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4 Tips for Applying to Pilot School

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Many of us are not sure how we would enjoy spending the rest of our working lives. For some, however, we are instantly drawn to a field. Many pilots describe being drawn to the idea of being a pilot from a young age. If you dream of becoming a pilot, here are some helpful hints.
1. Financial Help
If the financial burden of attending pilot school has you second-guessing yourself, don’t let it. There are grants and scholarships for those who demonstrate financial need or meet specific requirements. It is a time-consuming process but well worth it to apply for any and every scholarship or grant you are applying for. This effort could help reduce your financial burden significantly. An online search can give you an idea of all available scholarships. Spend the time looking up, applying, asking around and perfecting your applications and essays to improve your chances of winning. You will not win every single one you apply for, but the more you apply to, the greater your chances of receiving some free money towards your education.
2. Loans
There are a wide variety of good student loans available to fill any additional gaps in funding your schooling. Interest rates will be one factor you want to look at as you consider loan options. You will want to have enough money for tuition, books, living expenses and food throughout the program, but try not to take out excessively large amounts to live off of, as this is all money you will need to pay back. Some companies, such as airlines, require or prefer their pilots to have a bachelor’s degree in addition to their flight training. The type of loan you can get may be limited if you are only pursuing a flight school. Typically, it is easiest to get loans for programs through a university or college, and they often have better interest rates. The investment in yourself will be worth it if this is a career you are passionate about and will thoroughly enjoy.
3. Apply
Learn about the type of pilot you would like to become and what the application process is like for that specific type. Most airlines prefer bachelor’s degrees. Some pilots only need to complete flight training. Decide which path you would like to choose and research the job you would like to hold. See precisely what the requirements are. If you do not need a bachelor’s degree to apply, you may not need to spend the extra time or money obtaining a bachelor’s degree. However, it may be desirable to have a degree to fall back on if you do not enjoy piloting or think you may want to fly commercial in the future. Apply to multiple schools for bachelor’s programs in transportation, engineering, business or a related field.

There are some specific flight schools certified by the FAA that offer pilot training during a 4-year aviation degree. There are limited spots in these schools, so apply to many of them. Find wants to make your application stand out from the pool of other applicants to give yourself the best chance at being selected.
4. Be Patient
You may not get into the competitive program of your choice the first time. Be patient and keep working on yourself to become an even better applicant. Patience will be required throughout schooling and your pilot career. Flying can be a rewarding but challenging career. Training can be especially difficult and filled with frustrating times as you are learning to become a pilot. You will need to log a lot of hours in the air to obtain your license. You must learn to stay patient, calm and keep working hard, despite any setbacks or frustrations you may encounter.
Choosing your career can be one of the most stressful times of your life. If you feel compelled to become a pilot, keep working towards it. There are many hurdles to overcome on your way, but through hard work, dedication and patience, you can become a pilot!

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