Pilots Needed

A recent article in the June 21, 2011 issue of USA today reported that after years of drought of job openings, the airline industry is about to start hiring pilots at a rate never before seen in history. Boeing has estimated there will be an estimated need for over 460,000 new commercial pilots by 2029 — an average of 23,300 new pilots a year. The reason for the demand is multi-factorial; the mandatory retirement age for pilots was changed from 60 to 65 years of age in 2007. Almost five years later, there will be an increase in pilots leaving the airline for retirement. In addition there is an increased demand in the US for air travel overall as the economy improves.

The major airlines will have to make themselves attractive to prospective pilot employees in both compensation and benefits. The need to look for ways to support not only the current pilot population by while finding ways to feed the pilot pipeline to support the demand is a challenge the airlines will be forced to address. It will be interesting to see which airlines rise to the occasion. Otherwise they may see American pilots recruited by international airlines. Emirates, an airline based in Dubai, currently employ 300 American pilots and are actively recruiting. The benefit package of a US commercial pilot pale in comparison to perks such as a chauffeur-driven car to and from work, an education allowance for the pilot’s family, and profit sharing offered by Emirates.

The good news is that our former scholarship recipients who have faced stiff competition in the past, will now after have an excellent opportunity to start working in their chosen career field. So right now, if you are fortunate enough to be ready to start your career as a professional pilot, the sky’s the limit!

Melodie Homer

7 Comments on “Pilots Needed

  1. Melodie,
    I am thinking of you today! I hope you and your children are doing fine.

  2. I think this is so great!!! I love flying also,,little over 600 hrs…im 64 retired 2 yrs ago…hope all has happy flying experience n never give up your love of flying……my first ride was when i was 13 yrs old ina J-3 cub…

  3. I read your story in this weeks PARADE magazine. Inspiring! I am very sorry for your loss but whole-heartedly agree that this would be his legacy going for and he would have wanted it.
    I do not qualify for the scholarships as I am too old but I am pursuing a pilots license when my wife and I can pay some debt off. I will lift your family up in prayer at this time and wish you all the best going forward.
    God bless and thank you for publishing it in the magazine.

  4. I was moved by yesterday’s remembrance. I remember stopping by my parents house. My mother greeted me at the door and said”I know I’ve lived too long, now.”
    When I was a little girl my father used to take me up in small planes. He was an appraiser and did fly-overs to take photos of different lots.
    I hope your life is fairly bearable now and I know your husband would be proud of this foundation and its goals.
    Have a good life!

  5. What a wonderful Parade Magazine article to mark the anniversary of the most tragic day in the history of this country. Through ceremonies and memorials across the country it’s encouraging and uplifting to see that we are united in preserving the sacrifices of so many unsuspecting Americans. I commend you Mrs. Homer, for sharing your love for your husband Mr. Leroy Homer Jr. and his love and dedication to his profession of flying.

    I was a NYCPD first responder on that tragic day, I’m also a mother of a 16 year old who has a love of flying and aviation. He has joined the Civil Air Patrol and had his first flying lesson 3 weeks ago. All my husband and I could say was WOW! There is encouragement in knowing that your husbands love is shared by many, especially my son. My husband and I will continue to feed his hunger for knowledge and education in the field of aviation and we thank you for sharing in the dream and giving opportunities to those who wish to follow in your husbands occupational path.

    May God continue to bless you and your family,
    Angela Gomez

  6. God bless you for your great idea to honor your husband. You have chosen a way which will also change lives for the better. We are becoming donors.

  7. I saw your article in the Parade Magazine and was fascinated and proud of your accomplishments! Having the article published, hopefully parents’ will show it to their children to let them know anything is possible if you have a dream and work hard. God Bless you and keep up the great work with your organization. Hopefully you will be able to visit schools so our children will become familiar with your endeavors.

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