The meeting was good in my opinion. Both pilots had great things to say about ACA, American, and of course, FlightSafety. The focus started with FlightSafety and what a great school it is for training. Both pilots said FSI is well respected in the airline industry and that if you do well here, you are pretty much guaranteed a flying job.
Next, they talked about life as an airline pilot both at the regionals and the majors. The female pilot talked about her experience with the Air National Guard and how rewarding that is. Both pilots said to get your CFI and gain experience that route rather than by other means. They said it helps you to really get a grasp on your flying skills.
The last hour or so was spent answering questions about everything one could think of. The topic of the hiring freeze came up, and unfortunately, American is planning another 300 furloughs which would bring their number to 1,000 pilots total. However, on the positive side, they said the regionals are still hiring except for a select few and that when the economy gets betters, the majors will begin to hire again and the "flood gates will open" for pilots looking for jobs and jobs being available.
Overall, the experience was a positive one and both of them expect the airline industry to begin a hiring boom in the next couple of years. Let's hope the regionals keep hiring and take some of the FSI instructors to make room for us.