SUU Aviation Department Helicopter

Aviation Bachelor’s Degrees

Getting a bachelor’s degree in aviation can provide you with some great advantages if you're interested in becoming a pilot. 

  • Greater chance of getting hired
  • Higher average income
  • More opportunities for chief or management positions
  • A back-up plan in case you can't fly or pass the FAA medical exams

SUU Aviation has multiple Bachelor degree options to choose from. 

  • Aviation Sciences - Rotor-Wing Emphasis (B.S.)
  • Aviation Sciences - Fixed-Wing Emphasis (B.S.)
  • Aviation Administration and Leadership (B.A., B.S.)

Bachelors of Aerospace/Aviation Sciences (B.S.)

The Bachelor of Aviation science is the recommended degree for both helicopter and airplane students. Because it is approved for FAA Restricted ATP, this degree is very advantageous for fixed wing students. That means by completing this bachelor’s degree you only need 1000 flight hours (rather than 1500) to take your ATP checkride. This is a typical entry point into an airline pilot job. By completing this bachelor’s you save time and can potentially get an airline job sooner.

If you’re interested in applying it only takes about ten minutes to fill out the application. Or, if you have any application questions, email or call or 435-586-7862.

Bachelor of Aviation Administration and Leadership (B.A.,B.S.)

The Bachelor of Aviation Administration and Leadership is a degree that takes place completely online. Through it, you will develop the skills needed to advance as an aviation leader. Throughout the program, you will develop proficiency in aviation administration practices, Aeronautical Decision Making principles, aviation safety, and more. You will gain a strong foundation in the principles of aviation that include Total Quality Management (TQM), High-Reliability Organization (HRO), and Systems Thinking. 

Advantages of an Aviation Bachelor’s Degree

Getting a bachelor’s degree in aviation comes with several advantages over an associate degree. Some of these advantages include:

  • Better Chance of Getting Hired: If you want the best jobs with the highest paying salary, you need to stand out above the rest. Finding a job isn’t the most difficult part about being a pilot—finding the best and most ideal job for you is. To do that we recommend you give yourself every advantage possible by improving your credentials through a bachelor’s degree.
  • Greater Opportunity for Management Positions: A long-term advantage of having a bachelor’s degree is you have a higher chance at getting management or chief pilot positions. Often the first to advance are those who have invested in their education.
  • Greater Income Potential: On top of helping you save money while you build your hours, a bachelor’s degree increases your income potential. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Bachelor’s degree holders earn over $23,000 more per year than those who just have a high school diploma and $17,000 more than those with an associate degree on average. On average helicopter pilots with bachelor’s degrees have greater salaries than those without, according to data from

Some of the advantages for a student pilot are:

  • Build Up Your Flight Hours: It takes less than two years to get all of your helicopter pilot certifications, which leaves you with about two more years to finish your bachelor’s degree. You’ll need to build up your flight hours and doing that while getting your degree is the perfect time. Whether it’s finding a job as an instructor with us, or finishing your degree online and flying somewhere else, building hours while in school knocks out two birds with one stone, and it gives you funding advantages.
  • Extended Funding: If you’re using a GI Bill, FAFSA, or student loans to fund your pilot training, getting a bachelor’s degree will extend the amount of time you have access to the funding or delay your need to repay loans. Your first job as a pilot will be at a much lower salary than it will be when you reach the 1000-1500 flight hour mark. You can potentially reach these hours in around two years (depending on how frequently you fly). Once you reach 1000-1500 hours you’ll have a much greater income potential as a pilot. This two year growth of hours makes the bachelor’s degree advantageous because it delays the burden of paying loans while making a lower salary, giving you time to build your hours and increase your income.
  • A Backup Plan: Whether it’s from injury, chronic illness, or other health issues, as a pilot if you ever lose your FAA Medical you won’t be able to fly anymore. No matter how unlikely this is, it’s still important to make a plan in the event you need to make an unexpected career change. A bachelor’s degree can give you a backup career plan if you ever lose the ability to fly. A bachelor’s degree is highly respected and It’s possible you could continue to work in aviation in other roles.

General Catalog

Need More Information?

To learn more or schedule a tour give us a call at 435-586-7862.

Ready to Apply?

Applying to SUU Aviation only takes about 10 minutes. If you’re considering coming it’s best to apply sooner than later as the programs fill up quickly.

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