nine month wait to instruct


New Member
Hey everybody,
I have decided to make a career change and have toured the 'big' flight schools in Florida. I trying to decide between Pan Am, Flight Safety and Gulfstream. So far I am leaning toward Flight Safety because I feel they have the best program and are interested in training great pilots instead of simply making money. My dilemma is that after training they say there is nine month wait to come back and be an instructor. I am not sure what to think about that- what are the options after training while you wait? Why would it not be worth it to go to a school that you can instruct at right away. Thanks for any responses!!!
Go instruct at another school and if after 9 months you get the call to return you can decide then. Pick the school for the quality of the training not the guarantee of a job after you are done. When I finished at FS last summer I did not interview (I could not stand another week of living in the southeast let alone another year!) and I have no regrets about that. There are other ways to build time when you leave the school and most of them pay better anyway.
Ditto the ditto ditto.

If you sign on to instruct with FSI, you have to sign an 800 hour dual given contract. If you leave with 799.9 hours (or anything less) you have to repay all training costs that the company fronted for you (there is no pro-rata discount). Based on current student loads, this amounts to a commitment of several years.

Unless you can't get ME time anywhere else, I'd strongly advise you to consider other alternatives for employment.

Having said that, FSI is a good school and right now it is definitely a buyer's market. If you don't like your IP, it is easy to find another. And most IPs would be more than happy to fly you at least once a day.
That is a really good point about the current situation at Flight Safety (and other schools as well). It is a great time to be a student as there is no shortage of aircraft or instructors. I was very happy that I could cruise through the program at Flight Safety as fast as I did last year with no hold ups. It would have been a whole different expereince if I had trained during one of the busy periods. I dont even want to imagine what the practice areas around Vero Beach are like when FSI, Pan Am, & other schools are all maxed out. Eeeeks!
Ditto the other Dittos above.
A few buddies of mine I graduated with are instructing elsewhere until (if) they get the call back to FSI. They did not stay in Florida however, if you can believe it, 2 of them are got jobs instructing in Michigan full time. There are CFI jobs available everywhere, you just have to be willing to go out and look. Talk to people from the airport in your hometown. Small FBO's are always looking for someone to fly.
As ACA pointed out, there are not many students flying right now so now is a great oppertunity to jump in and fly and get it done. If you and your instructor are up to it, fly twice a day. It is a great school and you will learn if you keep your nose in the books. Also, if you can, get a crew partner and fly with them every flight. You see the other pilots mistakes and you learn from them as he learns from you. You can log X-C time on every flight b/c you usually don't stay around the practice area with a crew. Good Luck.
The 800 hr contract is not a hard number, Management has told people in the past that they could leave at 700 with no penalty.
"That is a really good point about the current situation at Flight Safety (and other schools as well). It is a great time to be a student as there is no shortage of aircraft or instructors."

The other good news is you guys are going to be in a great position when the economy turns around.