College Educated Pilots vs Management

SWAnnabee

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Remember everyone, this thread is not about civil vs mil or whether or not a college degree is required to make a good pilot. You want to debate those issues, do a search and post there. The main premise in this particular thread concerning college is whether the profession is selling itself short educationally and if this is advantagious to management's control over pilot groups.
 

Clyde

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I'll add a couple of more cents to the pile.

I know people who never attended college who are very smart individuals, and I also know people who graduated from college that lack any smarts at all. In other words, the college degree does not automatically equate to being intelligent.

I know several captains and a few f/o's who never went to college who make well over six figures and expect to be paid accordingly as long as the company enjoys continued profitability.

I also know several college grads who will literally do anything (including flying for free) just to fly a jet. These same people have mentioned to me in person that they would love to fly a Boeing so bad, that they would fly it just for the shear pleasure of doing so.

So, we have one group of people with no college education who seem to grasp quite nicely the concept of economics and refuse to be screwed by anybody. Then, we have another group of people who hold college degrees and will do anything to fly "the big iron".

Just for the record, I also know many who are educated and understand economics. Their degrees are typically in something very different than aviation.

I remember when I was a CFI (and this is in the mid-90's), there was a group of instructors who wanted out so bad that they forked over $10K to places like ASA and Continental Express just to be an f/o. This group of people were so giddy because they were in the big leauges making a whopping $15K/yr, after paying $10K to get the job. These same people could have gotten a freight job down the street in jets, had their training paid for by their employers, and start out making the mid-$30K's their first year. I'm not saying everyone who flies for a regional is like this, it's just this is what I observed from this particular group of 5 or 6 people.

See the pattern: A large jump in pay is going from $10K/yr as a CFI to making $15K/yr as an f/o, with $10K of your own money going to the training center. But that's o.k., because the egos of this group of 5 or 6 could justify the expense because they got to wear uniforms. ( I can say this because I also knew them personally.) Go to a major, and $60K/yr is a ton of money compared to $15K-$20K at their other place. If top captain pay is $100K/yr that's fine, because the same egos will justify it by not only wearing a uniform, but also because "it's so cool to be flying a Boeing."

Management isn't our enemy, some of us are our own worst enemy. Management just simply takes advantage of the attitude and work ethic that some of us create. Until that changes, expect the bar to continually get lower ane lower.

You want to be a professional? Quit letting people take advantage of you. The last time I checked, it was the airplanes that generate revenue for an airline. If your airline is making money, why shouldn't you be getting your fair share for raking in the revenue? Do you think the marketing exec's work harder than you?
 
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canyonblue737

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bozt45 said:
I posted this as part of another thread but thought it might make a good discussion topic on the Majors Board. I know the debate on college degrees in pilot jobs is still raging but does anyone have any intelligent thoughts on the below comments regarding airline management? Got to admit, it's in management’s best interest. Thoughts?

Anyone think there is any link between the lack of college degrees for many of today's piloting jobs and the dumbing down of the industry? Trust me, you will see more of this kind of thing unless the industry insists on some form of higher education to attain professional pilot positions. Otherwise, quit complaining about not being paid and treated like doctors and lawyers. They at least earned the term "white collar" by requiring an education for their professions. Believe me, airline management has figured out that it is in their best interest to keep the pilots under-educated. And they do this while getting many of them to think it's some sort of "favor" by making the hiring standards easier. They are NOT doing you any favors by making college degrees "preferred". If you were in management, which group of pilots would you rather negotiate a new contract against, GED/High School grads or B.S/M.S/PHDs?

Your theory doesn't add up because well over 90% of the pilots at the majors remain college educated and yet look how they are doing.
 

Ty Webb

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Your theory doesn't add up because well over 90% of the pilots at the majors remain college educated and yet look how they are doing.



Ding! Ding! Ding! We have a winner!
 

