Need Advice:Naval Officer interested in career in aviation


I am an active duty Surface Warfare Officer in the US Navy. I’ve qualified on and driven various warship platforms. I love my job,however aviation has always been dream of mine since I was little. I will have the option to get out in a few years and I am interested in becoming a pilot. Is there anyone who could answer the following questions?
-can I be a pilot if I wear contacts (my uncorrected vision is horrible), do I have to meet certain uncorrected vision requirements ?

-are there any scholarship programs for any flight academys for transitioning veterans.

  • do I need to get a private pilot’s liscense before attending flight school like Lift Academy

  • is it possible to work part time/full time and go to flight school?

-which flight academy’s offer the best bang for your buck?

much appreciated,



Let’s get you some answers:

  1. As long as your vision is correctable to 20/20 you’re fine.

  2. I’m not currently aware of any scholarships. You may be able to use your VA benefits for some of your training.

  3. While I’m not that familiar with Lift a quick visit to their website shows that you do not need you PPL.

  4. Anything is possible but it really depends on your goals and how long you want to take to achieve them. ATP is a full-time accelerated program which would not allow you to work while in training but it would get you working, getting paid and building time as an Instructor in only 9 mos.

  5. Chris is you look up to the left you’ll clearly see ATPs logo on the top of the this page. This is ATPs forum. It was created by ATP to help prospective pilots get answers. ALL the mentors on this forum are former ATP students and Instructors who are now airline pilots. Needless to say we’re all a little partial to ATPs program and after doing our research determined that ATP is the best route to an airline career. ATP has been training pilots for the airlines for over 30yrs, has 38 locations nationwide and has placed over 600 pilots with airlines in the last 12mos alone.

Btw, you sound like you’re relatively new to the process. I recommend you take a look at our FAQ section as it will answer many of your questions.



  1. I have worn glasses my entire career. As long as your vision is correctable to 20/20, you will be fine.

  2. No scholarships that I am aware of.

  3. I cannot speak for Lyft, I can tell you that most flight schools do not require one to have a PPL prior to enrollment.

  4. Depends on the flight school. At a full time program like ATP’s you will not be able to work while in the program as it is a highly condensed program that will occupy most of your time. There are of course schools that will allow for working, but it will take you much longer to get through their program.