Commercial flight training on my own or going to a big flight school to get training and a degree.?
ERAU says that when you have their flight training program on your resume, your’s gets bumped to the top of the resumes that an airline looks at. This is a very convincing sales pitch here as they are a big school and airlines will notice it. I’m currently working on a BS in aviation maintenance management full time while working full time and am considering dropping the degree program and my job to continue my studies full time. ERAU states that they fly about 3 days out of the week. I’m sure I could come close to that individually as I’ve heard rumors of people having problems getting training time scheduled with ERAU instructors. That can probably be a problem anywhere though, but with smaller classes locally I might be better off with fewer students. The equipment might not be as nice locally, but still decent. My main question is that I’ll have a degree from ERAU, but it won’t be their flight training degree. I wanted to get the management degree because I’ll have that to rely on and an A&P license if things fail with being a pilot. I am thinking that airlines would rather see any degree and an A&P license with work experience on the list compared to just a flight program degree might look better. Going to ERAU for their program, if things flop being a pilot, my flight hrs and aviation degree would get me no where in non aviation fields if things fail. I’m looking at this as if I would have started this way from the beginning. Atleast now after recently getting my A&P I’d have a mechanics job if flying failed even after going through ERAU’s flying program. My idea is for the management degree so than I can be a manager, mechanic, or a pilot. What do you think? Am I wasting my time by not going to ERAU’s flight school? Sure I can get the ratings locally and it may take a bit longer or be a bit harder, but I’ll probably save a lot of money going locally and because my work is paying for my degree in management that I’m working on. I am guessing that I’ll spend around 50k doing it by myself. I would like to be up to a flight instructor’s level in three yrs or so and be done in 4 yrs. with all licenses. I should be done with the BS by than. Another thing to consider is paying for the flight training. I will most likely be able to pay for about 30k out of my own pocket in 4 yrs. and the rest will come from Visa or a loan. By the end I plan to be in debt 20k which is a lot less than the 100k that I’d have in a loan after ERAU flight program. Another draw back is that it may be harder to get networking going on as ERAU advertises that they find their students jobs. It might mean me flying for a regional for another yr or so, but I’ll have more hrs, less debt, and a degree that would be more useful.
Also, if I decided to buy my own airplane, how do I document my flight hrs? Would my own signature be enough in a logbook or do I need to have an instructor certify that I actually flew those hrs. Thanks for the advice!