Real Answers from Real Pilots

Women new to aviation

Hello, I’m a women I just turned 40, I’m currently working at bank, I need a career change. I don’t have a college degree. Will I be approved at ATP? what are the steps to become an airline pilot, do I stand a chance to make it to the major airline? I know that money might become an issue, are there any scholarships, to help people like me to finance flight training? I heard i would need to invest about $76,000 or more. Would I be able to repay it after I become a pilot? This is my dream job, the only reason I wasn’t able to start at my twenties is due to the cost of training, now I need to give myself a chance or I will regret it for the rest of my life.

Angele,

Good questions so let’s go:

If you’ve had stable employment for a few years ATP will accept you without a degree. Regional airlines will as well BUT if you aspire to fly for a Major, while it’s not a HARD requirement, you’d be severely limiting your chances without.

The process is relatively simple. Get trained, work as an Instructor to build the required time. Get hired by a Regional. Earn an online degree IF you want to make it to a Major.

There are no scholarships that I’m aware of. The vast majority of people take out loans (which ATP can help you with). One of the great things about ATP is they currently have agreements with their Regional partners that will allow you to receive Tuition Reimbursement if you sign a conditional employment contract which helps repayment tremendously. The current cost of ATP’s Career Pilot Program is $65,995. Many people will take out loans for more to cover living expenses.

Hopefully that helps. While 40 isn’t old if you’re serious you do need to start moving, particularly if you’d like to make it to a Major.

Adam

Thank you so much Adam, you’re the best! I was so scared about how much loan I need to take out and not be able to repay it back but if it worth taking a risk, investing into something that would pay off at the end and never regret it. This is a profession that I would love for sure, banking for me is getting boring, no offenses for those working in the field, I’m not happy with my career right now. Pilot is not easy either, it probably has his ups and down. I just made up my mind, wish me luck with ATP and financing my training hopefully it’ll work out otherwise becoming a pilot will be just in my dream.

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