So you know you want to become a pilot, but now what? Fortunately, it is a student’s market when looking for a FAA-certified (approved) flight training program. The choices are endless with more than 100 schools throughout the country. Before selecting the right school for you, we encourage you to consider the following.

Houston open house1

What kind of pilot job to you want?
Have you asked yourself what you want from your aviation career? Do you want to be a commercial airline pilot? Corporate/charter pilot? Medical ambulance pilot? Thoroughly research which aviation career you are interested in. You want to make sure you understand the requirements of your dream job now.

Do you want/need a degree, or should you start your career as soon as possible?
Pilots who want to fly commercially must be 21 and meet the FAA’s Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certification requirements, but outside of those two musts each airline – regional and major – have their own additional requirements. At ExpressJet, we look for pilots who are competent, knowledgeable and passionate – we don’t require a degree. Some people prefer to attend a flight training school where they focus solely on earning their certifications, ratings and hours, while others want the college experience or are seeking a degree in aviation or another field.

Also consider if you want a career at the major airlines one day – some require degrees while others don’t. If you do want to go the college/university route, you can major in aviation management or aviation science or a related degree, which may qualify you for the Restricted ATP (R-ATP) that allows you to start your career with less hours (1,000 or 1,250). However, the majors simply require “a degree” so sometimes it’s smart to choose an unrelated field that you’re interested in, like English or Information Science. There’s also the possibility of completing your degree later while you’re flying professionally – that’s one of the perks of the flexible schedule of pilot life!

Part 61 vs Part 141
You haven’t even step foot on the campus yet, but you keep hearing the terms Part 61 vs Part 141. What does that really mean for you, the student? The terms refer to the federal regulations under which the program has the authority to train pilots. The difference:

Part 61

Advantages Disadvantages
Flexible training environment Less structured training environment
Ideal for part-time students Requires more flight training hours
Curriculum is adaptable for each student Self-study environment
Usually less expensive

Part 141

Advantages Disadvantages
More structured environment Not ideal for those who are doing leisure training
Ideal for full-time students Less flexible pace
Complete your certificates sooner May not be available everywhere
Study is classroom based Curriculum is not student specific
Usually more expensive

The cost of flight training is substantial regardless of whether you’re looking into Part 61 or 141 aviation programs. Making sure that you receive the highest quality education that best suits your career needs should be the primary focus. You can learn more about options for paying for flight training here: Paying for flight school.

Partner Programs
Many universities and flight schools have established partner relationships with regional and even major airlines. Attending a school that has this type of relationship can be the difference between you graduating with a conditional job offer (CJO) at a regional airline or job hunting on your own after completing your hours. Look at the regional airlines that your school is partnered with. ExpressJet has relationships with more than 50 schools across the country through our Airline Pilot Pathway Program (AP3). Then, see if that regional airline has any pathway programs with major carriers that you are interested in. Currently, ExpressJet has pathway programs with JetBlue and United.

Make sure that you ask questions to determine which school is best for YOU. Picking your flight training provider is not a decision to take lightly – you have every right to ask questions about the education you are receiving and you should.

All of this information can seem overwhelming, but it is important to research your decision early on when deciding where to complete your flight training. ExpressJet encourages you to continue to pursue your dreams as an aviator!


We’re excited to announce our 2016 Airline Pilot Pathway Program (AP3) Summer Camp. The camp is an extension of our commitment of educating, engaging and empowering future aviators across the country. This enrichment camp offers attendees an opportunity to expand their horizons and embark on a new adventure that will challenge and enlighten them both personally and professionally.

What is the Airline Pilot Pathway Program?
The Airline Pilot Pathway Program, AP3, is a partnership between ExpressJet, select flight schools and universities, and students in the program. At its core, AP3 is a mentorship-based educational program that gives students a highly structured path through school, building hours as a CFI, to a career at ExpressJet.

What is AP3 Camp?
Tailored to senior level aviation students and/or certified flight instructors, AP3 Camp provides an opportunity for student pilots to explore, grow, develop new skills and form lasting relationships in a friendly, career-focused environment. This all-inclusive experience will be offered to 48 students each year, chosen by ExpressJet leaders based on individual applications.

