Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

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Type4
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Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by Type4 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 10:25 pm

Initially I was quite geared towards getting an aviation diploma, but after attending a information meeting and talking to a friend who took the first year of a program, I'm having second thoughts. I finished my PPL training over 4 years ago and didn't really stay current, so I'm just getting myself back up to flight test standards again now. I have since earned a diploma from SAIT in aircraft avionics. If I just stayed with the FTU I could bang out a commercial and multi-ifr in under a year here. But considering I have a avionics diploma, would it be worth the extra money and time to spend another 2 years in school to get a aviation diploma as well?

Couple things that made me have seconds thoughts on the aviation diploma, and when I asked my friend he told me it was never like this for him:
-Flight times/bookings are made for you vs. you getting to pick your own flight times. Supposedly it use to be a FTU style booking system.
-Few hours a month of mandatory "ramp-rat" duties on top of classes and flights. My friend told me that before you only had to do that when you were tardy etc, as a sort of detention. They say it's for experience, which is fair enough. But I spend 40+ hours on the ramp as a handler for my current job anyways.
-No info about the new fleet the school is getting, or what they are getting, current fleet is non-op. Seems a bit dis-organized, possibility of shortage if not no A/C ready in time for fall semester?
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metal
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by metal » Mon Apr 11, 2011 12:08 am

The "aviation diplomas" are generally pretty useless. You've already got a diploma in something that could help you, why would you want to go back to get one that isn't even worth its weight in paper? Save the extra money and just do the rest of your flight training. Also, the fact that you have a diploma/degree isn't going to be worth much until you start trying to get in at the majors (if that is your desired career progression), where every little extra that you bring, gets you further through the filtering process.

Heres a good thread relating to diplomas and degrees:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=68894
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by 200hr Wonder » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:16 am

Type4 wrote: Couple things that made me have seconds thoughts on the aviation diploma, and when I asked my friend he told me it was never like this for him:
-Flight times/bookings are made for you vs. you getting to pick your own flight times. Supposedly it use to be a FTU style booking system.
-Few hours a month of mandatory "ramp-rat" duties on top of classes and flights. My friend told me that before you only had to do that when you were tardy etc, as a sort of detention. They say it's for experience, which is fair enough. But I spend 40+ hours on the ramp as a handler for my current job anyways.
-No info about the new fleet the school is getting, or what they are getting, current fleet is non-op. Seems a bit dis-organized, possibility of shortage if not no A/C ready in time for fall semester?
Wow I see a few serious red flags here...

Flight Times being made for you is pretty standard for *most* college programs, and was when I did mine, as it is essentially class time and done to ensure that everyone keeps up progress. However that was generally just for lesson plan type of flights. Getting ready for the flight test, multi, IFR etc. For time building if you are not given the flexibility to A. choose your destination and B. plan and go where you wish within reason, then I would say that is a major problem. The whole point of time building is having a PPL and exercising the privileges to learn decision making, airmanship and becoming a better pilot. If you just get to choose option A. or B. for you 300nm cross country and get your nav logs form your buddy what are you learning? Certainly a good FTU will vet your choices and make sure you did your home work but within reason should let you go wherever you want. Back when I was in a program we had to go over our plan in excruciating detail our purposed route, fuel stops, nav log, plotting, alternates, etc. with the CFI. Then prior to launching get the final go ahead to ensure that we had a reasonable chance of descent enough weather to get the plane back on time within reason.

Mandatory Ramp Rat duties really? The reality of Canadian Aviation is you will get quite proficient at fueling, towing, and washing airplanes wherever you first get employed. Sound a little like slave labour to me. They can stuff it or pay you $10/hr or whatever the going rate is at your airport for that type of work. As detention? What are you in high school. Your late you a. don't get to go flying or b. don't get into class, be a responsible adult.

Wow and no fleet so you may end up in a situation with crappy aircraft availability, have to do one day cross countries to one of maybe a half dozen airports around that you can got to and from in a single day. Yeah not a good situation.

You have a degree, I think a flying specific one would be about as a good as toilet paper as it is no better than the one you have.

Go somewhere where you can get good instructor/plane availability. Quality instruction. The MOST important IMHO would be to go somewhere where you can have FUN time building, That is what it should be. Seven years later some of my favorite flying memories where when I was low and slow in a 172 on my own time with a friend and we wanted to put as much sky between us and our home airport as we could. So long as we put on 4 hours a day and we booked far enough in advance the plane was ours and we could go where we wanted. Saw some really nice little airports went to some really big airports and everything in between. The only thing I would have done different is to be sure to get at least 25 night x-country PIC during my time building. That is it.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by Type4 » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:59 am

Did you get a full class schedule? I thought the program was going to be more on the lines of in class 3-4 days a week etc, and or half days and the rest was flying etc. But when we were presented the class outline, it was five full 3 credit college classes per semester. Meaning I'd be at main campus 5 days a week, most of them full days, an additional night class, plus flying on top. So flying would only be possible at during evening and weekends, or any odd gaps during the day, add in the countless commuting between campus and the airport.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by 200hr Wonder » Mon Apr 11, 2011 3:07 am

Well our flight time was worth x number of credits. So the "CPL" Course was worth say 3 credit hours. The IFR rating was worth so much, the CPL ground school etc. was all broken down and worth a number of credit hours.

