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Homepage / Air Transport Management MSc student Quentin Lacoste on studying at Cranfield and his exciting new job role

Air Transport Management MSc student Quentin Lacoste on studying at Cranfield and his exciting new job role


Quentin Lacoste is studying for an MSc in Air Transport Management (ATM). Here, he talks about his journey to Cranfield, his experience on the course, and his exciting new job offer.

Can you tell us a bit about your life before you came to Cranfield?

I am a French engineering student currently enrolled at Polytech Orléans, France. Prior to Cranfield, I was pursuing studies in aerospace, automotive, and energy technologies. The programme offered specialised aeronautics and space courses focusing on internal and external aerodynamics and aeronautical and space propulsion systems. Additionally, it included classes on the operation and principles of internal combustion engines, their thermodynamic cycles, hybrid vehicles, and the general dynamics of land vehicles.

I also completed an exchange semester in the final year of my Aerospace Engineering BSc at Wichita State University in Kansas, USA. My experience abroad provided me with invaluable insight into the advantages of working in an international environment. The engineering ethics class I took there inspired me to pursue a career in the air transport industry. The course focused on safety and hazard issues in the industry, which aligned well with my interests.

I have experience in software and hardware engineering at the Atomic Energy Commission and in data analysis for anaerobic aerospace applications in the PRISME industry. However, these roles did not align with my passion.

What sparked your interest in the air transport industry?

I have long been interested in the air transport industry. My mother has been employed at Paris Orly Airport since I was born, so I have been exposed to the aircraft and airport culture from an early age. During my middle school years, I had the opportunity to complete an internship at the Paris Orly Airport air traffic control tower. This experience solidified my career path. I kind of lost myself in the technical aspects of aerospace engineering, which was less managerial.

You came to Cranfield via our European Partnership Programme (EPP) – what was the process?

Indeed, I arrived at Cranfield via the EPP. Firstly, I had to submit an application to undertake a dual degree at my French engineering school. To be selected, I had to be in the top third of my class academically. Following this, I was invited to participate in a motivation interview with my professors. The purpose of this interview was to provide an opportunity for me to explain my reasons for choosing Cranfield and, in particular, to discuss why I wanted to pursue this MSc, given that I was the first student to express an interest in the ATM MSc.

Following this, I received the approval of my academic supervisors, and my French engineering institution forwarded my candidacy to Cranfield, indicating that I had been selected and that my application file was of a high standard. I then proceeded to complete my application on EVE, which took approximately three weeks to receive a reply. Subsequently, the administrative processes commenced, including the visa, passport, accommodation, and tuition fee.

Why did you choose the Air Transport Management MSc?

I was aware that I wanted to pursue a career in air transport management. I began researching the educational backgrounds of professionals in the airline and airport industry, using LinkedIn as a resource. The ATM MSc emerged as a popular choice among these professionals. Upon reviewing the module curriculum, I found it to be highly impressive. The professors are highly experienced professionals within the industry. Given that Cranfield University had a partnership with my engineering school, it was an obvious choice.

How are you finding the course? What are the highlights?

I found all modules to be of interest. My particular favourites were those related to economics and finance, as well as those pertaining to the environment and marketing. The most noteworthy aspects of this year’s programme were the Barcelona field trip, which afforded us the opportunity to visit the Vueling headquarters as well as El Prat Airport. It was a valuable experience to gain insight into the operations of a low-cost carrier and an airport.

Furthermore, we recently had the opportunity to visit the British Airways headquarters, which proved to be a highly informative experience. One of the most appealing aspects of this course is the extensive network of alumni, as well as the guest lecturers who are alumni working in the industry. These include representatives from Transavia, Virgin Atlantic, CFM, Airbus, British Airways, Wizz Air, Qatar Airways, and other prominent companies.

What is your experience of Cranfield so far?

My experience at Cranfield has been highly positive. I find the campus environment conducive to study, and I have had the opportunity to interact with individuals from diverse cultural and geographical backgrounds. The 24/7 library is an excellent resource for academic work.

 You have recently accepted a job offer as a Revenue Management and Pricing Analyst at Transavia France. Congratulations! Can you tell us more about the application process and your future role?

The application process was straightforward. I submitted my application online and then had a brief telephone conversation with the HR department. Subsequently, I participated in a team interview with two managers and the HR representative, during which we discussed my motivation and two case studies. The final interview was conducted in person in Orly, France, with the head of revenue management and another manager. It was a similar process to the first interview, but with a more in-depth discussion. I received the offer and signed it one week after that.

In my role within Transavia’s revenue management and pricing department, I will contribute directly to our strategic revenue optimisation goals. My primary focus lies in maximising and growing unit revenue within a highly competitive and dynamic market environment. I will achieve this by managing the fare policy and inventory for my assigned route portfolio. From the moment flights are launched for sale, I will meticulously optimise pricing for each seat throughout the sales cycle, ensuring optimal revenue generation until departure. This requires in-depth market knowledge – I will conduct comprehensive analyses of competitor strategies, travel trends, and seasonal fluctuations. By continuously monitoring these market dynamics and sharing my insights with management, I will proactively recommend and implement revenue-maximising strategies.

Furthermore, I will actively participate in cross-functional projects to develop and refine our revenue management tools, ultimately enhancing our decision-making capabilities. Additionally, I will collaborate closely with sales management teams to ensure alignment and support in achieving our collective revenue objectives. In essence, I will leverage data analysis, strategic thinking, and a collaborative approach to propel Transavia’s financial success.

What advice would you give to others aspiring to work in the air transport industry?

I would advise them to go for it, not to be afraid to ask questions and of course to come and study at Cranfield University!

Who is your professional inspiration?

My professional inspiration comes from European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Pesquet. His background as a scientist and engineer, along with his composure and problem-solving skills under pressure, fuel my own drive to excel in this demanding field. I particularly admire his resilience, adaptability, and ability to collaborate effectively in a global environment – all qualities that resonate strongly in today’s business world.

What else should we know about you?

I play piano and guitar, and I love travelling and hiking.

Quentin Lacoste

Written By: Antonia Molloy

Air Transport Management MSc 2024

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