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Evan Reiter

The PRP is Becoming Wings Over New England

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In the July Logan Informer, we announced that the Pilot Ratings Program will become Wings Over New England on September 1. As part of the new WINGS program, pilots will get a great tour of the New England region while getting an incredible series of training-oriented challenges designed to help teach flying within the ATC system on VATSIM. 

 

We're asking members to share their feedback on the existing program and identify anything they would like to see changed when Wings Over New England launches in September. More than just a name change, the release on September 1 will also include a full review of existing content, an improved depiction of pilot certificates, four new IFR flights, and changes to the current flight to align with recent real-world navigation aid changes.

 

For more information on the changes and to share your feedback and input: 

 


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Evan Reiter

Community Manager
Administration Team

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The VATSIM Pilot Training Department has announced they are advancing the timeline for the removal of our status as an Authorized Training Organization (ATO). As of 0000z on August 18, the Pilot Ratings Program will no longer be considered an active ATO and VATSIM pilot certifications will no longer be issued. It is likely the change in timeline is designed to align the PTD changes with the upcoming launch of Microsoft Flight Simulator.

 

Reminder, as part of the re-alignment, existing P-ratings will be grandfathered as follows: 

  • Existing P1 ratings will be revoked
  • Existing P2 and P3 ratings will become P1 ratings
  • Existing P4 and P5 ratings will become P2 ratings 
  • Pilots have the option of completing additional training to receive the new P3, P4, and P5 ratings

So, if you're looking to get your P2 in the new system, you have just under a month to complete the requisite PRP flights (VFR 1-6, IFR 1-5). Make sure you complete them at least a few days before the deadline so we have time to process your rating before the changes come into effect.

 

Meanwhile, we are continuing to build Wings Over New England, which is on track to replace the PRP on August 18. For more information on WINGS: 

 


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Evan Reiter

Community Manager
Administration Team

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We have just been informed by the VATSIM Pilot Training Department that the last day for BVA members to obtain VATSIM P-ratings will be August 11 at 0000z. For those in North America, that time is 8pm ET on August 10. Accordingly, any members who are currently completing PRP flights with the intention to obtain a VATSIM P-rating will need to complete the requisite flights by that time. (To allow us some processing time, we would suggest that Saturday, August 8 is the last day to reliably complete a qualifying PRP flight and still receive the corresponding P-rating.)

 

As in previous announcements, including when the go live date was pushed up from September 1 to August 18, BVA was not provided with an opportunity to comment or have input on this change.

 

A segment of the message from the VATSIM Pilot Training Department, which was received today, is below:

Quote

The new system is slated to go live August 18th 0000z. I have discovered web development and our department will need unobstructed access to the pilot rating system before the 18th to conduct beta testing of new automation features with the new website, test the new sign up process, and to be able to run pilot rating conversions. I have decided to terminate the existing pilot rating system August 11th in order for these important tasks to be completed without interference with ample time to fix any issues. Please do not utilize any pilot rating promotions after August 11th 0000z. In effect the P1-P5 pilot rating system will also go dead and all training programs under the old system will be nullified on this day also. If you currently have students who are almost completed with a current course please let them know that they must be completed and pilot rating promotion submitted by this date and time. As a reminder the current P1, P3, and P5 are going to roll back to a P0, P1, or P2 in the next system.

We are excited about the launch of Wings Over New England, which remains scheduled for August 16. Until the release of Wings Over New England, BVA members will be able to continue flying Pilot Ratings Program flights, though they will no longer qualify for VATSIM Pilot Ratings. 


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Evan Reiter

Community Manager
Administration Team

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At this time, the VATSIM Pilot Training Department has revoked our status as an Authorized Training Organization (ATO). As a result, although members may continue to fly Pilot Ratings Program (PRP) flights on the network, those flights will only count toward internal BVA ratings and will not be eligible for VATSIM P-ratings.

 

On August 16, Szymon, Nathan, Jay, and I will spend several hours launching Wings Over New England, which will include releasing the new website pages, changing references to PRP across our website, and updating our controller resources. There will be no gap in service; pilots may continue to fly PRP flights as the changes are being made. When the cutover happens, ratings will be counted for the WINGS program instead of the PRP. By the end of the day on August 16, WINGS will be fully active and all references to the PRP will be updated to show WINGS instead. 

 

If you've participated in the Pilot Ratings Program in the past:

  • All existing ratings will become WINGS ratings. For example, if you have passed PRP VFR 1, you'll now be credited with WINGS VFR 1. 
  • Pilots who had previously completed the entire program will need to fly WINGS IFR 20-23 in order to be considered WINGS graduates.
  • The new ratings table will only show pilots wil flights/ratings issued within the last 30 days. A lookup tool will allow you to retrieve older ratings.

If you've flown PRP flights in the past, you may be wondering what's changed. In fact, almost every PRP flight has been edited and reviewed for content. We've added more videos, resources, and images across the program. The most significant changes were made to the following flights: 

  1. IFR 6: improved description of course reversals with new images.
  2. IFR 9: new airports, circling is now completed at an untowered airport, enhanced description of ODPs.
  3. IFR 10: new airports, different style of LOC BC approach, introduces VCOA for ODPs.
  4. IFR 11: redesign of flight, covering similar but new skills (removes DME arc approach in favor of straight-in ILS at KPYM, arrival at KPWM from a different direction).
  5. IFR 12: the ILS RWY 7 Approach at KSFM has been re-designed; the new flight reflects the change and provides an enhanced description of CDFA with more information about how to calculate profile descents on non-precision approaches.
  6. IFR 15: adds requirement for pilots to create "along-track waypoints" in an FMS (and/or to do manual calculations to meet a prescribed crossing restriction). 
  7. IFR 20-23: new flights, covering flight planning, weather deviations, simulated failures, special use airspace, contact approaches, NOTAMs, FBO locations, use of EFB applications, and PIREPs. 

If you've already flown one of the flights listed above, you may wish to re-fly the flight (or at least read the material again) as you'll get a lot out of the new material. Plus, it wouldn't hurt to have another set of eyes on the material (the changed/new flights were all reviewed by at least 3 WINGS pilots). Of course, the only flights an existing WINGS graduate would be required to fly are the new IFR 20-23. 


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Evan Reiter

Community Manager
Administration Team

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Guest Thomas Corrow

Thanks for the update.  I just applied for the PRP program yesterday in fact.  Also applied for the BVA.  Is there going to be any issue in acceptance or denial process of my application before the WINGS program takes effect?  I would love the opportunity to start from scratch on the new WINGS if accepted.  Thanks for the update Evan.  

 

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20 hours ago, Guest Thomas Corrow said:

Is there going to be any issue in acceptance or denial process of my application before the WINGS program takes effect?  I would love the opportunity to start from scratch on the new WINGS if accepted. 

Welcome Thomas! Actually, your account was accepted on August 12. You should have already received our welcome email; I just sent it again through the website. Double-check your spam folder if you don't see it. It provides instructions on how to sign in (click BVA Member Sign In > VATSIM Sign In, and then enter your VATSIM CID and network password) and points you to our Orientation page as the place to get started.

 

You'll be able to get started on WINGS as of August 16. If you really want to, you can also start flying the PRP immediately. However, given the extent of the changes, I'd recommend waiting the two days to take advantage of the new program fully.


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Evan Reiter

Community Manager
Administration Team

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