Looking at ATP at GKY-advice please!

hill country

Well-Known Member
Good Evening Folks,

I'm looking at possibly enrolling at all atps airline training program in Arlington next spring. I know that things seem to be in the tank with the economy, but I've been wanting to do this for quite some time. I'm 32, married with an 8 month old and have my wife's full support. Right now I live in Central TX and the opportunity for multi time is somewhat limited. If anyone has any advice or has been in this similar situation, please chime in! Thanks in advance!
 

mxflyer

Well-Known Member
That is a overall a good location. There will be some that complain about any and every location but I can assure you that is a great place.

I was in the same position as you except my son was 2 months when I started in PHX. The good thing about ATP-GKY is that you will stay on pace very well. The manager there is good and will make it happen...as long as you are doing your part.

You're right...the economy tanked. Nobody is hiring. But that shouldn't stop those with a true passion for flying. My opinion is that those are the ones we need in this industry.

Here's my advice, at GKY you'll be able to get your ratings on pace (as long as you do your part). Get your Multi-time, head back to central TX with your wife and child. Do your current job earning money saving for your 1st year hazing. Flight instruct or find a job flying part time to build time so that when things come around your ready.
 

Clocks

Well-Known Member
As I'm sure you're aware, there's about 2200 pilots on furlough, and probably thousands of CFIs out there right now with the mins required (and desire) to interview if anyone was hiring. That's quite a backlog of people who will most likely all be hired/recalled before you.

However, if you're in a position in your life where you can take the time to spend 90 days at GKY and the money isn't a deal breaker, then go do it and CFI part time or sit on your certificates while making good money at a real job until the industry turns around. When it does you'll be ready, and if you don't do it now you might not have an opportunity to go get your ratings then.
 

Inverted25

Well-Known Member
Now this is the problem I have with this website anymore, everything is so doom and gloom. Given the economy is rough and yes a lot of airlines did furlough but to say that absolutely no one is hiring is misleading. And frankly tends to come from those who have been furloughed. I feel for you and hope you get back into the cockpit as soon as possible, but dont try to make everything so doom and gloom just because you got the boot. Part of what you need to consider is what sector of aviation do you wish to make career in. Right now if your shooting for that airline cockpit things dont look good. Given there are some hiring but they are few and far between. And I am of the opinion that even when things turns around regional airlines will still be laying off. I think they expanded too fast and theres just too many of them. But that is for another thread. Another thing to consider about the regional is that you will never see the 250TT jobs again. Period. Even when the age 65 band aid falls off you wont see those low mins again. Taking a look at other sectors of aviation. Part 135 is a toss up. Some are hiring and others have furloughed but overall the prospects look better. Check Haulers like Airnet are the ones who furloughed and they would have even without a recession do to the check 21 law finally taking away their business. But Airnet for example is getting into new avenues and have already started to call furloughed pilots back. Your best bet in this sector is to get on with a feeder. FedEx is the best feeder to get on with. You get on with someone like MAC or any other FedEx feeder your job security is pretty good and the pay is damn good too. UPS feeders aren't as secure because they dont own the feeders airplanes and they bid out their routes to the lowest bidder. So the feeders change. But still if you get on with someone who does a lot of UPS routes its better then adhoc. The one thing that is promising with 135 is that as the economy recovers they get more business which means more hiring. The reason is the more business picks up around the country the more shipping that has to be done. Bottom line is yes right now times are hard. But I believe right now is a great time to get your ratings and start building hours. Because in say one year when the economy starts to show life again and then come 2011-2012 when the age 65 ban aid falls off, their will be jobs for the taking and you will have the hours to take them.
 

Captain_Bob

Well-Known Member
Great post Jbroz.

Hill Country... I love your tag line, and I assure you that others at the GKY location will help you indulge in the possibilities of good BBQ that is only a short flight away from GKY. :)

Also, there is a current Flight Instructor at ATP-GKY here on JC who is also from Central Texas who may chime in. He is LoadmasterC141. I'm willing to bet that he will answer any and all questions you may have about the program there... he's always been a straight shooter in my book, especially since he did his ratings at several different flight schools/FBO's before becoming an instructor there and he can give you the positives and negatives from both sides of the fence. Oh yeah... and I know for a fact that he loves BBQ... so much so that he's willing to get a golf cart stuck in the mud for it. ;)

I was in a very similar stage in my life when I attended GKY several years ago (33, married, 18 month old, economy and airline hiring in the dumps). So if you do make it GKY... give me a hollar. I live just a few minutes up the road and I'd be happy to meet you for lunch.

