“Earn and learn is a job where you are trained as you earn. The position is designed for new comers to the sport. Usually newly qualified skydivers, who wish to become full-time skydiving Instructors. During your time working and supporting the jump programe, you’ll be trained to do everything from supporting the ground organisation to becoming (within 3 years) a multi-rated Instructor and coach.
“We have found that people that have worked their way up through the ranks within our organisation have a much better understanding & appreciation of the roles that everyone on the DZ fulfils. This creates a much stronger team that is capable of supporting each other during busy times.”’ – Kris Cavill, dropzone manager
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Earn and Learn began essentially after a discussion between Rob Spour (our Chief Instructor) and James Swallow (the dropzone owner of Skydive Hibaldsatow). At the time, the DZ had a new program called the Freefall foundry. It hadn’t taken off as well as hoped.
In year 1, Andy Pointer had come to Hibaldstow on the scheme. The foundry was ultimately a fast track 6-month package where people paid to spend 6 months training at Hibaldstow. Training would be in all areas of freefall: FS1, FF1, camera flying for tandems and working towards coach ratings.
At the same time, the DZ employed ground workers to support the jump program and its running on a daily basis. Usually, these ground crew members had no link to skydiving, so to them, it was just a weekend / seasonal role to earn an income.
Rob discussed how he had gotten into the sport and how he could link the ground crew role into a role similar to the foundry. The essence, was where we would take on keen up and coming want to be skydivers and pay them to work and support the jump program, while being trained at the same time.
Andy Pointer was the prototype for the Earn and Learn scheme. It worked and the benefits were very evident. Year 2 saw us take on Marcus Budgett into a similar training role. Marcus’s progression just like Andy’s had been – remarkable.
The scheme is now going from strength to strength with us taking on 4 candidates a season, talks of expansion and growth continue and the future plans for this scheme are extremely exciting. Watching and working with people as they grow within the sport and being a part of that is an amazing feeling. The scheme goes from strength to strength.