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Old 09-18-2018, 12:37 PM   #1  
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Default Why plan b

People on this forum are telling aspiring pilots to not get a degree in aviation. Why? What will prevent you from not being able to accomplish ?
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Old 09-18-2018, 01:06 PM   #2  
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Need something to rely on just in case you canít fly anymore, something that will pay the bills. If you lose your medical do you really want to make burgers or work retail? One can get a degree in water painting and still get hired by any legacy airline they donít care what you get as long as you have it. But only if you are younger then 40 and donít have more then 10,000hrs and several jet type ratings but thatís a different story
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Old 09-18-2018, 01:28 PM   #3  
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Need something to rely on just in case you canít fly anymore, something that will pay the bills. If you lose your medical do you really want to make burgers or work retail? One can get a degree in water painting and still get hired by any legacy airline they donít care what you get as long as you have it. But only if you are younger then 40 and donít have more then 10,000hrs and several jet type ratings but thatís a different story
How do you lose your medical? What if your healthy.
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Old 09-18-2018, 01:36 PM   #4  
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Youíre too young to understand growing old and its effects on your health? Iíve known several airline pilots in their 40s trying to find a new career due to loss of medical. One in my town died of heart disease IN HIS HOTEL ROOM! I went to a USC safety course with a former major carrier pilot who lost his medical permanently and was hoping the course might get him an offer inside the company.

As the old pilots said when I was young, ďevery passed medical means you can work for six more monthsĒ. And thatís true.
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Old 09-18-2018, 02:56 PM   #5  
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If I had to do it over again I'd get my degree in something different like business and would have done my flight training at a Part 141 school.
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:38 AM   #6  
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People on this forum are telling aspiring pilots to not get a degree in aviation. Why? What will prevent you from not being able to accomplish ?
You're asking the wrong question.

A degree in aviation doesn't prevent you from accomplishing.

It is a matter of putting one's eggs in one basket.

Aviation tends to be tentative in nature. The good job you have today may be gone in the morning. I've known people who worked at the operation where they planned to retire who came to work to find the doors padlocked. I've known others who were notified, while sitting in a hotel in a foreign country, that the company had shuttered its doors, leaving them stranded in that country. No forewarning.

A great many of us have part of foreclosures, furloughs, bankruptcies, flight departments that shut down, downsizing, economic downturns, mergers, and a host of other actions that mean that while the future looked rosy this morning, this afternoon the landscape has changed, and with it your job prospects.

You don't say how old you are or how long you've been in the industry, but presently it's a pilot's market. Jobs aplenty. Lose one job, find another tomorrow. No problem.

This is not normal. This is not natural. Aviation is a leading edge economic indicator, and it lives on a razor-thin profit margin. Today load factors are up, all the seats are full, airplanes are at gross weight with baggage, and the farmers have a market for the crops they need sprayed. A trade war is in the offing, we're about to see the six-year-old-in-chief make more and more mistakes, and you can bet the economy will not stay where it is. With that change will come job losses, changes, and downgrades. You may just find yourself looking for work, and when you do, your aviation degree will mean very little.

Why a plan B? For the same reason parachutes were invented. Why a reserve parachute? Because the first one doesn't always work. In case you've never jumped, when you leave the door intending to use the reserve, you carry a tertiary, or third parachute. Welcome to aviation.

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How do you lose your medical? What if your healthy.
I was quite healthy when I prepared one night for my flight early that morning to go to San Juan, and then to Abuja. Then I felt a bit ill, then began vomiting, and did so over 200 times by the time I got to the ER. I was in so much pain at that point that I couldn't say my name, couldn't think, and I spent the next eight hours vomiting violently before I was taken to surgery for a kidney stone. I missed my trip, and then spent the next three months with a kidney stent while undergoing tests and x-rays and jumping through hoops for the FAA.

During that time I did not draw a salary, because I was placed on leave. I was an active pilot, flying a wide body four engine jet internationally. I'd just taken my kids to aikido the night before. I was active healthy...and suddenly had no way to make a living.

Fortunately I'm also an A&P. I found work immediately working on C-130's and spent those three months of medical disqualification keeping my family fed and keeping me busy by turning wrenches, inspecting, riveting, painting, modifying, upgrading, and maintaining.

I was in great health and extremely active, martial arts four times a week, 30 mile bicycle rides four or five times a week, hitting hit hard, when I hit a mountainside under a spinning parachute and ended up in intensive care.

You're apparently young and mistake what you take for granted now for something that you think will always be there. Don't count on it. I was young when I wound up in intensive care, pulled from a bloody parachute with a split helmet, arms, legs, one on backward, my neck twisted around, and big blank spots in my memory. Youth didn't matter. Now, a life time later with ears that ring from radial engines and gunfire and a back that hurts all the time, knees and joints that click and a body that's worn out and that's been broken so many times that I've nearly lost count, I appreciate every day, and I am also acutely aware that every day flying may very well be my last.

One day you'll come to this realization too. Far better to plan for it than have it catch you by surprise.
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Old 09-20-2018, 07:21 PM   #7  
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You're asking the wrong question.

A degree in aviation doesn't prevent you from accomplishing.

It is a matter of putting one's eggs in one basket.

Aviation tends to be tentative in nature. The good job you have today may be gone in the morning. I've known people who worked at the operation where they planned to retire who came to work to find the doors padlocked. I've known others who were notified, while sitting in a hotel in a foreign country, that the company had shuttered its doors, leaving them stranded in that country. No forewarning.

A great many of us have part of foreclosures, furloughs, bankruptcies, flight departments that shut down, downsizing, economic downturns, mergers, and a host of other actions that mean that while the future looked rosy this morning, this afternoon the landscape has changed, and with it your job prospects.

