I am a junior in high school, and I’m interested in a career as an airline pilot. I’ve decided that if I were to pursue this career after high school, I would study aviation in college. As I know from reading this forum and others, people have different views about whether or not to go this route. Although I’d be happy to discuss/receive input about it, this is not what my question is about.
I would like to know how to go about choosing a collegiate aviation program. I am going to tour Ohio State this week, which will be my first time touring a college. While my decision on which college to attend would mostly rest on whether the college is a “good fit” for me, I think I should place some weight on the qualities of the aviation program. The heart of my question is, what should I look for in a collegiate aviation program? If there are any current college aviators or graduates of college aviation programs on this forum, I would especially appreciate their input.
To give some more information, I am lucky enough to
a) come from a well-off family, so paying for tuition/flight training is not an issue
b) live in Ohio, where I can be close to, and get in-state tuition at 4 colleges with aviation programs (Bowling Green, Kent State, Ohio State, and Ohio University).
P.S., I took an introductory flight lesson at my local flight school two summers ago. I enjoyed the flight, but I wasn’t in the position to keep paying for more flight lessons. My dad, however, saw my flight and got inspired to start working on his own PPL. I’ve been in the back seat of a 172 on several of his training flights, and I’ve enjoyed reading his PPL textbook. I think I’ve been adequately exposed to aviation to know that this is a career I’d like to pursue. Now that I’m in a better position to pay for flight lessons, is it a good idea to start them, or should I hold off on flight training until college?
Thank you all so much. I appreciate what you all do on this forum to help aspiring pilots.