Considering CTI

Flaflaflofly

Well-Known Member
I am just looking for feedback here on going to a CTI school. I know this has been debated here before. I am all set to start school next semester for a degree in social work but I just don't feel it anymore after applying with the FAA. Rather than sit around and wait to get picked, I am considering attending Lewis University for their air traffic control program. I feel that it may give me a little bit of an edge to get selected? I am also thinking maybe it will boost me a little bit while in OKC, in that I will know more than I do right now?
Any thoughts?
 

hudson26

New Member
IMHO, Don't waste your money.

You don't need it... not only will you get hired faster OTS it's also cheaper.
 

hudson26

New Member
There are not too many around here. I'm all about higher education when it benefits the student - in this case - it just does not. You'd be better off with a regular BA/BS then dumping money into CTI.

If you invest the time and money to go to CTI you will delay starting work by a couple years. Pay, seniority, and much more... you will have missed out on... but for what?
 

FutureATCer

Well-Known Member
I am just looking for feedback here on going to a CTI school. I know this has been debated here before. I am all set to start school next semester for a degree in social work but I just don't feel it anymore after applying with the FAA. Rather than sit around and wait to get picked, I am considering attending Lewis University for their air traffic control program. I feel that it may give me a little bit of an edge to get selected? I am also thinking maybe it will boost me a little bit while in OKC, in that I will know more than I do right now?
Any thoughts?
Being a CTI student I can agree with the fact that if you want to do ATC for your career then CTI may not be the choice. With the way the FAA is hiring (because of their need for controllers), you are likely to get a job OTS. This will save you money from going to a CTI school. However, if you were to go through CTI school, you are almost guaranteed to get hired and you get to skip basics at the academy in OKC.
 

Flaflaflofly

Well-Known Member
I just want to do something in the meantime and earn a degree. I figure I will still apply to the OTS announcements, and if something came up I would stop CTI. Were the classes at all beneficial?
 

FutureATCer

Well-Known Member
Yeah, the classes were beneficial. I definitely learned a lot about ATC taking the classes. The labs that we have at school are pretty good at simulating real air traffic.
 

pm577

New Member
Go get a private pilot's license.
It's fun, and it exposes you to the other side of ATC (i.e., the guys you are actually going to be controlling)

Even spending 10-15k on an license is cheaper than 50+K on a college education that is not needed.
 

Zeppelinpilot

New Member
Here is my Opinion as a CTI Student.

Get a degree! Does not even matter if it is a CTI degree.

Get a degree period.

If you decide to get a CTI degree, great. Its fun. Almost everyone I know who has graduated with one was hired within a month (obviously after 4 years of school :(). It seems like the whole process as a CTI is alot smoother.

Anyways, I just think you should go to school period. Even if its not a CTI program. But I know that people are going to tear me apart for this.
 

Barty

Well-Known Member
I'm not going to tear you apart, its good advice. Like those who are wanting to become pilots, it is always good to have a plan B. Your personal goals and ambitions can change or you could get into the job, decide you don't like it or worse yet, wash out.

IMHO, it would be better to get the degree out of the way, THEN apply for an OTS or CTI opening. It is better to do that than to be scrambling around in 3-4 years trying to figure out what to do if things don't pan out.
 

pm577

New Member
I'm not going to tear you apart, its good advice. Like those who are wanting to become pilots, it is always good to have a plan B. Your personal goals and ambitions can change or you could get into the job, decide you don't like it or worse yet, wash out.

IMHO, it would be better to get the degree out of the way, THEN apply for an OTS or CTI opening. It is better to do that than to be scrambling around in 3-4 years trying to figure out what to do if things don't pan out.
True...
But keep in mind that this ATCer shortage is limited and will likely be filled with guys in the next 3-5 years. If you wait it out, then the FAA could stop the OTS process. Then at that point you'd be forced into a CTI program.

No easy decision, but the opportunity to get hired OTS is limited and unique.
If you wash out, you can always go back to college and study something more useful... (what if you did CTI and washed out!? washing out could still happen, and then you'd be stuck with a 'useless' degree)
 

GeorgeM

New Member
...
No easy decision, but the opportunity to get hired OTS is limited and unique.
...
Like you say, no easy decision. The OTS hiring is probably going to be ramped down as staffing ramps up, but CTI hiring will continue.

Having the degree gives you more options, but if you're dead set on ATC, you don't need more options.
 

Zeppelinpilot

New Member
what if you did CTI and washed out!? washing out could still happen, and then you'd be stuck with a 'useless' degree
Besides the fact that having a degree period is helpful, many people don't get jobs related to the degree they have. Employers just want to know that you were able to go to school and complete a degree. They can train you for whatever it is they want you to do anyways.

Secondly, In my case, I have a minor in Human Factors. If I fail out of ATC I would still pursue a job in the ATC field on the Human Factors side of things. Designing new scopes or automation tools. Anything related to ATC. Although I would prob go back to school and get a masters first.

Bottom line is, school just opens up opportunities everywhere. Of course you can always go back to school if you flunk out of ATC. But thats not the point if you ask me.

Last of all, don't be worried about missing the "Hiring Crunch". There will always be open spots for qualified applicants.
 
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