Airline and commercial pilot

Hang time

growth

Employment of airline and commercial pilots is projected to grow 11 percent from 2010 to 2020

duties

Pilots typically do the following:

  • Follow a checklist of preflight checks on engines, hydraulics, and other systems
  • Ensure that all cargo has been loaded and that the aircraft weight is properly balanced
  • Check fuel, weather conditions, and flight schedules
  • Contact the control tower for takeoff and arrival instructions
  • Start engines, operate controls, and steer aircraft along planned routes
  • Monitor engines, fuel consumption, and other aircraft systems during flight
  • Navigate the aircraft, using cockpit instruments
  • Ensure a smooth takeoff and landing

Education

In addition, most airline companies require at least 2 years of college and prefer to hire college graduates. In fact, most pilots today have a bachelor’s degree. Because the number of college-educated applicants continues to increase, many employers are making a college degree an entry-level requirement. Preferred courses for airline pilots include English, math, physics, and aeronautical engineering.

skills

Pilots must be alert and quick to react if something goes wrong, particularly during takeoff and landing.

the money

Pilots must be alert and quick to react if something goes wrong, particularly during takeoff and landing.