Prescott vs Daytona Beach

Jonnyb9040

New Member
I have just been accepted for the aeronautical science program to both campuses and I don't know which to go to. I will be going into school with around 325 hours total time, no prior college experience, and will have ratings through CFII. Only current students and/or alumni please answer.
 

FalconCapt

New Member
I thought Prescott was a more "Close-knit" school... There is a much better student:professor ratio in PRC vs. DAB.

To me, it was a no brainer... PRC
 

flyn_ace_99

New Member
I agree with FalconCapt... PRC is a very close-nit campus simply because the only thing you really have are your friends. Prescott has smaller class sizes, and although I have never been to another college, I think our Proffessors are the best. I just graduated from there on the 13th and miss it already.

Daytona Beach is... well.. Daytona Beach... they have sand and sun and lots of fun, but personally as a REALLY serious student, I wouldn't want all the DB hoopla to even potentially get in the way of my studies. Prescott is small but if you like the out doors, it's really perfect. There is rock climbing/boldering in the Dells, and hiking up Granite Mountain and throughout the Prescott National Forrest. If you are of drinking age, there is the famous Whiskey Row. I have been there a couple times (yes I am kindof boring... ok!), and have usually had a great time, even without drinking. And if you reallly can't find anything to do... Phoenix is just an hour and a half away. If you keep active within campus or have a job as a CFI, you should never really be bored.

Like I said, I enjoyed my time there. Prescott and Daytona Beach are entirely different campus'. I think one thing you need to decide is what you want out of your college career, activity wise. Prescott Campus has a definate character all it's own, created by both students and faculty.

Good luck in your decision. It'll be a tough one.

Oh yeah... are you coming in with your CFI? or planning to get it here? I guess what I am asking is what lisences and ratings are you coming in with? I read your post and am a little confused. If you are comming it with at least your Private, you are doing good. If you are comming in with your CFI, you are great. I just don't advise that you come in green... I did, and found that to be the BIGGEST mistake of my life.

Anyway... Good Luck

Marilyn
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
Have you looked to see what sort of transition courses are required at either campus? I know PRC likes to milk you out of as much money as possible (look at me... PP: ASMEL, IA after shucking out ~$32,000 in loans. Ugh.
), so I wouldn't doubt that they'd try to stick you in as many of these courses as possible, even though you have your certificates and ratings already.
 

FalconCapt

New Member
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I just don't advise that you come in green... I did, and found that to be the BIGGEST mistake of my life.

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Why not??? I came into Riddle "green" and did fine... As a matter of fact my first 2 years were as an Aero Engineering Major and I switched to Aeronautical Science after my Sophmore year, I did all my flying and ground schools during my last 2 years... Wasn't a big deal...

As a matter of fact I would recommend someone start at Riddle with zero hours, this way they don't have to potentially "unlearn" any bad habits they may have picked up along the way...
 

FL270

New Member
Like Falcon Capt, I came in to Riddle with zero hours, and did just fine. (Went on an intro flight in high school, but didn't own a logbook, so it never got counted.)

I went to the DAB campus. That said, I'd recommend Prescott. If I had it to do over again, I'd have gone to Arizona. I picked DAB only because it was 1000 miles from my folks instead of 2000. People get jealous when they find out I went to college in Daytona Beach, but it ain't all that! The class of tourist that frequents DAB has gone way downhill over the years, as the Caribbean has gotten less expensive. Not even that many spring breakers anymore! Once you get past the beach, the town is fairly dull. Nearby entertainment means an hour's drive to Orlando, which is of course expensive and tourist-infested. I never flew over any terrain higher than 300' when I was there, never saw a hint of anything like ice. Almost got mid-aired twice in training ... see and avoid is difficult there.

Arizona is a whole lot prettier place. You'll get some mountain flying experience. Everything I know says the campus is much more close-knit. The flying weather is a lot better than in Florida. Go to Prescott and don't look back. Just my opinion.

