Hello, could I get some advise?

Hawaiian 767

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Hello all,

Well as you can tell I'm brand new here, so I apologize in advance if anything im abotu to ask has been discussed to death already! :D

I'm a 17 year old junior in high school, I've got high marks so I'm able to graduate early, diploma and everything. Well, I've already decided which college I'm going to, and will be moving to Honolulu in about a year's time to start classes, possibly sooner, depending on how things go.

I'm going to be attending Honolulu Community College, and going to take the commercial aviation program.


Now, here is where I'd like some advise.

Ive already got the college plan all worked out, but following graduation, im not ENTIRELY sure which direction I should take.

About, oh...3 months ago my plan was to graduate HCC, move to Maui, and get hired on with Pacific Wings, flying right seat, and build up time that way. but lately I've heard some not-so-great things about Pacific Wings...I was wondering if anyone could tell me a little bit about Pacific Wings, and if its a good idea to get on with them after HCC?

If that's not a good idea, what other options could anyone suggest? You see, my ultimate goal it to eventually get hired on by either Aloha or Hawaiian airlines, but I want to take my time getting there, not rush things. Hopefully I can get into Island Air, but I'm well aware that they will not hire me straight out of college, so I need to find some other way to pass the time...flying of course...until I can meet the entry requirements and perhaps land a job at Island Air.

Now, this is basicaly a rough description of my goals, but really I'm willing to take my time and do whatever i need to do first in order to make this happen, and if it takes 25 years to get into Hawaiian I'll still be happy. :D

Btw if anyone here would be willing to share a bit of info or advise I'd appreciated it more than you know!! :D :D

Has anyone else done something similar, that they could share their experience? Any tips on what Island Air or Aloha look for in a pilot applicant?


Really, anything you could provide is appreciated.

thanks for taking the time for reading this extremely long post, lol.
 

mar

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Jim offers good advice

I swear you sound just like me when I was 17--I had it all planned out.

It's good to have a plan but you also need to stay *really* (I mean *very*) flexible in this industry.

Here's some insight into my twisted little world: I learned to fly when I was 17. I thought I'd be at the commuters (we called them "commuters" back then) in my 20's. Then I thought I'd be at the majors in my 30's.

Well.

I turn 34 this year and I've never flown anything bigger than a Metro. Not only that but I've spent the last 7 years in the awesome state of Alaska (awesome state but I never *planned* to be here).

In this business we sort of have to follow the jobs to get the experience we think will help us.

It's great to keep Hawaiian or Aloha as ultimate long term goals.

I keep aiming for Alaska Airlines!

But let's be honest: As Jim said, the business is extremely volatile. For all we know, Hawaiian and Aloha could both be bought up/merged/disolved/reincarnated into something called Pineapple Air by the time you're ready to apply.

Just do what you love and the rest will follow.

:)
 

Hawaiian 767

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Hi!

Well I didnt expect a reply so soon, thanks very much for your input.


As far as being flexible...I believe that I am. My ultimate goal is to work for Hawaiian or Aloha, sometime down the road, but ill do whatever i need to do in the meantime.

I dont plan on ever leaving the islands, i love them too much, they are my home and I dont think I'd be happy anywhere else. (well, except for San Diego and a few spots in the Carribbean and the South Pacific ;) )

My main concern is this:

I dont know much about PFT, and before I registered I saw a number of topic here that are really heated, I dont want to start an argument over it...but i would like someone to kind of explain it to me.

See, I've heard recently that Pacific Wings is a scam, that you dont get paid to work for them, you pay them to hire you or something like that....and that its an utter waste of time.

I dont know if that's true or not, but if it is, what about other small commuters in Hawaii? Not as big as Island Air, but smaller, someplace I might be able to get into with low hours.

If push comes to shove, I might do a CFI thing, but once agian I know very little about flight instructing (I've only had 2 hrs in a Cessna, dont have any licenses either).

so, if a person was to become a CFI....what do you do. Do you put an ad in the paper? Do you get hired on at an airport? How is it done, or what are the different options to take?


Sorry for not quite knowing as much as I should! ;)


Anyway, just some suggestions or ideas, if you could, or maybe tell me how you did it when you got out of a flight program at college?

Also, are there any people here from Hawaii, that might have done something similar?



Again, thanks so much for your replies!! :D
 

norskman2

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Whew! You ask a lot of questions, but asking questions is good - no, make that great! With an inquisitive, open mind and a thirst for knowedge, you will go far!

As some philospher once said, true knowledge is knowing what you don't know.

1. Dig, dig, dig through the archives on this board. Read every old thread. You've got time (I assume) and will learn an incredible amount about everything - flying, instructing, career paths, etc. The amount of accumuated knowledge contained here is incredible.

2. Check out a site called www.jetcareers.com. It's by a DAL FO named Doug Tayor and contains a ton of useful information for aspiring airline pilots.

