flygcforum.com ✈ Aviation Forum ✈ Where Aviation Matters ✈

Members Login
Chatbox
Please log in to join the chat!
Post Info TOPIC: Flight Academies which one is the all-around best?


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 1342
Date:
Flight Academies which one is the all-around best?
Permalink   
 


The career advisor

 I have done as much research as possible on flight academies. I have read all the brochures and spoken to counselors. I will begin making my rounds visiting each one. Which one is the all-around best? I have also tried looking at some blogs online trying to get some feedback from students, but it was not much help at all.-Pat in Florida

Question: I have done as much research as possible on flight academies. I have read all the brochures and spoken to counselors. I will begin making my rounds visiting each one. Which one is the all-around best? I have also tried looking at some blogs online trying to get some feedback from students, but it was not much help at all. - Pat in Florida

Answer: First, understand that most institutions offer a fine service. Further, most have been in business for more than a few years and have many success stories to tell.

Choosing a flight academy is much like choosing an airplane to fly. All the manufacturers will get you from "A" to "B." What makes an airplane attractive could be a number of subjective factors: size, cost, comfort, and the like. While most training institution will train you well, it's the other things that will help you make a decision.

For most, cost is paramount. Quotes from admission reps are rarely if ever guaranteed. One young pilot heard a pitch from an academy that the total cost would be $55,000 to $65,000. After $110,000 invested and almost two years as an academy CFI at $10 per instructional hour with no additional pay for endless paperwork and sitting through student checkrides, he did find a job as a regional airline first officer but is now stuck with crushing debt.

Reputation is right up there in importance. See how many regional airline affiliations the school has formed. If the academy is regarded highly, it will have a number of agreements with regional airlines to interview pilots who complete training. Ask for proof. The admissions folks should be willing to show you the letters of understanding between the airlines and the academy. Obviously, if a half-dozen airlines welcome graduates to an interview with less time and experience than published, that's good.

Location offers pros and cons. Some trainees would rather fly up north where they can find real weather. But they risk waiting for days before the icing goes away, unless that school has flight training devices and simulators where training can continue even in the worst conditions. Many training airports in the South are very busy; expect a significant increase in cost as you taxi to the other end of the county and are number eight for takeoff behind seven other school airplanes.

Take a good look at the fleet. Is the academy using tired old aircraft, or is the flight line filled with newer machines sporting the latest avionics? Newer airplanes spend less time in the shop. And inspect the maintenance facility. Is it clean and tidy? Are the classrooms bright and modern?

Determine what advanced training is available. Certain schools will have a "jet transition program" as part of the curriculum that includes flight time in CRJ or ERJ devices or even in jets like a Citation.

How much time must you serve as a flight instructor? Some academies require that you compete for flight instructor positions at the end of training, pay you little, and keep you on a leash for hundreds of hours before the school will shop your résumé to the airlines. Finally, head over to the cafeteria without any school officials in tow and talk to the students. See what the school's reputation is. Are students and instructors treated like customers and professionals or worse?

In-person visits are an excellent idea. If you apply these strategies your choice will become quite clear.



-- Edited by flygc on Wednesday 11th of July 2012 01:29:09 AM



-- Edited by flygc on Wednesday 11th of July 2012 01:31:24 AM

__________________
Page 1 of 1  sorted by
 
Quick Reply

Please log in to post quick replies.

Tweet this page Post to Digg Post to Del.icio.us