The 2016 AMPAP Graduation activities were conducted in Montréal, Canada, in the presence of distinguished guests to celebrate more than half of the graduating class who travelled from all the regions. A packed cocktail reception was enjoyed by all at the ICAO Headquarters’ Museum and the traditional annual Graduation Ceremony was conducted immediately following the ACI World Annual General Assembly at the Montreal Convention Center.

Congratulations to the 118 Graduates!

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Above, at the ICAO Museum cocktail at Headquarters, ICAO Secretary General Dr. Fang Liu presented a commemorative plaque to HR Board Member, Mr. Anuj Aggarwal, who received it on behalf the Airports Authority of India (AAI) for its outstanding contribution and support of the Programme.

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Above, the Graduation Ceremony at the ACI WAGA event; bottom pictures from left to right: Catherine Meyer (SITA, the AMPAP Premier Sponsor), Herve Touron (ICAO Representative), Angela Gittens (ACI Director General), Roosevelt Council (Valedictorian, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport), and Pierre Coutu (AMPAP Programme Executive).

Excerpt from this year’s Valedictorian address, Mr. Roosevelt Council Jr. (Deputy General Manager / Chief Financial Officer, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport):

“Ladies and gentlemen,
I am honored and humbled to have been chosen to speak with you on this joyous occasion on behalf of the 2016 AMPAP graduating class. Today in this room, there are 66 graduates in a class of 118 from different parts of the world including India, Europe, Latin America, Africa and the USA, that will receive the coveted international airport professional designation. We also celebrate the 52 graduates who could not be here with us but their spirit is a part of this room as well.

Each of us have a different story that has led us to this day. But as different as these stories may be, there is a common thread that binds us alI. We are all quite fortunate that those before us had the vision and commitment to understand that this industry that we have chosen to serve requires a collective set of rules and standards of excellence. AMPAP is the vessel to get us there. It is highly encouraging that a program such as AMPAP exist. A program that is so meticulously designed and administered, creating this sense of excellence that I feel is unparalleled in its application. I say this because its sheer existence was founded on the premise of sharing, sharing of ideas and knowledge across an industry that means so much to each of us. AMPAP has become the definitive tool for developing airport professionals around the globe. So it is fitting to recognize those that have stood by us throughout this journey. I would like to thank the AMPAP team of administrators, their highly experienced team of instructors, ICAO Secretary General and ACI Director General, and especially Dr. Pierre Coutu, the Program Executive. I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Miguel Southwell whose commitment to this program was instrumental in the class of 2016 having 18 graduates from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the busiest airport in the world.

Personally speaking, AMPAP has been a great experience. It has not only provided me with analytical tools and intellectual confidence but it has given me best practices, strategies, and an immense pool of resources that I can draw upon. But make no mistake, AMPAP is not an easy journey to make. You don’t get the chance to put your day job on hold. AMPAP becomes a daily calendar event that more often than not leaks late into the night and the early morning. But it helps to know that others are also making this journey with you, across different time zones, nations, and continents. Clearly, the people that you meet along the way keeps you going and keeps you focused.

We are entering an era where the next wave of highly skilled airport professional are taking the reins worldwide. And with so many challenges before us such as the safety and security of our passengers and employees, this class must be ready to rise up and meet these challenges. I believe we are ready, no I believe we are AMPAP-ready. So let’s all go forward armed with the knowledge and commitment, knowing that our support does not stop at our doors but span across all the nations and continents that are a part of ACI and ICAO.”

At the ACI World and Asia/Pacific assemblies in Seoul May 26-28, 96 IAPs were welcomed in to the Community of AMPAP graduates, bringing to the total number of graduates to some 500 hundred in the seven-year history of the global ACI/ICAO AMPAP Programme.  In his opening remarks, AMPAP Administrator Pierre Coutu congratulated the graduates, noting  that 45 of them were in attendance, a very high proportion given that many traveled long distances to Seoul for the event.  Dr. Coutu briefly outlined the upcoming gateway course schedule and noted that a number of new airport companies were showing interest in hosting the classroom course ‘The Air Transport System”.  He specifically singled out Ms. Suning Liu of Macau as being a pioneer in the Asia/Pacific region becoming the first graduate from the region and also the first female graduate in the programme.  Since that time, the programme has mushroomed in the Asia/Pacific region.  He also remarked that IAPs were increasingly used by the programme as instructors for both the gateway course and the on-line courses.  Citing the growing role of the IAP Community of Practice as a portal for continuing professional development for IAPs, he introduced Denise Martinez , an IAP from San Francisco, who was recently elected Chairperson of the IAP Cop Board.

AMPAP Graduating Class at At ACI WAGA in Seoul

AMPAP Graduating Class at At ACI WAGA in Seoul – View the entire photo gallery

Angela Gittens, Director General, ACI World, also congratulated the graduates calling them ‘the next generation of airport leaders’ and noting that the programme had excellent worldwide coverage and had particularly gained traction in the Asia/Pacific region.  Speaking for ICAO by video link, Nancy Graham, Director, ICAO Air Navigation Bureau called AMPAP a ‘groundbreaking programme’ and a creative and unique venture supported enthusiastically by both ICAO and ACI.  She noted that many senior airport positions opening up had a tag line “IAP-preferred”.  She also said that for the first time, an IAP was represented on the ICAO Council in the person of Raphael W. Bokango of Tanzania.  In closing, the valedictorian, Tom Ganley of Northern Territory Airports in Australia said that IAPs share a common passion for the industry and that AMPAP provided them with the tools and the confidence and an international network of peers to take their careers to the next level.