Embry Riddle

Sat Jul 03, 1999 5:10 am

I will be entering my Junior Year in high school, and will have to begin my college selection process. My whole life has been aimed toward aviation, even though I do posess many skills that may not show up in the cockpit. I was wondering if all of you could comment on ERAU as a school, and educationally speaking the best method to prepare for a job with the majors. I will be soloing in 3 months, and should have my private by the time I'm finished with high school. THANK YOU!!
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat May 29, 1999 11:10 am

RE: Embry Riddle

Sat Jul 03, 1999 5:45 am

hi there,
i juggled with that question when I was in high school as well. I was lucky to know a guy a year ahead of me who did go to erau only to quit because it is quite intensive. but that is usually a good thing when looking for good academics. so i was still interested... you get your tickets, you get your 4yr degree but you dont get all the hours you need to jump into the regionals, much less the majors. I have heard from more than several people who have graduated with basically nowhere to go, except a flight instructing job at a local airport and working another job on the side to make ends meet. i think theres a big taboo on pilots who graduate from erau... something like 'what are the words you will hear out of an erau graduate? --Welcome to McDonalds.' Im not going to dis erau because i havent been there so this is all accounts from other ppl.

A side note, I talked with Mesa Air at Sun n Fun and I asked where they get their flight instructors from (because they boast 300hrs ab initio program to get you in the right seat, with a 2yr degree.) and the lady told me that their instructors are usually graduates, from erau, or uni of north dakota, etc with little flight time.... its a way for them to build their time up.

All that said, most all pilots will say 'get your hours first, then school.' i think most say this because you are inevitably going to be spending a few years in the regionals, during that you can get your degrees... it is so much easier nowadays because of online courses, etc. i wasted 3yrs figuring out what i should do, and now im 21 looking to go somewhere to get structured flight instruction, possibly comair academy.

hope this helps, and ask erau ppl what they offer for your long time goal... dont ever compromise on your dreams.


RE: Embry Riddle

Sat Jul 03, 1999 11:35 am

I was looking at Embry Riddle a couple of years ago, but ultimately I did not choose them. I felt that, because Enbry-Riddle is only an Aviation school, you would not get as complete an education as you could. Sure, you may take an english class, but the professors know that none of the students are majoring in English. At a more comprehensive college, you take the same basic ed classes as other majors, and I feel that you get a more well rounded education.
That said, I can tell you that, as my name implies, I chose Purdue Unversity, located in West Lafayette, Indiana. They are a Big Ten school, and have an aviation department with three concentrations - flight, which is my program, maintenance, and administraion. A lot of students take two concentrations, with maintenance/flight being the most common combined program. I chose Purdue at the reccommendation of the Allied Pilot's Association, which represents pilots at American Airlines. They indicated to me that the APA, as well as AA itself, considers Purdue's program the best collegiate flight program in the nation. Now that I've completed a year, I can say that I am very happy that I chose Purdue. Our program really makes you learn until you can't learn any more, and the professors make sure that you know information well enough to be able to use it in an emergency... after all, isn't that why we want to know some of the stuff to begin with?

We have a fleet that currently consists of 13 Piper Cadets (PA28-161), 4 Piper Arrows (PA28R-201), 2 Beechcraft Duchess multi-engine trainers, a Chipmunk acrobatic trainer, 2 King Air 200s, a Beechjet 400A, and others, as well as a 727-100 and a 737-200 from United Airlines. We will be getting new Cadets, and I think new Arrows, in the 2000-2001 school year, as they are replaced every ten years. Our new Cadets will have GPS and other special instrumentation, currently our Cadets are VFR trainers only. The fleet is maintained exteremely well, and the instructors, professors, and AvTech office staff are all great.

We currently have several programs available to help students with their careers. One of these is the King Air program, in which each student builds multi-engine turbine time by flying copilot in the King Airs on staff transport trips. This is available for the last 2 years in the program. Also, a select few students (up to about 6 per year, out of about 50 in the program), are sent by Purdue to Flight Safety in Florida, where they train, at Purdue's expense, to earn a type rating in the Beechjet 400A. These students then build about 100 hours of multi-turbine time flying the president of the University around... This one looks GREAT on resumes! We also have a direct hire program with USAirways Express carrier Chautauqua, whereby students can be hired directly upon graduation at significantly reduced minimum requirements. Another direct hire program was established with American Eagle in May.

All in all, I would highly reccommend Purdue's program to anyone looking into an aviation degree. You can find information about the program at their website, Also, feel free to e-mail me with any questions you may have.

RE: Embry Riddle

Sat Jul 03, 1999 9:10 pm

As a graduate of Florida Institute of Technology (another small aviation university) I can tell you that I agree with Purdue Cadet. You should consider Purdue, or UND, or Daniel Webster...but stay far away from Embry Rediculous.

Come to think of it, it is rare that I ever agree with Purdue Cadet...his views on Regional Jets are very shortsighted for someone who claims to want a career with the major airlines. Oh well, I'm sure ALPA will straighten him out at some point.
Posts: 469
Joined: Sat Jun 05, 1999 11:23 am

RE: Embry Riddle

Sun Jul 04, 1999 12:21 am

A few points here:

1. I am a ERAU graduate and felt that the program was excellent. In fact, ERAU-West has one of the best Electrical Engineering programs in the country. It's more than just Aerospace Science. The flight training is expensive, as any other aviation program, but every interview I had, they mentioned that they've had a lot of satisfaction with ERAU Alumni. I liked ERAU, but you can go to any state college and fly on the side also.

2. I think you should pursue your education FIRST. If you can work on your degree while flying simultaneously, even better. Here's the real story. I know a lot of people that started flying, got their ratings and then started to work on their degree. Inevitably, they got a job flying for a regional or a cargo operation and college fell by the wayside. Once you're flying 80 to 100 hours a month, finishing up your degree is next to impossible. Then, without a degree, your chances of getting into a major airline is very small if at all.

3. The proliferation of RJ's sucks - pure and simple. I felt that way when I was a regional pilot and I especially feel that way as a major airline pilot. Every RJ-50 or RJ-70 is a lost 737-600 to mainline flying.

Before I get too political (whew!) let me give you my website address where you could probably get some more answers to your questions:

Doug Taylor
Delta 737 FO

RE: Embry Riddle

Sun Jul 04, 1999 12:30 am

All you guys are speaking of the typical ERAU, UND, and Purdue aviation schools. There is one in Michigan that is still as good as the BIg 3 discussed. It is called Western Michigan University, which offers a 4 yr aeronautical science major and flight training. It sounds like an excellent program. I think someone who may have a hgih degree of trouble affording flight training in college should start off at a 2 year school offering flight ratings and aeronautical science, then transfer to one of the top 3 (including Western Michigan). Are there any downsides to that plan? The reason I worry so much about becoming a pilot is affording to pay for all ratings as well log time about once a week to keep your skills sharp. My dads only a mailman and it will be hard for him to afford flight training costs with 2 other kids in the family.

RE: Western Michagen

Sun Jul 04, 1999 5:01 am

BA send there pilots there it must be good!!

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