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    Welcome to the Ambassablog! We're the front-line employee bloggers of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority and participants in the Airport Authority's Goodwill Ambassador Program.

    Here you'll find our continually updated posts about life at historic San Diego International Airport (Lindbergh Field).

    Take a look around, and Email us if there's something you'd like to see added to the Ambassablog or covered in future posts.
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    For questions or information about this blog and other social media tools used by San Diego International Airport, contact:
    Steven Shultz, M.S.
    Deputy Director, Public & Community Relations /
    San Diego County Regional Airport Authority: sshultz@san.org

Saying goodbye (for now) to the summer interns

Jumping 5September is here again, and another group of summer interns at San Diego International Airport has come and gone. In early August the interns had lunch with Airport Authority President and CEO Thella F. Bowens, who shared career advice and professional insights.

Back row: Austin (Training & OD - Brigham Young University) Nathan (Aviation Security - Oklahoma State University) Natalie (Human Resources - San Diego State University) Mark (Quieter Home Program - University of California San Diego) Daniel (Airport Planning - University of North Dakota) Jeff (Small Business Development - San Diego State University) Tim (The Green Build - University of California San Diego) Jennifer (Facilities Development - University of Virginia)  Front row: Lois (Public, Community and Customer Relations - San Diego State University) Michelle (Real Estate Management - The George Washington University) Jessica (Risk Management - San Diego State University) Thella F. Bowens (President/CEO) Dani (Marketing - Pt. Loma Nazarene University) Dana (Airport Noise Mitigation - Florida Institute of Technology) Chris (Environmental Affairs - University of California San Diego [not pictured])

The Airport Authority's 2009 summer interns, with President/CEO Thella F. Bowens. (See below for their names, the Airport Authority departments they worked in and their colleges).

Back row, from left:

  • Austin (Training & Organization Development – Brigham Young University)
  • Nathan (Aviation Security & Public Safetyu – Oklahoma State University)
  • Natalie (Human Resources – San Diego State University)
  • Mark (Quieter Home Program – University of California at San Diego)
  • Daniel (Airport Planning – University of North Dakota)
  • Jeff (Small Business Development – San Diego State University)
  • Tim (The Green Build – University of California at San Diego)
  • Jennifer (Facilities Development – University of Virginia)

Front row, from left:

  • Lois (Public, Community and Customer Relations – San Diego State University)
  • Michelle (Real Estate Management – The George Washington University)
  • Jessica (Risk Management – San Diego State University)
  • Thella F. Bowens (Airport Authority President/CEO)
  • Dani (Marketing – Point Loma Nazarene University)
  • Dana (Airport Noise Mitigation – Florida Institute of Technology)
  • Chris (Environmental Affairs – University of California at San Diego [not pictured])

At the beginning of the summer the interns were given a group project:  Design and implement an Web page to promote the Airport Authority’s internship program among colleges, universities and the general public and provide future interns with useful information. Over the next two months, the interns worked with their advisers – Mike in Human Resources, Jon in Marketing and Dat in Internet Technology – to unveil a really awesome site.ryan

This year, the core team of Airport Authority employees responsible for the internship program – Carol and Michelle in Human Resources, fellow Ambassablogger Sjohnna in the Quieter Home Program and me – implemented some changes to the already “World Class” program . . . so next year is going to be even better! Remember to check the Airport Authority’s employment website starting in February 2010 for more information about the program.

Oh, and as a farewell gift, the 2009 summer interns produced this music video showing them in action at the airport:

Home Treat Alert! The special feature above may not be accessible at work. But you can view the Ambassablog at home & check it out there.

All about air cargo

cargo 2

Have you ever sent an overnight delivery of See’s Candy to your mother in Tampa? (Just FYI—my favorites are nuts and chews). How do you think it gets there? If you shipped via FedEx, it likely went through Memphis during the middle of the night. At the FedEx World Hub in Memphis, packages from all over the United States (and the world) get sorted on a nightly basis. In fact, the hub can process nearly 125,000 packages an hour (that is a lot of candy), making it the world’s busiest air cargo airport! FedEx is also the largest employer in Memphis.

The air cargo route between San Diego and Memphis.
The air cargo route between San Diego and Memphis.

Recently Keith from Airport Planning, Richard and Eric from Real Estate and I spent a couple of days in Memphis talking with both FedEx and UPS about their air cargo needs here in San Diego. Currently, all of San Diego International Airport’s cargo carriers park their aircraft on the north side of the airfield. It is a long-term goal of the Airport Authority to build air cargo buildings for processing and sorting of packages, as addressed in both the Airport Master Plan and Destination Lindbergh.