Here are some of the activities you’ll experience in as part of AP3 Camp:

  • Behind-the-scenes tour of ExpressJet’s facilities including our airport crew lounge, Flight Ops training center, maintenance hangar and Operation Support Center (OSC)
  • Tour of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport or George Bush Intercontinental Airport
  • Exclusive meeting with ExpressJet leadership
  • Sessions in our flight simulators
  • Pilot shadow experience
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Aviation think tank
  • On-site interviews, dependent on individual candidates

When and where is the camp?
Two camps will be held each session – one in Atlanta and in Houston.

June Session Monday, June 27 – Wednesday, June 29
July Session Monday, July 11 – Wednesday, July 13
August Session Monday, Aug. 1 – Wednesday Aug. 3

How much does the camp cost?
ExpressJet covers a majority of the cost associated with camp, excluding travel and personal spending money for the duration of the camp. Lodging, meals, and all activities are provided for free to selected attendees.

Who is eligible for the camp?
AP3 camp is open to senior level aviation students and/or certified flight instructors who are members of AP3 at our partner schools. Students must complete the AP3 Camp application to be considered. ExpressJet leadership will select 48 participants (16 for each session).

How do I apply?
The application window will be open Apr. 6-May 10. To apply, complete the online application at and then submit your resume and a letter of reference to In the subject line write, “John Doe’s Additional Documents for AP3 Camp,” Applications without these supporting documents will be considered incomplete.

When will candidates be notified?
Selected candidates will be contacted on May 16 via the email address and/or phone number provided in the application.

Contact for any additional questions.

Apr. 30 Open Houses

Come explore one of the best regional airlines in the industry at ExpressJet’s Spring Open Houses, and invest in your future career. ExpressJet Airlines is pleased to announce our annual Open House events at both our Atlanta and Houston locations on Apr. 30, 2016.  Both Open House events will be held 8 a.m.–5:30 p.m. ET/CT, and we encourage you to reserve time slots for the various events at

Our Open House events aim to help you make the smart choice for your future by providing you an inside look at what it’s like to start your career at ExpressJet. During this event you will have the opportunity to:

  • Go on a guided behind-the-scenes tour giving you a look at our flight operations, maintenance facilities and Operation Support Center (OSC)
  • Talk with pilot recruiters
  • Listen to former ExpressJet pilots who have transitioned to the majors about how ExpressJet prepared them for the next step in their career
  • Learn about financial aid opportunities available to finance your flight training
  • Attend workshops to help you plan for your pilot career (schedule will be published here soon!)
  • Interact with local flight schools
  • Experience flight with a free session in our flight simulators

The Houston Open House event will take place at 17445 JFK Blvd., Houston, TX 77032. The Atlanta Open House will take place at 990 Toffie Terrace, Atlanta, GA 30354.

We encourage future pilots, students and their parents, and aviation enthusiasts to attend. Registration isn’t necessary to attend, but will ensure your desired time slot for the tour, workshops, pilot meet and greet or interview. If you are interested in signing up for a simulator sessions you must register as slots will fill up fast! Only one slot per attendee is allowed. Register for all events at

ExpressJet looks forward to meeting you!

Our leaders, pilots, recruiters and team members have been working exceptionally hard in 2016 to make ExpressJet an even better place to build your career. We’re only two months into the New Year and we’ve had so many good news announcements already that we want to make sure everyone is in-the-know on the latest happenings at ExpressJet.

Here’s an overview of everything going on:

ExpressJet Pilots Ratify Contract Extensions

  • First year pay rates at $37 (CRJ200/ERJ) and $40 (CRJ700/900)
  • Per diem increased to $1.85 on date of signing and $1.90 on date of signing + 18 months
  • $1.50/hr. increase for all pay rates
  • Profit sharing program that guarantees a minimum payout of $1,000 for 2016 and $1,500 for 2017 for eligible pilots

Path to United

  • ExpressJet signed an agreement with United to offer our United Express pilots a path to United Airlines
  • United has committed to hiring a dedicated percentage of their new pilots from the Career Pathway Program at ExpressJet
  • All ExpressJet pilots will also have the opportunity to apply through the normal channels and we expect our strong hiring relationship with United to continue into the future Launch

  • Visit to learn more about the ExpressJet story
  • Site highlights ExpressJet’s training, safety, quality of life, stability, family, career and new total compensation package
  • Regularly updated with blog posts, recruiting events and company news