Bob
 

mxflyer

Well-Known Member
So if you do make it GKY... give me a hollar. I live just a few minutes up the road and I'd be happy to meet you for lunch.
He's not kidding, Bob is full of great advice and knows a great BBQ near GKY. I've never tasted such good food..
 

SatelliteBeachPilot

Well-Known Member
I just got hired with another ATP grad at a very reputable flight school and college. Also, I get free tuition, 100% to start my master's degree. Did I mention this was in Florida as well? People are still hiring, if you want to fly, go for it.
 

Clocks

Well-Known Member
...snip...
Good god man use paragraphs!! :D

On a long enough time scale I am very optimistic. There will always be someone, somewhere hiring, but I do tend to look at aviation from an airline-goal point of view (its the only thing that ever interested me). Even still when the airlines stop hiring it affects the entire industry, because there are quite a few people who will happily fly for a regional, fly checks, CFI, or fly a corporate turboprop. When the airlines slam the door they all go wandering around the job market and snatch up those jobs.

You and I agree that there's nothing wrong with getting you training done now. But I don't think its pessimism to face the facts with what is happening in the industry right now....anyone with a wet CFI ticket is probably in as tough a position as has existed since post 9/11. So get your training done, CFI if you can, save up money, and wait for the industry to recover so you can cash in on your investment (and wait to get furloughed agian :laff:).

/rantings of a grumpy furloughee :p
 

LoadMasterC141

Well-Known Member
Great post Jbroz.

Also, there is a current Flight Instructor at ATP-GKY here on JC who is also from Central Texas who may chime in. He is LoadmasterC141. I'm willing to bet that he will answer any and all questions you may have about the program there... he's always been a straight shooter in my book, especially since he did his ratings at several different flight schools/FBO's before becoming an instructor there and he can give you the positives and negatives from both sides of the fence. Oh yeah... and I know for a fact that he loves BBQ... so much so that he's willing to get a golf cart stuck in the mud for it. ;)

Bob
Aww gee shucks...thanks Bob!

Hill Country, like Bob said I would be more than willing to answer any questions you have about the program here at Arlington. I'll PM you my personal email and cell. Also, if you have not already, give some consideration to coming up one day for a tour. If I know in advance, I can make sure I am setup to give it. Maybe we could round up Bob and head to lunch as well.
 

SoonerAv8r

Well-Known Member
DON'T LISTEN TO LOADMASTER HE'S FULL OF IT!!!

No actually he's a pretty good guy. Just watch out on your tour, don't let him lure you downstairs to see his magic yoke.....:drool:

OK now on too seriousness. Reading your initial post is kind of like deja vu for me. I myself am 32, married with a 4 year old daughter. At almost the same time last year I was sitting in your shoes....To make an even longer story short I'll skip to the grand details:

1. Finished my PPL at home in Tulsa on 2-28-08
2. Started 90 day program at GKY 4-15-08 wife and child stayed in Tulsa while I was gone(God bless my wife!)
3. Finished the 90 day program 7-16-08...91 days
4. Upon finishing: Airline hiring halted, ATP dramaticly slowed hiring and I was ready to come back to Tulsa. So I came home to start freelance instruction at KRVS.
5. By mid August had reached an agreement to serve as a corporate pilot flying a new Piper Matrix.
6. Sept 15th started work as a corporate pilot for my present employer.
7. Tomorrow Dec 31th we take posession of our new bird. (See atached photo.)

My .02:
The glass is what you make of it-half full or half empty. There are still plenty of opportunities out there if you have the faith in yourself to step out on that limb. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at ATP-GKY, there are some great instructors there (even LoadMaster).

I'd do it all over in a heartbeat!!!

They will help you to gain the skills necessary to move forward in the aviation field...From there it is up to you to blaze your path forward.

Good Luck!
 

hill country

Well-Known Member
I second that-Great post jbroz. It's refreshing to see some posts that aren't full of doom and gloom! Personally, I think one of the best times to get into something is when it is slow therefore you are prepared when the correction is over and you can capitalize at the start of the recovery. Of course, no one has a crystal ball.....

