Working before ATP?

I hope everyone is doing well. I have been thinking about this every day now so thought I should bring it up here.

I’ll graduating in May 2020 with a bachelor’s in math, and I hope to start ATP right after. Lately I’ve been worrying about starting flight school immediately after graduation: I don’t have any savings, and have been paying off all of my college loans by working on campus. My family live almost paycheck to paycheck, although I’ve helping them maintain a reputable credit score.

Is it recommended that I work a year or two before attending ATP? I’m worried about the monthly payments while I’m a CFI or in flight school as I can’t let my parents deal with additional loans.

Thanks for the input, as always.


These are grownup decisions only you can make. The down side is every year you wait will be a year you won’t be accruing seniority and year you’ll be sacrificing the highest income on the backside of your career. That said you need to do what’s best for you and your family.

I’m not sure what type of job you’ll be getting but unless you believe you can save a huge amount of money in that time I don’t believe it’s worth the sacrifice. You can take out a loan for additional funds to cover your expenses and not burden your family which in the long run will pay dividends many times over. But again, totally your call.



If you can swing it, I would really recommend going straight into flight training after college. It is simply easier to stay in school mode and the rewards from getting into the program early will really pay off at the end of your career. Call the admissions department and ask to speak with somebody in the financing department. They can let you know what your options would be.


It’s recommended that you do what’s best for you. If you can’t figure out a way to start immediately after college, then don’t. That simple.


As Tory said it’s ultimately up to you. What I did after I graduated was worked from June to about early April to have a few grand saved with the intent of starting in May. My reasoning behind my decision was because I knew for ATP I’d need a loan and I wanted to have enough saved so that in case something happened I’d have a little booster on top of what I’m giving each month for living expenses. (I’ve had bad luck in the past with stuff happening to my car so wanted a cushion in case while in the program something happened to it, I was prepared and able to fix said issue without stressing too much.)