Flight Training - March 2011 - 44
Roger Cohen, president of the Regional Airline Association, says that academic work is “far more useful in training pilots for modern aircraft” than hours spent “towing banners over the beach.” The committee’s two main pilot groups are divided, however. The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) backs the committee’s recommendations; the Coalition of Air Line Pilot Associations supports experience over enhanced training. If the question is truly about safety, the answer may very well be in the quality of training. The armed services have proven that a uniquely talented individual can be taken from zero time to the seat of a tactical jet in fewer than 350 hours if trained as a military aviator from day one. Sometime soon, flight academies, colleges, and universities may need to wake up and train their students to fly RJs and turboprops and not teach them how to become CFIs in Cessna Skyhawks and Piper Seminoles. San Juan College in Farmington, New Mexico, proved that concept for several decades using ab initio training, in which it molded young pilots into first officers for Mesa with just 300 hours. If the 1,500-hour rule does take effect as written, there are other important ramifications. Under
the veneer of safety lie other, less noble factors. Not surprisingly, a major issue is money. Airlines worry that, if the FAA increases minimums, air carriers will be forced to raise pilot salaries and benefits to attract more experienced fliers—presuming they can find any. With the pilot population declining and the airline way of life now much less attractive, CEOs of air carriers both large and small will need to face the fact that financial and lifestyle conditions will need to improve dramatically to attract flight talent of any sort. It is said that lawmakers who proposed the bill hoped that it could prompt better pilot wages and treatment. University flight schools are also thought to be concerned. If beginning pilots need to build 1,500 hours of flight time in their logbooks, they may skip those expensive institutions in favor of building experience through hourly instruction at the local aerodrome. However, that conundrum may turn things around for the schools and become a boon. Collegiate or academy programs might affiliate with a specific carrier, develop a high-grade flight training curriculum that includes advanced levels of simulation devices approved by both the airline and the FAA, and
train to that airline’s procedures and policies. And, yes, the airline should foot most of the bill for hardware. Better yet, both the airline and the school should consider recruiting the brightest freshmen and sophomores at the school, enroll them in the advanced airline professional curriculum right after earning the private pilot certificate, provide a scholarship or stipend for at least half the training costs, and guarantee a flying job at $30,000 annually to start in exchange for a seven-year contract. Wishful thinking? The military and foreign carriers such as Lufthansa have recruited the best of the best, paid for their training, and promised a job at the training’s conclusion. There may come such a day out of necessity, as savvy individuals opt out of aviation as a career path because of initial expense, financial risk, the employment gamble, insensitive management, and an existence that is anything but stable. Otherwise, who will fly the flights? The 1,500-hour rule just may have more positives than negatives. We can only hope.
Wayne Phillips, an airline transport pilot with Boeing 757 and Falcon 20 type ratings, is a B-737 instructor and operates the Airline Training Orientation Program.
IS THERE STILL TIME?
» By Wayne Phillips »Q. Dear sir, »A. Anyone can embark on a
I always wanted to become a pilot, and now I think I can afford to make it on my own. I want to know if it’s still possible for me to do so. I want to choose the best commercial pilot training college so that I get the maximum exposure and get placed immediately into a good airline. — Ziyad Aboobacker
flying career if you have the stamina, financial means, are reasonably talented, and are not “over the hill” in age and flying ability. You ask for the “best commercial pilot training so that I can get the maximum exposure.” Scan the pages in this magazine
Flight Training - March 2011
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - March 2011
Flight Training - March 2011
Air Safety Institute
Since You Asked
Legal Q & A
The Flight Training Experience: Making It Work
Where Do You Stand?
Is This Flightopia?
The 12-Step Lesson Plan
Who Will Fly?
Career Pilot News
Can a CFI Use Pizza in the Cockpit?
Flight Instructor Burnout
By the Numbers
Flight Training - March 2011 - Flight Training - March 2011
Flight Training - March 2011 - Cover2
Flight Training - March 2011 - Contents
Flight Training - March 2011 - 2
Flight Training - March 2011 - 3
Flight Training - March 2011 - President’s Perspective
Flight Training - March 2011 - 5
Flight Training - March 2011 - Right Seat
Flight Training - March 2011 - 7
Flight Training - March 2011 - Flight Forum
Flight Training - March 2011 - 9
Flight Training - March 2011 - Going Places?
Flight Training - March 2011 - 11
Flight Training - March 2011 - This Weekend
Flight Training - March 2011 - Tech Tip
Flight Training - March 2011 - Success Story
Flight Training - March 2011 - Air Safety Institute
Flight Training - March 2011 - Since You Asked
Flight Training - March 2011 - 17
Flight Training - March 2011 - Final Exam
Flight Training - March 2011 - Legal Q & A
Flight Training - March 2011 - Flying Carpet
Flight Training - March 2011 - 21
Flight Training - March 2011 - Insights
Flight Training - March 2011 - Checkride
Flight Training - March 2011 - The Flight Training Experience: Making It Work
Flight Training - March 2011 - 25
Flight Training - March 2011 - 26
Flight Training - March 2011 - 27
Flight Training - March 2011 - 28
Flight Training - March 2011 - 29
Flight Training - March 2011 - Where Do You Stand?
Flight Training - March 2011 - 31
Flight Training - March 2011 - Is This Flightopia?
Flight Training - March 2011 - 33
Flight Training - March 2011 - 34
Flight Training - March 2011 - 35
Flight Training - March 2011 - The 12-Step Lesson Plan
Flight Training - March 2011 - 37
Flight Training - March 2011 - 38
Flight Training - March 2011 - 39
Flight Training - March 2011 - Weather
Flight Training - March 2011 - 41
Flight Training - March 2011 - Flight Lesson
Flight Training - March 2011 - Who Will Fly?
Flight Training - March 2011 - Career Advisor
Flight Training - March 2011 - 45
Flight Training - March 2011 - Career Pilot News
Flight Training - March 2011 - Can a CFI Use Pizza in the Cockpit?
Flight Training - March 2011 - Flight Instructor Burnout
Flight Training - March 2011 - By the Numbers
Flight Training - March 2011 - 50
Flight Training - March 2011 - Advertiser Index
Flight Training - March 2011 - 52
Flight Training - March 2011 - 53
Flight Training - March 2011 - 54
Flight Training - March 2011 - 55
Flight Training - March 2011 - 56
Flight Training - March 2011 - 57
Flight Training - March 2011 - 58
Flight Training - March 2011 - 59
Flight Training - March 2011 - 60
Flight Training - March 2011 - 61
Flight Training - March 2011 - 62
Flight Training - March 2011 - 63
Flight Training - March 2011 - Debrief
Flight Training - March 2011 - Cover3
Flight Training - March 2011 - Cover4