Future Of A Career In Aviation

Before deciding to pursue an aviation career and applying for scholarships to that end, it is important to understand where the industry currently stands. This way, it is easier to assess whether or not this type of career will lead to long-term employment as well as an adequate income.

Occupational Outlook

If anything, the need for skilled professionals is accelerating in this sector. New jobs are constantly being created in the passenger, commuter, corporate and on-demand air taxi segments of the industry. However, competition for each job vacancy is fierce; highly educated college graduates compete with experienced individuals who were perhaps laid off or are returning from a career break. Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that employment will grow at a rate of 7% to 13%, be aware that this may vary depending on the global economy.

Employment Opportunities

Generally speaking, the best employment opportunities are often found at regional and low-cost airlines. With more and more passengers opting for budget flights, it is these types of airline that experience the most demand and therefore require the most manpower. However, other types of employers such as mainstream airlines, the Armed Forces, air cargo carriers and business executives also regularly go on recruitment drives. The highest concentration of jobs is in or near major cities as these tend to be bases for passenger and commercial airlines alike.

Available Positions

To have a career in aviation, it is not necessary to be a pilot. There are plenty of career paths an individual can take in order to get into the industry. Flight attendants, engineers, inspectors and designers are just some of the other professionals that make airplane and helicopter flights possible. All of these positions are more or less indispensable to the industry these days and they cannot be automated. There will always be vacancies for these roles and plenty of opportunity to secure a career.


Wages obviously depend on the type of position secured, but even within the context of one particular role, salaries vary according to education, experience, seniority and rank. Airline pilots currently earn around $106,000 on average, but commercial pilots earn considerably less at approximately $65,840. Flight attendants can expect about $38,000 a year, and aerospace engineers are paid around $97,500, on average. As the industry continues to grow, average pay is set to increase across all job types.

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Training and Qualifications

In the past, employers have been happy to hire high school graduates, but current trends showthat educational requirements will likely include a minimum of a two-year degree in the future. Pilots and engineers in particular will be expected to have taken courses in mathematics, physics, aeronautical engineering and English. If they are not military-trained, it is best for them to attend a flight school that has been certified by the Federal Aviation Administration, as this is what an increasing number of student pilots are doing to increase their credibility.

Even thoughit is impossible topredict the future of careers in any industry with total accuracy, aviation is probably one of the fields with the brightest future. There will always be planes and helicopters that need to be flown and, therefore, plenty of flights that need to be manned.

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