Airline Training Academy (ATA) locks its doors...


New Member
Sounds like another skanky flight school bites the dust..

<font color="blue"> "The Airline Training Academy closed its doors today.

They gave the students 15 minutes to get out and locked the doors. They admitted a new class of students just 2 weeks ago. These people paid 60,000 dollars for 2 weeks of groundschool. I really feel for these students but at least they will be the last people the Airline Training Academy screw. Well at least for a while. The cockroaches behind ATA will proabably reinvent the lie to scam more people."



New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
Holy crap, Cartman!

Are the students out of $60 grand?


New Member
More gossip from an ATA'er..

<font color="blue">"Your lucky you left when you did, it was really sad to see students outside the gate crying because they know that they will never get a dollar back from those crooked people. One funny thing though, before they announced the closing they had maintainance disconnect the starters on all of the aztecs and parked two fuel trucks on the entrance of the ramp to keep students from stealing the airplanes!
" </font>


Well-Known Member
That's unbelievable!

I really hope there is some way for the poor students to recover their lost 60k...

It almost gave me a heart attack when I lost my lone five dollar bill the other day... Sixty Thousand Dollars? Geez!


Well-Known Member
They have to give the money back. They recieved no product or service for the payment. Any student who takes them to court will easily win their case.


New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
I figure any money will go to the aircraft leases or large institutions with lawyers on retainer/on staff and usually us lowly customers have to fight over the few scraps left.

Dammit dammit dammit, this pisses me off because this is just like the early 1990's all over again and a lot of good kids with dreams of flying got absolutely screwed -- and without legal representation, they're going to have little recourse if history bears it's ugly face again.

These guys knew for months about their impending doom probably, but still gleefully took money from people. GRRRRRRR!!!!!

The fact that ATA still took money up to the day they went out of business is going to hurt a lot of legitimate flight schools.


Well-Known Member
Ouch, when i started looking at these big flight schools ATA was the first one i considered but the thing that scared me was the pay up front thing. As far as i know though you had two payments of $30,000. They have a stage I for $30K and then when you pass that, you enter stage II for another $30K. basically stage I was where you get your ratings minus any flight instructor ratings, and stage II is where you just build time and then get the "guaranteed interview" where they tell you "we will keep your resume on file, thanks for coming"

Hopefully these guys will get their $$ back although i bet it will be tough! If not, maybe they are only out half the cost? Geez that really sucks! I dont do well when stuff like that happens to me... I would be afraid I would go nuts and do something stupid. I would probably be the guy stealing the planes fly it to mexico and sell it there.


Well-Known Member
I met a captain for American about two years ago who advised me to go to ATA. He had sent his son and daughter through the program and raved at how they didn't have to waste time instructing and that they would instead get a higher seniority number and a jump on their career. I almost took out the loan based on his recommendation alone. Luckily I came to my senses and decided to pay off some college loans before borrowing more money (still paying them off by the way). I could have gotten screwed not only out of my money, but also out of a dream.

I should write this guy a letter to see how his kids are doing?

I feel bad for the poor students who lost their money. Man that sucks!


New Member
No where on their website does it say that they have closed their doors. I have no doubt that you're right, but I can't verify this...

You won't catch me at any of those training academies or pilot mills. Too much of a chance of being taken for me. I'll stick to the FBO route and get my CFIs that way. There really isn't any hurry in this job market after all.


Well-Known Member
Their web site comes back as a blank page when I just tried it now. Can anyone else confirm what's going on there?


Well-Known Member
Any place that wants that much cash up front is a little sketchy if you ask me. If I went somewhere that did this I would ask about having my student loans put into my bank account. After all, it is your money and YOU are the one who has to pay it back. Not the school!

Do any of us go to the Piggly Wiggly and pay for the next 8 years groceries and just hope that they would stay open until the 8 years is up?

Needless to say, this is REALLY sad.


New Member
I'm on a 6 month LOA as my wife got in an accident and one of my friends from school just emailed me and told me it actaully happend.

Guess I'll call a lawyer this morning.


Well-Known Member
Any place that wants that much cash up front is a little sketchy if you ask me. If I went somewhere that did this I would ask about having my student loans put into my bank account. After all, it is your money and YOU are the one who has to pay it back. Not the school!

[/ QUOTE ]

This is exactly the reason why I only have about $2500 in my account at a time. I'm not afraid of FSI going bankrupt, but if I need to get out of there quick, I can.

WOW, I almost went there too. I'm sorry to hear that for the student's sake.



New Member
I am surprised there hasn't been a Busload of new students driving to the homes to attach 60K worth of collateral assets.

Additionally I suspect, if the school was taking $ up to the day they closed that implies criminal intent (fraud), and the ability to file charges.

Personally I would be kicking some scumbag flight school ass, and getting the paperwork filed ASAP bringing criminal charges. Off to the sheriff's office I go.

on a lighter note, Mrs Eagle just offered up.. "sounds like the airlines they will sell you a ticket up to the day they go out of buisness, as you are standing at the gate. "Sorry we are out of buisness." D'oh!


Well-Known Member
Christ this is scary because the same thing almost happened to me - only at a smaller - lesser known academy.

I was going to attend "ACA - The Academy" in Lakeland, Florida (the ACA supposedly stood for "Airline Careers Academy" as well as "American Culinary Academy", so go figure).

I had already gone out and interviewed the school's student recruiter/GM. This was in November of 2001, so just after 9/11. I asked - point blank - "is the school in any danger of closing?"

The guy said "No. We did lose some international students, but we're okay."

Well, come January, I was about to send in my $500 deposit to hold my "spot" and called the guy to let him know to expect it.

He said "hey - why don't you wait until the end of the month? We've got a new class in and I don't want your money to get lost in the shuffle."

Two weeks later - GONE! CLosed the doors with no warning. Just like ATA.

The students were out, BUT if memory serves me correctly - a huge law firm took their case and they received all remaining funds back. I may be wrong on that.

I feel for the ATA students! Sucks! The folks who run ATA should spend a VERY long time in jail, because Eagle is right - they knew and they kept receiving funds. That's fruad no matter how you cut it.


New Member
This is so sad ... So Marcus Price, you said you are on a LOA from ATA? Keep us posted on what happens. I wonder if there is anything people on this board can do. Many people, including myself, almost went to ATA. Maybe publicize it?
I hope ATA has the decency to return the money to the students.



Well-Known Member
I can't believe I'm saying this, but GET A LAWYER QUICKLY! Express to counsel that you believe your money is in jeopardy and you will probably be in court today to get an injunction against them spending any of your funds.

SCUMBAGS! Find out where they live and start knocking on doors. I'd be half tempted to hand-prop an aircraft and fly it to an "undisclosed location". Course, you might go to jail for that....on second thought, just get the lawyer.



Well-Known Member
(Dammit! Twice in two days, goes..)

I agree with Chunk! If you're a (former) ATA student... <font color="red">Get a Lawyer!! Fast - fast- fast!!!</font>
Like before you close this thread.
Good luck!