Top 10 Colleges for Aviation Degrees


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The aviation field is a competitive industry with substantial and diverse opportunities. It is expected to experience average job growth over the next several years. Individuals interested in pursuing a career in the aviation field will need to reside within close commuting distance to an airport. The profession can be stressful, often requiring long hours and meticulous work and in some cases days away from home. However, careers in the aviation field can offer professionals within the field an exciting and challenging experience with respectable salaries. The aviation field includes positions such as air traffic controller, aircraft mechanics, operations and flight instructors, airline pilots, copilots and flight engineers and airline flight attendants. Individuals entering the field will need to be detail oriented, decisive and organized.

Below is a list of the top ranked aviation schools offering online and traditional degree programs:

1. Hallmark College

Hallmark College, established in 1969, is a private career school dedicated to providing industry relevant programs. The institution has earned high regard for its dedication to providing high quality programs to motivated individuals. Hallmark continuously strives to improve and expand their degree programs. Students enrolled at Hallmark College have the option of completing diploma programs or associate and bachelor degree programs in electronics, health care professions, business and information technology. The students are taught by experienced instructors who ensure they attain a high level of competency and develop a responsible code of ethical conduct. Certified by the Federal Aviation Administration as an Aviation Maintenance Technician School, Hallmark College’s Hallmark Institute of Aeronautics provides rigorous and challenging programs which remain abreast of advancements and regulatory changes within the aviation industry. Hallmark College of Aeronautics is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges and approved by the United States Department of Education.

The school of Aeronautics at Hallmark College offers both associate and diploma programs. two associate of applied science degree programs in aviation; airframe technology and power plant technology. The fifteen month degree programs prepare graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary to become professionals in the field of aviation. Students learn to diagnose aircraft problems and to maintain and repair aircraft. Significant emphasis is placed on experiential learning through practical application of the skills learned in the classroom. The program curriculum adheres to the requirements and regulations of the Federal Aviation Administration; ensuring students will be qualified to take the certification exams administered by the FAA. The test incentive program offered by Hallmark College allows student to earn vouchers to assist with the costs of the tests. The diploma programs offered include aviation technician, airframe technician and power plant technician. The programs require between 54 and 90 credits and between 1174 and 1926 hours practicing and performing the learned skills. Each of the programs instills graduates with the entry level skills necessary to successfully enter the field of aviation.

2. Wyotech Aviation Schools

WyoTech, founded in 1966, is a focused career educational institution which provides training in a range of technical fields with campuses located across the country. The school originally began as an automotive institution but has grown to include programs in various other technical fields. The short-term degree programs provide students with the necessary training without unnecessary delays. The programs offered at Wyotech schools include watercraft technology, plumbing, electrician, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, automotive, diesel and motorcycle. The training programs meet the standards and specifications of the industries and are continuously updated to include advances in the fields and respond to the growing demands of the various industries. The instructors are dedicated educators who remain abreast of the changes within their area of expertise.

The aviation technology program offered at Wyotech Aviation School is FAA approved. The students are offered the option of pursuing either the aeronautical maintenance technology or aircraft mechanics programs. The program curriculum includes training in electrical systems, hydraulic and pneumatic systems, composite structures, fuel and propeller systems, riveting, fastening, bending, forming cutting, welding and inspection for airworthiness of sheet metal structures, ignition and starting systems, induction and air flow systems and airframe assembly and rigging. The course includes practical maintenance training on the most advanced equipment and workshops comparable to those used in the industry. The programs are offered at the Boston, Massachusetts and Oakland California campus locations.

3. Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology

Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology offers students a diverse range of educational choices. The training and education students receive at Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology is applicable to an array of professional and technical fields in various industries. Students are able to complete the programs in as little as seven to twenty months. The hands on training offered at Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology provides extensive opportunities to develop a proficiency in the skills learned in the classroom. The curriculum is current and industry relevant, ensuring graduates are prepared with the skills and technical knowledge required by employers. The support services include one on one instruction, additional laboratory training and student employment assistance. Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges and certified by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Michigan Institute of Aviation and Technology offer degree programs in Aviation maintenance, power technology and transportation dispatch. The aviation maintenance program prepares students with the skills to become a trained technician. Students are trained in gear systems and operations, sheet metal fabrication, composite structure fabrication, hydraulics/pneumatics, pressurization, heating, air cycle and Freon cooling systems, radio and navigation systems, ice and rain protection systems, metal corrosion and prevention, fuel control, carburetion and fuel injection systems. Students enrolled in the program receive their own personal tool kit which is included in the cost of their tuition. Upon completion of the program, students are qualified to become FAA certified Airframe and Power plant Technicians.