CaptBob, the BBQ tagline is true! That's one thing I love about central TX-I'm an hour away from Cooper's and 20 minutes away from Louie Mueller's BBQ in Taylor! Not only that but I've got a smoker that I cook on almost every night. Even did the Thanksgiving turkey on it. The weather is NEVER too bad to cook outside. It's good to know that you were in a similar position when you wnet to ATP and that it can be done. Were you already living in the area when you attended? Trying to balance the family aspect is a huge factor in all of this as you well know!

Loadmaster-got your PM. Thanks for the info! I'll definately be in touch when we can get up there for a tour. I'm sure I'll have tons of questions before then too!
 

hill country

Well-Known Member
Sooner-the magic yoke?? If there's gerbils involved, i'm scrapping this whole idea! :laff:

Seriously though, it's good to hear another experience from someone in a similar situation. Honestly though, your situation is awesome! I'd love to get a corporate gig but right now I really don't have a network that I can actively work. I just need to get started, get the ratings and experience and all of that will hopefully change! Not sure if my wife will stay here or go-that's one of the undecided things for the moment. Just curious-what is the new aircraft ya'll are getting tomorrow??
 

wjmiller3

Well-Known Member
Went to ATP in June-07 in Houston, started when I was 34 with a 7 year old boy and going through a divorce. Left a good job of 9 years to persue a dream. Pretty hectic times.

Been working for ATP since Jan-08 in the Houston location, re-married, happy, making 1/3 of what I made in my prevous job and never once regretted the decision. At my old job my office didn't even have a widow, now the view out the window changes everyday.
 

BillH

New Member
Now this is the problem I have with this website anymore, everything is so doom and gloom. Given the economy is rough and yes a lot of airlines did furlough but to say that absolutely no one is hiring is misleading. And frankly tends to come from those who have been furloughed. I feel for you and hope you get back into the cockpit as soon as possible, but dont try to make everything so doom and gloom just because you got the boot. Part of what you need to consider is what sector of aviation do you wish to make career in. Right now if your shooting for that airline cockpit things dont look good. Given there are some hiring but they are few and far between. And I am of the opinion that even when things turns around regional airlines will still be laying off. I think they expanded too fast and theres just too many of them. But that is for another thread. Another thing to consider about the regional is that you will never see the 250TT jobs again. Period. Even when the age 65 band aid falls off you wont see those low mins again. Taking a look at other sectors of aviation. Part 135 is a toss up. Some are hiring and others have furloughed but overall the prospects look better. Check Haulers like Airnet are the ones who furloughed and they would have even without a recession do to the check 21 law finally taking away their business. But Airnet for example is getting into new avenues and have already started to call furloughed pilots back. Your best bet in this sector is to get on with a feeder. FedEx is the best feeder to get on with. You get on with someone like MAC or any other FedEx feeder your job security is pretty good and the pay is damn good too. UPS feeders aren't as secure because they dont own the feeders airplanes and they bid out their routes to the lowest bidder. So the feeders change. But still if you get on with someone who does a lot of UPS routes its better then adhoc. The one thing that is promising with 135 is that as the economy recovers they get more business which means more hiring. The reason is the more business picks up around the country the more shipping that has to be done. Bottom line is yes right now times are hard. But I believe right now is a great time to get your ratings and start building hours. Because in say one year when the economy starts to show life again and then come 2011-2012 when the age 65 ban aid falls off, their will be jobs for the taking and you will have the hours to take them.
Sooner or later, reality eats away at your little dream until your faced with it. The magical yoke, the sheer wonders of flight... The yoke might as well be a steering wheel and flying is no more intriguing than driving a car.
When you have over 1000 hours and there is no mysteries anymore, your left to think about everything else, job security, making your payments, supporting a family, and your retirement. And man, job security would be just as good too!
Granted, if I had to work for some one making money, I would not want to be stuck in a cubicle, I would not want to be in my own version of "Office Space". Being a pilot is what I want to do. Now with all my friends working, making at least 3x as much money as I am, have weekends off, and normal hours with excellent health care and retirements, and dangling that string in front of me to join them with their federal job, Yes, I am quite tempted. Yes, I could make enough money to buy my own airplane and fly it for myself, when ever I wanted...
So we are not all doom and gloom, we've just all been broadsided in the forehead with REALITY!
I had a student who left his high paying job in England, came down to Florida to start his pilot career. His wife nagging him to stop wasting money. HE was SURPRISED that the USA entered a recession... This guy had no freaking clue, he NEVER did his homework, he NEVER did ANY planning with any LOGIC, just went on a whim... Oh he never finished, his wife called him a few days later wanting a divorce... You want to be married, with a family, and be a pilot? Look up the statistics on that one, it does not look pretty... The only people who should be pilots were the ones that were born pilots...
 

