Pittsburgh aviation schools offer training

Some projections within the airline industry project a pilot shortage to reach 32,000 in the United States in 10 years. It hovers around 8,000 in 2023, based on industry data.Training the next generation: Click the video above to see how students are learning about aviation at Pittsburgh-area schools. “Now we’re at the full height of the pilot shortage,” said Robert Marshall, Federal Aviation Administration-certified flight instructor at Moore Aviation in Chippewa Township, Beaver County. His calculations are shared by Scott Szuhay, chief flight instructor at Pittsburgh Flight Training Center in West Mifflin. “The pilot shortage in the airline industry is very critical, “Szuhay said Their schools are among many across the country guiding students into a career as commercial airline pilots. For many of these students, it’s a four- to five-year journey on average to gain 1,500 hours of flight time to apply for jobs with regional carriers that operate short trips for the major airlines. Most students enroll in two-year aviation programs to earn an associate’s degree, which counts toward their first 250 hours. “W hether you’re surveying, or in the commercial airlines, or you’re doing jet charter or medical stuff, there’s a need for pilots everywhere, “said Noah Trunzo, a 23-year-old student pilot. Community College of Allegheny County’s South Campus is a prominent institution preparing students for their hours in the air after they complete the two-year program. Curriculums for all aviation programs follow federal guidelines “for how all students should be trained per the FAA,” says Cheryl Freedman, CCAC chief ground instructor, associate professor and aviation program coordinator. “It’s all spelled out in that document and approved by the FAA, they will get private pilots certification, instrument certification, commercial and multi-engine certification.” Instructors say the airline industry feels a strong sense of urgency to get pilots in the air because the current workforce has been depleted by early retirement during the COVID-19 pandemic and massive retirements within the baby boomer generation. in public schools and scheduling open house events to introduce aviation as a career.

Some projections within the airline industry project a pilot shortage to reach 32,000 in the United States in 10 years. It hovers around 8,000 in 2023, based on industry data.

Training the next generation: Click the video above to see how students are learning about aviation at Pittsburgh-area schools.

“Now we’re at the full height of the pilot shortage,” said Robert Marshall, Federal Aviation Administration-certified flight instructor at Moore Aviation in Chippewa Township, Beaver County.

His calculations are shared by Scott Szuhay, chief flight instructor at Pittsburgh Flight Training Center in West Mifflin.

“The pilot shortage in the airline industry is very critical,” Szuhay said.

Their schools are among many across the country guiding students into a career as commercial airline pilots.

For many of these students, it’s a four- to five-year journey on average to gain 1,500 hours of flight time to apply for jobs with regional carriers that operate short trips for the major airlines.

Most students enroll in two-year aviation programs to earn an associate’s degree, which counts toward their first 250 hours.

“Whether you’re surveying, or in the commercial airlines, or you’re doing jet charter or medical stuff, there’s a need for pilots everywhere,” said Noah Trunzo, a 23-year-old student pilot.

Community College of Allegheny County’s South Campus is a prominent institution preparing students for their hours in the air after they complete the two-year program.

Curriculums for all aviation programs follow federal guidelines “for how all students should be trained for the FAA,” says Cheryl Freedman, CCAC chief ground instructor, associate professor and aviation program coordinator. “It’s all spelled out in that document and approved by the FAA, they will get private pilots certification, instrument certification, commercial and multi-engine certification.”

Instructors say the airline industry feels a strong sense of urgency to get pilots in the air because the current workforce has been depleted by early retirement during the COVID-19 pandemic and massive retirements within the baby boomer generation.

Local flight schools are embarking on outreach programs in public schools and scheduling open house events to introduce aviation as a career.

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