We generally had airport weeks and campus weeks. So one week everything was at the airport and the next everything was at the campus. We did not take any general classes that where avaliable to other students. All of our classes where set and we did one class at a time. So if we did say an English class we got that for 8 hours a day for a week and then wrote an exam and that course was over. Then say the next three weeks we where at the airport doing CPL ground school for 4 hours a day in the morning followed by at least one flight/study time in the afternoon for CPL flight test prep. You where expected to be at the airport from 8am till 3pm M-F either in ground school, flying or studying (AKA goofing off).
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by skybaron » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:54 am

Short answer: NO

1. Get your CPL at an FTU under a year
2. Hunt for your first job - GET EXPERIENCE
3. Network network network!
4. Get your Atpl
5. Network - be humble, & try not to fall into douchebag category.

If you really want a piece of paper to state that you're educated - then after all that (or during), enroll at embry riddle university and get your gumball machine degree in aviation (whatever that means) ONLINE.

Just my 2cents
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by winds_in_flight_wtf » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:08 am

The common misconception among aviation diplomas. People do not really go there for the diploma... they go for the flight training. If you manage to score a seat in one of the subsidized colleges, well you pay a hell of a lot less and get that much more training for a fraction of the cost. Paid $10,000 and got the CPL with some additional goodies. The added diploma is just another credential which can only help you and is mandatory for it to be considered a college program.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by supertrooper » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:45 am

Agreed, its about the cost, why would I pay 60 grand when I can pay 10 and not worry about being in debt plus be covered by osap if need be.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by winds_in_flight_wtf » Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:36 pm

Just double checked... was actually less than 10 . Lots of people always hate on the colleges though ... for reasons which are unknown to me . Maybe they just never took advantage of the opportunity.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by lownslow » Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:21 pm

Worth your money? Absolutely, if you can get into a subsidized program.

Worth your time? Debatable. Seems there is a decent bit of hiring going on right now (at least around the point I'm at, entry level could be different) so maybe getting all your licenses and ratings done in a hurry would be a good thing. On the other hand, if hiring is slow anyways you can bide your time at college while you amass a huge network of drinking buddies who can all do each other favours later on after grad.

<rant>
Whichever way you go, remember what you put in is what you get out. You want to be a professional pilot eventually, start acting like a professional now (not saying you don't, I just know that lots slack off and expect it all to come to them). Most importantly, if you have a young-ish instructor (ie. not instructing forever) be sure to conduct yourself in a manner that impresses them, it's a small world and you may have them for a captain in the future. You may even land a job on their recommendation. Did I say networking and not being a douche is key? It is.
</rant>
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by global35 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 12:55 pm

Don't bother. You will spend less, and accomplish more on your own. Focus on building time in the airplane instead of the classroom. Good Luck!
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by winds_in_flight_wtf » Mon Apr 18, 2011 4:36 pm

global35 wrote:Don't bother. You will spend less, and accomplish more on your own. Focus on building time in the airplane instead of the classroom. Good Luck!
That sounds like fabricated bullshit to me. Bottom line you will NOT spend less and gain more time doing it outside of a subsidized flight school. You are NOT paying for flight training at those schools ... sounds like a horrible deal. Please find me the flight club in Canada which will train you up to your Commercial License for just 9 - 10 grand (+ some additional things like a float rating, multi-sim , etc )
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by iflyforpie » Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:33 am

winds_in_flight_wtf wrote:
global35 wrote:Don't bother. You will spend less, and accomplish more on your own. Focus on building time in the airplane instead of the classroom. Good Luck!
That sounds like fabricated bullshit to me. Bottom line you will NOT spend less and gain more time doing it outside of a subsidized flight school. You are NOT paying for flight training at those schools ... sounds like a horrible deal. Please find me the flight club in Canada which will train you up to your Commercial License for just 9 - 10 grand (+ some additional things like a float rating, multi-sim , etc )
There aren't any. There aren't any subsidized colleges west of Lake of the Woods either. It seems only Ontario has Government funded programs to provide an over-supply of fresh meat to thrifty bush operators.

I did a mom and pop course and it probably saved me over $30,000 in comparison to the closest College, plus I was done a year earlier and had more personalized training by more experienced instructors.
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Geez did I say that....? Or just think it....?

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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by BTyyj » Tue Apr 19, 2011 6:57 pm

If you are looking to become a pilot commercially with an airline, then this is the matrix they use for assigning points to education.

High School Diploma - 2
College Diploma - 3
University Degree - 4
College Diploma related to aviation - 4

The question is, would your current diploma count as aviation related? Still, paying $50-$100k extra just to get one point on the matrix? It's definitely not worth it.
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Re: Aviation diploma worth my time and money?

Post by Type4 » Wed Apr 20, 2011 2:17 pm

Decided i'm not going the diploma route, the school isn't Confed/Seneca, so I would have to pay every cent for the flight training anyways.
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