Air traffic controller to pilot

Hello all,

My name is Jeff and I’m looking for some advice. I am currently a Watch Supervisor air traffic controller working for the United States Air Force. Air traffic is a good career but is not what I want to do. Being a pilot has always been in my sights as the career that I want to pursue however I’m working on my degree but the money for pilot school is demoralizing especially seeing how even if you have a degree and required time it’s still unlikely to get hired. So my question is to all the pilots how would I go forward I want to get at my dream and I’m motivated to make it happen but it seems that the only thing matters ultimately is that degree.


Not really understanding what you’re asking? What makes you think that “even if you have a degree and required time it’s still unlikely to get hired”? Right now the nation and the world is experiencing one of the worst pilot shortages in history. If you have the licenses, time and a clean record, chances are excellent you’ll get hired by a Regional with no degree. Add in the degree and your shot at a Major arguably is the best it’s ever been. While nothing is guaranteed, if this is really your “dream” don’t you think it’s worth a little risk?


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There’s a lot of helpful information in the FAQ section. Do you have any specific questions that we can help you with?



I am not sure where you got the idea from that people with both degrees and flight time are not getting hired. Plenty of people are getting hired everyday at the airlines, but yes, they have the proper credentials. You will need a degree for the majors, but not for the regionals.


Chris, What do you mean ‘with flight time’? Are you talking about flight time with no previous hired experience? Or flight time with previous history of employment flying as PIC?


I mean total flight experience. The airlines have certain minimum flight experience that needs to be met. This is often both a combination of total flight time and pilot in command time. The airlines all publish their hiring minimums in their websites.