Inverted25

Well-Known Member
Reality is what you make of it. I'm not saying there isnt tough times. In every profession there is tough times. I just think too many people want to make it sound like there is no jobs out there and there is. Maybe not jobs that you would think are attractive but there are flying jobs. Bottom line. I never said you would make any good money or that you could even afford to live. But you could fly. Thats all. I understand the reality of it which is why I wont make my entire living flying. I am on course to go to law school and I'll do some CFI on the side to keep flying. Maybe part time 135 is needed. I knwo a guy who works as a ATC and flies part 135 at night. Now hes living the life.
 

Clocks

Well-Known Member
Well I think people should gather as much information as they can. But be careful that the information you're relying on isn't only coming from a single source....or from multiple sources all at the same stage in their careers.

Talk to the students at the flight schools, the CFIs, the furloughed FOs, the FOs who can't upgrade, the CAs that got downgraded, and the CAs that kept their seats. You'll probably get a slightly different outlook from each of them based on their own experiences now, and in the past. A lot of the students are probably still daydreaming and will have an excited outlook. Some of the CFIs might have planned to make insignificant money for a while and going to a different part of the indistry may be no big deal, some might have financially anticipated moving on by now. Some of the furloughed FOs might have stumbled into a desk job making more money and getting furloughed is just an inconvenience (like me), others might be in dire financial shape. Some of those FOs stuck in the right seat might be perfectly happy, some may really need the extra pay....on and on and on...they'll all have a different story...and that's only looking at the first 5-10 years of your career...talk to the guys at the majors with more significant family and financial obligations than I can even imagine and see how they feel right now.

Anyways...long story short...there's a lot of opinions to go around...the only accurate story is probably a mixture of all of them.
 

Inverted25

Well-Known Member
Clocks I totally agree. I'll admitt I havent seen the horrible side. The one FO who was fourloughed from XJT that I know actually got a job flying a Cessna 210 making more than he did at XJT. So hes happy doing that till he gets his call back. I the DE who does most the checkrides at our airport is a CA for Continental and he got put back on reserve but he doesnt mind he said hes not flying but getting paid pretty much the same. Now I do know a few guys who have a ton of corporate twin time and can't find a job but they still got the corporate jobs so it isnt so bad from what I have seen. But I'm sure there are horror stories out there and I pray no one ever becomes one.
 

LoadMasterC141

Well-Known Member
CaptBob, the BBQ tagline is true! That's one thing I love about central TX-I'm an hour away from Cooper's and 20 minutes away from Louie Mueller's BBQ in Taylor!
Coopers may not have as nice an atmosphere as the Hard 8 in Stephenville, but I think the BBQ is my favorite!
 

Captain_Bob

Well-Known Member
Coopers is the Bombdiggity! The most tender and tasty briscuit I've ever had.

That... and Llano had one of the coolest airport cars (old city police car)... we used to call it the Blues Mobile. It always got us to Coopers in record time. :)

Bob
 

welle036

Well-Known Member
Right now if your shooting for that airline cockpit things dont look good. Given there are some hiring but they are few and far between. And I am of the opinion that even when things turns around regional airlines will still be laying off. I think they expanded too fast and theres just too many of them. But that is for another thread. Another thing to consider about the regional is that you will never see the 250TT jobs again. Period. Even when the age 65 band aid falls off you wont see those low mins again.[/quote

During the next hiring boom the regionals will have the biggest pilot shortage and lowest minimums again. The next hiring boom will be more drastic than the last with many 250tt/wet commercial me jobs again. When hiring starts attrition will increase to major airlines by regional pilots. There is a large batch of qualified to fill the seats at the regionals for a time, and after that there will be a severe shortage of new pilots looking to begin a career. Not many are beginning training for the career with the lack of jobs and loans. If a pilot shortage happpens where else can it happen other than the regional level? majors, legacy. That aren't enough sectors of aviation for a shortage to not effect the regionals and the shortage is always going to effect the lowest pay most entry level airline jobs first. A situation where good paying jobs cant find pilots, but lesser jobs are having no problem finding employees doesnt make sense. Some of the regionals now are hiring guys with 350-400 hours now, not to far from the 250tt. Hiring too qualified pilots will just increase the cost of retraining with the higher attrition rate to greener pastures of these pilots.
 
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