23 Mar 2015 10:30
Shareef Al Romaithi, a 31 year-old Etihad Airways First Officer, has become the first Emirati to obtain a PhD in aviation from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, which also makes him the youngest and the eighth holder of this distinctive degree in the world.
joined the UAE’s national carrier in 2007 as a cadet pilot, and upon completing
the airline’s specialised pilot training program, became the first Etihad
Airways cadet pilot to transition to First Officer status.
educational journey began in 2005 when he obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in
Aerospace Engineering. He went on to complete two Masters degrees in Aviation
and Aerospace Management and Safety Systems. In 2010 Etihad Airways
sponsored his PhD studies at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the world's
largest, fully accredited university specialising in aviation and aerospace.
studying, he continued his flight training and along with his commercial pilot
license, he also obtained private pilot sea-plane and rotorcraft licenses,
becoming a Certified Flight and Ground Instructor.
am thankful to Etihad Airways for giving me the opportunity to obtain this
unique degree while at the same time pursuing what I love,” Shareef said.
research-based dissertation addressed the importance of understanding the
impact of cross-culture on airline pilots' safety performance, specifically in
the Middle-East and North Africa.
Airways’ President and Chief Executive Officer, James Hogan, said: “It is very
important that Emiratis have a key role in all areas of our business, as the
national airline of the UAE. Their development is therefore a significant focus
for us, and through our innovative Emiratisation, training and scholarship
programs, we work hard to prepare our UAE national staff to become future
leaders and play an integral role in the airline and aviation industry.
is a prime example of the ambitious and talented Emarati we are continually
seeking to develop, and who will ultimately bring their unique skills and
knowledge for the benefit of the airline as well as the UAE. We are proud
of his academic accomplishments and look forward to expanding his horizons and
career even further.“
currently operates the Airbus A330/A340 fleet and will be operating on the
Boeing 777 fleet from April 2015.
said: “I encourage my colleagues to pursue their goals, never give up on their
dreams, to become risk takers and not be afraid of failure. We are blessed with
all the opportunities that come our way; it is up to us to accept the