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COLLEGE DEGREE'S - Valuable for helicopter pilots?


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#1 AdminLB

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 11:16

Helicopter Industry Education Opinionnaire

What is your opinion about the value of a bachelor's degree for helicopter pilot interviews and job placement?

This is part of an industry research project and we need your honest opinion!

Take 2 minute survey - click here


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Regards,
Lyn Burks
Rotorcraft Pro Media Network
www.verticalreference.com

"It's better to break ground and head into the wind than to break wind and head into the ground."

#2 Gomer Pylot

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 11:31

One does not form a plural by adding an apostrophe.  That is basic grammar, which any middle school graduate, let alone a college graduate, should know.


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Best Regards,

Gomer

#3 apiaguy

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 11:59

I do hate the narrow focus, painting you into a corner questions.  It should be obvious to all that a college degree is an important character builder and provides a rounded educational background.  I personally think that narrow focused education (aviation professional training in persuit of piloting) is looked upon as a lesser education than a traditional bachelor degree education in nearly any other focus.  Furthermore, an associate degree in pilot training coursework is even more worthless.  Hard to even be taken seriously in academic circles.


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#4 crashed_05

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 12:26

I took this survey at HeliSuccess, but I agree with apiaguy.  Can you be a helicopter pilot with just the minimum ratings...sure.  But, why not hold yourself to a higher standard?  I do believe that with a bachelors degree comes more oportunities...and even more so with a masters....and so on.


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#5 Flying Pig

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 12:38

More opportunites, defintely. With flight experience a degree can only make you more marketable after you are an experienced pilot. But i think when you start getting into a Masters level, those opportunities will probably take you out of the cockpit and into management, HR, etc. But hey..... all it takes is to lose a medical cert one day. A higher level of degree plus a career of flying behind you may move you into management and at least you could still be around aviation.
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#6 pilot#476398

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 12:58

There are only two reasons for helicopter pilots to get a college degree;

 

1.  Enrolling in the degree program will allow you to get the funding needed for flight school.

 

2.  The degree (preferably a non-aviation one) gives you a back-up plan in case you never find work as a pilot....or lose your medical (as stated above) :D


Edited by pilot#476398, 13 November 2013 - 13:01.

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#7 WolftalonID

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 17:36

Educational institutions are a business that absorb the income of the attendees. I honestly think that training to sort out the hype, and see the potential of future use of your time spent learning would far better suit the learner than the classes one is forced to take in order to meet a degrees requirements.

Vocational training has definitely filled that gap tremendously over the last few decades and has become much more accepted in the professional fields.
For those who see themselves moving into management, or business positions, going for further education into business management or marketing is going to always help, assuming he educator has a solid program to begin with.

Nothing like going to a broke financial advisor for advise! Lol. If the educator has not built a business like yours....you shouldnt be learning from them. Follow those in life that are headed where you want to go.
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Sometimes we think we know it all....only later to discover we only knew all we had learned. Never stop learning.

#8 aeroscout

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 18:23

Lyn started a thread about this on the impolite forum today.



#9 avbug

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Posted 15 November 2013 - 02:44

 It should be obvious to all that a college degree is an important character builder and provides a rounded educational background. 

 

 

I disagree.  There is nothing inherently character building about having prostrated one's self to an institution for a period of time, nor does a degree necessarily even equate to learning, let alone an actual education.  It's a great way to go into debt, however, and if that's one's goal, then the degree is the way to go.  Short of buying an aircraft, in which one gets a very expensive collection of metal parts for one's trouble, one can sink equivalent values into the degree, and come away with a small piece of paper.  Your choice.

 

Certainly one can take from a degree what one puts into the effort, but a degree is no guarantee of learning nor education.  It's just a degree.  

 

As aviators go, by and large helicopter pilots are utility operators, and degrees are for the most part not particularly useful or applicable to such operations.  

 

If you're going to earn a degree, make it something useful, in a discipline on which you may one day capitalize for a return, for a job.  

 

Maintenance training does make you more valuable to a lot of operators, primarily utility operators, and a degree in aircraft maintenance technology is a good place to start.



#10 Flying Pig

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Posted 15 November 2013 - 16:02

If a college degree is about building character, Im glad I went with the route I decided on....

 

http://www.tecom.mar...t/UnitHome.aspx


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#11 Gomer Pylot

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Posted 15 November 2013 - 22:15

Having a degree is yet another discriminator.  It shows at least enough intelligence to get through the university, and the persistence to complete it.  It won't get you a job by itself, but given two applicants who are otherwise equally qualified, the one with the degree is more likely to be hired.  


Best Regards,

Gomer

#12 ospreydriver

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 17:45

There is always value in learning things.  It makes one a better person, which has a certain value in itself.

 

Does it make one a better pilot?  Not really, though I think going through some academic rigor makes one better able to absorb some aeronautical concepts later.

 

I'm a Marine pilot, and we require our pilots to have degrees.  The Army doesn't, and does just fine.

 

Though I'm still learning about the civilian flying world as I prepare to transition in a few months, it's my impression that sometimes flying work is hard to come by.  Having a degree means better options while you're waiting for your ship (or helo) to come in.

 

As far as being expensive, it's only expensive if you pay for it.  The military will, through officer programs on the front side or via GI Bill on the back, should you want it badly enough.


"Why can't we buy just one airplane and let the pilots take turns flying it?"--President Calvin Coolidge


#13 avbug

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 08:42

It won't get you a job by itself, but given two applicants who are otherwise equally qualified, the one with the degree is more likely to be hired.  

