Description: The recent emergence and growth of the regional airlines in the United States has placed a strain on the supply of pilots that are needed for staffing scheduled flights. This present pilot shortage is presenting challenges for 2-year colleges and 4-year universities with aviation programs to produce more pilot graduates in less time to meet the staffing demands made by the regional airlines. With this shortage, the pressing issues of how to train and hire qualified pilots to fly technologically advanced regional airline jet aircraft have forced the industry to demand more aviation skills from a shrinking market of aviation pilot candidates. Colleges and universities with aviation programs have been forced to compete with outside private aviation schools on a larger scale in the training of collegiate students for airline employment opportunities. The primary purpose of this study was to expose any inadequacies in the higher-education aviation curricula and to propose changes needed to better qualify aviation students in the hiring process at regional air carriers. This study concentrated on the principle that higher education is necessary for advancing a pilot's aptitudes and abilities to perform the highly technical tasks of a professional pilot in a regional airline environment. The avenues of obtaining aviation experience along with flight certificates and ratings in an academic environment from 2-year colleges and 4-year universities with aviation programs is examined, along with qualifying these schools with the criteria regional airlines expects from new pilots hired. A survey was used to poll the pilots from two regional airlines that were based in Texas. By analyzing the responses from the returned surveys, the quality of training that existed in higher education aviation programs was revealed. The study confirmed the value of advising a path of higher education for students embarking on an aviation career as a ...
Date: December 2007
Creator: Fullingim, James Fred
Item Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Partner: UNT Libraries