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Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:23 am
by generic930
I am a 29yr old Canadian and looking for a career change possibly in aviation. Hard working type and starting a family not my thing. I am also eager to relocate.

I applied at NavCan for ATC position. I am waiting to get a call for the first assessment, if I ever get one. My resume is poor, I really tried to sell myself on this one but I have no previous experience in aviation and no postsecondary education.

I got lucky and was able to visit a control center. I have the strong feeling that I have the personality for that field of work. Unfortunately, getting that first call is uncertain.

I was looking for other options in case I don't get the call from NavCan. Something I would like to pursue as a career but also something that would give me a background in aviation for subsequent ATC application.


It's worth mentioning that I am a petite female so it has to be something I will be physically able to do till 65. Mechanics or lifting up engine parts is not a feasible option.

I thought about passing my private pilot license since we have a school not very far from here. They seem to be a little expensive tho for a facility without a tower. It's a summer class and they ask 12,000$ total. That would give me some experience in aviation but I have no intention of leisure flying on my free time. If I dont get a position that would be a year worth of savings thrown away.

They also offer a commercial license for 40,000$ (private+commercial). Correct me if I am wrong but starting a career as a pilot in your 30's might not be the best idea since jobs starts low paying before you have enough flight time.

I saw there was demand for dispatch but I don't know where to start. SENECA offers a 2-3 year aviation certificate A WHAT? for a test you can pass online without post secondary education. The is a few institutions that offer to prepare you for the TC test in a short period of time but they suggest you to have a background in aviation before enrolling.

I feel like I am not seeing the big picture here. Some guidance would be appreciated.

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Sun Sep 24, 2017 4:08 am
by floatyghosthat
One of the main advantages/disadvantages of NavCanada is that there's not a whole lot that can be done to be "qualified" as an applicant. Nearly all points of consideration when factoring in an application are the results of the tests and interviews. I wouldn't be too concerned about your resumé.

I've known many people who have joined the company with extensive aviation backgrounds and many others who have joined with no aviation experience whatsoever. The success rate has generally been the same in both groups, and that's across IFR, VFR and FSS. There definitely is a bit of a leg up when the actual training begins for people with some background (namely aircraft performance/recognition, terminology, radio work) but that usually only lasts for the first couple of months before everyone else catches up.

As far as success with the application goes, it can often come down to situational luck. It really depends on when and where you apply and who needs people.

My biggest piece of advice for you is to keep your options open. If this is a career path you're interested in, make sure to be flexible and open to positions in all streams and regions. They need people in different areas at different times. If you applied for ATC in Toronto but are willing to take an FSS course in Vancouver, you'll be much more likely to get a call.

Unfortunately, the whole process takes a lot of patience and sometimes there's nothing you can do but wait.

I wish you the best of luck!

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Mon Sep 25, 2017 7:26 am
by generic930
Hey thanks for the reply!
floatyghosthat wrote: The success rate has generally been the same in both groups,...
That's interesting. So I guess it's all down to how well you do on your assessment.

I am willing to relocate and also am open to any position. Unfortunately, it is something you cannot specify when you first apply and have to wait for the assessment to take place in your region. I guess it's just easier for an applicant to travel to an assessment center closer to him then flying out of province. In my case I am far from everything even from the closest center so it doesn't make much of a difference.

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:02 pm
by wingandaprayer
What floatyghosthat said. You don't need any background in aviation, nor post secondary education to be able to do the job. In my experience, having prior aviation experience only really gives you a leg up in roughly the first month of training. Some of the most skilled specialists I know hadn't even been in a plane before training, let alone flown one. Flying is a lot like driving, while ATS is more like working on a big, 3d moving puzzle where the pieces can't touch and don't always listen to you. It's all about the aptitude and how you perform under pressure. Work on your mental math, spatial reasoning, listening and reading comprehension.

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:50 pm
by fish4life
Certain regions are deemed "less desirable" and end up a little bit easier to get on from my understanding YWG being one of them. I don't work for NAV Canada but most people I know are willing to give tours for pilots I'm not sure if they do them for someone just off the street but it could be an option for getting a feel of what the job entails.

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 7:03 pm
by generic930
fish4life

I already had a tour and I fell in love :smt040

Re: Canadian Looking for Insights About Career Possibilities Related to ATS.

Posted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:23 am
by fish4life
generic930 wrote:fish4life

I already had a tour and I fell in love :smt040
Awesome good luck