Aeronautical Science - Flight, B.S.

Aeronautical Science - Flight, B.S.

What is a flight option aeronautical science degree?

Aeronautical Science with Flight DegreeFlorida Tech's aeronautical science degree prepares students for technical jobs in the aviation industry. We've been consistently recognized for offering one of the best university-based aviation programs in the country.

The aeronautical science degree is available as either a flight or non-flight major.

  • Choosing aeronautical science without flight provides a strong foundation in applied math and science for a career in a technical aspect of aviation.
  • Choosing aeronautical science - flight prepares you for a career as a professional pilot. Traditionally, graduates pursue a type rating as a new hire, and in most cases only then after building flight time as an instructor. 

In addition, you have two other degree options:

  • Prepare for a career in military aviation and participate in Army ROTC
  • Specialize in air traffic control and be ready to apply to the FAA Academy upon graduation. The air traffic control (ATC) specialization meets the requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Air Traffic-Collegiate Training Initiative (AT-CTI) program and is FAA-approved.

Gain Practical Experience

Whether you want to be an aeronautic designer, airport manager or aviation safety expert, an aeronautical science degree from Florida Tech develops a strong background in aviation through hands-on experience in modern aeronautical technology and industry best practices.

Students at Florida Tech complete advanced course work in aviation security and advanced aircraft systems, and meet recruiters from major airlines at university career fairs. Students can gain experience in internships and are encouraged to participate in those opportunities. Aeronautical science degree students have access to first-rate computer labs and the Basic Aviation Training Device (BATD) for hands-on learning.

Build Professional Relationships

Beyond the classroom, aeronautical science degree majors build leadership and professional experience through internships and participate in academic organizations like Collegiate Aviation Business Executives, a student chapter of American Association of Airport Executives, the Falcons Intercollegiate Flight Team, Women in Aviation (WIA), Student Government and over 100 other campus-wide student organizations.

Get Recruited By a Top Airline

Employers seek out graduates with an aeronautical science degree from Florida Tech. Airlines and aviation organizations who have recruited our students include:

  • American Airlines

  • United Continental

  • Delta

  • JetBlue Airways

  • US Airways

  • National Transportation Safety Board

  • Garrett Aviation

  • Department of Homeland Security

  • International Airports

Earn an Advanced Degree

After receiving their aeronautical science degree, many of our students go to graduate school, often at Florida Tech, for advanced degrees in aviation human factors, airport development and aviation law.

Why pursue an aeronautical science degree with flight at Florida Tech?

Studying aviation at an aeronautical science university like Florida Tech provides you the benefits of a larger school, such as world-class professors and high-quality curriculum, in an academic community offering small class sizes and one-on-one time with professors.

Florida Tech's faculty members are experienced experts in all aspects of aviation. The professors are themselves pilots, as well as being experts in aviation law, safety, avionics or environmental science. Other faculty are experts in areas such as airport consulting; design and management; airline or general aviation management; as well as aviation human factors, meteorology and air traffic control.

A Flexible Program You Can Tailor To Your Interests

Of all the aeronautics programs offered at Florida Tech, aeronautical science–flight is the most flexible in terms of elective course work. This allows students to tailor their course work to their interests including flight instructor, air traffic control or dispatcher.

The Only Program in the U.S. to Offer Type-Rating As Degree Option

Other aeronautical science university programs can't compete. Florida Tech's aeronautics program is currently the only one in the U.S. that offers a turbojet type rating as an option in its regular curriculum and an FAA-approved Air Traffic Control program in conjunction with any of our bachelor of science degrees. Additionally, graduates of the Air Traffic Collegiate Training Initiative program may be eligible to bypass the Air Traffic Basics Course, which is usually covered during the first five weeks of qualification training at the FAA Academy in Oklahoma City.

Other aeronautical science university benefits include:

  • Flight students fly within their first week of study
  • Aviation master's and accelerated MBA programs available to graduates
  • Strong alumni and employer network
  • ExpressJet Pathway Program leads to a job with ExpressJet and Delta Airlines
  • Stay and instruct to gain experience needed for a job as a pilot at a regional airline
  • Flight students graduate with an average 250–300 flight hours
  • Flight-option majors have the opportunity to obtain an FAA Dispatcher Certificate and work as an airline or corporate dispatcher without taking any extra courses

High-Tech Laboratory & Learning Facilities

An aeronautical science university demands cutting-edge technology and facilities, which Florida Tech has. Aeronautical science majors at Florida Tech primarily attend class and work in the College of Aeronautics' Skurla Hall, which includes classrooms, computer labs for airport design and planning, and unlike any other aeronautical science university, the Basic Aviation Training Device (BATD) Lab. The BATD Lab enables all students to fly desktop simulators under the supervision of a flight instructor. Skurla Hall is home to a first-rate computer lab with many different applications and networking capabilities that allow hands-on learning of many aviation topics.

The tools students have at their disposal at Florida Tech are vital to any aeronautical science university. FIT Aviation manages the flight training facilities, which are conveniently located in the nearby Melbourne Airport. FIT Aviation has 52 new and refurbished aircraft, both Cessna's and Pipers. There is a human factors lab where some experiments can be conducted and CADCAM, a computer classroom used by students to design airports.

