Be Careful With Pan Am

Mavmb

Well-Known Member
There seems to be a lot of interest in Pan Am lately, so I'll give my honest opinion of the school.
I was at the Pan Am Phoenix academy for six months. Basically, the more students they can attract, the more money they can make, and that is all the school really cares about. Now they have more students than they know what to do with. I started the instrument course and after about one month, myself, along with all of the other instrument students, were switched to a night time schedule which basically meant from four o'clock PM until 2:00 AM.
Flying twice a day also became a thing of the past and never really happened. Besides, when you are scheduled for sims at 10:00 and another at midnight, you can bet that the quality of training is not what it used to be.
In fact, the quality of training was terrible. The school is always changing its policies on what checklists and emergency debriefings students are required to memorize and recite before each flight. After you've memorized one set of a checklists, your instructor comes back from one of his/her instructor meetings and tells you have a new checklist to memorize. Students are left in the dark and never know what is going on. What's more, each instructor has about ten students each and is booked with one student directly after another. Often, there is not much time for debriefing after a lesson-- despite the 40 to 60 dollar debriefing fee you pay for each mission. And where does that money go? I guarantee that is what every student at the school would like to know.
Also, if you go to the school plan to spend about a month of your time doing absolutely nothing but waiting for stagechecks. When you are finally ready for a stagecheck, your instructor signs you off and then you have to wait four or five more days while your skills go dry. Then if you flunk the stagecheck plan about another two weeks for retraining missions and getting the stagecheck scheduled again. The stagecheck pilots have the biggest egos I have ever seen; and it is an everyday thing for a student to flunk a stagecheck two and three times. This is unheard of at other schools. One of my friends went to a university flight school and if someone ever failed two stagechecks, they were removed from the program. Stagechecks are not meant to be failed that often. It does, however, help the school make money, and is also the reason that people at FBOs finish much faster than students at Pan Am.
I'd say the only good thing about the school is the airplanes themselves and being immersed into an environment with a lot of other students. I did learn a lot from studying and working with other students and was able to pass both my instrument and cfii writtens with no problems. Also, Pan Am does have brand new Piper Archers and Seminoles with lavish GPS systems and air-conditioning. Several students at the school who decided to leave said they have learned more elsewhere, because GPS can become like a crutch since it does everything for you. I don't know if I agree with that or not, but I do think you can definitely get better instruction, a faster schedule, and save tens of thousands of dollars if you go to an FBO instead.
The only last warning I will throw out to anyone attending Pan Am or any other big flight school is to read the fine print. I know at Pan Am they make it a point not to show you any of the paperwork until the day you are ready to sign. And if you sign up for all of the programs, you have just signed yourself to a 2,000 charge if you decide to leave and go elsewhere. So, if you go just sign up for one program at a time. That way you can leave if something doesn't work out for you. I want to say good luck to everyone. This website has helped me a lot in pursuing a career in aviation, and if anyone else has any questions, I will try to answer them the best that I can.
 

**DONOTDELETE**

New Member
WAZZUP DUDE! Yah I was there with you when they were doing sims in the early stages of the morning...that is strictly bullcrap man. I left Panam and I'm glad I got outta there before they really took all my money. hMMMM LETS see oh yah and the fact that I had 6 different instructors....just for the private rating.ahhh i could go on about this school!!!


Phoenix Panam = waste of time, money, and energy

tailwinds -ifrflight-
 

AMP

New Member
Damn straight..Pan Am in Phoenix sucks big time. I was there 6 months a go and finished with them after multi, which cost me a disgusting amount of money to get compared with other schools. Ever since the old chief instructor left the place has gone to rats. All the flight instructor management do is have meetings and change the policies, the students don't know whats going on. I went to a local FBO that had beat up old planes but really experienced instructors who did tailwheel and aerobatic stuff as well. Best move I ever made, I saved a load of money and the instruction was first rate. I hear Pan Am are making new private guys do a multi private course now as well as a commercial multi course, they just doubled their multi income!

