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I am interested in getting a private pilots license and I know I can go to a near by airfield to get one. However I would like to know if anyone has received one through college and if it would be best just to wait until then? The cost at the airfield near me is around $12,000 but i have not found a cost for getting one in college.

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    $\begingroup$ You might want to mention in which region you live, or in which region(s) you would consider to acquire the license. $\endgroup$ – bogl Dec 6 '19 at 14:19
  • $\begingroup$ The Midwest more, specific Indiana. I know Purdue has programs like and Western Michigan does as well. Other than those two I've had a hard time finding colleges that provide private pilots licenses. $\endgroup$ – ThundaChicken76 Dec 6 '19 at 15:06
  • $\begingroup$ Find the lowest cost flight school you can. Part 61 or part 141 is irrelevant. You will pay considerably more for a certificate at a college but the quality of instruction could be lower. College instructors are typically low time instructors building time for airlines. A local school may have more experienced instructors who teach because they enjoy it. Just a thought $\endgroup$ – acpilot Dec 6 '19 at 15:32
  • $\begingroup$ I believe Vincennes also has a flight program, and I think Rose Hulman does as well. $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Dec 6 '19 at 15:43
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    $\begingroup$ @ThundaChicken76 "What is best" questions will always get closed. However, if you were to rephrase it "What should I consider when comparing a & b" you'll likely get the question reopened. $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Dec 6 '19 at 18:11
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There are 2 major drawbacks to getting a PPL through a college program.

1) Admissions

In the comments you mentioned Purdue University. An excellent school, but they have very high academic standards (my son was interested in going there - didn't get accepted). There may be some variation for admission to the flight school program vs other degree tracks, but you'll still have to get admitted to the university of choice.

2) Cost

When getting your PPL in conjunction with a college degree, you're going to be taking a whole lot of general education courses that don't apply to flying. To go back to your Purdue example, they will not want you parading yourself as a proud Purdue alumn, yet not have the basic education levels that people would expect from a Purdue grad (IU v Purdue sparing aside). That means you're going to be taking writing and basic math and humanities classes, none of which have anything to do with getting your PPL. Each one of those credit hours will cost you. As will your flight hours. A school like Purdue is a prestigious, Big 10 school and tuition there ain't cheap. Purdue (again, mentioned in the comments and I have some personal experience) will run somewhere in the neighborhood of $30,000 per year for in-state tuition. I don't know the length of their flight school program, but you could do 2.5 trips through the flight school you mentioned for that kind of money.

If you go the straight up flight school route, you're going to be paying for flying lessons and flight time and that's it. Not having gone to flight school, I don't know what the admissions criteria are, but I'd venture it's not much more than having a medical certificate and the cash to start paying. If you run out of cash, you can put your training on hold for a while.

Of course, if you're going to school to get a degree and you want to make getting your PPL part of the process, not the sole reason for being there, that's a different story as far as classes go, but you're still paying a lot for the privilege of taking flight lessons through a university.

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  • $\begingroup$ @ZeissIkon I was gettin' there! I wanted to have an answer in before the question got closed... $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Dec 6 '19 at 15:53
  • $\begingroup$ The usual advice is not to answer "bad" (likely to be closed) questions -- if you know it's going to be closed, rushing in an answer isn't desirable. Ideally, if a question is closed as OT, opinion based, or unclear, it shouldn't have answers when it closes. $\endgroup$ – Zeiss Ikon Dec 6 '19 at 16:57
  • $\begingroup$ @ZeissIkon that's quite true, and I've said that myself to others... I think this could be quite salvageable if it were rephrased "what do I look for" as opposed to "which is best". I'll go make that suggestion. $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Dec 6 '19 at 18:10
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You go to a college because it's part of a career track and as such will be filled with all sorts of courses that are professionally useful but not directly related to learning to fly airplanes. And it won't be any cheaper. If you just want to learn to fly for recreation, find a local school with the best instructors and equipment.

Probably the best overall and cheapest way to do a Private it is to find 2 partners and buy a trainer (2 partners gives you the optimal dilution of fixed ownership costs), and hire an instructor to train the 3 of you.

And if you really want to learn to fly, properly, start with glider training first.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the response, and I am planing on going to college for aviation technology/aerospace engineering. I just was curious on which would be more beneficial college or local school for PPL. $\endgroup$ – ThundaChicken76 Dec 6 '19 at 22:16

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