By Jennifer Cairns 02 Nov 2022 3 min read

The only Mexican female Pilot in Panama: my story

Meet Paula, First Officer at Copa Airlines, flying a B737NG. Paula is the only female Mexican Pilot currently in Panama, and has kindly shared her journey in aviation...


My name is Paula Gomez. I was born in Cancun, Mexico, but have lived in Panama since 2009, so I would consider myself Panamanian too! (Fun fact: I am the only Mexican female who is in a pilot jobs here in Panama!)

Cancun is a very young city, as it's only actually 52 years old, so there are few people born there. My grandparents came from Yucatan in their search for opportunities so they are pioneers of Cancun. They are a great inspiration for me, as they started from scratch in the place I grew up. A lot of my passion for aviation comes from my family, so their story is important for me to share with others - if I can be encourage to follow my dreams and become a Pilot, anyone can do it!


Where did your aviation journey start?

My aviation journey started when I was a little girl; my dad is a Captain, and that's where my passion started. I saw and experienced his life as a Pilot, and I decided I really liked it and wanted to take after him.

Years ago, when my dad could take me into the cockpit, I could watch him take off and land, and it was very exciting for me. He is the best mentor I could have asked for.


What do you love most about being a Pilot?

I currently fly as a First Officer and enjoy every flight I make as if it was my first. I love that you just never stop learning! I also have the opportunity to fly alongside my dad as a Captain, and sometimes take my family with me (which they love)!

The Pandemic taught me that you should never take anything for granted; now, I can't hide my smile when I go to work at the Airport. I take and share pictures of my flights and enjoy my career more than ever; I love my job so much, I want to share it with the rest of the world! My Instagram handle is @aviacionconpaulita - here, I post aviation tips and my travel photos.


Did you face any struggles in your journey to become a Pilot?

I would say being a Latina and woman was challenging, but I was asked to take part in the creation of a book called Latinas in Aviation. This book encourages other Latinas to join us in this great industry and gives insight into different scholarships available.

If you are interested in becoming a Pilot, I'd tell you that you will never regret it - it is a very exciting journey.

Always fight only with yourself to be a better professional and find the balance that makes you happy. Everything is a balance... you have to find it!


Explore and apply for Pilot jobs here.