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SkyLens accepting resumes for 2018-2019 season

Stump

Well-Known Member
How'd you get a commercial ticket at 170 hours?
Got it at 152 hours, but semantics aside, did PPL part 61 and then IR and Commercial with Riddle. No hour requirements for commercial, just gotta complete the course syllabus and take a check ride with an outside DPE (For the multi engine initial - they have in house exam authority for the single engine initial and multi add on).

I probably could have gotten it done at 130 hours TT if I had one instructor for the entire course and not being thrown around to 4 different ones as they all left for the airlines partway through my training.

Anyways, thanks for letting me know the 250 was for insurance purposes!
 

pilotbry

Well-Known Member
The two available seats for this class have been filled. Both candidates had previously worked for Picto/EV vendors so are already trained and experienced on the rig which is huge because that allowed me to cut my orientation classes in half. Both had over 680 hours total time. One had 109 Multi plus 10 in an Aztec. The other had a personal recommendation from my senior pilot plus lots of mountain flying experience. He only had 10 hours multi but the previous Picto experience soaked up the difference. 5 others have been placed into my backup pool and they all had north of 400 total time and/or 50+ hours multi - some were MEI and had some Aztec time.
 

ECMO4

Active Member
Thank you for the update/insight into the process. While I really enjoyed my 10-day "off the grid" vacation it meant missing this cycle.
 

citrus

Sound of the suburbs
This is just my observation (and I could be totally wrong) but it seems as though that the applicant pool seems to getting bigger along with improving quality of the applicants. Greater number of folks with TT > 400+ hours with a good amount of multi time. Of course, I'm not taking into consideration previous picto work or some other work experience/qualification to make someone stand out but without those numbers you can almost forget about this being your first flying job if you only have 250 TT.
 

pilotbry

Well-Known Member
This is just my observation (and I could be totally wrong) but it seems as though that the applicant pool seems to getting bigger along with improving quality of the applicants. Greater number of folks with TT > 400+ hours with a good amount of multi time. Of course, I'm not taking into consideration previous picto work or some other work experience/qualification to make someone stand out but without those numbers you can almost forget about this being your first flying job if you only have 250 TT.
You are correct, for the most part. As a businessman I of course look for the most qualified employees that I can find and a serious amount of sweat goes into trying to ID the best possible candidates. I have to keep in mind contingencies for the near future, especially making sure the bench is deep enough to replenish the multiengine seats as they come available. The twins are a pain in the donkey to manage but that is the required airframe for my client's new camera pods so that's where things are going. It only makes sense to hire as many pilots that are (or can quickly be) qualified to move into our Aztecs. The reality now is that I get so many resumes that I never even have to consider resumes without a twin rating. I DO examine and evaluate EVERY SINGLE RESUME that I receive. I have a scoring/weighting system that is pretty complex so no one thing is a slam dunk. The only certain deal killer is not having the minimum listed qualifications or not following the submission instructions. Some ask why don't I just list CMEL as a requirement. It's because I never know when the tide will change and maybe I don't get so many multi pilots applying. But your statement is true, at least it has been true for the last few years. Your odds of making the cut at SkyLens with only the bare minimum quals is almost zero. I've hired 60 pilots in the last two years and I can think of four that did not have a multi ticket.

Let me say this again for those interested in working for SkyLens:

Do whatever you have to do to GET YOUR MULTIENGINE CERT and any Aztec PA23-250 time that you can. A resume with 50 multi and 10 of that in Aztec gets into the top hiring tier. Period. Not a guaranteed job but probably gets you into the top 10ish resumes for consideration.

Get some flight experience AFTER you come out of a structured flight school any way you can. I've seen some scary weak skills from some of the 250 hour ATP and Riddle grads that have no other flight experience other than school. Any kind of post school employment as a pilot gives you an edge. Even having a few hours of $100 hamburger trips is better than nothing. An instructing cert gives you an edge, especially an MEI.

Please don't send me emails asking if I'll make an exception to the minimums. I won't. You'll just annoy me. I get upwards of 300 emails some days in the course of my regular duties and I'm looking at hiring more staff just to manage the incoming resumes. Get the quals then follow the directions to submit your resume and I promise I will give you a fair assessment along with all the other applicants. I wish I could hire everyone but I can't. I'm just giving you the most straight dope advice that I can to get into the running.
 

bimmerphile

SuperCritical™ Member
Wow, compensate pilots well and treat them like people and you can be as selective as you want! Imagine that, businessfolks!
A few of the FOs I've flown with recently worked for Bryan at various points in the past, and it's been really awesome to hear how he has grown his business over the past several years while still treating his employees well. (FYI, some of the best FOs I've flown with were skylens pilots, so Bry must really know the secret recipe)

It makes me happy when people succeed and make other folks' lives better in the process, especially involving low-time, sorta-broke pilots. I don't think I've ever heard a single bad comment about this place.
 

Inverted25

Well-Known Member
Got it at 152 hours, but semantics aside, did PPL part 61 and then IR and Commercial with Riddle. No hour requirements for commercial, just gotta complete the course syllabus and take a check ride with an outside DPE (For the multi engine initial - they have in house exam authority for the single engine initial and multi add on).

I probably could have gotten it done at 130 hours TT if I had one instructor for the entire course and not being thrown around to 4 different ones as they all left for the airlines partway through my training.

Anyways, thanks for letting me know the 250 was for insurance purposes!
Something’s not adding up. Part 141 still requires 190 hours for commercial.


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Roger Roger

Paid to sleep, fly for fun
Something’s not adding up. Part 141 still requires 190 hours for commercial.


