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Did he make good ? NOPE.


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Sorry to stir the pot, but I was reading some older posts. I wonder.. did High Sierra helicopters ever make good on their promises to students?

Back about two months ago (Dec 17th) , HH60Pilot posted that he was "still in business". He also said he was still interviewing for a flight instructor.

I wonder... is HH60Pilot in the GOM working still? Two months seems plenty of time.

I wonder.. did the "new facility" ever get built? Is the classroom ready for students?

Just wondering......

 

(Bristol waits for his beating again)....

 

 

The last thing that I will address is the current status of the business. I am still interviewing for a new flight instructor. We have been without one since Bob took a job in the GOM two months ago. When we operated the R22, I received upwards of 8-10 resumes a week of flight instructors seeking employment. I have received next to nil resumes since switching to the Schweizer and the vast majority of those are from instructors with zero hours in the Schweizer. Unfortunately, the insurance company has a minimum 25 hours make and model requirement before a CFI can be hired. This has made finding an instructor to hire a rather large challenge. As far as a helicopter goes, the leasing company did retrieve the ship from High Sierra Helicopters. This was done out of the owners concern with the troubles in finding a new flight instructor and the minimum monthly amount due on the lease whether the hours are flown or not. I met with the owner of the leasing company yesterday and he reaffirmed his commitment to supply High Sierra Helicopters with another helicopter once I have hired a new flight instructor and have things moving forward again. The new facility that was originally supposed to have been constructed some three years ago is finally under construction and we should be moved into it in the next couple of months. We will have a classroom, space for the simulator, hangar space for helicopters, and shared briefing rooms with the fixed-wing operator that is constructing the new facility. As for my taking a job in the GOM, I have and this was done to ensure that there is money coming in to be able to keep the business going and to further ensure that no student of High Sierra Helicopters will lose any money prepaid for training not received. Will being away in the GOM three weeks at a time be a difficult thing to do with the business and family being located in California? Yes it will, but I will do what it takes to make certain that the business continues. One last thing regarding the business, I have been moving away from the prepaid block time and to a pay-as-you-go method of payment. It became apparent many months ago that the pay-as-you-go method would be best for both the students and the business. All current students will be converted and all new students will use this method.
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Hi,

I was just passing through and checking out new posts and thought I should speak up. I started with High Sierra in Feb 2006 with full intentions of going all the way through CFII full time. As of today Doug still owes me 10 hours of dual training and has not contacted me for the last month and a half. I just checked his website and it is down: http://www.highsierrahelicopters.com

 

I don't think this is a good sign. I have resumed my training elsewhere and am going to take my first check ride in a couple of weeks!

 

I am not trying to fire up the "beat up High Sierra" thread as I don't feel it is necessary, and I do like Doug as a person. Just posting the facts as I know them.

 

JimT

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Hi,

I was just passing through and checking out new posts and thought I should speak up. I started with High Sierra in Feb 2006 with full intentions of going all the way through CFII full time. As of today Doug still owes me 10 hours of dual training and has not contacted me for the last month and a half. I just checked his website and it is down: http://www.highsierrahelicopters.com

 

I don't think this is a good sign. I have resumed my training elsewhere and am going to take my first check ride in a couple of weeks!

 

I am not trying to fire up the "beat up High Sierra" thread as I don't feel it is necessary, and I do like Doug as a person. Just posting the facts as I know them.

 

JimT

 

 

Yep, website down. I guess all those heartfelt promises were bogus.

I'm sure he was a nice guy.

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Just a thought, but maybe give Doug a little more time. A few months in the GOM is not going to be enough to help recover from a business collapse. He may be down there working his tail off to make good. It's hard to say for sure, but my guess is that in time Doug will respnd here and to e-mails.

 

My 2 cents, be gentle on me............. :D

 

Gary

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Just a thought, but maybe give Doug a little more time. A few months in the GOM is not going to be enough to help recover from a business collapse. He may be down there working his tail off to make good. It's hard to say for sure, but my guess is that in time Doug will respnd here and to e-mails.

