Airline Pilot Forums

Airline Pilot Forums was designed to be a community where working airline pilots can share ideas and information about the aviation field. In the forum you will find information about major and regional airline carriers, career training, interview and job seeker help, finance, and living the airline pilot lifestyle.




Speedbird67V
02-12-2015, 04:12 PM
Hello, everyone. I am currently 17 years old, and I am beginning to prepare for applying to college soon. I have visited several flight schools and colleges, specifically ERAU (hated that place) as well as Arizona State and their Professional Flight degree program at Polytechnic. I am just curious as to the size of that major and would like for anyone currently enrolled in the course to talk to me about it, specifically life on campus as well as training with ATP. There are a few threads about it but they are all from the old days when ASU was partnered with Mesa Pilot Dev. I am also interested in knowing how selective the process of applying is. I take my school work very seriously and have an excellent GPA around 3.8-3.9. I am in excellent health and will have no trouble obtaining a Class I Medical. Debt for me will not be an issue since my grades qualify me for a substantially reduced tuition and my college fund will cover all of my flight training and classes. I look forward to hearing some opinions about the program.

Sam


csucbrown
02-12-2015, 11:33 PM
Major in a STEM related field and stay far, far away from an aviation degree. Do your training at a local flight school, and pay as you go. Don't do 40-50-60k package deals.

Learjet FO
02-13-2015, 03:23 AM
What he said! Look, I know you don't want to hear this right now. I took the easy aviation science degree. If you're as smart as you say you are, major in computer science, engineering, or a hard science like biology, physics, or chemistry. Do your flying during the summer if you just can't wait. If for any reason, economic, medical, family, etc, you can't fly at any time in your life, you'll have something to fall back on. Having been an unemployed/under employed father and husband, I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy! When you're struggling to get (the right) hours and nobody's retiring, and the FAA and insurance companies are moving the first down chain further and further back, or WHEN there's another big terrorist attack, an aviation science degree isn't worth the paper it's printed on!


Airhoss
02-13-2015, 05:16 AM
My daughter had a 4.2 GPA in high school. She got exactly $1500 in scholarships. And neither of those were academic based. She applied for HUNDREDS of academic scholarships. Don't count those academic scholarship chickens before they hatch just yet kid.

JamesNoBrakes
02-13-2015, 05:24 AM
I was going to say earlier;

You seem smart enough to be an engineer. Get an engineering degree. That is one of the only paths to being a test pilot, not to mention that lots of airlines employ engineers. There isn't really such a thing as an "aeronautical scientist". If you go this route, or a similar, at least you are actually getting something useful, rather than spending a lot of money on top of pilot certs for something that is not.

kingsnake2
02-13-2015, 05:43 AM
The best academic scholarships are based almost solely on SAT/ACT score. You want one, do well on those tests.

Airhoss
02-13-2015, 07:21 AM
The best academic scholarships are based almost solely on SAT/ACT score. You want one, do well on those tests.

True ^^^^ BUT even a high ACT/SAT is no guarantee. It has got to be better than a high score it needs to be AWESOME! That is where my daughter messed up she got a very good score, I think it was a 28 or a 29 and thought, that's good enough and didn't retake it. I know a kid from her class who scored a 32 and he got a full ride based on that, his GPA and a ton load of community service, leadership, sports and club participation. The kid is truly an outlier and deserved it. Especially since his parents are ranchers and just barely scratch out a living.

My only point here is that most people think that if they have a high GPA and a good ACT score that they are going to get scholarships. It is shocking how few kids get any scholarships based on academics alone. You need to start applying now it might just be a HUGE wake up call. It was for us. It also helps to have a good high school academic adviser. Our academic adviser was pretty clueless.

If anybody here has any real world advice to offer on the subject I'd like to hear it. Most people think they are going to get scholarships based on academics, and it turns out most people don't get squat. ESPECIALLY not with an in state school.....

kingsnake2
02-13-2015, 08:04 AM
True ^^^^ BUT even a high ACT/SAT is no guarantee. It has got to be better than a high score it needs to be AWESOME! That is where my daughter messed up she got a very good score, I think it was a 28 or a 29 and thought, that's good enough and didn't retake it. I know a kid from her class who scored a 32 and he got a full ride based on that, his GPA and a ton load of community service, leadership, sports and club participation. The kid is truly an outlier and deserved it. Especially since his parents are ranchers and just barely scratch out a living.

My only point here is that most people think that if they have a high GPA and a good ACT score that they are going to get scholarships. It is shocking how few kids get any scholarships based on academics alone. You need to start applying now it might just be a HUGE wake up call. It was for us. It also helps to have a good high school academic adviser. Our academic adviser was pretty clueless.

If anybody here has any real world advice to offer on the subject I'd like to hear it. Most people think they are going to get scholarships based on academics, and it turns out most people don't get squat. ESPECIALLY not with an in state school.....

