Starting the from scratch

Hello everyone,

My name is Jon. I am 22 yo and have always had an interest in aviation and flying. Growing up I can remember wanting fly ever since I was little to young teens but since money was tight in my family that dream never came to be. I’m now twenty-two. I work in the pharmaceutical industry making around 50k making IV medications for terminally ill people. I have a G.E.D and a four year old daughter with my girlfriend. I am very smart although the high school equivalent would say otherwise I just had a lot going on in life my senior year if high school and was not able to complete for my diploma. Now that I have a little background my question is what does experienced pilots like yourself recommend someone like me to do to try to get started in this field, if I should try at all? I’m based in Charlotte, NC and have a few schools here to chose from. I’ve been researching for awhile but obviously having input from actually pilots currently in the field will help me out a lot. What steps should I be taking to eventually 5-10 years from now to help set my family up for our future?

Thank you, Jon!


If you decide to pursue this career in 5-10yrs you should have been flying for an airline for a while. The first thing you must do is go flying. Wanting to, dreaming and having an interest are all great things but until you actually go up and sit in the cockpit of a small plane it’s all academic. I recommend you go to your local flight school (or ATP if there’s one nearby) and go for an Intro flight. There’s really zero point in pondering any of this if you go up and are terrified or get deathly ill.

Assuming things go well there’s really not a whole lot of preparing other than doing your research choosing a school and start training. A GED is fine for the Regionals but the Majors want a college degree so at some point you’d want to look into that. Really that’s it. If you want to fly then you simply need to start.



Welcome to the forums and thank you for the introduction. To begin with, I recommend that you take a look at the FAQ section as it will address many of your questions.

I recommend finding a flight school that specializes in intensive training in a fast paced program. Once you get through flight school and start working for an airline, you can begin working on a college degree. I do not think that having a GED will be a huge barrier for the regional airlines, but it certainly will for the majors. A college degree will help overcome this issue.

Again, check out the FAQ section.