On International Women’s Day, Emirates Airlines celebrated by posting a video of Egyptian captain Nevin Darwish, who has become the first Egyptian woman to pilot the world’s largest passenger aircraft, an Airbus A380.
Darwish’s historic flight traveled from Dubai to Vienna. Emirates First Officer Alia Al Muhairi, who is currently the youngest female Emirati pilot, flanked the flight. Al Muhairi called Darwish a “wonderful role model,” as she has now become an inspiration for young aspiring female pilots all around the world.
Al Muhairi also mentioned that Darwish comes into each flight with the same motivation as if it were her first. Darwish herself praised Al Muhairi as well, saying that she sees her flight partner “as an example of what a generation of female pilots can achieve.”
Both women hold records for the airline, and now they have made history.
The Airbus A380 is a double-decker, wide-body jet airliner, and Darwish’s manning of it marks a huge moment in the history of Egyptian women. “We are proud of our women colleagues and their immense contribution to the growth and success of the airline,” said Abdulaziz Al Ali, Emirates’ Executive Vice President of human resources. “We hope that we can continue to inspire and be role models for girls and women across the globe interested in pursuing careers in aviation.”
Currently, there are an estimated 4,000 female aviators employed around the globe out of the total 130,000 pilots in the world. This is only 3% of the workforce. Although numbers may still be developing in terms of female interest in the field, women like Darwish and Al Muhairi are making headlines and creating the visibility that women need in this profession thanks to Emirates and their unstoppable motivation to break ground in a male-dominated field. The footage of this flight has garnered more than 240,000 views.
Hearing a woman’s voice on the intercom of a flight saying “this is your captain speaking” is a pleasant and new feeling, and hopefully, it will soon be a more common one.
Darwish told Gulf News, “I’m sure that a day will come when women holding such jobs will no longer be unusual, and that jobs will not be biased based on gender. We are already moving towards that day. I’m very fortunate to work with a company that provides equal opportunities to both genders.”
Nevin Darwish has made history for Egyptian women, and we are sure that her impact has inspired many others to do the same. The skies are becoming a place that more and more women are beginning to want to navigate, and for pilots like Darwish, the sky is the limit for women driven by a motivation that allows them to treat every day on the job as if it was their first.
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