I am strongly considering going to a flight school for training to be an airline pilot, but I am torn between two options as far as which school to attend. I currently live in the Northwest US, so I’m primarily interested in potentially flying for Horizon/Alaska Air as this is the region they primarily operate in. The schools that I am considering are ATP (I would likely go to one of their Seattle locations) and Central Washington University in Ellensburg, WA. I currently have my private pilot certificate and some college credit, but no degree. I spoke to someone at Horizon/Alaska and they informed me that technically neither airline has a requirement for a bachelor’s degree. Horizon also does actively recruit pilots from both schools.
I’ve done some research of both schools and attempted
to weigh pros and cons of both, including the type of schooling it would be, ATP being exclusively flight training under Part 61 and CWU being a college including general education courses (which some of my current credits may cover) and flight training under part 141. ATP also guarantees a CFI job after training, whereas CWU does not, but I am under the impression that CFIs are in high demand as well right now and finding such a job on my own should not be difficult when needed, but I could be wrong in that impression.
What it seems to boil down to in comparing these schools is that ATP would likely be quicker and cheaper, but CWU would result in a Bachelor of Science degree, which would also include eligibility for a restricted ATP certificate at 1000 hours.
If any of the pilots on here could share some insight or wisdom on this potential decision, that would be greatly appreciated!