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No. Starting about 12 years ago several 141 schools started getting FAA approval for no minimum hour requirement other than completion of the syllabus and a checkride. At the time they were calling it FITS FAA/Industry Training Standards.
 

killbilly

Vocals, Lyrics, Triangle, Washboard, Kittens
No. Starting about 12 years ago several 141 schools started getting FAA approval for no minimum hour requirement other than completion of the syllabus and a checkride. At the time they were calling it FITS FAA/Industry Training Standards.
True. Researched this and was surprised. And other things. Mostly surprised.


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Stump

Well-Known Member
All that money for a 141/EMB training has to be good for something right?
I did my PPL part 61 and I'm so thankful that I was able to get a lifelong mentor as a CFI, a retired airline pilot, who still imparts his practical knowledge on me. I felt my training at Riddle was just done to get me to pass their in house rides or the FAA check ride at a minimum. Just a lot of money thrown at them to say I did my IR and Commercial Multi-Engine with them.
 

ozziecat35

4 out of 5 great lakes prefer Michigan.
True. Researched this and was surprised. And other things. Mostly surprised.


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My take on it is while it’s great to get you commercial that quick, I don’t think the program does the student any good, because there are so few places that will even look st a guy at bare mins csel times (250 hrs for example) let alone sub 200. It just kind of handcuffs the student in my opinion.
 

pilotbry

Well-Known Member
Just curious - I see most 141 school grads come out with 250 and just a CSEL. Some with 250 plus a CMEL and 50 hours multi. Some with 200 and 100 multi. Same school. What determines this? Funds? Different programs? Ability of some students to progress faster than others?
 

Stump

Well-Known Member
Just curious - I see most 141 school grads come out with 250 and just a CSEL. Some with 250 plus a CMEL and 50 hours multi. Some with 200 and 100 multi. Same school. What determines this? Funds? Different programs? Ability of some students to progress faster than others?
In my experience at Riddle it is a mix of that.

Usually if they do all part 141 they will have higher hours as most of the PPL's at Riddle get milked for 90+ hours on average. If they transfer they'll likely have a much lower number of hours. The students who put in the work and effort and get an instructor who does the same for them can blow through a course without repeating much and be done in a semester. Students who don't fly or study much will be repeating lessons to go over things already taught and come out with a larger number of hours in general.

Other students have family and friends with airplanes and acculturate hours flying at home while on summer and winter break. Students can also chose to get their multi engine license at the PPL level which can explain why they have 100+ multi. If they have extra money they can rent from Riddle or another local place and go fly on the weekends which also gives them more hours.

My take on it is while it’s great to get you commercial that quick, I don’t think the program does the student any good, because there are so few places that will even look st a guy at bare mins csel times (250 hrs for example) let alone sub 200. It just kind of handcuffs the student in my opinion.
I agree, it may just be a way for schools to get students their instructor certificate a few months faster and have them teach for an extra 50-100 hours at the school before they leave for the airlines or other jobs.
 

killbilly

Vocals, Lyrics, Triangle, Washboard, Kittens
My take on it is while it’s great to get you commercial that quick, I don’t think the program does the student any good, because there are so few places that will even look st a guy at bare mins csel times (250 hrs for example) let alone sub 200. It just kind of handcuffs the student in my opinion.
I don't want to de-rail @pilotbry 's thread too much, but this is a really good topic and worth discussing. I've had my eyes opened to the 141 world lately...

The structure of 141 is good because it sets baselines for quality control, so to speak, and enforces standards which ultimately makes it easier to measure student progress. The school where I teach is one of only 6 or 7 schools in the country that has self-examining authority for PPL, IR, and CSEL, and they're pursuing the ability to self-examine for CMEL and CFI initial. This is very long, arduous process with the FSDO, but I will concede that the standardization is a very good thing for pilots, especially when they have to fly with a different instructor; everyone is on the same page and if the instructor is doing his job and documenting the lesson correctly, then the process for the student is efficient. You get a low-time but standardized student who is a "known quantity" to progress to next level - I think this is part of the reason ab-initio programs kinda work this way.

It is often NOT efficient because of gaps that happen in training due to weather/CFI availability and the student getting rusty while waiting for a stage check, progress check, etc. The lessons in 141 are prescriptive in length - for example, some lessons state that the pilot should be proficient in a given SET of tasks in 1.3 hours. That's potentially do-able, but it's not always the case, and so the student often repeats an entire lesson to brush up on certain things. I get why it's done that way, I'm just not always a fan of it.

All of that being said, I still prefer Part 61 training, because it gives the CFI and student greater flexibility. The *problem* with 61 is that it gives the student and instructor greater flexibility. In my opinion (and I don't have a lot of dual-given under my belt, to be honest) Part 61 is the BEST environment when you have both a diligent, engaged flight instructor and dedicated, engaged student - so many rich learning experiences can be designed into the training under 61. The problem is that 61 can allow the opposite of that to get through the cracks, so to speak.

And of course, there are exceptions to these nebulous "rules" I'm talking about. This is my limited experience speaking. I may change my mind over time.

What I have a major problem with, though, is putting 61 students through part 141 restrictions. I know of at least one school (not mine) that puts Part 61 students on the same XC restrictions as their 141 students, and they end up flying the same damned time-building laps to the same airport, over and over, at just a 50nm range. That strikes me as having limited learning opportunity for both student AND instructor.

While our 61 students do follow the 141 syllabus, our instructors are given the latitude to design the training to the 61 student needs. We do institute stage checks for our 61 students, too, but they're not strictly mandatory and they're not regulatory - more of an internal quality-control check for our own CFIs. I find this practice favorable.

End of de-rail. @pilotbry - if you want me to have this post moved to another thread I'll do so. It just seemed relevant.
 
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