Shehab Al Shehhi is Etihad Airways’ first Emirati aviation engineer to obtain an Airbus A320 authorisation certificate

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 2013-10-11 — / — Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has celebrated the graduation of thefirst Emirati certified aircraftengineerwho successfully completed the airline’s Graduate Engineering Traineeprogram.

Shehab Al Shehhiis Etihad Airways’ first Emirati aviation engineer to obtain an Airbus A320 authorisation certificate, allowing him to certify the certificate of release to service for the airline’s Airbus A320 aircraft.

The certification process is threefold and includes obtaining basic licenses after fulfilling the requirementsof the European Aviation Safety Agency(EASA), the UAE’sGeneral Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), and finally passing an Etihad Airways’Quality Assurance board exam.

Etihad Airways’ Chief Operations Officer, Captain Richard Hill, said, “Etihad Airways is committed to developing a skilled and qualified cadre of Emirati engineers to join its technical team. We are very proud of Shehab and we have complete confidence that he will excel in this role and pave the way for more UAE Nationals to take up the challenging role of aircraft engineers.”

Shehab joined Etihad Airways in 2007 and was immediately enrolled in the airline’stechnical engineering program, offered at the time in cooperation with the Aviation College in Brisbane, Australia, and one of the 147 facilities approved by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).

In 2009 Shehab graduated from the Aviation College with a diploma in Aircraft Maintenance Engineeringand then had to undergo‘On the Job’trainingon the dedicated aircraft in theEtihad Airways’ Technical line maintenance facility at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

His training included servicingand rectifying defects on AirbusA320 and A330 including engines, conducting heavy and light maintenance on Etihad Airways’aircraft, as well as spending timeworking at the out station maintenance facilities in Sydney and Dublin.

Shehab said:  “It has always been my dream to work in aviation and specifically as a certifying aircraft engineer and I am proud that I have finally managed to realize my dream after a long and sometimes challenging journey.

“I am excited to embark on this new role and to shoulder the responsibility of certifying the airworthiness of our aircraft and ultimately playing a pivotal role in protecting the safety of our guests.”

Etihad Airways Graduate EngineeringProgram is now offered in partnership with the Higher Colleges of Technologies and the Al AinInternational Aviation Academy allowing trainees to obtain a B1 (Engineering License in Airframe and Engines) or B2 (Avionics) license in Aviation Engineering Technology. The program is accredited by both the EASA and GCAA.

The trainees are chosen after extensive assessments, and once qualified, will become part of Etihad Airways’ technical team at the airline’s dedicated aircraft line and light maintenance facilitiesat Abu Dhabi InternationalAirport.

Shehab added: “I would like to thank the Etihad Airways management andtechnical training department for all their support, guidance and encouragement and to my colleagues I say: if you work hard and know your responsibilities then you can make your dreams come true.”



About Etihad Airways
Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, began operations in 2003, and in 2012 carried 10.3 million passengers. From its hub at Abu Dhabi International Airport, Etihad Airways offers flights to 94 passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas, with a fleet of 83 Airbus and Boeing aircraft, and over 80 aircraft on firm order, including 41 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and 10 Airbus A380s, the world’s largest passenger aircraft. Etihad Airways also holds equity investments in airberlin, Air Seychelles, Virgin Australia and Aer Lingus, will acquire 49 per cent of Air Serbia from January 2014, and, subject to regulatory approval, will acquire 24 per cent of India’s Jet Airways. For more information, please visit:

For more information please contact:

Etihad Airways :
Reem Al Midwahi
Corporate Communications Manager
Phone: +971 50 812 63 78