E-handle

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The Bus

E-handle found this article:


Reuters
Airline jobs lose luster in a changed industry
Friday February 14, 2:26 pm ET
By Julie MacIntosh


NEW YORK, Feb 14 (Reuters) - The sight of a smartly uniformed airline captain made such an impression on young Richard "Nick" Louis that he decided right then, at the age of 10, to become a pilot. "I was part of the old breed who pointed up at the sky saying 'That's what I want to do,'" said Louis, who is now retired.

"That's the way my career started out, the romantic days where ... it was always sort of a challenge whether you'd get there or not."

But, nearly half a century later, the exoticism and wonder that once defined air travel -- and those who worked in the
business -- has dissipated into a collective groan, as flying has morphed from a luxurious status-enhancer into a hassle-filled form of mass transit.

Cheaper tickets have made jetting cross-country a reality for the general public. And as the passengers became less prominent and worldly, so have the flight crews themselves.

The desperate state of the airlines, crippled by more than $7 billion in losses for two straight years, has added new fears
of wage cuts and layoffs into the mix.

It's a different world, but Louis, 59, says he can still see that uniformed air captain in his mind's eye, and feel the
excitement and reverence he sensed the first day he sat in the cockpit as a pilot for United Airlines.

"But in my 31 years, maybe I had 5 minutes where I could breathe easy. It was just no fun anymore," said Louis, who retired at age 53. "After 31 years, I quit 7 years early."

THE MEN WERE MEN

Some of that romance has been kept alive by numerous Hollywood movies that formed idealized -- if dated --images of daredevil airline captains and gorgeous flight attendants that persist today. Steven Spielberg's recent film "Catch Me If You Can" is a recent example.

But gone are the days when the sight of pilots and flight attendants ducking smartly in and out of airport taxis left

children awestruck and their parents envious. To most passengers today, air travel itself is not part of the fun of getting away, but an obstacle course of ticket counter hassles and security checks.

Not so many decades ago, the mere existence of a jet was a cause for wonder. But as blasting across the sky in a metal tube became commonplace, so did working in one. Pilots complain they're now viewed more as bus drivers, while passengers treat flight attendants like wait staff.

"People didn't fly as much back then, and the curiosity was there, said Georgia Panter Nielsen, who was a flight attendant
for more than 40 years. But some of the myth surrounding the job was blown out of proportion, she admitted.

"It never was as dramatic and as glorified as people think," she said. "It was the mystique." The demise of those myths can be a mixed blessing.

Today's low airfares and global economy mean even travelers with financial constraints can afford to book the occasional
flight. But children of the well-heeled 1950s travelers now fly in flip-flops and grubby sweatshirts, a trend that is irksome to many airline crews.

While consumers themselves have made travel more casual, the airlines can also be held responsible. Most of them have simplified their crews' roles, cutting back to the bare minimum on in-flight food service to save cash.


E-handle sez:


Except for the International flights, you are the "BUS" and those airlines that can not adapt will perish under the the likes of Southwest, AirTran etc. (who understand the theory of the "BUS") Just 40 years ago Movie Stars, business moguls and rock bands used to fly the likes of TWA and Pan Am. Now they (the well to do) have their own jets! The economics and technology of jet aircraft have advanced to the point that a 757-200 (in economy configuration) gets about 70 miles per gallon per seat. (assuming a high load factor).

Moreover, if you have to spend time on a plane, in the non-glamorus state that it is today. Would'nt you rather have a non-stop than fly through Dallas or Denver?

College or no College you will have to change and accept this ------unless some of you smart people get into management and change it for all of us
 

TexaSWA

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By WillowRunVortex:
Your first mistake is the misconception that an airline pilot is a "white collar" position. We are strictly LABOR brother.

Edit: ps , that was a quote told to me personaly by a NWA 400 pilot


MAGNUM!! said:
I consider myself a professional, not a tradesman. It's up to you whether you think that's blue collar or white collar.

Cant you read MAGNUM?!?! He was told that "personally by a NWA 400 pilot"

Man, what an idiot you are.
 
