FlightSafety questions


New Member
After reading the informative forums on this website and talking with other aviation professionals, it appears that FSA is a premire flight school. However, it concerns me that instructor ratings are not included in the Professional Pilot Program. I have a few questions. Upon compleating the Pro. Pilot Program, do students have to pay to recieve either some or all instructor ratings before being eligable to enter the instructor waiting pool? How long is the current wait to become an insructor (to the best of your knowledge)? How do people commonly build time and stay sharp during the wait? I am seriously considering attending FSA because of its reputation for providing high quality training, but it costs so much that I need to have a clear idea of the transition from attending the academy, to instructing and building time. I would be thankful for any opinions or insights regarding a students progression from FSA towards being hired at a regional. -Walker
After completing the CIME program, you will need to obtain your initial CFI and single-engine add-on to your commercial certificate. This is about $9k total, and it is at your own expense. After that you can interview with FSI. If hired as an instructor, you get the CFII and MEI ratings at no cost in exchange for a contract for 800 dual hours given, currently paid at $14 an hour. I believe you are paid for flight time and brief time.

As for the cost, it's competitive. The other large schools either charge more upfront or lowball the price quote, knowing you will spend far more. There are also schools and training programs with no ground school or no extras (CRM, unusual attitude, etc) so of course they are going to be somewhat less expensive. It all depends on what you want. I frankly want the very best training, and I am willing to pay a little more for it. This is a career I have dreamed about my entire life, and I am going to give it the best start that I can manage.
FSI's quote is a bit high as well. It includes stuff you would have already done during CMEI. My single engine add & CFI ended up being a hair over $7000 (SEAD Part 61 in the Cherokee). BTW who is teaching CFI ground now? I heard Al St.George left just after I finished up. That is FSI's loss... he taught the best ground school there.
My apologies if this has been asked before, but do you have to start at Flightsafety from zero time to be eligible to interview for the CFI pool? Or will they consider those who got their PPL/Instrument/Commercial elsewhere (assuming they go ahead and get their instructor certificates at FS) ?
If you do your CFI here, I don't think you'd be at much of a disadvantage hiring wise, but you'd have to work hard to get the FSI-isms down in one rating. Totally possible.

Classdates start Nov.25 and Jan 5th (I forget the Jan one...could be 5th or 6th).

If you come for only the CFI you do get the opportunity to interview. However, some people who do this have trouble with the simulator ride. The frasca is touchy and the ride is to test seminole IFR procedures. These must be done to FSI specs. For students who just went thru the CIME program this ride is usually a non event. Others struggle if their multi/instrument skills are not sharp and they have to learn the FSI seminole procedures in a short time.