Courses begin every eight to ten weeks and courses are scheduled Monday through Friday with either a morning or afternoon schedule. The flexible enrollment schedule allows students to begin their education without necessary delays and permits students to devise a work and school schedule that accommodate one another.

4. Academy College

Academy College, founded in 1936, is a private college which offers an array of professional career focused degree programs. Students enrolled at Academy College have the option of pursuing associate, bachelor and certificate programs in aviation, business and finance, computer technology, digital arts and design and medical and health. The challenging curriculum prepares students for the complex and dynamic careers in the professional realm. Academy College offers flexible schedule options tailored to meet the needs of their students. The instructors teaching the courses are specialists with industry relevant experience. Students are offered lifetime placement assistance, career and resume counseling and employer panel discussions. Academy College maintains professional associations with well regarded professional organizations. Academy College is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools.

Academy College offers several degree options in the aviation field; Associate of Applied Science degree in aviation business or professional pilot, a certificate program in professional pilot and a Resident and Correspondence program in aircraft dispatch. The pilot programs provide flight training beginning in the first quarter of study and use a combination of ground school and flight training. Students learn on single and multi engine aircraft to provide the most comprehensive educational experience. The structure, results oriented curriculum ensures students are equipped with the knowledge and training essential to success as a pilot. The courses are FAA approved and are conducted under FAR Part 141. The courses are taught by pilots and students develop professional relationships with industry professionals. The aviation business program requires 101 quarter credits and includes courses in private pilot aviation principles, private pilot flight training, business and computer courses, aviation course electives and technical course electives.

5. Crimson Technical College

Crimson Technical College, founded in the late 1930’s, is one of the nation’s premier technical institutions. Established by the founder of Northrop Aircraft Company, Crimson Technical College was instituted to respond to a growing need for highly skilled technicians in the aviation field. The training programs are based on industry standards and provide high quality curriculum which prepares students with the skills and knowledge necessary to become successful professionals in their field of interest. The career focused education provides students with hands on experiential learning. The faculty instructors are industry experienced professionals knowledgeable of the skills essential to the workplace. Students are offered career development assistance; resume training, interview skills and career fairs. Crimson Technical College is accredited by the Commission of the Council on Occupational Education.

The Airframe and Power plant aviation certificate program offered at Crimson Technical College is a 2100 hour program requiring seventeen months to complete. The fourteen unit program is broken into three general units: airframe, power plant and inspection and review. Each unit is five weeks in duration with 150 hours of instruction. The curriculum includes classroom lectures, hands on training, discussions and individual projects. Student can select an area of specialization. Students study wood structures, fabric, fiberglass, Plexiglas, composite structures, electrical circuits, aviation regulations, flight control systems, aircraft communication systems, aircraft engines and batteries. The program includes inspection and review labs for various aircrafts, theoretical studies of power plant systems and diagnostics, maintenance and repair of aeronautical systems and engines.

6. Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology

Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology, established in 1928, is a leader in aviation education and training. Since it’s founding, Spartan college has produced graduates who have continued on to make remarkable contributions within the aviation industry. Spartan College offers programs which encompass the areas of aviation, aerospace, manufacturing and technology. The program curriculum incorporates the latest advances and the most current information in the continuously evolving aviation field. In addition to the traditional educational programs, Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology also provides contract training to employees of national and international government agencies and various commercial and industry organizations with the United States. Students are also offered the opportunity to complete the FAA and FCC professional certification exams administered by Spartan College. Spartan also offers ongoing career services to their graduates which include resume creation, recruiting visits and interview training.

Spartan College of Aeronautics and Technology offers a range of programs in aviation including associate and bachelor degrees and diploma programs. Students have the option of pursuing diploma programs in avionics maintenance technology, nondestructive testing diploma programs, associate of applied science avionics maintenance technology, quality control and professional pilot degree and a Bachelor of Science aviation management degree. The Associate of Applied Science degree in aviation maintenance, avionics, quality control and flight programs prepare student for entry level positions within their field of interest. The Bachelor of Science in aviation technology management can be completed in 16 months and combines training, education and experience to ensure graduates are equipped with the skills necessary to become successful professionals in their field.

