Careers in the aviation industry have always been hot. Unfortunately, in recent years, the image of the industry has changed due to fear and strict security rules. However, some things never change, and the need for transportation hasn’t decreased. There are just as many jobs in aviation as there ever were, including many which aren’t quite as obvious as flying a jumbo jet for a major airline. Here, we’ll cover some aspects of the aviation industry, options within the field and several HBCUs which offer programs in this exciting carrier field.
What an Aviation Career Can Offer
In addition to the undeniable glamour and excitement, a career in aviation also offers a reliable and steady income. Depending on the area of aviation you choose to pursue, this can mean a salary well into six figures
Becoming an aerospace engineering director is, by far, the highest-paid option in aviation. These highly skilled engineers direct teams which are responsible for designing many different aspects of flight. An MBA is nearly always required for this career, in addition to an engineering degree with a strong background and focus on aerospace design.
When most people think of aviation, they picture a pilot. Salaries vary widely in this career. The largest salaries typically come with large planes and major airlines. There are many jobs available to pilots in smaller companies. While these do not pay as much, they can offer steady work and are a great way to gain experience before applying to a major airline.
Other careers in the aviation industry include lower-level aviation engineering, aircraft maintenance management, air traffic control, on-board security officers (also known as sky- or air-marshals), aircraft inspecting, aircraft maintenance, avionics technology and load-mastering.
Which HBCUs Offer Aviation Programs?
A wide variety of schools in many areas of the country offer aviation programs. Each program is different, and prospective students need to research each program before deciding which one matches their career goals. It’s also important to remember that a career as a pilot does not require military training, as was common in the past. Today, more new pilots have civilian training than military backgrounds.
Students in the northeast will want to check out Delaware State University, located in Dover. Moving down the coast, Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina, Hampton University, Norfolk State University, and Edward Waters University are all wonderful HBCU options.
Students in the south also have a wide variety of local options. Explore the aviation programs offered by Florida Memorial University in Miami, Langston University in Oklahoma, Morris Brown College in Atlanta and Tennessee State University, located in Nashville.