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Answers to Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I enroll?

You may apply to the college, check the class schedule, enroll, and access the college catalog at the Cypress College website:  www.cypresscollege.edu.  For additional enrollment questions, you may find the link to Admissions helpful:  Admissions (includes out-of-state and  international students)

How long does it take?

Airline & Travel Careers:

Students typically begin with a Basic Certificate (15 units or one semester) which can be done in one semester.*  Students may also work toward an Advanced Certificate (35 units which can take two to three semesters).  Depending on their goals, students will then begin applying for positions and/or proceed to an Associate in Science Degree which typically takes two years.  You may also use your coursework to transfer to a four-year university. 

Typically, the airlines prefer two years of college.  Students who have studied in other fields or changing careers may find the Basic Certificate to be enough to get them hired. The airlines have minimum and preferred requirements.  Because the application process is competitive, successful candidates typically have two years of college and two years of customer service requirements.  The airlines do not require specific airline training though it helps (somewhat like a business degree in that you do not need a business degree to open a business but it helps). Most airlines require flight attendant applicants to be 21-years-old though a couple will hire younger applicants (it is very rare that someone under 21 is hired as a flight attendant).   


Students typically begin working toward their Professional Pilot Certificate while also flying to earn their flight hours.  A Professional Pilot Certificate is typically completed in two to three semesters.  Students can then work toward their Commercial Pilot Associate in Science Degree, which requires 25 units of general education.  It is then recommended that students transfer to a four-year college to earn a bachelors degree, which is typically required by major airlines.  To learn more about how to become a pilot, you'll want to read the job requirements link at the bottom of this page and the following links:

    AOPA's article, "How do I become a pilot?"  http://flighttraining.aopa.org/learntofly/welcome/

    How to Become a Pilot: http://www.bestaviation.net/art_how_to_become_a_pilot_faa.asp

How much does it cost?

(Subject to change; you can verify the latest fees at the Cypress College Admissions site).

$46 per unit for CA Residents

Non-Residents and non-US Citizens will want to check the Admissions site for the latest tuition fees).

Do you provide Financial Aid? 

Yes, many students qualify for Financial Aid.  You can estimate your award at Financial Aid.

Do you offer online classes? 

Yes, for the latest classes, check the Cypress College Schedule under Airline & Travel Careers.  The Aviation Program does not currently offer online classes, but consult the Department Chair for “test-out” options. 

Where can I find more information for international students?

Cypress College has an International Student Coordinator; for more information, check the International Student Information site.

How can I arrange a visit or talk to a counselor?

You may visit the campus anytime; however, to meet with the Program Coordinator Kathleen Reiland or the Program Counselor Jane Jepson, it is best to make an appointment in advance by emailing them as follows or you can email any campus counselor at onlinecounselor@cypresscollege.edu:

kreiland@cypresscollege.edu for Kathleen Reiland, Department Chair

jjjepson@cypresscollege.edu for Jane Jepson, Counselor

Also, before each semester, you are invited to attend the informational open house that is held just before school begins. 

When is the next Open House?

If you are interested in being a pilot, flight attendant, airline customer service agent, or travel consultant, you are invited to hear a one-hour presentation about the programs available to you.  These Open House informational meetings are held just before each semester begins and information about the next event can be found on the main home page.

What are the job requirements?


The United States Department of Labor provides up-to-date answers to frequently asked questions about job requirements, pay, and hiring outlook:

What else should I know?

Many airline positions like being a pilot or flight attendant require that you not have any felony convictions, DUIs, visible tattoos, extra piercings, etc.  Weight must be in proportion to your height and you must be in good physical shape.  Pilots will have to pass an FAA medical exam (for more information: http://www.faa.gov/licenses_certificates/medical_certification/faq/)

What do others say? 

Read what Tim Kirkwood, author of the best-selling career book says about Cypress College, THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT JOB FINDER & CAREER GUIDE recommends:  http://forum.simplyhired.com/showthread.php?p=55752

Do you provide housing?

Although housing is not available on the college campus, students interested in off-campus housing may contact the Student and Campus Activities Office for suggested quarters.. For questions, call (714) 484-7198. Other housing resources can be found at these websites:




Free Tutoring Center:  http://www.cypresscollege.edu/~llrc

Free tutoring is available in a variety of subjects for all students enrolled in credit courses at Cypress College.     

Located in the Learning Resource Center, 1st floor. To make an appointment, drop by the Tutoring Appointment Desk, first floor.

Telephone them at 714.484.7183, or to schedule an appointment with an English tutor, email LRCEnglishTutor@cypresscollege.edu.

How Safe is Flying? 

Flying is safer than taking a bath!  In fact, "Airplane manufacturer Boeing says 1.4 billion miles flown for every fatal accident and the likelihood of dying on a commercial airline flight is 9 million to 1."  For more, read:  Surprisingly Easy Ways to Fly Safe

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                                 Frequently Asked Questions