7. Embry Riddle Aeronautical University

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, founded in the early 1970’s, is the top ranked provider of aviation educational degree programs comprised of more than 170 locations around the globe. Dedicated to the success of their students, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University offers flexible, high quality degree programs to highly motivated, busy working adults. The curriculum equips students with the most current knowledge and skills and training in the latest technologies. Their programs are continuously reviewed and updated for both quality and content. Embry Riddle Aeronautical University provides online distance learning programs to a student body of more than 26,000 individuals. The courses are taught by leading experts in the aviation field with real world experience. Embry Riddle Aeronautical University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers a range of degree and non-degree programs in the fields of aviation and aerospace. Students have the option of selecting from 35 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. The Aerospace Engineering program has been ranked as the top program in the nation by U.S. News and World Report for the last nine years. Degree programs offered online include Associate and bachelor in Aviation Business Administration, in Aviation Maintenance and in professional aeronautics with additional bachelor degree programs offered in technical management specializing in logistics, occupational safety and health or engineering sciences. Master degree programs are offered in technical management, space education, logistics and supply chain management and several other areas of focus. The curriculum in each of the programs provides extensive study in the fundamental and advanced areas of aeronautical science. The programs include in flight training through sophisticated aircraft simulators, courses in navigation, communications and surveillance systems found in aerospace vehicles and core areas such as philosophy, ethics, psychology geography and humanities. .

8. Rio Salado College

Rio Salado College is a two year public institution with a thirty year history which serves a student body of nearly 20,000 individuals. The student focused institution offers customized, flexible degree programs which can be tailored to meet the needs of the individual. Students have the option of selecting from certificate programs or associate and bachelor degree programs. Programs are available in accelerated formats and distance learning delivery formats. The innovative curriculum are high quality, industry relevant courses which prepare students with the tools and knowledge necessary to begin a new career or advance their current careers. Rio Salado College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association.

Rio Salado College offers an Associate degree in Aviation and Airway Management and Operations. The program prepares students with the skills necessary to become successful managers in the aviation industry. Students learn the fundamentals of airport operations, ground traffic direction, passenger and cargo operations, ground support and flight line operations and flight safety and security operations. The program also encompasses aviation industry regulation and the business aspects of managing aviation organizations. Certificate programs are offered in ground operation, initial flight attendant, passenger services, reservations and vacations. Rio Salado College has entered into partnerships with numerous employers and offer up to 22 college credits to their employees at minimal cost.

9. Daniel Webster College – Nashau

Daniel Webster College at Nashau, founded in 1965, was originally instituted as an aeronautical institute and has developed into a private college offering a range of programs in numerous fields. Students have the opportunity to pursue degree programs in aviation, business, management, computer sciences, engineering and social sciences. The faculty members teaching the courses are experienced educators with real world experience. Daniel Webster College is dedicated to the success of their students; providing the support and services necessary for them to accomplish their educational and career goals. Students have access to the fully automated library and learning center available through online. Daniel Webster College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and the Council on Aviation Accreditation.

The Master of Business administration for Aviation Professionals at Daniel Webster College is a comprehensive program which prepares graduates for a career in the aviation industry. The degree program provides a solid foundation in the fundamental and advanced areas of business and a focused study in aviation. The curriculum incorporates case studies and requires students to complete papers on the aviation industry. Students enrolled in the online aviation professional program are able to attain a practical understanding of the major through the real world application emphasis of the course work. The students attain the skills and knowledge necessary for management professionals within the aviation field. The program develops students’ skills in leadership and teamwork, decision making, integrated analysis, written and oral communication skills and information technology.

10. Delta Connection Academy

Delta Connection academy Flight School was established in 1989 and is considered a leading institution for pilot training. Recognized for the quality of their graduates, Delta Connection Academy has produced first officer candidates for the most successful regional airlines. Delta Connection Academy operates a fleet of 73 aircraft and its graduates have become employed in over 30 airlines. The programs provide students with advanced, industry relevant curriculum and training which prepares them for careers in the top airlines as first officers, nationally and internationally. The programs train students in safety, efficiency and customer services. Students from around the world enroll at Delta Connection Academy because of the quality of their programs. Delta Connection Academy is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges.

Delta Connection Academy is primarily a flight school offering pilot raining, but also offers associate and bachelor degree programs through a joint partnership with Jacksonville University, Broward College and San Jacinto College. The traditional professional pilot program is a challenging, fast paced program which can be completed in as little as 24 months. An approved first part 141 flight school, the program includes coursework in advanced systems, part 121 operations, high altitude weather, high speed aerodynamics, advanced aircraft systems and automation and EFIS and EICAS systems. Students engage in mission based training where students are provided with a particular assignment intended to accomplish a specific purpose. The program consists of two phases at twelve months each; the training phase and flight instructor phase. The training phase includes training in private and instrument, commercial multi, high altitude, commercial single add-on and flight instruction. The program curriculum is VA approved flight training. The second twelve months requires completion of 600-800 hours of flight time, a jet transition course and a guaranteed job interview.

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