FL270
 

kellwolf

Piece of Trash
Living in Florida (and Orlando particularly) I would recommend AZ. Plus side to Florida over AZ is that you will get more than 1 hour of actual instrument time. I'm just about to get my instrument, and I had more actual than most of the guys I talked to in their last year of MAPD. Both states can get fairly hot, but AZ is a dry heat.
 

NC_BE300

Well-Known Member
I'm a 1st semister student to DAB.
I came in with my Commercial/Multi/Instrument and a 2yr degree from a community college, which gives me a ending sophomore/beginning junior class standing. You might have to take AS370 Advanced/Commercial/Mulit class to get advance standing credit for your other ratings. That was what I had to do at ERAU DAB. All the class consists of is a autopilot flight course using the Seminole. 5 out of 6 meetings of the class use the new Frasca PA44 simulator. And one flight in the real aircraft. Being that you already have your CFII, if you wanted to persue a job at riddle as a instructor you have already saved alot of money. I was quoted around $11,000 for CFI/II and a chance at a job, but there is no good assurence that there was a CFI position at riddle, as a matter of fact, it doesn't look that good for them right now, especially because at riddle they are getting more flight simulators from Frasca, and more of the flight training is being done in the sims instead of the real aircraft. As far as which campus to go to for a "college experience", i think it is possible to be a serious college student regardless of the campus, I believe that it depends on the person. If you are set on doing well in college you can do it at either campus. The beach is nice to have nearby campus, and the town is nice in some aspects, but the entertainment does have its slow times, Orlando being nearby is good to have though. With DAB there are a few other airports on the area to rent aircraft from. Those aircraft can can range from 172's,a piper arrow,to an assortment of light twins. The rental rates of the aircraft off campus are much more reasonable than the aircraft on campus. Good luck with your choice.
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
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...as a matter of fact, it doesn't look that good for them right now, especially because at riddle they are getting more flight simulators from Frasca, and more of the flight training is being done in the sims instead of the real aircraft.

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Very true. PRC has been putting in Seminole and C172 Level 6 sims in for a while now. Fortunately, I was one of the last multiengine instrument (FA304) classes to go through under Part 141, which meant I spent a solid portion of my training in the real aircraft. The new FA304, under Part 142, is going to involve so much sim work, it's not going to be even worth it. Even one of the checkrides is going to be in the simulator...can you say "stupid"?

Unfortunately though, I'm about to start the new Part 142 version of commercial training, and I have no idea what that has in store. Probably costs less than its Part 141 equivalent, but seriously, put me in the damn airplane.

This switch to Part 142 is the only reason I'd suggest not going to, or not working at ERAU.

EDIT: I'd like to point out that while DAB students do get more actual, PRC isn't without its clouds from time to time. PRC instructors and flight supervisors are notoriously wary of putting students in actual. It's just a matter of getting yourself a plane and going and having some fun elsewhere while Riddle is sitting there on PQ Hold.
 

FalconCapt

New Member
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The new FA304, under Part 142, is going to involve so much sim work, it's not going to be even worth it. Even one of the checkrides is going to be in the simulator...can you say "stupid"?

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Hhhmmm... I haven't taken a checkride in an actual aircraft since my first Type Rating ride in a Lear 35a back in 1995... All training and checkrides (5 additional Type Rating rides) have all been in Simulators...

You can get a lot more training done in a sim than in a real aircraft. There are things you can do in the sim that you wouldn't (or can't) simulate in the real plane.
 

