. There are always possibilities to meet clients’ needs and expand the company’s repertoire of services.
  5. What extracurricular activities were/are you involved in?
    While in college, I served as the club president and editor-in-chief of the student newspaper, a representative to student government and as a memer of a student wire service.
  6. What activities do you enjoy the most?
    My favorite activities are – with the arrival of my first child – parenting, writing and social interaction.
  7. What classes did/do you enjoy the most? The least?
    The classes I enjoyed most where those that challenged me in a positive way to do something with which I was not familiar or immediately comfortable. I least liked classes which consisted of long lectures without interaction or room for discussion.
  8. Why did you choose your major?
    I chose my major because I believe in an informed society and social justice. I think that if one can communicate through written and printed words he can do a great service to society.
  9. What is your favorite kitchen utensil and why?
    The cheese grater is my favorite utensil because I put grated cheese on everything.
  10. Are your grades a good measure of your ability?
    My grades certainly show that I was dedicated to performing well in my studies, but they do nothing to show my enthusiasm or ability to work and communicate effectively. Grades also do nothing to show the sacrifices one makes and the challenges one accepts in order to earn them.
  11. How does your degree prepare you toexcel in corporate and business aviation?
    My degree in journalism has given me a lot of tools to excel in corporate and business aviation. I can communicate effectively verbally and on paper. I know how to research any issue, and I know how to work with other team members to create a useful, informative product. The skills I picked up while earning my degree have gone a long way in introducing me to an unfamiliar field.

3rd Place Winner - Jonathan Hatcher

“Dark Skies? Air Pollution and the Private Jet Industry”

Travel times to global destinations will decrease with the advent of faster aircraft and, as soon as the technology becomes less expensive and more available, space transportation and tourism will be a booming business.
  1. What is your greatest strength? My greatest strength is and always has been my work ethic. I complete assignments professionally and on time. I never turn in work that I do not think is my very best and I strive to improve both myself and my efforts with every project.
  2. Do you prefer to work independently or on a team?
    Let’s just say that I prefer to work independently on a team. I like having the ability to be creative on my own terms but one person cannot get to the moon all by himself. I enjoy having the freedom to complete my own task and then see it integrated in the team’s final product.
  3. What qualities do you think are necessary to make someone successful in this industry?
    The qualities most important in this industry, as well as every other industry, are intelligence, discipline and attention to detail. These qualities will get a person wherever he or she wants to go. However, in order to stand out in the industry, a person requires all of these characteristics plus the most important quality for success – passion.
  4. What is your favorite kitchen utensil and why?
    My favorite kitchen utensil is the spatula because it is the best tool for flipping hamburgers, pancakes, French toast and eggs, all of which are prime bachelor foods. Plus, it doubles as a fly swatter. Just make sure to swat flies after the cooking is done…
  5. What extracurricular activities were/are you involved in?
    I am an editor for an online high-performance motorcycling magazine, TrackdayMag.com and I also work as a writing tutor at ERAU. My true passion lies with motorcycle roadracing and I am a licensed amateur rider with the Champion Cup Series in the Florida Region.
  6. What activities do you enjoy the most?
    I absolutely love anything to do with motorcycles: riding, racing, wrenching, or just plain talking shop. I also enjoy target shooting, SCUBA diving, writing, drawing and drafting.
  7. What classes did/do you enjoy the most?
    My favorite classes are the ones involving technology. My favorite so far has been an engineering course where I learned how to use CATIA V5, a high-end Computer Assisted Design program. I plan to continue working with CAD programs in my career and it was enjoyable to learn CATIA.
  8. Why did you choose your major, Mechanical Engineering?
    Engineers are important people. We build bridges, buildings, motors and machines. I want to be the person who designs the next engine that can take us to other planets, the most intelligent robot or the newest sport motorcycle. Technology is just plain COOL.
  9. Are your grades a good measure of your ability?
    My grades depend on my interest level in that subject. Engineering and writing courses usually display my potential. Anything else is another story…
  10. What qualifications do you have beyond academics that qualify you to make a successful transition into business?
    Besides my academics, I have a number of qualities that will make me successful in my future career. I was involved in the Boy Scouts of America for over 12 years, from Cub Scouts to Boy Scouts and even earned the highest rank of Eagle Scout. Scouting instilled me with a strong sense of discipline and excellent work ethic, which has helped me to become a dedicated leader. I am also intelligent, meticulous and detail-oriented, allowing all of my projects to be finished with a professional grade.
  11. What is your ideal job?
    My ideal job would be as a design engineer for a factory-backed professional motorcycle roadracing team that competes on the world level, such as MotoGP or World Superbike. Traveling to different countries for each race and working with pro-level riders to create winning motorcycles would be a dream come true. I want to design parts to make the motorcycles faster and immediately see them applied at the race track.

    A close second choice would be as a design engineer for manned, interplanetary spacecraft. I am fascinated by the wonders of outer space and I believe interplanetary space travel is something that is extremely possible to achieve in my lifetime. We’ll also need engineers to man these spacecraft or personnel to work on colonies on other planets and I’d be happy to take one of these jobs as well.