Real Answers from Real Pilots

Just Waiting


(Kieran Miller) #1

I’m halfway through my junior year in college and am planning on graduating in 2020 then jumping into flight school. I took an intro flight over the summer and LOVED it. Right now, finishing the four-year degree is my main focus because I want to fly majors, but I just feel like I’m sitting around as far as aviation is concerned. Is it a realistic idea to look into maybe getting a PPL while attending college? Is there anything I can be doing now that would make life just a little less hectic once flight school gets into full swing? Thanks for any help!

Kieran


(Tory) #2

Kieran,

Read the FAQ section. There’s guidance in there about what you should be doing.

In short, focus on school. Get good grades and stay out of trouble. Don’t get your PPL while in school. There’s really no need. If you want to be proactive, take the written tests. This will buy you time during flight school to focus on other things. Keep in mind, the results expire after 24 calendar months. So, don’t take the tests too early.

Click here to learn more:
https://atpflightschool.com/faqs/acpp-prep-written-knowledge-tests.html

Tory


#3

Kieran,

There’s really no need getting your Private now nor will it save you much time in the long run. BUT there’s really nothing wrong with it either. If you’ve got the money and the time and feel like flying then by all means do so. It might also help if you have any doubts whether flying is really what you want to do. Totally your call.

Adam


#4

Kieran,

I got my private at a local school while I was in college. I found that it distracted from my school work, took longer than it should and cost more than I was told it would. I would really just focus on the college and go to flight training afterwards.

Chris


(Anthony Thai) #5

Hi all,
I am in the same situation. I will graduate from college in May 2019. I’m taking only 3 easy classes in Spring 2019, which only keeps me from going to flight school half a day on Friday. Indeed, those are three 1-hour seminars that I need to get my degree. They are not true classes. Therefore, if I start my training January 2019, flight program is my priority. However, the ATP operators talked me out of that option. They told me to finish school first.
Nevertheless, I am living apart from my wife. And we expect to be together again in September 2019. Furthermore, I wish to be an earlier bird on the pilot shortage now.
For 3 aforementioned reasons, I still think that starting in January during my last year of college is optimal. I know ATP advises prospective students against going college and train simultaneously because ATP wants students to focus 100% on the training. But should it be applied on every case? If I am adamant and show them my reasons, can I still start training?


#6

Anthony,

ATP will not allow you to train with them while you are enrolled in college. It is a full time program. Other, local schools, would be happy to accommodate you, but I do not recommend it for the reasons discussed above.

Chris


(Tory) #7

Anthony,

If you are thinking about training at ATP while in college, then no. That won’t be possible and Admissions won’t allow it. If you want to get your PPL elsewhere and then join ATP after college with a PPL, including 78+ total time, that’s up to you. Also, taking the written tests is another way to be using your time wisely until college is over.
https://atpflightschool.com/faqs/acpp-prep-written-knowledge-tests.html

Tory


#8

Anthony,

Chris and Tory (and as you say ATP admin) ALL have advised you against trying to remain in school while attending ATP, and therefore if you tell them, they will not allow you admission. You could of course lie or simply not tell them. Every now and then there are people who think they’re “special” and can pull it off and frankly it’s your life and your money. But know that you have been told and WHEN (not if) things unravel, you start busting checkrides and washout of training it’s 100% your fault, NO ONE will be sympathetic, you will lose a considerable amount of money and checkride busts could strongly impact you ever having a career as a pilot.

Decision making based on all available information is a critical and perhaps the most important pilot skill. Merely based on the fact that you’re willing to disregard the advice of people with years of experience on the subject based on your own desires and lack of patience demonstrates a clear lack of judgment and maturity. The good news is when it does happen, rather than being a successful airline pilot you can go online and join the ranks of those who say “ATP is a scam! They lied, they took my money, the instructors are terrible, they, they, they, etc etc etc…”.

Adam

Adam


(Kieran Miller) #9

Awesome! Thanks a lot, that’ll definitely be useful to look at


(Kieran Miller) #10

Alright sounds good, thanks. I was really wondering if there was any overall benefit timewise to getting a PPL now.


(Kieran Miller) #11

Thanks for the insight, that puts me at ease a little more.


#12

Kieran,

Did you actually read my response? This is good preparation for an airline interview. If you ask a question and the interviewer answers it and you then ask another question which they already answered in the last it will be a VERY short interview.

Adam


(Tory) #13

I would argue that a student attending college, even only 3 easy classes, while enrolled in ATP’s program wouldn’t even make it to the check ride. Training lessons would be missed because of conflicting schedules. The absence would catch management’s attention and the student would get a phone call. I should know. I received one of these calls when I was picking up shifts on the weekends. I missed one lesson and I got a call within a few days. I quit my job and continued with the program.

Tory


(Kieran Miller) #14

Adam,

Yeah I did. I was reemphasizing the fact that that was my main concern and you answered it. I can see how it was read differently, though. Part of the difficulties of communicating through text rather than face-to-face, I suppose.

Kieran


(Anthony Thai) #15

Thanks for chiming in guys! A CFI at my local ATP base suggests I could do flight training first, and finish my last semester once become a CFI. What do you think about that idea?
On the contrary, if I start in May 2019, will I still able to catch the wave since aviation is known to be cyclical?


#16

Anthony,

I think the wave could crash tomorrow or in 20 years. None of us have crystal balls. What I do know is if you’re one semester away from finishing your degree you should finish your degree.

Adam


#17

Anthony,

I would finish college, then flight training. Too many people say they will go back to school and never do. Eventually credits expire as well.

While none of us have a crystal ball, it does seem like the pilot shortage will continue.

Chris


(Tory) #18

The advice you received from that CFI doesn’t make any sense. Why would you do that when you’re so close? Finish your degree, Anthony. Aviation is a marathon, not a sprint. Take the written tests before you start like I suggested. With those out of the way, you increase your potential of finishing the program early, which could put you on the same timeline as if you were to start training now.

Stop fixating on the “wave.” You’re making it sound like your success depends on catching the front side of it and you’re willing to postpone your degree, which is your backup plan btw, to jumpstart your training. In the end, you’re free to do what you want, but since you asked, I think postponing your degree is irrational and unnecessary.

Tory