NC_BE300

Well-Known Member
Interesting how you mentioned that DAB students get actual time in IFR, from what I have heard recently, thats very difficult to come by. Right now one of my friends on my floor is taking the instrument rating training at DAB. And on the decent IFR days, his instructor tells him sorry and his flight is marked as "weathered". This sounds odd to me cosidering the instructor should be teaching how to fly in IFR. During my training (Part 61 away from riddle) I was in actual frequently. This was easy to come by in North Carolina, but a good day for IFR in DAB came along with little rainshowers nearby (which is rare), and they just told him to bad. I have heard a few of the Commercial students getting actual time, but from what I'm hearing, they are still with instructors at the moment it happens.
 

flyn_ace_99

New Member
The reason I say don't come in "Green" is because the majority of the people who I have seen come in "green" don't make it through the program. Some do, but the majority don't, me being one of them. I don't think you should go in green because if you already have prior training and a license to boot, then the flight line can't tell you that you can't be a pilot. The majority people who have come in with their PPL or above have a far better chance of succeeding simply because of the prior training. I have also found that those who come with thier PPL actually leave the flight line because they get fed up with waiting around for an airplane or not being able to go because they are on PQ hold. This has created a lot of business for the schools across the field because you know when the plane will be down and when you schedule your session, you schedule THE plane, not A plane that might be there when you check in.

In my case, the training managers told me that I couldn't be a pilot (if you want the whole story, read my auto bio posted "Attention Potential Riddle Students") while my instructor was confident that I was a great pilot. I just want people to go in with a better aviation background than I and so many other people regretted we didnt' have.

I am very glad for those who have gone through the AS program, but all my friends who did, say that it probably wasn't worth the hassle. I think it is a difficult program, probably more difficult than it really needs to be. But what makes it difficult is the lack of personalization. I didn't like being a number in a training atmosphere. The chief pilot wrote me off as being too stubborn and sent me on my way. (Tell me, have you ever met a pilot who wasn't at least a LITTLE stubborn?) Anyway, my point is that nobody knows you or even cares about you except the instructor, but they really have no say in anything if you are having problems.

I don't know how long it has been since you have flown with them, but believe me, the Flight Line has changed dramatically. New sims and aircraft, but more BS.

Anyway, pardon my RRR(Riddle Rant and Rave), I get going sometimes and have a hard time stopping. Like I said, just from my experience and the experiences I have seen throughout the school, this is just my opinion. I just hope it helps in some way.
 

FL270

New Member
My experience with Riddle (DAB, though I'm sure PRC is the same) is that the academics are absolutely second to none. You'll get an excellent, thorough, professional aviation education from quality professors who know what they're talking about. The flight line has always been an administrative nightmare, even when I was there in the '90s, and I'm sure it's only gotten worse. Coming in with all your ratings will mostly elminate that hassle for you, and make your Riddle experience pretty good. If you are a beach person, and you'd rather study with the surf lapping your toes, head to Daytona. (Be careful, though, you can get run over by an SUV on the beach!) If you're a mountain person, and you prefer that scenery, pick Prescott and don't look back. If I had it to do over again, as I said, I'd choose Prescott this time around. Study hard and enjoy, good luck.

FL270
 

FalconCapt

New Member
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The reason I say don't come in "Green" is because the majority of the people who I have seen come in "green" don't make it through the program.

I don't know how long it has been since you have flown with them, but believe me, the Flight Line has changed dramatically. New sims and aircraft, but more BS.

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No offense, but you must have been hanging out with the wrong group if a "majority" of the people you know didn't make it through the program...

I have 2 very close friends at ERAU-PRC right now, both are in Aero Sci and both came in "green" (zero hours). One is graduating this coming spring and the other next year... both are doing just fine (as well as the dozen or so friends of theirs I have met in my visits to ERAU-PRC. All of their friends came in "green"...
 

flyn_ace_99

New Member
Congrats to your friends and you, I'm glad they were able to do it. Like I said, it is a very difficult thing to do.

Like I said, It is just MY opinion that people come in with their private first. I believe had I done that instead of trusting my flight career (and my money) with the school, I wouldn't not have spent the money I did to try to get my PPL and end up just getting slapped in the face. I feel I was fed promises that did not come true no matter how hard I tried. I found that my flight time at Riddle was the worst time I had ever had in my life, and I wouldn't wish that experience on anyone.

