2 min read

It’s rare that passengers think about their pilot while boarding a flight. Most individuals are only thinking about how quickly they can make it home to their warm bed. For those that have wondered who their pilot might be, Arthur Roberts (Sigma-Phi, ‘17) could be that one. 

Roberts grew up in Beijing, China but lived in an Americanized bubble for most of his life. He knew he would end up in Europe or the United States, but he didn’t know he would land at the Harvard of the SkiesEmbry-Riddle Aeronautical University earned the name by owning the largest civilian flight training fleet in the United States and the largest degree program for professional pilots in the world. After accepting an offer to study at the prestigious university, Roberts would now be training on those same fleets. 

His classes were scheduled, and his clothes were hung on the wardrobe. It was only moments later Roberts met his new neighbor, Jake Tan (Sigma-Phi, ’16). As luck turns out, Jake grew up in China and immediately began exchanging stories of what they thought American colleges would be like. The one thing that surprised them the most: Fraternities.  

Arthur Roberts (Sigma-Phi, ’17) on flying during his training to become a pilot at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

“There is no such thing as Fraternities in China, all I’d seen is from the movies, I had no idea what it was. Somehow, Jake joined Lambda Chi Alpha first semester and I realized: if this guy has never seen a Fraternity and is loving it, there might be something in it for me” says Roberts. 

The “something” that Roberts was referring too was all about the people he’d have the chance to meet. He hadn’t experienced a sense of Brotherhood with friendships before, the focus was on academics and reaching the goal of becoming a pilot. Lambda Chi Alpha gave Roberts his first taste of the dedication his Brothers have for him.  

“It changed my entire career. My brother is an airline pilot at a different company, but he introduced me to one of our alumnus who is a recruiter at my current company. Once he found out I was a Lambda Chi, that recruiter gave me a job offer to be an on-campus recruiter at Embry-Riddle. It was chained with a conditional offer with being a First Officer once I made the minimum hour requirements. It was a connection that made it possible for me to be here right now. It was my sophomore year and I already had a job lined up for the day I graduate.” 

After working tirelessly to receive his minimum hours, Roberts is ready to take the skies for passengers around the country. He is prepared to fly two types of aircraft for Republic Airways as soon as his training is complete. Then, Roberts will continue to live in the Daytona, FL area while flying out of New York, NY. The next time any of our men are looking for a flight outside of New York, Roberts might just be the one getting them home.  

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