 

My 2 cents, be gentle on me............. :D

 

Gary

 

 

Gary,

 

I understand, but cant't help doubting. I'll keep an open mind.

I would like nothing better than to see it all come good. I hope so. It would be fantastic to see someone actually own up to issues and recover. Although I was not involved in training at HSH, I have sympathy for those that lost money (and training time).

 

Paul

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Gary,

 

I understand, but cant't help doubting. I'll keep an open mind.

I would like nothing better than to see it all come good. I hope so. It would be fantastic to see someone actually own up to issues and recover. Although I was not involved in training at HSH, I have sympathy for those that lost money (and training time).

 

Paul

 

Paul,

 

I agree and do hope that everyone effected by this will come out of it on a good note.

 

Thanks,

 

Gary

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I remember Doug replying to posts on the previous High Sierra thread, and if he is still posting on the forum, then he obviously hasn't "run away." Moreover, I think that this is an issue between Doug and his students, not the VR community. On the last thread, I saw that there were a lot of rumors being tossed about, and it just stirred up a lot of emotion in people who were both involved personally and people who were never students at that school. I honestly don't see the need, or the benefit, to repeat that with this thread.

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I remember Doug replying to posts on the previous High Sierra thread, and if he is still posting on the forum, then he obviously hasn't "run away." Moreover, I think that this is an issue between Doug and his students, not the VR community. On the last thread, I saw that there were a lot of rumors being tossed about, and it just stirred up a lot of emotion in people who were both involved personally and people who were never students at that school. I honestly don't see the need, or the benefit, to repeat that with this thread.

 

Andrew,

 

In my opinion, it is everyones business here in the helicopter community how his business dealings with students shakes out. Anyone that knows me, can tell you that I always give the benefit of the doubt and have compassion for everyone. I just don't think that HSH will recover, that's all.

As for repeating what has aready been said... well, we should not forget companies that have these problems. They are good examples of what students should avoid.

I don't know what caused HSH to have financial problems, and it really doesn't matter to me. What does matter is that students are chasing a dream in an industry that finds it easy to take advantage of that emotion.

I don't doubt that Doug is a nice guy, or that he did his best to make HSH work. I wish him the best at his new job.

 

As a result of companies like SSH and HSH, the VR community has been able to form advice to follow when selecting a good school. NOTE: What SSH did is completly different than the problems Doug had. It looks to me like SSH is just a crooked business, and what happened to HSH was in no way intentional, but unfortunate. I still believe that the students should get every cent of their money owed to them back from HSH, not promises.

My two cents (I think I'm up to about 50 cents on this subject).

 

Paul

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  • 1 month later...
HSH website is up. If you want to know why don't you just call him.

 

(916) 370-6618

 

I don't have to call him.

He used this forum as a way to communicate with fellow pilots and prospective students. He "was" a part of this community, but seems since then, if he had done anything to make good on his promises to students, he would continue to be a part of the online aviation community. In general, most people that fail at business never recover, at least not in the same business.

If you don't like the fact that I keep bringing it up, sorry bout dat!

I'll continue to follow along as long as I want to, regardless. I'll continue to warn students about schools like SSH and HSH.

SSH is a crooked business with a theif at the controls. I think HSH business just caved in and there was no way to recover. I don't think he set out to defraud anyone on purpose or premeditaed. (SSH sure did).

 

The point is that the aviation community needs to develop guidelines for students to follow. Schools should be held accountable. Loan grantors should not send funds to schools. It should all be sent to the students. Schools would be forced to change their policies regarding training funds.

 

I paid as I trained. I was lucky enough to have a good career with a large company. I socked my money away in the bank over a two year period and paid a couple of thousand to the school whenever I needed to.

I am lucky enough to have the best helicopter school in the country in my own back yard.