There should be a separate thread for Pan Am complaints..That siad I've heard that the Fort Pierce outfit is not bad in comparison.
 

guido161st

New Member
Finally people that feel the same way I do!! Where the hell have all you guys been. I've been posting my a$$ of, and nobody was there to back me up! Good Luck

Matt
 

IFLYRJS

New Member
Man I love FlightSafety, great training, set your own schedule, came in under budget and had the same instructor for most of my training.
Sorry to rub
 

**DONOTDELETE**

New Member
hey keephopealive09 i got here as fast as i could man but im glad to back my brothers up cause what happened @ panam man is for reals and wasn't cool at all. -ifrflight-
 

Citation X

New Member
hey IFRFLIGHT,

your "10 reasons not to attend" post belongs in this section. Actually, there should be a whole new section devoted exclusively to people complaining about Pan Am.

I am an ex-Pan-Am-er myself, but I don't think that the training was bad. It was very good, as a matter of fact, but it was very expensive and not flexible enough for my schedule. There will always be people that are pissed off at the school for any number of reasons. If we want to help prospective students with our first-hand experiences, then we should do it in a helpful way, not just trash the school.

To all of those who are thinking about Pan Am: In my opinion, if you want to spend a ton of money for a big name, "pilot farm" type of training environment, then Pan Am is probably the best of that group. I thought it was, but I realized I could do it fster and cheaper elsewhere. But if you do decide to go, GET YOUR PRIVATE LICENSE FIRST. You will be in a much better position to make a decision about a flying career if you already have your Private.
 

Mavmb

Well-Known Member
Hey, I got everyone's back! I'm glad I'm not the only one that feels like they weren't getting what they paid for--to put things gently.

What are you guys doing now? There are lots of decent FBOs in Phoenix. I'm going to finish my training that way.
 

Lima_Charlie

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

Too bad NONE of it is true. I will say that I am very impressed w/ you grasp on fictional storytelling, though.

Let's see where to start... (Is this really going to be worth the effort???)

1. I don't know of anyone during my 9 months at Pan Am, that had an instrument sim session in the middle of the night.
(Granted, if there were so many instrument students that the sims were booked 24/7, I guess someone would eventually get the crappy time slot.)

2.Flying twice a day... Hmmm... If I wanted to fly twice a day, and there was a plane available, I was able to do it. Never had a problem.

3. I have seen the checklists "change 3 times" since I started. Each change was more a change of format than a change in content.

4. Instructor meetings... I don't see anything wrong w/ the instructors getting together to talk about ways they can improve. Not once did my instructor come out the meeting and proceed to leave me in the dark.

5. The number of students per instructor... I am pretty sure that most instructors can adequately handle the 2-3 students that they have presently. If I wanted extra time to brief or debrief my instructor was more than happy to oblidge. I think that in my case, I made the decision to come to each lesson PREPARED, so I didn't need a long brief/debrief.

6. Stagecheck wait?? What can I say? I have NEVER had to wait for a stagecheck. Period! As soon as I was ready to go, the stagecheck got scheduled. By the way, I have failed a handful of stagechecks. I don't blame a single failure on the Stagecheck Pilot. The failure was my fault, not the school trying to squeeze more money out of me. If you can MAN UP and admit that you are responsible for your success or failure, then no wonder you are still bitching about the same stuff that happened 2 years ago.

TO ANY PROSPECTIVE PAN AM STUDENT...If you are taking the time research your options, then do it throroughly. Don't rely on the uninformed, out-of-date opinions of the vocal few. Read ALL of the Pan Am posts from Mr. MavMb, and you will see him for what he really his. (You can make up your own adjective when you read his posts.)

I can speak for the Phoenix Campus. The instructors are great! The Administators that I have come in contact w/ have been great. Maybe I have just gotten lucky, or better yet, maybe I just spent my time and energy taking responsiblity for success or failure, and making sure I was on the successful side of the curve.
 

montanapilot

Well-Known Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
Read ALL of the Pan Am posts from Mr. MavMb, and you will see him for what he really his.

[/ QUOTE ]


way to resort to personal attacks. that really helps affirm your credibility right there.
 

Lima_Charlie

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Read ALL of the Pan Am posts from Mr. MavMb, and you will see him for what he really his.

[/ QUOTE ]


way to resort to personal attacks. that really helps affirm your credibility right there.