Great Florida Location – Year-Round Flying

Florida Tech's benefits as an aeronautical science university begin with its prime location on Florida's Space Coast, which has perfect weather conditions for flying year-round. This Central Florida location also puts students amidst a wealth of high-tech companies for internships and research.

The campus of this aeronautical science university is near 72 miles of beautiful beaches, NASA Kennedy Space Center, Brevard Zoo, Port Canaveral and Orlando theme parks. Campus life includes many student organizations, Student Government, and competitive and intramural sports.

Aviation is a small world and our faculty and students enjoy a special bond and sense of camaraderie. Florida Tech's program, quality faculty and comprehensive curriculum make it the best choice as your aeronautical science university.

How will an aeronautical science degree with flight prepare me for the future?

Many aeronautical science majors participate in an aviation internship over one or more summers or semesters. Just a few of these opportunities include major and regional airlines, where students gain specialized experience in airline operations and a variety of aviation businesses, as well as attend valuable development courses such as aircraft systems.

These aviation internship opportunities can be with the airlines or aviation companies such as:

  • JetBlue Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Melbourne International Airport

Aviation internship experiences are great for networking in the industry and utilizing skills learned during coursework. An aviation internship also provides an opportunity to attend aircraft systems training and to train in a full-flight Level V flight simulator. Interning students learn about flight dispatch, record keeping and the various large computer systems and programs employed by the airlines.

High Tech Training

In addition to an aviation internship, FIT Aviation conducts flight training with the university's modern fleet of aircraft, offering fixed wing flight certificates and ratings. The towered Melbourne International Airport hosts a mix of air carrier and general aviation traffic on its three runways.

With eight different instrument approaches, a radar approach control and over 10 airports within a 50-mile radius, the airport provides an excellent environment for professional flight training. Numerous general aviation and commercial service airports in the Central Florida area offer valuable training opportunities for various airport approaches, landings and takeoffs.

Florida Tech's first-rate flight training facilities are located at the Melbourne International Airport, in the Emil Buehler Flight Training Center. Our large fleet consists of Piper aircraft, including Warriors, Arrows, twin-engine Piper Seminoles and an aerobatic Citabria. Florida Tech offers both glass cockpit and round dial aircraft.

Air Traffic Control Program Option

Interested students can also take part in the optional Air Traffic Control (ATC) program. ATC students gain hands-on experience with industry standard air traffic control programs and are able to bypass certain training courses after graduation. Students learn high-level software and programming skills and gain experience in aviation programs and applications used around the world. Using computer-aided design (CAD) programs, students can complete projects in designing airports and airport terminals, and conduct experiments such as noise studies.

Be an Active Part of Aviation Flight-Related Organizations

Professional organizations are another way to learn about aviation internship and job opportunities. The Falcons Precision Flight Team is a student organization that takes part in both ground and flight competitions regionally and nationally. The team participates in highly competitive events and also holds numerous gatherings on campus to promote aviation safety.

Women in Aviation (WIA) is an organization made up of both women and men dedicated to the advancement of women in aeronautics. WIA takes part in networking activities and lectures to help promote women in all fields and help them obtain aviation internship positions and career opportunities.

What can you do with an aeronautical science degree with flight?

Between expert instructors, internship opportunities, an engaged alumni network and a Career Management Services office, Florida Tech graduates are well prepared for a number of careers in aeronautics. An aeronautical science degree opens up career paths such as airport manager, aviation safety expert, air traffic control and airline manager, and more.

Career Outlook

A degree in aeronautical science gives the graduate a set of skills applicable to many different careers, particularly those that place a premium on technical competencies.

Certain careers, such as airline and commercial pilots, are projected to grow 11 percent through 2020 as growth in world travel increases and many pilots are expected to retire, as projected by the Occupational Outlook Handbook. Job opportunities will be highest among passenger and cargo airline companies with the best job prospects being regional airlines and low-cost carriers.

Jobs in air traffic control will rise as today's air traffic control workforce retires over the next decade. While there will be an increasing number of job openings, competition for the FAA Academy will remain high. Job opportunities will demand that applicants obtain an air traffic control degree from a FAA certified school.

The Occupational Outlook Handbook, published by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), provides detailed information about hundreds of occupations, including, entry-level education, overall working environment and employment prospects. Careers in aeronautics such as air traffic control and aviation mechanics are expected to stay stable. Check the handbook on the outlook for careers in the aeronautics.

Career Options

Careers in aeronautics include such jobs as:

  • Pilot
  • Flight engineer
  • Aircraft technician
  • Aviation and aeronautic design
  • Aviation and aeronautic maintenance (repair and perform scheduled maintenance and conduct inspections as required by the FAA)
  • Air traffic controller
  • Non-jet military pilot
  • Defense industry design (e.g., "smart" weapons")
  • Research and development (e.g., space suits, jet fuels, space communication systems)

Potential Employers for Florida Tech Graduates

Employers offering careers in aeronautics to Florida Tech graduates include:

  • Major or Regional Airlines
  • Federal Department of Transportation
  • National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
  • Aviation-related companies (Harris Corp., Velocity Aircraft, Government)
  • Airports
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