 

On the other hand, younger students don't have the money. They get loans. Can you imagine what it would be like to borrow $60,000 to $80,000 and have no rating or money just because someone went out of business. You're obligated to repay the loan, but cannot make a living in that field. What about the business owner? He has your money, do you think he should be obligated to give the money back? You bet your ass! (And that's what attorneys are for, but most of us cannot afford them, or the business owner spent the money and there is no chance of getting it back). Do yo know what a defaulted student loan does to your credit? I can tell you that it will impact your credit for many years, possibly all your life.

 

I don't apoligize for my opinion.

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I don't apoligize for my opinion.

You don't need to apologize for your opinion, but while we're holding people accountable, why don't we also hold students responsible for doing some research up front, studying their ground lessons, being prepared for the lessons before hand, scheduling in advance, showing up when they're scheduled and keeping track of what they're being charged (honest errors happen, too). The reason most student loans are paid directly to the school is that students have a long history of being irresponsible when given large sums of money.

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Umm, yea, I simply suggested that you call him if you want the information. If he is flying in the gulf to support HSH, then he likely doesn't have time to read the board, or to take time to respond.

 

If you were really interested in his making good with his students you would make a phone call and let us know. However, you seem to want others to do the leg work for you; Or you just want to stir the pot. If thats all it is, then just say so, but don't pretend to care if he "made good." Makes you look bad...

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I paid as I trained. I was lucky enough to have a good career with a large company. I socked my money away in the bank over a two year period and paid a couple of thousand to the school whenever I needed to.

I am lucky enough to have the best helicopter school in the country in my own back yard.

 

Whats the best school? BTW I agree it is a good idea to save for training. ;)

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The reason most student loans are paid directly to the school is that students have a long history of being irresponsible when given large sums of money.

 

Well there's a gem of pure hogwash. That might be the "story" for why loans are paid directly to the school but it's certainly not the "reason". I mean really, if the student is responsible for paying the loan back...which, of course, they are...what "big brother" decided they should not control the funds? Nah, that's just a BS sales pitch to take the responsibility...and thereby the control...away from the student-borrower.

 

The real "reason" for handling the disbursement they way they do is because there is a symbiotic relationship (i.e., the intimate living together of two dissimilar organisms in a mutually beneficial relationship) between the vocational ed industry and lenders and the student-borrowers. It's sorta like two parasites living on the same host. The schools do the marketing and rope in the students and the borrowers provide the cash. Then the schools provide day care for the students until they get bored or frustrated and quit...taking their loan payments with them. As for the students, they're just the feedstock...the fuel...that keeps the whole machine moving along. If they're lucky the student might actually learn something and move themselves forward (most won't). But if they do it will be largely on them to get it done...the students' progress is secondary to the agendas of the schools and the lenders, despite what their marketing material says.

 

That may sound cynical (and it is) but the fact is that the priorities of the players are different. For example, while a student may find individuals within an organization such as SSH who are sincere and genuine those folks generally don't have any influence on the policies of the company. The objective of the company is to make money. If the contract with the student is such that the company makes more money when the student doesn't fly (e.g., 10% per month while in ground school) it would seem logical to assume that the policies of the company will be biased toward students spending more time on the ground than in the air.

 

Bottomline: It's your money...and it's a lot of money...so, protect yourself.

 

Oops, almost fell off my soapbox.

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Bottomline: It's your money...and it's a lot of money...so, protect yourself.

I agree with you on that, Fry. You make some excellent points but your rants get tiring after awhile. I stand by my statement on student loans. I'm also talking about non vocational degree programs as well. Once someone pisses away a loan and has nothing to show for it their default rate goes way up. Gee, they didn't have the responsibility to use the loan as intended so why would they have the responsiblity to pay it back?