Ya, I should have emphasized that. By high SAT/ACT, I don't mean in the top 20% or something - I mean in the top 1-2%.

AZFlyer
02-13-2015, 10:47 AM
ASU aviation graduate here...

I went through the Aviation Management program. Total bs degree. Wish I hadn't done it and gotten something useful if I ever can't fly for a living. I did my flight training through a local FBO and spent far less than the ASU kiddies in the flight department spent.

A 'flight' degree doesn't make you any more desirable for a pilot job for one simple reason: All pilots have the same pilot certificate that says that they are qualified pilots. After that, the type and quantity of flying in your logbook + who you know will you get the job you want to have.

Having the college degree is nothing more than a box that must be checked to be 'competitive'. Get a degree in something you can fall back on in a STEM field, as another poster mentioned.

Lastly, do NOT waste your money going to ERAU, FIT, etc or any other 'aviation university'. Horrible waste of money, primarily for the reasons listed above.

Life on the polytechnic campus is nothing like being on ASU main. All the ASU hotties are at the main campus. You'll be surrounded by a bunch of engineering and flight dorks, with the token 'hot' aviation chick thrown in the mix, which I can tell you is tough game to get, since for those girls it is a 'buyers market', if you will. But you'll at least get to watch a bunch of nerds dropping their game as hard as they can.

Seeing 18 year old kids rolling up to private pilot ground school with aviator sunglasses and "My other car is a Cessna" license plate frames gets old real fast.

Nice thing about the polytech campus is you mostly can park directly at the building that your classes are in. No distant parking lots and long walks like on the main campus. That's about it.

GucciBoy
02-13-2015, 11:47 AM
Delta seemed pretty pleased with my aviation degrees. If you get a 2.8 GPA, it doesn't really matter what kind of degree you get. The same could probably be said about getting a 4.0 GPA as well. If you want to get an aviation degree, go for it. If the industry completely craps out, you'll figure out a Plan B, I did. Besides, doesn't an aviation degree get you reduced hours for the ATP these days?

awax
02-13-2015, 11:56 AM
Delta seemed pretty pleased with my aviation degrees.

Don't sell yourself short, it was probably the stories about summertime frolicking on the Jersey shore while you worked your way through college as an underwear model that got you the job. Then again, it could have been the military service with heavy jet time.

+1 for aviation degrees being worthless.

JamesNoBrakes
02-13-2015, 08:44 PM
Delta seemed pretty pleased with my aviation degrees. If you get a 2.8 GPA, it doesn't really matter what kind of degree you get. The same could probably be said about getting a 4.0 GPA as well. If you want to get an aviation degree, go for it. If the industry completely craps out, you'll figure out a Plan B, I did. Besides, doesn't an aviation degree get you reduced hours for the ATP these days?

Wow, you went straight from undergrad to Delta!? Good job!

SUX4U
02-15-2015, 02:09 PM
I graduated ASU with a Business Degree. I had a graduating GPA in the mid 3's. I did all my flight training out of local flight schools in the PHX area. I paid for it all myself which totaled a bit over $30K. I spent the last 9 years in the regionals and just got hired at United. My degree or flight training background was never even discussed in the interview. if you need any further info or advice for flight training in the PHX area I am more than happy to assist. Good luck with your decision.

SkylaneRG
02-17-2015, 12:04 PM
ASU grad here. Did one of their many business majors at Tempe campus and did all my flight training at one of the local FBOs. No regrets at all. I work with kids either fresh out of the program or still doing some of their training and they want to cry every time they take a flight in the mighty Seminole because it's so expensive. They also look at me with awe when I tell them about stories of a time I went here or there, because you don't get those opportunities in the big structured schools like ATP... you don't get to time-build just to time-build and gain experience on your own. IMO that's a vital part of flying and the MOST fun part of it. Not to mention ASU Tempe is awesome... and at the end of the day I have another degree to fall back on if I decide not to continue professional aviation.

GucciBoy
02-17-2015, 12:35 PM
Don't take my word for it...

Pilot Application - Qualifications Considered

Educational achievements, including quality of school(s) attended, courses taken, major(s), grade-point average(s), and advanced degree(s).

Flying experience as demonstrated by the quality, quantity and verifiability of the individualís flight time. The candidateís personal flight training experience is also evaluated, including the quality of the school(s) attended, rating(s) achieved, and all checkrides and flight evaluations. Recency of flight experience is another critical component in this process.

College intern for Delta or other airline(s) or airline type-rating scholarship.

You can certainly get a job at Delta without an aviation or service academy degree, but you are voluntarily putting yourself at a disadvantage by doing so. If you think the benefit of a "backup" degree is worth the trade-off, then don't do what I did. That's the point I'm trying to make.

As for United, feel free to disregard everything I'm saying. They never called.