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-   -   Any interest in an Air Traffic Control career? (http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/forum2/showthread.php?t=20881)

Fishy 02-13-2014 01:13 PM

Any interest in an Air Traffic Control career?
 
For the first time in a long while, the FAA is hiring "off the street" Air Traffic Controllers. I've been in this career for 20 years now. When I started, the military was the only way into a Federal air traffic career. I chose the Marine Corps. Now, there are numerous colleges all over the country that offer air traffic degrees.

If you or someone you know is under 31, this has been a great career for me and has provided my family with a pretty comfortable lifestyle. The hours suck, you'll miss holidays with family, parties, birthdays, kids sports, school functions and so on. You may spend half your career with Tue/Wed off, you will be mentally worn down and your chances of a heart attack or a nervous breakdown may increase. You'll also need to be able to :blah: nonstop for hours.

If you like working out complex problems and contributing to the safest, most efficient air traffic system in the world, it's a pretty fun gig. The age 31 restriction is because we are forced to retire by age 56. In order to be eligible for early retirement, you need 20 years good time (actively working airplanes) by age 50 or 25 years at any age. As an example, I am eligible for full retirement at age 49 because I will have 25 years of talking to airplanes. (and over 20 years good time) Not bad.

Salaries are as low as $50-60k for fully certified controllers at low level airports up to $150k+ at busier facilities. It's not an easy profession. Here in Denver we have a failure rate of probably 40-50%. All of our new controllers come from other airports and have experience but still cannot certify. The busier facilities no longer hire direct, you need to work your way up and move around. Failure to certify at your first facility usually results in termination. Failure to certify at your 2nd or 3rd facility usually results in being placed at another low level facility, but you won't lose your job.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/johngogl...rience-needed/

Go here and search "2152" That's the air traffic code.
https://www.usajobs.gov/

Bidding is open for another week and may be years before it's done like this again. The FAA will send you to OKC for school, (3-4 months) but they do pay you while you're there. Obviously, you need to pass that school. Let me know if anyone has any questions.

PabloCruise 02-13-2014 01:45 PM

That is cool!

Should people watch Pushing Tin before applying?

cbmontgo 02-13-2014 01:51 PM

Very cool. I fly out of Centennial. Funny how you start to recognize your local controllers' voices after a while!

Fishy 02-13-2014 04:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PabloCruise (Post 246326)
That is cool!

Should people watch Pushing Tin before applying?

They should not. :) However, the final episode of Season 2 of Breaking Bad isn't too far off. You need to be in the right frame of mind at work every day. Distractions big or small are better left at the door. One mistake, and lives are at risk.

You need to be right 100% of the time. There is no such thing as being 98% efficient. If I work 100 airplanes in an hour and smack two of them together, I was 98% successful that hour of that day. In most professions, you'd get a bonus for reaching that goal for 365 days in a row. Think about the consequences of that happening everyday in air traffic.

All this aside, it's a fun career.

wesintl 02-13-2014 05:12 PM

negative ghost rider the pattern is full

Fishy 02-13-2014 05:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cbmontgo (Post 246327)
Very cool. I fly out of Centennial. Funny how you start to recognize your local controllers' voices after a while!

I've been told my voice is pretty distinct, so it's always nice to be recognized when things are going well. Then again, everybody knows when you're getting your tail beat too.

I'm at Denver TRACON (Approach/Departure) so I work everything in and out of APA. I'm sure we've spoken to each other.

Lars 02-13-2014 06:23 PM

I'm sure we have spoken with my flights out of Rocky Mtn metropolitan.

cbmontgo 02-13-2014 06:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fishy (Post 246334)
I'm at Denver TRACON (Approach/Departure) so I work everything in and out of APA. I'm sure we've spoken to each other.

Yep...very cool. Too bad we can't talk Toyotas while you're vectoring me to the ILS!

Fishy 02-13-2014 09:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cbmontgo (Post 246338)
Yep...very cool. Too bad we can't talk Toyotas while you're vectoring me to the ILS!

Sure we can! I've got a few fishing buddies who fly the A320, so we sometimes chat a little in between vectors..... if its not too busy. ;)

cbmontgo 02-14-2014 10:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Fishy (Post 246348)
Sure we can! I've got a few fishing buddies who fly the A320, so we sometimes chat a little in between vectors..... if its not too busy. ;)

That's awesome. I'll have to request "fishy" next time I'm IFR in the Skylane!


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