New Member
I am very worried about getting a job when it's time to leave. I am a very strong proponent of FSA. I personally believe that this is the best education available in the civilian realm. I hope to instruct here. However, I can't help but be very concerned about the job market. I don't want to be an instructor when I am 50. I wonder which direction is best to focus on, the airlines or a corporate career. Which way do you all think the trend is moving? Just things to ponder and get a cross section of opinions on.
A short answer is - I would focus my efforts in a direction which will lead to a job I can reasonably attain -at this time.
I don't think that many guys are finishing up the CIME course and walking right into airline or corporate flight departments. Some people with conections, maybe 135 SIC gigs but not that many. At this moment in time, my personal opinion is to go the CFI route and use that as a stepping stone. Won't last forever and nothing says you have to teach at FSI.
The aviation industry as a whole is very volatile and cyclical. I would say that the best time to start training is probably when things are not looking good, because training takes a while and by the time you finish, the job market will very likely have turned around.

Having said that, unless you can get into a pipeline/direct program, you are still going to have to spend some time building hours and experience after you get your commercial. As it has been stated here before, don't pick a school based solely on what airlines they affiliate with because things might very well be completely changed by the time you complete the basic course.

I would plan on obtaining a CFI. If the pipelines are hiring, then you might choose that option later, but the CFI is the safe bet. You will most likely be able to find a job somewhere with a CFI. If you don't want to do teach as a career (difficult), as Doug says, it is at least a good way to build the experience that you will need to take the next step.