From an early age, aviation quickly became everything to me: passion, faith, optimism, devotion and everything in between. My passion for aviation wasn’t born from a trip with the airplane.
At 17 I decided, together with my best friend, to follow the aviation school in my country’s capital city. I had no idea what it meant since I had never even been a passenger on an aircraft and was oblivious to the fact that it is all about passengers’ safety and security.
All I knew was that my eyes lit up whenever somebody asked what I was planning to do after graduating from high school. I left everything in my hometown behind and started the aviation school, with the plan to build a career in the field as soon as I completed my studies.
The very first time I set foot in an aircraft was as a certified cabin crew, shortly after my graduation. I can definitely say I haven’t been happier in my entire life.
A few flights later, I realised that my dream of flight had better chances outside Romania so I started applying for a cabin crew job with one of the major airlines in the Middle East. 4 years from my very first flight, I am seeing my dream turn into reality as I am starting my cabin crew journey with one of the world’s most prestigious airlines – Etihad Airways.
It is worth mentioning it wasn’t an easy ride. I attended a few good interviews before eventually passing and that often left me disappointed and very close to losing hope.
I used to always think “Im gonna try harder next time” until I finally realised I needed to try smarter, so I started browsing the internet in search for more answers to prepare better for my next interview.
I discovered Monica & Simona and got in touch with them asking for help and guidance. I still remember, it was a Friday evening when I started watching all their Youtube videos and contacted them to tell my story and ask for support.
I was so happy to get a quick reply and so very proud to find out the girls were Romanians, just like me. Monica listened to my story and encouraged me to spend the 3 weeks before my next interview with Etihad preparing properly if I wanted to pass and not be disappointed again. And so I listened and became one of their many Pass First Time students.
I have to admit I didn’t stop shaking with nervousness and emotion during the 3 weeks. I only got my invitation to attend the interview on the weekend before the big day so I was full of hope, but also emotions and a bit of fear.
I couldn’t sleep at all the night before the interview! I showed up to the venue at 7 am (although the interview was starting at 8 am) and I found myself among 200 girls, all wanting to make their own dream a reality.
I Discovered Monica & Simona & Got In Touch With Them Asking For Help & Guidance
The interview felt like a walk in the park this time, yet at the end of each of the standard stages (English test, group games, role plays and final interview) I was nervous and very scared to see so many girls leaving disappointed.
When I heard my name called out among those successful all the way through, I was overwhelmed with happiness and hope and grateful I listened to Monica’s advice.
I went through my final interview, the next day, with a shivering voice and all the hope in the world. I was so close to where I felt I belonged and the professionalism and friendliness of the recruiters strengthened my belief even further.
We were told to expect a final answer after a week, but 3 days later I received my “successful” email from Etihad. I was walking on clouds!! My inner child must have come to life at full thrust because I found myself jumping around the house with joy, crying and laughing at the same time.
It was the happiest day of my life that far and the first person I had to share this with was Monica.
I haven’t said anything to my parents and friends until I received my date of joining. The month and a half spent with joining formalities felt like years.
I completed all the paperwork, packed and said goodbye to my always-supporting parents and all my loved ones and on 9th of July 2015 I was boarding the plane to a new life.
I wiped my tears dry and looked ahead with optimism, enthusiasm and a lot of gratitude.
Abu Dhabi, here I come!!
I landed in Abu Dhabi and was soon overwhelmed by questions: was I going to get used to the melting 50C temperatures, what’s my house gonna look like, will I make it through the training, how will I cope with being on my own??
After a relaxing weekend, the intense 6 week training kicked in and it was packed with useful, interesting information, practical workshops, new colleagues and friendships, incredible trainers, sleepless nights and countless hours spent studying.
I Knew That At The End Of The 6 Weeks I Will Receive My Wings
Nothing could’ve scared me at that stage. All the sleepless nights and all the stress were a small price to pay for my dream.
The most impressing was the service training. I discovered, from very skilful and friendly trainers, the true meaning of hospitality and how to provide our guests (not passengers 😉 ) with a unique experience every time they fly with us.
I formed beautiful friendships with the girls in my batch (Romanians and other nationalities) and was already discovering the beauty of cultural diversity.
I am beyond happy and so proud to be an Etihad cabin crew and I want nothing more than to grow with the company to become a better version of myself and a truly excellent cabin crew.
The graduation ceremony kept me in tears the whole day. Tears of joy to realise I finally made it, I’m earning my wings and I’m going to fly soon. What seemed to be a distant dream just a few months ago is now my reality and I get to do it in an airline that isn’t just my workplace, but my home away from home.
I took another glance at myself in the mirror to really take in that fact: I am indeed wearing the amazing purple uniform! Dreams are truly worth pursuing.
I felt I lost hope many times before, but truth is you can’t lose if you don’t give up. So never give up on your dreams! They do come true for those who are strong enough to believe in them.
I celebrated my birthday in July and I couldn’t have offered myself a better gift than donning a designer uniform for the best airline (I believe) in the world. Etihad is now my everything and I can’t wait to let it take me around the world and grow me into the person I am meant to become.
For those of you out there still dreaming about earning your wings one day, I say keep at it with all your heart and resources. Work smart to get it, prepare for it with professionals and pursue it until it becomes your reality because one day it will, I promise!
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