How to Choose an Aviation College for an Aviation Career?
If you are interested in a career in aviation, then you’ll need to choose the right aviation college to help you get the education you need. A few different factors go into this, but it all comes down to the type of career you want. Air traffic control, piloting, and even airport management all have their own degrees that can help you succeed.
Is a Degree Necessary?
In almost every possible aviation career out there, with the exception of flight attendants, a college degree is a necessity. Aviation technology is growing increasingly complex, and those who will work with it on a daily basis need ample training. What’s more, pilots take hundreds of lives into their hands on a daily basis, so it is important for even these individuals to have at least a bachelor’s degree.
Differences between Colleges with Aviation Programs and Aviation Colleges
Another important factor is understanding the difference between an actual aviation college and a school or university that offers an aviation program. In an aviation college, the focus is on flight, whether this is via commercial or passenger aircraft – including helicopters. You will be completely immersed in the industry and surrounded by individuals who have (and faculty who have achieved) similar career goals. This is often a better learning environment and lends to higher grades, better understanding, and a higher degree of overall success.
Do Your Research and Look at Program Offerings
The first thing that you will need to do is research the various schools that are available to you and discover the types of programs they offer. If you want to be an air traffic controller, for instance, then it is important to ensure that the schools you consider offer the right courses and training. If you’re interested in airport management, then you’ll need a degree in business administration with some aviation coursework. Some schools offer airport management degrees, too.
Consider Cost, Distance from Home, and Program Length
Finally, as with any other college, school, or university, you will want to be sure that you consider tuition costs, the distance that you’ll need to travel, and the length of the program. Most aviation degrees are four-year bachelor’s programs, and completing these will prove your ability to commit and meet goals. If you want to be a pilot, then you’ll need an ATP (Airline Transport Pilot) certificate before you can be paid to fly. A bachelor’s degree may entitle you to a “restricted” ATP, giving you a certain number of flight hours simply because you earned the degree.
Another exciting way to start your aviation career is through the military. There are many exciting programs out there to help you get the education you need, and you can even trade active duty for tuition costs in many situations. Once you have fulfilled your military service requirements, you can transfer into a civilian aviation career without much trouble. There are many options out there for aviation training, so it’s up to you to choose the best route.