[/ QUOTE ]

What personal attack?? I left the formation of any opinion to the mind of the reader. I am pretty sure that the grown-ups that visit and take the time to do their research, can make up their own minds. If they read his post and find that he speaks the truth, then GREAT!! If not, then so be it....

Who has less credibility, a current student, or someone that left two plus years ago??? You tell me??
 

Tired

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
Too bad NONE of it is true. I will say that I am very impressed w/ you grasp on fictional storytelling, though.

[/ QUOTE ]

Some of this was true quite awhile ago. He does have a good point about the midnight sims...I hated teaching those.

It's a good school that a couple people here keep picking on.
 

Lima_Charlie

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

Yeah, I can imagine... How long has it been since those sessions went away??

Speaking of schedules, I need to check mine for tomorrow!
 

Tired

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
way to resort to personal attacks. that really helps affirm your credibility right there.


[/ QUOTE ]

Oh please....he totally left it open for the reader to form their own opinion.

Montanna, why are you so interested in Pan Am?
 

Mavmb

Well-Known Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Too bad NONE of it is true. I will say that I am very impressed w/ you grasp on fictional storytelling, though.

[/ QUOTE ]

Some of this was true quite awhile ago. He does have a good point about the midnight sims...I hated teaching those.

It's a good school that a couple people here keep picking on.

[/ QUOTE ]


Lima Charlie you still want to call me a liar? The school was that way when I was there, if it changed for the better, than I hope so. I just hope they got rid of the 2000 dollar penalty charge for not completing the whole career program. That really wasn't fair.
 

Lima_Charlie

New Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

So maybe I should rephrase... None of the problems you had w/ Pan Am are currently an issue, at least in my humble opinion. Is that better?

Mav... As I have said MANY times before. It is unfortunate that you had a such a bad experience at Pan Am. For whatever reasons, the school just wasn't a good fit for YOU!! It has been a GREAT fit for me, and for many of my friends at Pan Am. It is GREAT that you found a place to finish your training that made you happy. So just LET IT GO!!!
 

TheFlyingTurkey

Fetus Worshiper
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

Mavmb, I am a working CFI at Pan Am. I give my students 110%. Your continuing bashing of the school only hurts one group of people. The CFI's, and other employees. If the doors closed tomorrow because there were no students, the company that owns the school would just write it off as a loss, and they would just move on. The rest of us would be devastated.

Every attack you make on Pan Am is a personal attack on my current livelyhood, which in turn is an attack on my future as a pilot with an airline.

Mavmb, you have made your point so many times now I can't imagine what satisfaction you could be getting from the continued bashing of a school you haven't been to in over 2 years! You can stop now, I give you permission.

Mavmb, I AM LIVING PROOF that the school has changed. I am a real person, I even use my real name and email so everyone will know I am not just a mouthpiece for the administration. I finished the program from 0 time to MEI in just over 10 months. No 2:00 AM sim sessions, no MX delays, and only 2 WX delays in all of my training.

So please stop the personal attacks on all of the employees of Pan Am. And if you dont think these attacks are personal, think again.
 

Mavmb

Well-Known Member
Re: What a GREAT Story!!!

[ QUOTE ]
Mavmb, I am a working CFI at Pan Am. I give my students 110%. Your continuing bashing of the school only hurts one group of people. The CFI's, and other employees. If the doors closed tomorrow because there were no students, the company that owns the school would just write it off as a loss, and they would just move on. The rest of us would be devastated.

Every attack you make on Pan Am is a personal attack on my current livelyhood, which in turn is an attack on my future as a pilot with an airline.

Mavmb, you have made your point so many times now I can't imagine what satisfaction you could be getting from the continued bashing of a school you haven't been to in over 2 years! You can stop now, I give you permission.

Mavmb, I AM LIVING PROOF that the school has changed. I am a real person, I even use my real name and email so everyone will know I am not just a mouthpiece for the administration. I finished the program from 0 time to MEI in just over 10 months. No 2:00 AM sim sessions, no MX delays, and only 2 WX delays in all of my training.

So please stop the personal attacks on all of the employees of Pan Am. And if you dont think these attacks are personal, think again.

[/ QUOTE ]

Personal attacks huh? Pot calling the kettle black.
 
Top