3. What is PFT? As you've already discovered, PFT is to pilots like the death penalty or abortion in politics - a highly emotionally charged issue that practically brings otherwise sensible people to near fisticuffs! And like death penalty and abortion, there is no right or wrong, there is practically no way to change people's minds, and in the end it is a personal decision. My personal opinion - PFT is when a company charges you money in exchange for a flying job. By that definition, Pacific Wings is PFT - you pay, you play. As you've seen, everyone has a different definition of PFT. PFT has been equated on this board to everything from buying your CFI ticket to military training to training contracts, etc.

4. What flight instructing like? (I've completed CFI training) Well, it's exactly like what your instructor does. :) Buy your instructor a cup of coffee -- ask him how he does his job, what's his approach to the job, how does he feel about flying, what are the good and bad parts of the job? Would he it recommend it to others?

5. How do you get a CFI job? Especially if you're trying to get a CFi job in a specific area (Hawaii), bombard the local FBOs. Practically live there. Stop by every week and chat up the chief instructor. One big plus - get your CFI training at an FBO or school that will agree to hire you afterwards. Get any job you can at the FBO - pump gas, wash planes. Hang out at the airport and be an airport rat. Persistence and networking is what it's all about at every stage of your flying career!

Congratulations on your choice of an aviation career. As I said, with your attitude and approach, you will fly high in your career.
 

mar

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More great advice from Norskman

Just to expound on the PFT definition:

PFT is not paying for any rating that you get to keep (Private, Instrument, Commerical, CFI, type ratings, etc...)

PFT is not military service.

Listen close: PFT is when an employee pays for company specific training that the company is *required* to provide (and therefore, should budget for it).

The key points are:

*As a professional pilot (one that holds himself to a higher standard than Joe Sixpack; one that is constantly under the scrutiny of company and FAA; one that exhibits discipline, good judgement, skill and technical knowledge) you have the right to be compensated for your time.

*When we sell ourselves short by not demanding adequate compensation we hurt the industry overall.

*The training isn't an option; it must be completed with a minimum level of competency. When a new-hire purchases this training it puts the company in a conflict of interest....What if the new-hire performs sub-par but has already paid for the job?

*Not only is the training not an option but you can't take it with you to another company. If you're fired or you quit for another job--tough beans--you just blew your "investment".

*Ruthless airline managers will try anything to save a buck--often taking advantage of young, ambitious, goal oriented people.

Be sensitive to your position in the Grand Scheme. You sound like you're willing to take your time and pay your dues--that's great because it's a long road. But some of those that have been walking this road much longer than you and I have never looked back once.

Best wishes.
 
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flydog

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Oh Oh another PFT thread. Here we go again
 

Hugh Jorgan

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If I were in your shoes, I would do the college thing like you are planning, but go pound on the door of the Hawaii Guard. You might even consider Enlisting and working as a crew chief or something while going through college. If you perform for them and they like you, they just might send you to UPT and you could find yourself in a KC-135, C-130, or F-15. You'd be flying these planes part-time alongside HAL and Aloha pilots-the guys that can get you an interview at these airlines. I see that as the fastest route to the right seat of an Island Air plane, followed by that 767 with the wahine on the tail. Good luck!
 

Clownpilot

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Future?

A small point but if you have high grades and are graduating early then you certainly should be able to spell the word 'advice'.

Especially since thats the main thing you came here to ask for.

Simple answer. The airline business is cyclical. By the time you are ready to get a job we should be into a serious upswing again. Take it one step at a time. Get your ratings, FINISH YOUR DEGREE, then get that commuter job.

I wouldn't worry too much about PFT until you have more experience but there are lots of alternatives to that. I also believe that in a down market you do what you need to to get the experience by whatever means are available where you are. I'm not saying PFT is the way but frankly if people weren't doing it then it wouldn't exist.
 
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Hawaiian 767

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Sorry!

Whoops!

Yes I did misspell "advice" didnt I. sorry about that, its an easy thing to do when youve got a alot on your mind! :)
 

Hawaiian 767

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Something interesting.....

Hello again,

I was wondering if I could get your thoughts on some new information i found today.

We had a person come to our high school to tell us about a program called "Education Based Career Education" it's where they have you in a work environment, and you earn 3 high school credits doing it, kind of like an internship...without pay.


I asked the presenter if he had any aviation options, and sure enough, they do! :D

now, I'm wondering if I should do this:

For three class hours a day, I "work" in a job or career of my choice, and learn things. With the aviation, on some days you do maintainance work on aircraft, on others you work within the terminal, and on others...you get to fly. Actually I think he said you fly 3 days a week, you pay for the fuel,. and up you go. It's like a dirt cheap flight school program. :)

Then, once you graduate the program (about the same time I graduate early), you can get hired on as a full employee out at the airport, and because of that, you can finish up your flight schooling, and get your private license, for less money than other people pay.

So, I think I'm going to give this "EBCE" a shot, what do you all think, would this be beneficial?
 

norskman2

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Anything that gets you up in the air (just about), and provides you opportunities to meet and network with pilots and others in aviation would be beneficial. Just don't neglect your studies.

But it is essential to get that 4-year degree!!!!! It will be extremely difficult to get to the majors without it. I think you said you were planning on Honolulu CC. Find a way to get that BA/BS degree. An AA degree isn't going to cut it. Not only it is important for getting to the majors, it provides an important fallback. You never know when you could lose your 1st Class Medical. And if indeed you have a nice, long career in aviation, that nice long career will likely be punctuated by a nice long furlough at some point too!
 