You don't say how old you are or how long you've been in the industry, but presently it's a pilot's market. Jobs aplenty. Lose one job, find another tomorrow. No problem.

This is not normal. This is not natural. Aviation is a leading edge economic indicator, and it lives on a razor-thin profit margin. Today load factors are up, all the seats are full, airplanes are at gross weight with baggage, and the farmers have a market for the crops they need sprayed. A trade war is in the offing, we're about to see the six-year-old-in-chief make more and more mistakes, and you can bet the economy will not stay where it is. With that change will come job losses, changes, and downgrades. You may just find yourself looking for work, and when you do, your aviation degree will mean very little.

Why a plan B? For the same reason parachutes were invented. Why a reserve parachute? Because the first one doesn't always work. In case you've never jumped, when you leave the door intending to use the reserve, you carry a tertiary, or third parachute. Welcome to aviation.



I was quite healthy when I prepared one night for my flight early that morning to go to San Juan, and then to Abuja. Then I felt a bit ill, then began vomiting, and did so over 200 times by the time I got to the ER. I was in so much pain at that point that I couldn't say my name, couldn't think, and I spent the next eight hours vomiting violently before I was taken to surgery for a kidney stone. I missed my trip, and then spent the next three months with a kidney stent while undergoing tests and x-rays and jumping through hoops for the FAA.

During that time I did not draw a salary, because I was placed on leave. I was an active pilot, flying a wide body four engine jet internationally. I'd just taken my kids to aikido the night before. I was active healthy...and suddenly had no way to make a living.

Fortunately I'm also an A&P. I found work immediately working on C-130's and spent those three months of medical disqualification keeping my family fed and keeping me busy by turning wrenches, inspecting, riveting, painting, modifying, upgrading, and maintaining.

I was in great health and extremely active, martial arts four times a week, 30 mile bicycle rides four or five times a week, hitting hit hard, when I hit a mountainside under a spinning parachute and ended up in intensive care.

You're apparently young and mistake what you take for granted now for something that you think will always be there. Don't count on it. I was young when I wound up in intensive care, pulled from a bloody parachute with a split helmet, arms, legs, one on backward, my neck twisted around, and big blank spots in my memory. Youth didn't matter. Now, a life time later with ears that ring from radial engines and gunfire and a back that hurts all the time, knees and joints that click and a body that's worn out and that's been broken so many times that I've nearly lost count, I appreciate every day, and I am also acutely aware that every day flying may very well be my last.

One day you'll come to this realization too. Far better to plan for it than have it catch you by surprise.
As someone who recently lost his mother to cancer, this left my eyes a little teary. My mum was full of life, completely healthy, and we all had big plans until Cancer said otherwise.. Nobody would have envisaged this but it happened.
Moral lesson: Nothing in this life is guaranteed, John you have spoken wisely, Get a degree in something unrelated to aviation and if unfortunately you loose your medical along the line Your degree will cushion the effect, and you will have something to fall back on. This cannot be overemphasized.
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Old 09-20-2018, 11:12 PM   #8  
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[QUOTE=Christian102001;2676697]How do you lose your medical? What if your healthy.[/QUOT

Heres a few ways to lose your medical.

Bad car accident.

A friend of mine, an avid mountain bike rider wiped out big time, broke his back. Was out for 2 years.

Fall off a ladder cleaning your gutters.

I almost died working on my classic car that was on jacks.

Stuff happens.
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Old 09-20-2018, 11:35 PM   #9  
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How do you lose your medical? What if your healthy.
I knew a man who had flown for almost 40 yrs. It was his life. When I met said man 6 yrs ago. He never had medical event. He flew for the majors and was a Capt. 3 months into knowing him he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes so out of work for 3 months until medicine and diet were under control. Next year it was blood pressure. The guy was approaching his late 50’s. At the age of 61 he had 20 yrs at the majors plus military and private contract work. He got cancer. Every year after the 1st medical event it was something after another for him to fight for his first class medical.
Then 2016 he got weird lab results back after a physical that was required by his airline which is every airline. Normal everyday physical that is required. His blood work was off Rbcs, wbcs and platelets. I knew then some was very wrong. He had cancer and not the nice kind, it was very aggressive not much time on this earth kind.

Trust me it was very hard to watch a person not be able to fly to finally it was taken away from him before he was ready. He died 13 months after the cancer diagnosis. He retired because it was forced but not because he reached the age of 65. But he did have a plan B. His degree was never aviation.
Always have a plan B. I do and I will always have plan B because I have learned nothing is a guarantee. I am lucky because I am healthy and I get to fly. Btw age is a very contributing factor. Your body does weird things as you get older. My body is not the same as it was when I was in my 20’s. I wish I had my brain now and the stamina when I was 26.

Last edited by Black Sambo; 09-20-2018 at 11:57 PM.
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Old 09-21-2018, 12:16 AM   #10  
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People on this forum are telling aspiring pilots to not get a degree in aviation. Why? What will prevent you from not being able to accomplish ?
I agree with John Burke on a lot of his posts. He is right. I will not just say of knowing someone who always had a plan B. I worked for a major airline for 15 yrs. Awesome company, however I got hurt on the job that led to 5 knee surgeries. 3 on one knee, two on another. I was completely healthy no issues at all. This weird thing happened out of the blue. I was just walking and knee gave out on the job. Well the doctors told me to have a back up plan because I might be able to get back to 100%. I had spent my 20ís playing around jumpseating everywhere. I decided to have back up plan I did get another degree not related to Airlines at all. It saved my earning capacity. You never know when life is going to hit you and it will, it always does in one form or another.
Do not rely on just on one profession always have a back up plan.
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