Aviation Academy

MSc Air Transport Management @ Cranfield University


Maxime studied MSc Air Transport Management at Cranfield University after he graduated at the Aviation Academy.

I continued to study because I wanted to expand and deepen my academic knowledge in aviation from an airline perspective. The HvA provided me with the basic skills in aviation and a master's degree goes deeper into airline-specific aspects. I was also keen to gain additional international experience before starting my career.

Maxime Jossa - Alumni 2022 - track Aviation Operations

Why did you choose this study?

I chose this study because during my internship at an airline in the Netherlands, everyone recommended this master's programme to me after my undergraduate degree. Cranfield University has an excellent reputation, especially in aviation studies, and offers access to valuable contacts within the aviation industry. Cranfield University's proximity to my home also played a role, as it allowed me to travel home quickly during holiday periods.

Could you progress directly from the Aviation Academy or did you need a premaster, for example

Transferring to this study from the HvA is fairly straightforward. There are not many requirements to move on, although an English certificate is required to demonstrate your English level. This is required because the HvA only offers the last 3 years of the study completely in English, not the first year. Various language tests are accepted; for example, I myself obtained the Cambridge certificate, as this certificate has no expiry date and remains usable after my studies.

In addition, you need to apply for a Student Visa for the UK (due to the Brexit). Cranfield offers guidance documents on how to apply for this and the steps to follow. A premaster's degree is not necessary.

(Also, there is a cooperation between the HvA and Cranfield regarding tuition fees: a 50% benefit. For more information on this: aviation.academy@hva.nl)

Are there any points you can focus on during your studies at the Aviation Academy that would be in favour of further study?

The Master Air Transport Management offers a good connection to the curriculum from the HvA. Although you are already equipped with basic knowledge, during this master's you will go into more depth and are expected to be able to work independently. Independence is therefore an important trait. Fortunately, teachers and fellow students are always ready to help, and extra explanation hours are available for questions if you have not followed or understood a subject before.

In addition, Excel is an important skill that you will have had to work with many times at the HvA. You definitely don't need to be an Excel guru, but basic knowledge of the programme is definitely a positive point and will help you a long way.

Teamwork is also essential, especially since there is a large group assignment. This year, for example, we are working with a group of 11 students to set up an airline from scratch. Through previous experience of group work during Aviation Operations, I have found that communication and arranging group matters are much easier and more efficient. So while working in groups can sometimes be challenging, it is a valuable skill that will come in handy in your career, where you don't always have your peers to choose from either.

Why would you recommend this study?

The programme provides an excellent opportunity to make valuable industry contacts. During each module, an average of 2-4 guest speakers visit, both physically and through Teams, who share valuable insights from their practical experience in the industry. After the lectures, I regularly had conversations with these speakers, which led to valuable contacts. Interestingly, many of them come back later to assess the group assignment where we have to set up an airline.

Moreover, we are invited to visit different airlines to see their operations. For example, I have already visited Barcelona and a trip to Qatar is planned soon. These excursions offer real hands-on experience and an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at airlines.

The international diversity of the study is also remarkable. Besides students from France and Spain, there are students from countries such as India, China, Kenya, Indonesia, Thailand and Nepal. This makes for a rich international character, which is enhanced if you take a residency on campus. I myself am in the flat with people from Thailand, France, Spain and India and then we also organise regular 'cultural cooking' events where everyone prepares dishes from their own country, which contributes to a great community atmosphere outside our studies.

What would you possibly do differently?

At the moment, I can't really name anything I would have done differently. I am very satisfied with my electives, namely Fleet Planning, Regional Aviation and Marketing. These subjects appealed to me the most and I found them very interesting and informative. Of course, there are other electives available, such as Maintenance, Safety and Digitalisation, but personally, the aforementioned subjects attracted me the most.

In addition, I took my car with me to England, which is really a great advantage because the campus is located in the English countryside, about 15 minutes away from a larger city, Milton Keynes. Although buses go to this city, public transport is generally less developed than in the Netherlands. So a car offers more freedom and I would definitely recommend taking it if you have the opportunity.

Are there any critical points on your further study?

Perhaps the cost of study will be one of the biggest critical points by many for not opting for it. In addition to tuition fees, costs for accommodation, visa application and any insurance costs are also added. Excursions also need to be self-funded. To be honest, you will soon incur these costs no matter which university you study at abroad. Fortunately, the HvA now has a contract with Cranfield University, which means that students have to pay 50% of the tuition fees (more information: aviation.academy@hva.nl), and this already makes a big difference in reducing costs. In addition, the study is only one year, where various masters studies in other countries are sometimes 2-years and therefore double the cost. Furthermore, the study is basically not eligible for study financing from the Netherlands, only the public transport allowance is provided.

In terms of living expenses, I find England comparable to the Netherlands, sometimes even slightly cheaper, but ultimately this is entirely up to you. You can make it as expensive as you want.

Apart from the costs, there are no major downsides to the study itself at the moment. I do find it unfortunate that there aren't many facilities on campus itself, such as bars, restaurants or lunch and coffee shops, where you can have a social break with someone. You will soon have to go to Milton Keynes to find this, for which you then have to take the bus or car again. You have to be able to deal with this as a person yourself

More info: https://www.cranfield.ac.uk/courses/taught/air-transport-management