Aviation/ Professional Pilot Sinclair

Hi guys, i have a question. So right now I want to become a pilot. Im currently a Junior in high school and i plan on going to Sinclair community college. They have a professional pilot program. They are partnered with psa airlines. After you graduate you will become a cadet for PSA. So do you guys recommend this program? Also, is the future for pilots bright. Finally, do you need a bachelors degree for the regionals? Thanks.


First I recommend you visit the FAQ section as that will answer many of your questions. I’m not familiar with Sinclair or their program. You should know that PSA doesn’t have “cadets”, they have a cadet program which means you’ll have to work as an instructor until you build the required hours to fly for a Regional. Regionals do not require a degree at all but they are desired by the Majors.

I would also recommend you give the whole aviation degree some thought. Should flying not work out (by choice or circumstance) there’s not much you can do with an aviation degree otherwise.



I cannot recommend Sinclair CC since I am just now hearing about it, but I will provide you with some insight.

The more important question: is Sinclair and PSA right for YOU? Sure, it is convenient that the CC has an aviation program and a partnership with PSA. Is PSA where you want to fly? Do you really want a degree in aviation? If flying doesn’t work out, are you interested in pursuing other careers in aviation? Or are you more interested in finding the most economical option? Or would you rather have a degree in something else so that you can fall back on something else you’re interested in?

For the record I am not asking these questions to pick your plan apart. I’m trying to get you to think more about your future. Maybe Sinclair really is the best option for you? Who knows? That’s what I am trying to help you figure out.

I’ll give you more background. I just flew with a 24-year-old first officer. He attended a CC with an aviation program. He was able to earn his commercial certificate and his AA. He was also able to secure financial aid and put most of the money towards his academics and the remainder towards his flight costs. He then flew cargo for a few years. After he met the hiring minimums for the airlines, he put in his application and received an offer. He’s now finishing up his degree online while flying for Horizon.

I share that story because it’s not the path that I would recommend, but it worked for him. I would recommend staying in school and finishing your 4-year degree in something non-aviation related and then knock out your ratings as fast as you can and then instruct to build your time, but I know not everyone is in a position to follow that path exactly.

So, lets talk about your suggestion. First, consider the bigger picture. All of the regional airlines are hiring and every regional has a partnership with one or more flight school(s), including aviation colleges. So, don’t be distracted by Sinclair’s partnership with PSA. Imagine you already have all of your ratings and hours and are deciding which airlines you want to apply for. Which ones would you apply to? If you don’t know, consider where you want to live, what type aircraft you want to fly, upgrade times, pay (except they all pay well now), company values, etc. In other words, put more emphasis on quality of life. Don’t just pick something because you can. Take the time to look at all of your options and choose the one that is right for you.

All of this information about different airlines can be found on airlinepilotcentral.com, company websites, and talking to current airline pilots.



Please take a look at the FAQ section as most of your questions will be answered there.


Hi Adam, sorry for the late reply. Right now im enrolled in a trade school. So if anything bad happens I could fall back on the trade. Thank you sir.

Hi Tory, sorry for the late reply. If aviation doesn’t work out I would either be a dentist or a electrical lineman. Thank you sir.

Also, Sinclair just added a bachelor’s program recently. So when I finish my associate’s I will work my way up to the regionals. When I’m in the regionals, I would finish my degree at Sinclair. Not to mention, I have a 3,000 dollar scholarship at Sinclair. Thier program costs less than atp. 59,000 dollars for all ratings. Thank you sir

I’m glad you found the path that’s right for you, even though it seems like you already made up your mind about Sinclair before asking the question. I’m curious what other options did you consider?


Hey Tory, I thought about going to delta state to get my bachelors in flight operations but it was way too expensive. 100k. Furthermore, i thought about getting my associate’s degree in business then go to atp when I’m done, but atp was expensive too. When I looked into the Sinclair program it was cheaper and they had a partnership with PSA. So i decided that Sinclair was the best option because it will save me time and money. Thank you sir.


Fair enough. Congrats on taking the first step!