 

 

This is a myth largely promulgated by the universities that advance the degree.  Who really stands the most to gain in that equation?  The university that receives several hundred thousand dollars of the student's borrowed money in exchange for a piece of paper and a brand?

 

That's not really an equation, nor equitable.  It's also not really true.

 

There are some professional positions where a degree may be leverage, but in the vast majority of flying positions, especially utility positions, and most helicopter positions, a degree is of little value to distinguish one employee over another.  

 

Of far more interest to an employer is the certification, experience, and capability of the applicant, than whether he or she has a degree.  A degree speaks to none of those things.

 

Those most impressed with degrees are…those who have the degrees.  The myth is self-promoting, yet becomes no closer to being true.


Edited by avbug, 21 November 2013 - 08:43.


#14 Spike

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 11:22

This is a myth largely promulgated by the universities that advance the degree.  Who really stands the most to gain in that equation?  The university that receives several hundred thousand dollars of the student's borrowed money in exchange for a piece of paper and a brand?

 

That's not really an equation, nor equitable.  It's also not really true.

 

There are some professional positions where a degree may be leverage, but in the vast majority of flying positions, especially utility positions, and most helicopter positions, a degree is of little value to distinguish one employee over another. 

 

Of far more interest to an employer is the certification, experience, and capability of the applicant, than whether he or she has a degree.  A degree speaks to none of those things.

 

Those most impressed with degrees are…those who have the degrees.  The myth is self-promoting, yet becomes no closer to being true.

 

I wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment and what I’ve experience over the past years. However, it would appear the industry is migrating towards an “airline” mentality/philosophy which could change the demographic of the hiring pool.  Sadly, I’ve already seen this happen.  That is, an educated individual who is hired over a more qualified/experienced individual and, a huge problem for this industry in the future…….. 



#15 apiaguy

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 11:47

why would it be a "huge problem for this industry in the future"?  Eventually the standard will rise to having a degree and the old schoolers who simply learned by experience will be weeded out.  The huge problem to me seems to be students willing to pay for a "degree" which holds no value... ie a degree in aviation studies (not including technical maintenance degree/certification)

I am a proponent of self education and education without the academic environment... ie trade schools; apprenticship programs etc... and that may be well suited to aviation more than the "degree" nonsense.  I guess either way, talent moves to the top regardless of accolades. 

ps. I don't think people who have degrees simply want to self promulgate their experience in the system...  I believe they feel their "degree" has made them a better person that is more well rounded and educated in a variety of topics ....  maybe that makes them a jack of all trades and master of none.



#16 iChris

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 12:22

What is your opinion about the value of a bachelor's degree for helicopter pilot interviews and job placement?
 

 

I went for and obtained a degree in engineering because of the passion I had to learn more about electronics and computer technology.

 

If you have no passion, for the field you’re studying, and only seek a degree to get a so-called job, you’ll end up greatly disappointed. 

 

The Great College Conspiracy

 

 


Edited by iChris, 21 November 2013 - 12:23.

Regards,

Chris

#17 Spike

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 12:46

why would it be a "huge problem for this industry in the future"?  Eventually the standard will rise to having a degree and the old schoolers who simply learned by experience will be weeded out. 

 

Don’t get me wrong, I too am a proponent of an education, formal or otherwise…. However, the standard may rise to include a “higher” education but that, in itself should not be used as a yardstick for hiring purposes. In this business, experience matters and everything else beyond that, including an education, is secondary.  In short, the qualities pilot must have to improve their judgment, increase production and enhance safety cannot be adequately learned on a theoretical level (at least, not in the real world where the rubber meets the road). IMO, ya gotta do it, and prove it, -daily…… And, if this industry is going to embrace an education over experience, expect only bad things to happen and thus a problem for the future…… 


Edited by Spike, 21 November 2013 - 13:08.

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#18 Spike

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 13:33

 

If you have no passion, for the field you’re studying, and only seek a degree to get a so-called job, you’ll end up greatly disappointed. 

 

As a society, we tend to be paralyzed by precedence in an attempt to keep up with the Joneses…. Maybe an alternate mindset is required to break this cycle….  

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=h11u3vtcpaY



#19 Gomer Pylot

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 20:59

Having a degree, in anything, is an advantage in any industry, for any job.  The point of an education is to teach you to think, not necessarily to learn everything about a particular subject.  I don't claim that simply having a degree, in and of itself, makes you employable, but it's a common belief in the world that someone with a degree has an enhanced ability to think things through because of education, and education is widely seen as desirable in and of itself, regardless of the major subject studied.  Like it or not, having a college degree is a big step above those who don't have one, and the ones who protest most loudly about this are those who don't have a degree.  Protest all you like, but it's a fact that people with degrees, on average, earn far more over a lifetime than those who have none.  That will not change, and in fact will most likely become more prevalent in the future.  If you want to make a good living, and do work that doesn't involve manual labor, get a degree.  In anything.  Nothing is guaranteed, but the odds are way in favor of those with a degree.


Best Regards,

Gomer

#20 aeroscout

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 21:02

 

As a society, we tend to be paralyzed by precedence in an attempt to keep up with the Joneses…. Maybe an alternate mindset is required to break this cycle….  

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=h11u3vtcpaY

Keeping up with the Joneses is a double edged sword. If you can keep the competitive side of the sword directed properly, then excellence can be achieved.






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