FedEx "feeder aircraft" at SDIA, for carrying smaller cargo shorter distances.

In 2008, there were 6,892 cargo operations (a take-off or a landing) that accounted for 3.4 percent of our total operations. Most of the FedEx operations here are with large Airbus A300 aircraft. Occasionally, FedEx operates some small Cessna Caravans from El Centro to San Diego; these are known as feeder aircraft (pictured here).

Ah ... Memphis.

Ah ... Memphis.

Some of you may remember my post from last year, “Thank ya, thank ya very much,” which discussed our once-daily nonstop service to Memphis. Here are some other sights in Memphis you might consider seeing:

ryanLet me give you a word of warning:  When you visit Memphis during the summer, it can be HOT and HUMID! However, whether you’re sending an overnight package or having some dry-rub BBQ, Memphis is one “attitude adjustment” that shouldn’t be missed.

Laverne & Shirley at Lindbergh Field

Laverne & Shirley — those happy-go-lucky ladies from Milwaukee, Wisconsin who entertained generations of Americans on TV in the lavernelarge1970s and 1980s — were recently spotted at San Diego International Airport! Well, sort of.  The video above is a madcap spoof of the opening sequence of the original Laverne & Shirley TV show. It stars the Ambassabloggers themselves and a few other SDIA employees in supporting roles.  Watch it all the way to the end for a cool tip on how to get to Milwaukee — and lots of other places — from SDIA.  Oh, in case your memory of the original Laverne & Shirley opener is a little fuzzy (we’re talking more than 25 years ago, after all),  here it is for purposes of comparison to the above spoof:

Home Treat Alert! The multimedia features above may not be accessible at work.  But you can log on at home and check them out there!

Dancers have baggage, too

San Diego Dance Theater performing 'Rolling Luggage' in Terminal 2 West.

San Diego Dance Theater performing 'Rolling Luggage' in Terminal 2 West.

And I thought that I have baggage!  Boy, was I mistaken … I just had the pleasure of watching the San Diego Dance Theater’s performance of Rolling Luggage in Terminal 2 West here at the airport.  The dance piece starred eight “passengers” with luggage.  It was improvisational, and they interacted with our real passengers, concessionaires and objects like the baggage belt.Rolling Luggage 098

It was really fun and exciting to see our real passengers interact with the “dancing passengers.”  Some people didn’t quite know what was happening at first, but soon almost everyone was intrigued and applauding.  Through our performing arts series, called a breve, the Airport Authority is showcasing all different types of performing arts.Rolling Luggage 090

The San Diego Dance Theater’s Artistic Director is Jean Isaacs, known for her work on the Trolley Dances — combining mass transit with urban dance.  (Remember that the MTS Route 992 serves the airport!)  The 11th Annual Trolley Dances start September 26.

I have to admit that I was a bit jealous of all the dancing.  If you check this clip, you can see that I can really get my groove on:

Home Treat Alert! The special feature above may not be accessible at work. But you can view the Ambassablog at home & check it out there.

ryanYes, that is the Roger Rabbit I’m doing.  You’ll also see me in a special new Ambassablog video that will be posted on the blog VERY soon. And, no, it’s not an audition tape for So You Think You can Dance!

(By the way, thanks to Susanna P. in Airport Art for taking these great shots of the Rolling Luggage action.)

Sweet dreams

moonlight

Moonrise over San Diego International Airport.

Tick tock … tick tock … tick tock. How often do you lay awake in the middle of the night? Counting sheep? Counting airplanes (what?!)?

Well at least one person working at San Diego International Airport has visions of 737’s at night: Garret in the airport’s Airport Noise Mitigation Department:

Garret of the Airport Authority's Airport Noise Mitigation Department points out a monitor used to trace aircraft noise curfew adherence at San Diego Internatiional Airport.

Garret of the Airport Authority's Airport Noise Mitigation Department points out a monitor used to trace aircraft noise curfew adherence at San Diego Internatiional Airport.

RYAN:  What time of the day does the curfew take effect?

  • GARRET:  All passenger aircraft operating at SDIA today are Stage 3.  That means they meet the most stringent noise levels set in Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) Part 36, which cover aircraft noise standards.  For Stage 3 aircraft, there is a departure curfew from 11:30pm to 6:30am.  Arrivals are permitted 24 hours a day.

R:  Are there any exceptions?

