In 2017, pilot Anny Divya made history after she became the youngest woman to command a Boeing 777. Anny Divya now flies ultra long-haul international flights and is an inspiration to girls across the country
Anny Divya said, "When I became the youngest woman to command a Boeing 777, I didn't realise that I had unknowingly become an inspiration to young women around the world, who want to pursue a profession in flying. I am excited to share my learnings as a LinkedIn Influencer and I look forward to inspiring others through my personal story."
Born to a lower-middle-class family in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, becoming a pilot was Anny Divya's dream job as a school girl. She started learning flying aircraft at the age of 17 and in two years at 19 she received her license and was employed with Air India
In picture: Anny Divya with her father
Anny Divya's father served in the Indian Army. They lived near the army base camp in Pathankot After her father retired, their family settled down in Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, where Anny attended school.
In picture: Anny Divya with her grandmother
Anny Divya was educated at the Kendriya Vidyalaya in Vijayawada. Divya speaks English, Telugu and Hindi. In school, when Anny Divya shared with her friends her dream of becoming a commercial pilot some day, her friends would laugh her choice.
In picture: Anny Divya with her family
Since at that time engineering and medical were considered the best career options, Anny Divya attended engineering college but didn't enjoy studying engineering, as she said she would continuously think about flying. Anny credited her parents for supporting and helping her pursue her dream
After finishing school, Anny Divya got into Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Akademi (IGRUA) in Uttar Pradesh. It was an expensive course so her family took a loan for her so that she could achieve her dream. It was a big struggle right from the start as she came from a modest background
At the training, Anny Divya had a bit of a culture shock as came from a rural, non-English speaking background. She said, "Life on campus was rather turbulent, something which I did not foresee at the time of joining. Though I was quick at learning, fellow students would target me all the time, mostly for my English language skills. Being a student of a vernacular school, where we did not speak in English, my diction and words were funny, especially for those who had studied at expensive public schools in the metros."
However, even as she winced at their harsh words and the ensuing laughter, Anny Divya kept calm and remained focused on her goal of becoming a pilot. Anny Divya said that she drew inspiration from what Lord Krishna told Arjuna in the Bhagwat Gita, "The journey is not important, the destination is!"
After completing her training at 19, Anny Divya got her first job with Air India. She did her Boeing 737 training in Spain and Boeing 777 training in London, which saw her fly the world’s largest twin jet – Boeing 777
Anny Divya, the world's youngest female pilot to fly the Boeing 777 in March 2019 joined the exclusive league of global influencers on LinkedIn, the leading professional network
About braving through hard times Anny Divya said while her father, a soldier with the Indian Army, tried to give them the best he could, at times she encountered moments that felt like brick walls that she felt she could never scale. As a child, looking at the airplanes in the sky and hoping that she will be able to sit in them one day was a distant dream, but flying them was another matter altogether
Anny Divya joined the coveted group of Indian and international leaders, who are part of the over 500 LinkedIn Influencer programme including Narendra Modi, Bill Gates, Priyanka Chopra, Oprah Winfrey, Sachin Tendulkar, and Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, among other eminent personalities
As a LinkedIn Influencer Anny Divya shared her story on how she fought societal conventions, language barriers, and family pressure to succeed in a male-dominated profession
Anny Divya shared in her own words how her support system helped her pursue her dream job and how perseverance and hard work have led her to success. On women in aviation, a male-dominated industry, Divya said, "They have to do a lot to create awareness about aviation and other fields where women are not working."
Apart from flying, Anny Divya enjoys writing poetry. She has written more than 30 poems in Urdu
Anny Divya with 2017 Miss World Manushi Chhillar whom she referred to as beauty and also a sweetheart. Anny Divya had also congratulated Manushi after the latter's win at the international beauty pageant. She wrote, "Sooo proud of her, Miss India is Miss World 2017, Manushi Chhillar with her parents after winning the contest. Both her parents, who are doctors were present there in China to witness the historic moment. " (sic)
Anny Divya with cricketer and the captain of the Indian women's cricket team Mitali Raj
Anny Divya has the distinction of being the world's youngest female pilot to fly the Boeing 777. Her journey from a modest background to reaching the skies (quite literally) is no mean feat and truly inspiring. In March 2019, Anny Divya joined the coveted group of Indian and international leaders, who are part of the over 500 LinkedIn Influencer programme. Here's her story
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