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Whats the best school? BTW I agree it is a good idea to save for training. ;)

 

 

Tomlinson Aviation in Ormond Beach Florida (KOMN). Well, my opinion is biased since I've not trained at any other school, but Based on alot of things I've read, and after getting to know dozens of Tomlinson students over the past 9 months. I've never heard a complaint.

 

If you were really interested in his making good with his students you would make a phone call and let us know. However, you seem to want others to do the leg work for you; Or you just want to stir the pot. If thats all it is, then just say so, but don't pretend to care if he "made good." Makes you look bad...

 

I don't look bad. I look pretty good. In fact, I feel great too!

On a serious note. I hope things turn out good for the students that had issues. If HSH does recover and at least offer some sort of compromise to the students, then I'll eat crow right here and apologize publically for "stiring the pot". Have faith and all that jazz, have hope and keep the dream alive.

 

PhotoFlyer,

 

What do you say to the students that lost their dreams?

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Bottom line is :<<< Doug is a lying, cheating, stealing, dirtbag, who obviously has not made anything up to his students or even kept them up to date, I happen to have a friend who was ripped off by this guy, luckily it wasn't much money, but he was here today gone tommarro. He had lists of his students phone numbers, most of them in his phone and each student had their own binder with their name and contact info all over it. Doug has those somewhere also. Doug has not contacted hardly anyone. atleast not to my knowledge. through my friend I heard that one student did get to talk to him, but anyhow, he left, ripped people off, has not got his crap together. doesn't care to post here anymore, will not let the world know of his plans or how he will make better to the students he has ripped off. I don't know him personally, but alot of people here do and say he is a great guy, a real stand up guy and will do the right thing and so on. but he is so worthless, he will not post a message, call his students, he basically will not do any of the right things. All he will do is run and hide, duck and dodge, run from his problems, hide out and try and make his own life better and go on with his life, making money, good money probably and go on spending other students hard earned money on whatever he will.

 

I cannot believe other students have to make payments on high interest rate loans for money they never seen or spent. that makes me so mad I cannot believe it. How does it make you guys feel, when you loaned one of you distant friends 20-100 bucks because they really, really needed it for something, and then the next thing you know, the phone calls stop, you never see this guy, when you corner him, his phone breaks up or he has had some tragic thing happen and this is why he was so busy he could not even call you and let you know what was going on. All your old friend could do is run and hide, dodge and duck your attempts at contacting him or recovering your funds.

 

Its a sad story that a Doug WAS a stand up, good guy, and he traded it all for a few thousand bucks, lost his business, identity, reputation and much more, just for a few dollars that are already spent. Pretty crappy way to go out if you ask me. In my opinion, there is no difference between a non violent bank robber, a con artist, a dirt bag or Doug himself.

 

Nobody needs to call him to try and find out what is going on, if doug wanted us to know he would have told us. And if any of his prior students knew they would have told us and gave us an update if doug did something right for once. But it should be quite obvious to all of us, that he has done nothing, cause soon as he stole the money, he has dissapeared only to have his concerned students resort to the internet to try and find something out.

 

But none the less, I really hope it somehow works out for the students who lost their money to him. I feel sorry for the guys that are working to pay their loan payments on trainining they never even received.

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I am a former HSH student. I am owed about 10 hours. I have not heard from Doug for the last couple of months. I have received my PPL and am on my way to my commercial at a different school. Just wanted to give real info from a former student.

 

JimT

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I am a former HSH student. I am owed about 10 hours. I have not heard from Doug for the last couple of months. I have received my PPL and am on my way to my commercial at a different school. Just wanted to give real info from a former student.

 

JimT

 

 

well jim, i am sorry to hear about that, i know there are a few more of you guys floating around there and im glad to see that this set back did not totally ruin your dreams. that just sucks and I cannot believe it happened like that, but it did and I m sure you are not happy about it. but I think all of us appreciate you comming forward and giving us some first hand info. keep us posted on how things go, if they even go at all... good luck with your training...

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  • 1 month later...

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