Smart 16

  • ExpressJet wants to know what our pilot applicants value most in an airline
  • Visit and “vote” on each matchup to choose which company advantage is most important to you
  • ExpressJet’s pilot recruiting team will use the results to share more information relevant to the topics players are most interested in
  • Grand prizes include a GoPro and $100 Ray-Ban gift card (winners selected randomly from all submissions)

Aviation Career Development Presentation Series

  • ExpressJet is partnering with Delta, United and JetBlue to visit partner schools and present on a number of topics, beginning with Career Progression
  • Presentations have been held at Jacksonville University, the University of North Dakota and Middle Tennessee State University thus far – look for an event coming to your campus soon

Career Info Sessions

  • We’re traveling the country to offer you an interview preparation session, or if you’re ready to start your career, an on-site interview
  • Sessions include a mock interview, resume review and one-on-one Q&A with ExpressJet pilot recruiter
  • Check or our events calendar for the next visit to your city

Pilot Recruiting Events

ExpressJet is committed to exceeding all expectations for 2016, and redefining the regional airline industry. We take pride in raising the bar for our company and setting the industry standard.

If you’re ready to start your career, apply today at

Amazing People 1

People rarely get the opportunity to mesh their love for their heritage with a passion for their career, but when the opportunity does arise the results are often very rewarding. Houston-based First Officer Michael Cerrato-Yeomans and four other airline pilots recently took it into their hands to do just that. They came together to provide a platform for Latino pilots to celebrate their culture while nurturing their careers – launching the Latino Pilot Association (LPA).

Hispanic and Latino pilots currently account for 5 percent of airline transportation pilots, more than any other minority group, but those types of numbers can still lead to a lack of unity in the workplace. LPA was organized in an effort to address the workplace issues that directly affect minority groups like Hispanics and to help enhance networks where they can further develop individual careers within the aviation industry.

“As a pilot of Latin descent I have personally seen the disparities within the airline industry when it comes to welcoming those of other cultures,” said Michael Cerrato-Yeomans, Houston pilot recruiter.  “Discrimination within the workplace can definitely lead to lower morale and discourage people from actually becoming interested in pursuing a career in aviation.”

Not only is Michael the co-founder of LPA, but he is also a member of ExpressJet’s Houston Recruiting Team where he spends business hours supporting the company’s hiring efforts. However, Michael spends much of his free time working with the LPA team to ensure they are uniting and mentoring association members.

“I, along with my four LPA co-founders, wanted to be able to show other minorities that they are welcome in the airline industry and that they will be taken in to a close-knit group that understands their struggles,” he continued. “I am happy to know that I work for a company that values diversity and encourages others like me to proudly embrace who they are in the workplace.”

Michael’s passion for LPA is contagious and has definitely spread to other members of the Houston recruitment team, as many of them now actively support and forward the mission of the organization even though they are not official members.

Participation in the Latino Pilot Association provides members with several rewarding benefits, including:

Professional Development & Mentorship: Members have the opportunity to volunteer and mentor other LPA members. A program entitled REACH is currently being developed to help educate, guide and further mentor many of the LPA members who are high school and college students.

Education Resources: Members receive educational resources that help acclimate them to the aviation industry and provide steps for achieving fruitful careers.

Career Growth: LPA members are encouraged to network with other members in effort to forge long-term personal and professional relationships, which may lead to future career growth opportunities.

Cerrato-Yeomans and his colleagues followed their passion by starting LPA, and they encourage others to start or join their own organization that addresses their unique heritage or beliefs.  “Determine why you want to start your association, what benefits you can provide to members and how you can help others through the organization you are trying to start,” said Michael.

“Believe in yourself, your cause, and your core values. When you truly believe in what your association stands for, others who believe will follow and everything will fall into place,” he explained. “With that being said, your hard work will be needed to start the association. Just like a for profit organization, you will need to have many teams – Legal, Marketing, IT, Recruitment, Outreach, among others – and finding those who can help you will be the key to your success.”

The Latino Pilots Association is open to anyone with an interest in aviation.  The organization believes that everyone has the ability to give back and they welcome all pilots who want to be a part of forwarding that goal. For more information you can email him at or visit

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