What degree should I get to become a pilot?

Hello! My name is Maximus and I am a junior in high school interested in becoming a pilot. My question is how common is it for a pilot that works for the major airlines to have a degree in something completely unrelated to flying? I know that to work for the major airlines you need a degree, but does it matter which degree you pick? What I have read online says that it’s good have a bachelor’s in aviation, but when my school had a pilot come and talk to us, he said that it was useless because the licenses you get from ATP show you know how to fly. I would like to get a bachelors in some thing like business or finance so that I have a backup if things don’t work out and also out of interest. Would it be unrealistic to get into major airlines with degrees like that?


 One thing that my instructor said is that you can be a pilot with a degree in mathematics but you can't be an accountant with an aeronautical science degree. All of my pilot mentors has said, "Don't put your eggs in one basket." In the airline business there are 3-4 times a year (depending on your age) that you could possible lose your job. Preparation and dedication can get you far, however, things do happen. It would be good to get a degree in something else that you enjoy outside of flying. Or you can get an aviation degree but minor in something outside of aviation. This is just my 2 cents the pilot mentors can give you a better answer regarding this subject.


Pick anything you’d like, but choose wisely. Pick something you’ll be able to use if you need to fall back on it.



The vast majority of pilots have degrees in everything but aviation. Study what you like.


To everyone that responded, I appreciate it. It has helped me decide what I want to do after high school.


Welcome to the forums! I completely agree with the pilot that came to your school. The majors do not seem to have any preference at all for the degree type, they just want to see a four year degree. Most pilots that I know have degrees in things other than aviation. I have known pilots to have majors from business administration (my degree) to piano composition and everything in-between. Just get a four year degree from a reputable college and you will be fine.