No offense, but I guess hanging with the "right" crowd and having minimal problems with flying makes it hard to realize how or why a person would end up in the "wrong" crowd. Believe me, we aren't here by choice. All of us at one time wanted to be an AS major and the best Riddle Pilot around (that is why we came to that school). The only thing that stood in our way was the flightline (a few standards instructors and managers to be exact).

Like I have said time and time again, I believe it is wise to come in with your PPL at a minimum, just so you have a jump on your flight and are "ahead of the airplane". By the way, a friend of mine who started with me in 1999 (who I suppose would be in the "right" crowd) came in with his comercial, got credits for everything and was out in 3 years. He is now flying with a regional airline at 23, he didn't even get furloughed after 9/11. Now, if that isn't incentive to come in with everything, I don't know what is.

Pardon the long RRR, like I said, after my experience, I am very set in what I think would be a good idea to come in with. As a student who had difficulty flying at ER, and knowing friends from "both crowds", I think I am giving and honest assesment of an easier and possibly cheaper way of doing well at ER. But... If one wants to intrust their finances with the school, and has enough money too, the by all means, be my guest. Like I said, love the school, not the flight line. (JUST MY OPINION!)
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
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Hhhmmm... I haven't taken a checkride in an actual aircraft since my first Type Rating ride in a Lear 35a back in 1995... All training and checkrides (5 additional Type Rating rides) have all been in Simulators...

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Well, seeing as how the price difference between the sim (FTD, really) and the Seminole itself isn't too bad, I'd much rather get some time in the real plane. Plus, we can't log time in these dang things, and of course you know that at this point, multi time is everything. All I meant.

By the way, I came into the program "green," and as most others have related, I've also gone through just fine.
 

FalconCapt

New Member
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Well, seeing as how the price difference between the sim (FTD, really) and the Seminole itself isn't too bad, I'd much rather get some time in the real plane. Plus, we can't log time in these dang things, and of course you know that at this point, multi time is everything. All I meant.

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That I agree with, at your point Multi-Time is golden... especially if there is minimal cost difference between the airplane and the sim... Just don't discount the learning value of sim training, it can be very valuable. Keep in mind, there is much more to your training than just building hours!
 

flyn_ace_99

New Member
not really, there are 2 other FBOs besides Riddle (North-Air and Sky School), and they aren't really hiring right now. Maybe with the new hiring starting that will change, but my boyfriend is in Prescott and he has applied many times. He is trying to be a Freelance Flight Instructor for the time being, he is having a hard time having the FBO he trained at to even put him on the insurance. He isn't asking for a job, he just wants to be on thier insurance to rent the plane as an instructor. The owner seems to not be able to figure out that my BF can actually make him money if he can get the students. As of right now, he has a potential Dr. for a recurency student, and a couple who want to hire him to fly them to California. We'll see what happens.
 

Tazman282

New Member
Hey in regards to the actual time. I am finishing up my multi now and I currently have 20 hours not sure if that is a lot or not but a lot of my Instrument was in actual. I know my past flight instructor has like 3000 hrs but he also has 500 actual IMC time working at Riddle Daytona Beach.

The education here in Daytona Beach was great also, just to give you a hint of some of the instructors backgrounds. I know one that was a top gun instructor in the navy, another one that flew with the blue angles, there are many that lost there medicals and have type ratings in just about every boeing, MD airliner you can think of. The Daytone Beach campus also offers a great ATC program that has a great Tracon system which incorporates the tower class. I have never been to the Prescott campus so I can't say anything about them but I do know that the only drawbacks with Daytona is the Riddle Run Around with the flight line. However as a flight instructor you would never really experiece that side of it. There are many local airports but acquiring a job would be difficult unless hired by Riddle. My suggestion would be to work in the Flight Tutor lab and try to instruct at a local FBO and I would say within a year if there are any open slots for instructors you would be the first they would hire. They almost always hire the students that work for them before the other applicants. Good luck with whichever you choose. I think you will be happy no matter where you end up.
 
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