  • G:  Yes, what we call “life-flights”—when patients or human tissue is being transported, and military flights of necessity. A real-world example is after 9/11, there were doctors flying to New York and Washington, DC, to assist with injuries, and they departed after curfew as a “mercy” flight.

R: How often do the airlines “break” curfew?

  • G:  About twice a month airlines break curfew. The aircraft operator may be assessed penalties for breaking curfew, based on a six-month period. The review of violations is done by a Curfew Violation Review Panel, consisting of representatives of the Airport Authority’s’ Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Vice President of Planning and Operations and Vice President of Development. There can be exceptions made to the penalties, such as for local weather concerns, air traffic control issues or mechanical problems with the aircraft.

      The Aircraft Noise Monitoring Room at San Diego International Airport.

      The Aircraft Noise Monitoring Room at San Diego International Airport.

    R: Is the curfew legally enforceable?

    G:  Yes, the curfew at SDIA is legally enforceable. Other airports that have legally enforceable noise restrictions are John Wayne (SNA), Washington National (DCA), Long Beach and San Jose (SJC). In 1990 the Airport Noise Capacity Act (ANCA) was passed, which restricts airports’ ability to enact noise ordinances. SDIA’s curfew was grandfathered in under this law.

    R: In the post-ANCA period, what airports have tried to put a curfew in place?

    R: As a member of the public, how can I learn more about the curfew or other noise issues?

    • G:  The best way is to check the airport noise mitigation section of Airport Authority’s website. The Airport Noise Mitigation Department also publishes a periodic  Noise Matters newsletter. And you can always call the Noise Complaint Hotline at 619-400-2799.

    R: Garret, what are the two most important points you’d like the public to know about the curfew?

    ryanG:  Simple: SDIA has arrivals 24 hours a day, and departures are mostly allowed only from 6:30am to 11:30pm.

    And if you live near the airport and those airplanes at night are still giving you grief, make sure to check out Ambassablogger Sjohnna’s Quieter Home Program, as well. Otherwise, sleep tight … and sweet dreams!

    Golden ticket to D.C.

    KIPP students at SDIA

    KIPP students at SDIA

    This week, San Diego International Airport played host to a very special group of eighth graders from San Diego’s KIPP: Adelante Preparatory Academy. KIPP: Adelante is a small, college-preparatory public school serving 360 students from southeastern San Diego in grades five through eight. The school is based upon the acclaimed KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) model. KIPP schools share the common mission of preparing educationally underserved students for success in high school, college and the world beyond.

    KIPP students arrive at the airport

    KIPP students arrive at the airport

    In all, 70 eighth graders were at the airport for their Golden Ticket Ceremony, where it was announced that they’ll be flying to Washington, DC on Southwest Airlines next week! For the special event, the Airport Authority provided San Diego International Airport baseball caps and luggage tags for the students. Opening remarks were provided by yours truly, as well as by Keith Wilschetz, Director of Airport Planning for the Airport Authority.

    After the ceremony, the students were treated to a special presentation by Harbor Police Department K-9 units and a tour of Terminals 1 and 2. They had a look at ticket counters, the concessions program, the NTC Landfill Remediation, TSA security checkpoints and various public art projects at the airport.

    'Yours Truly' welcoming the KIPP students to SDIA

    'Yours Truly' welcoming the KIPP students to SDIA

    The event was organized by LEAD San Diego, KIPP: Adelante, and the Airport Authority’s Airport Planning and Landside Operations Departments. It was a great way to expose these bright students to all of the opportunities and careers available at San Diego ryanInternational Airport. I’m bursting with pride knowing that these promising students are our future passengers … and maybe future employees, too!

    Garth’s got baggage!

    Congratulations to Garth in the Airport Authority’s Accounting Department …  He’s got baggage!!! Garth was the first person to correctly identify both the final destination of the luggage and the airline in the Ambassa-Quiz at the bottom of my I’ve got baggage post below. He correctly identified that, on this baggage tag:DSC00283

    You can also see on the bag tag that the first flight is operated by United Express (UA), departing at 9:35am, but then in Los Angeles it connects to ANA (NH), departing at 12:35pm. Both of the carriers are part of Star Alliance, one of the “Big 3” airline alliances.

    This flight to Tokyo is operated on a Boeing 777-300 aircraft, like this one:

    1004321ryan

    Thanks to everyone who submitted answers, and stay tuned for more fun Ambassa-Quizzes.

    And remember, when you see Garth in the hall, congratulate him for having baggage!

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