#056 – On this episode we uncover the path that leads to becoming an airline pilot. Dr. Kenneth Byrnes outlines the steps students must take to succeed in the aviation program at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, one of the most respected universities in the country.
The airline industry has begun to rebound and is expected to reach the pre-COVID levels of 2019 in short order.
Additionally, from reports presented by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Boeing Company, and airlines, such as American and United, we can forecast a high demand for airline pilots by diverse airlines in the near future and for the next couple of decades.
Dr. Byrnes presented the attributes necessary for aviation students to succeed. These have to do with the level of commitment, leadership, and maturity of each student.
He also presented a quick synopsis of Embry-Riddle’s quick approaching 100-year history. Dr. Byrnes shared the close relationship the school has with major airlines and the fact that some of them often hire students while still in their sophomore year.
That fact highlights the need airlines have for good pilots, and how important it is for students to do their very best since the beginning of their aviation training and coursework.
Dr. Byrnes also informed us of the advantages students enjoy when they graduate from the aviation program earlier.
In short, airline pilots must retire by age 65, so it to students’ advantage to graduate as early as they can, so they can work as many years as they can before they reach that age.
This gains more importance as they realize that airline pilots with that level of seniority usually earn salaries within the $300K and $400K range. This was a very fun interview for me to do. As a passionate aviation enthusiast, I enjoyed every minute of it.
Links mentioned on this episode:
Aviation 101 by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Nine video lessons, which will introduce you to the following topics in aviation: Aircraft Systems, Aerodynamics, Flight Instruments, Airports, Airspace, Radio Communication & ATC, Aeromedical, Aviation Weather, and Performance & Navigation
Federal Aviation Administration: 2020-2040 Aerospace Forecast - The FAA cites the airline pilot shortage as an ongoing issue)
From Simple Flying: Over the next 20 years, 80,000 airline pilots will be retiring
From CNN: Early retirements taken during the coronavirus pandemic are accelerating the demand for new pilots to enter the industry and begin training. By 2023, a shortage of 12,000 pilots is expected due to these COVID-related early retirements, as well as mandatory retirements
From Boeing: Economic growth has contributed to increasing passenger demand that has exceeded long-term averages. Boeing, Airbus, and Embraer, all leading aircraft manufacturers, project increasing (even doubling) their commercial jet fleets to account for these demands for air travel by consumers
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