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capt. megadeth

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mrtoy2 said:
The only ones "dumbing down" our industry are ourselves. I've been looking for a reason that a college degree is required for this "profession" and can't find one. Go ahead and make the argument that you have to have one to negotiate a contract. I would counter that with you just needing experience in your field and educating yourself in labor law (doesn't require getting a degree). You simply don't need a degree to do this job and having one or not is NOT an indication of intelligence or capability.

You're just saying that because you don't have one.

He he....just messing with ya! ;)
 

stonewall

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TexaSWA said:
By WillowRunVortex:
Your first mistake is the misconception that an airline pilot is a "white collar" position. We are strictly LABOR brother.

Edit: ps , that was a quote told to me personaly by a NWA 400 pilot




Cant you read MAGNUM?!?! He was told that "personally by a NWA 400 pilot"

Man, what an idiot you are.

Good one, jacka$$. If you could comprehend English, you'd see that he offered no opinion on whether or not HE thought it was white collar, and you'd see that I offered no judgement on whether he thought it white collar or not. I just said it was up to him without attacking him one way or the other.

Now go f*** yourself.
 

SWAnnabee

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canyonblue737 said:
Your theory doesn't add up because well over 90% of the pilots at the majors remain college educated and yet look how they are doing.

Really, 90% huh. Can you post your source? And by the way, I wasn't thinking about just the majors but the entire piloting profession so you need to consider regionals, cargo, corporate, etc.
 

pilotyip

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It is 90% because the college degree has become universal almost everyone has one. They have become the equal to a high school diploma in the 1940’s. The 90% is much in line with Kit’s published numbers. In the cargo and regional level, the number of degreed pilots goes down in the 70% range.
 

Ty Webb

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Why don't you quit playing with your sheepskin and do a little research, "Mr. Collegiality"?
 

FR8mastr

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It seems to me at the regional level the pilots most willing to work for less or even pay for the privelage are the college graduates coming out of the academies. The guy that has been flying freight for years is generally not willing to work for free or pay for a job. But your average pilot factory graduate is. This is why they are "hiring" 300 hour pilots for these entry level jobs. These are the only pilots willing to work for those wages. So if the industy is "dumbing down" It is not because a small percentage of pilots dont have a degree.
 

Draginass

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Irrelevant discussion. It's all about competition for the available, good well-paying jobs. A college education in itself is not the point. The point is that the college degree will get you into a better flying job earlier than otherwise. The sought after flying positions (majors, etc.) generally have a degree as a de-facto competitive requirement. As far as military training goes . . . companies know the quality of training as well as rigorous screening process prior.

Some of those without college degrees carp and put-down those with military and/or college degrees with irrelevant BS. But, it just doesn't matter. If you want to get hired by a competitive company, a college degree is almost essential and a military background is a plus-up.
 

YGBSM

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WillowRunVortex said:
Your first mistake is the misconception that an airline pilot is a "white collar" position. We are strictly LABOR brother.

Edit: ps , that was a quote told to me personaly by a NWA 400 pilot

Cool. How has arguing for less respect and less pay worked out for you so far?
 

Ty Webb

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Draginass said:
Some of those without college degrees carp and put-down those with military and/or college degrees with irrelevant BS. But, it just doesn't matter. If you want to get hired by a competitive company, a college degree is almost essential.

Maybe ten years ago . . . but right now, it's all about the time, the types, the contacts, the perseverence, and the luck. Look at who is hiring, and look at who they are hiring.
 

PCL_128

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Does Airtran pay much attention to whether you have a degree or not?
 

jafo20

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Although having a bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering doesn't directly affect your ability to fly an ILS, the ability to think critically in multiple dimensions does. Guys with degrees or substantial life experience tend to be more adaptive and flexible in the cockpit. Others tend to melt down when they need to do something that doesn't have a published checklist associated with it.

There's a lot to be said for the security of being able to pay your bills if your eyeballs or heart go bad, too.
 

jafo20

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Someone said that 90% of the pilots in the majors have college degrees. Remember, this includes people who get degrees in aviation from flying universities. If you look at the numbers of pilots who have degrees outside of aviation (physics, microbiology, business, poli sci, etc.) those numbers drop precipitously.
 
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