Newly Proposed Bill Aims to Fund Aviation school for Veterans

The bill aims to reduce the national pilot shortage
New bill in the making
Published: Mar. 17, 2023 at 3:22 PM CDT
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OSHKOSH, Wis. (WBAY) - The American Aviator Act of 2023, introduced by Sen.Tammy Baldwin and Sen. John Hoeven, would distribute flight training grants to help veterans become commercial airline pilots. It addresses a problem senator Baldwin says airlines around the nation are feeling.

“We have a desperate shortage of pilots in-training to serve the commercial airline world,” said Senator Baldwin. “This shortage is only going to be addressed when we have a concerted effort to recruit and train the next generation of pilots.”

The US Bureau of Labor Statistic estimates there will be roughly 18,000 openings per year for airline and commercial pilots this decade. The bill is also aiming to support veterans returning to the workforce.

“The pilot students learn all about the machines they’re flying, so all the airplanes and the systems, the weather they’re flying in, of course all the regulations that govern aviation, and the hands on skills to become a pilot,” said Jared Huss, the Director of Aeronautics at the Fox Valley Technical College.

Training institutions, like Fox Valley Technical College, would recruit and enroll veterans in their programs. The legislation would take care of incurred expenses, that means tuition, training services, books, and other training resources would be covered.

“It’s a really enjoyable career,” said Huss. “There’s a lot of forcastability in the field and it’s a very high-paying career.”

If the bill passes, we could expect to see more veterans filling the shortage and taking flight.