Hawaiian 767

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Gotcha covered

Hey there...

I got it covered, my plan is to get a degree in Geology as well, and I might do some plant biology studies too, so if an aviaton career were to fail at some point, I can always fall back on studying Hawaiian volcanoes (Which I've loved doing since I was a keiki), and if not i can always do a flower plantation, LOL!

HCC does offer the 2 year, AS degree....but hopefully a double degree will look good enough for the major airlines.

That would be an AS in Geology and an AS in Commerical aviation, with a possible minor in plant biology.

Would that be enough, or should I scrap it and go for a single 4 year degree?

Again, I'm very flexible, I'll do whatever i need to do to make this happen! :D
 

norskman2

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Unknown. Maybe some of the guys/gals in the majors can chime in on that one. Most of the hires at that level have the 4-year degree. Might be the safer bet.
 

PositiveRate

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You NEED the 4 yr BS/BA degree. Associates is fine for the regionals, but the BS/BA has become standard at the majors. You can do all of your flight training while going to a 4 yr school. In college, I budgeted my training as if it were a second major...time, money, patience and creativity will get you where you want to be.

Can't say it enough...gotta have that 4 yr degree for the majors. If there's another huge hiring boom in the future, that standard might loosen up...or if you're in tight with people in high places. For the rest of us, though, college is a necessity.


good luck with your training!
 

Hawaiian 767

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Checked and replied!

Hey,

I checked it and replied, check yours. ;)


For everyone else:

HCC is the only college in Hawaii at this time to offer an aviation program, so if I do want a degree in an aviation field this is my only choice without having to go to the mainland.


However, if I must obtain a 4 year degree, I could complete the program at HCC, and then enroll at U of H at Hilo, on the Big Island, and take a 4-year geology course instead of the 2-year one at HCC.

Perhaps that would be good enough for the majors.

But, if I cant afford it in the long run, I guess I'll have to see how far the HCC AS degree gets me, and if it never gets me beyond Island Air, I'll still be happy. ;)

Any thoughts?
 

PositiveRate

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That's the right attitude. You'll do well in this business. Just remember, the airlines don't require an aviation related degree...just a degree. Could be music theory, geology, english, engineering....whatever interests you. It's important to have a feasible backup.

I would recommend going right into a 4 year program, while actively flying at the local FBO to get your ratings. If you plan it right, you can easily have 1000TT before you graduate. My parents got me my first flight as a present for high school graduation and I was hired by my first regional a month before I graduated college. It's definitely something that can and has been done.

Good luck!
 

Clownpilot

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Re: Checked and replied!

You must have a 4 year degree to get to a major airline. There are plenty of guys out there with thousands of hours of experience and every rating in the book who cannot get to the majors because of a lack of a BACHELOR degree.

If you can be happy at a different level then it's not a problem. But if your goal is to make it to the top of the commercial payscales that's the ticket.

Of course there are lots of other flying jobs you can get that are pretty exciting. Lots of them don't require a degree. But, many of them amount to slave labor so you better love the job cuz you'll be scrapin to keep it financially.






Hawaiian 767 said:
Hey,

I checked it and replied, check yours. ;)


For everyone else:

HCC is the only college in Hawaii at this time to offer an aviation program, so if I do want a degree in an aviation field this is my only choice without having to go to the mainland.


However, if I must obtain a 4 year degree, I could complete the program at HCC, and then enroll at U of H at Hilo, on the Big Island, and take a 4-year geology course instead of the 2-year one at HCC.

Perhaps that would be good enough for the majors.

But, if I cant afford it in the long run, I guess I'll have to see how far the HCC AS degree gets me, and if it never gets me beyond Island Air, I'll still be happy. ;)

Any thoughts?
 
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T

TDTURBO

......or you can just buy a diploma on the internet. Kinda like PFT only PFD, (pay for diploma).:D

Anybody else sick of the junk mail from that mail order diploma mill?
 

8sm

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Hal767,

There is plenty of time to do all that you want to accomplish. First get started in HCC, say hello to my cuz, the prez, then visit the HNL INTL Airport, take the Nimitz Rd towards Waikiki then take the frontage road, turning right to Lagoon Dr. You will drive pass 10 cul-da-sac's from Iolana Place all the way down to Palekona. There you will find the Air Freight Services Ramp as well as a number of Flight Schools and FBOs that will help you get your ratings/cert's. While attending HCC start flight instructing, not forgeting to count your blessings once a day. I would say get your private stateside then work on your comm/inst/CFI in Hawaii since thats were you intend on hanging your shingle. That way, you'll get use to the ever changing WX and winds. Did I mention the wind. Howling at times, but fun.
Your one lucky person with a plan that puts you in paradise to train for the best job in the world.
Hopefully, FreightDog will jump in with some advice on IslandAir. But most likely the brada is relaxing afta surfing all day. I'm still bust up over that one, FD!

Aloha for now.....8sm
 
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