So I'm a commercial pilot working towards a career with the airlines but have a few ATC friends that keep telling me to reconsider. After seriously comparing the two careers I might just try for an ATC slot, but my question is this: how often do openings come up for "off the street" applicants? I noticed there are no current openings for non FAA employees at this time. I also keep hearing about a big ATC shortage... is there really a shortage? And how competitive would an applicant with commercial aviation experience be?