Calling all Hired Controllers with 1-2+ years Exp. already

Marc539

Rookie
Jan 16, 2009
31
0
6
Miami, FL
I'd imagine that many people once hired, hit up OKC, and start at their facilities with time just stop posting at this site or just dont bother with updates on their progress. Maybe cause they're there already and feel no need to hang out around these Employment Threads I suppose. :cya:

But as a favor, could some of the Hired Controllers who actually still read employment threads give a little insight as to how your employment has gone so far? In terms of training, pay increases, expectations, suprises, etc..

This controller in New Orleans did a pretty nice write up on link below:
http://www.stuckmic.com/atc-employment-forum/3155-lakefront-new-tol-recipients.html

Would be cool to have something similar like this for a few different facilities if possible, especially the big scary ones like ZNY, DFW, MIA, and Atlanta.

Just killing time! Thanks! :hurray:
 
A

Adam

Guest
I'd imagine that many people once hired, hit up OKC, and start at their facilities with time just stop posting at this site or just dont bother with updates on their progress. Maybe cause they're there already and feel no need to hang out around these Employment Threads I suppose.
I really hope that isn't the case. Though there is a lot of information for new hires...StuckMic is an air traffic controller and aviation forum, not just an atc applicant forum. This site was around long before the hiring boom began...Oct 1999 to be exact...and this site will continue to be around after the hiring boom. There are people on this site that were retired management, ex-union officials, current FAA controllers, military controllers, contract controllers, European controllers, pilots, FAA technicians, and of course a whole bunch of applicants. StuckMic is flooded with posts about the hiring process right now because that is one of the major things going on in air traffic control.

There is also tons of information that you will use once you are a controller...I'm sure the FAA Rules and Regulations forum will become a lot more active once you guys start filtering in as well as the Union forum. The Employment forum is also not just for new hires, but for current controllers as well. This is a great resource to stay in touch with old friends and network new opportunities as well.

Anyways, I have gotten that same perception from a few of the applicants on here and just wanted to clear things up. I hope you continue to use this site throughout your whole career....we are constantly adding new features and if you ever have any input, please feel free to let us know and we will see what we can do.
 

SRQ

Senior Member
Jul 25, 2008
233
1
18
Sarasota/Indianapolis
I really hope that isn't the case. Though there is a lot of information for new hires...StuckMic is an air traffic controller and aviation forum, not just an atc applicant forum. This site was around long before the hiring boom began...Oct 1999 to be exact...and this site will continue to be around after the hiring boom. There are people on this site that were retired management, ex-union officials, current FAA controllers, military controllers, contract controllers, European controllers, pilots, FAA technicians, and of course a whole bunch of applicants. StuckMic is flooded with posts about the hiring process right now because that is one of the major things going on in air traffic control.

There is also tons of information that you will use once you are a controller...I'm sure the FAA Rules and Regulations forum will become a lot more active once you guys start filtering in as well as the Union forum. The Employment forum is also not just for new hires, but for current controllers as well. This is a great resource to stay in touch with old friends and network new opportunities as well.

Anyways, I have gotten that same perception from a few of the applicants on here and just wanted to clear things up. I hope you continue to use this site throughout your whole career....we are constantly adding new features and if you ever have any input, please feel free to let us know and we will see what we can do.

It's true, the perception with others in my class and myself is that Stuck Mic is really a pre hiring forum, and not really useful for anyone after they leave OKC. I know that before the change of ownership, it got pretty hot with controversy between different groups. I haven't seen any of that on the new site and happy that it is that way. I see NATCA try to generate interest once in awhile, but nothing from folks who are in the facility training program. Maybe it is fear that what they post may impact their career at the facility? I don't know. It would be nice to hear from them though.
 

DOD_ATC

Senior Member
Jun 15, 2008
210
1
18
Chicago, IL
Obviously the change in ownership came at a time when new applicants were scouring the web looking for information pertaining to our profession.

I have been visiting Stuckmic (current and past versions) for about 5 years now and can say that I see less and less actual ATC conversations going on here and more and more posts concerning employment.

While the old Stuckmic had it's limitations, it also had a fairly loyal following of veteran ATCer's. I don't see many of them here now (perhaps they are here and have just changed their screen names??) Sure there were a fair share of shouting matches (remember rontaylor's rants?) but all in all I think it was an "ATC discussion", not a "How to get a job discussion".

I still enjoy this site and hope, like Gnome does, that once the hiring craze slows, more and more "ATC" topics will arise.

That being said, on to the original topic... If anyone has questions about the training program at ORD, I would happy to reply.

DOD_ATC (but should be FAA_ATC now I guess)
 

Roddy_Piper

Resident Knucklehead
Jun 15, 2008
3,339
18
38
Vegas baby
www.myspace.com
Im curious, when exactly did the "hiring boom" begin? Last two years?
the hiring boom happened after the hiring freeze ended in 05. then the white book happened and real controllers stopped going into the faa. so the faa started hiring people off the side of the streets.

hope that answers ur question
 
A

Adam

Guest
I just want to let everyone know that this site, though it does have tons of applicants and information for applicants, is for air traffic controllers. I really hope none of you just use this site for its' information on the hiring process, then forget about it for the rest of your careers. Hopefully, the majority of these applicants will continue to browse StuckMic throughout their careers. StuckMic after all is the largest ATC site on the net, period...so if you aren't coming here for information, there isn't many other places to go.

I was on the old StuckMic for years as well and it definitely had some loyals...there quite a few from the old StuckMic that are on here as well...not all, but quite a few.

Looking back at the web statistics for the old StuckMic, it was getting only around 2,000 to 3,000 unique visitors a month. We will probably have close to 90,000 unique visitors this month. So....I think that we actually have just as much, if not more actual controllers on here than the old StuckMic....but we also have a ton of applicants that post a lot more too.

Anyways, hope to see everyone on here for a long time to come. And I'll try and get some more stuff up for current controllers, and old timers....if you have any suggestions, please let me know!
 

danielbfoster

Not my real name
Nov 20, 2008
93
1
8
DFW - D10
the hiring boom happened after the hiring freeze ended in 05. then the white book happened and REAL CONTROLLERS stopped going into the faa. so the faa started hiring people off the side of the streets.

hope that answers ur question
ouch, don't rile the ots peeps, we are far outnumberd...:diggin:
 

Rosstafari

Daaaang.
Aug 17, 2008
1,149
22
38
40
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I really hope that isn't the case. Though there is a lot of information for new hires...StuckMic is an air traffic controller and aviation forum, not just an atc applicant forum.
Yeah. Jet Careers is the ATC applicant forum, duh.

ouch, don't rile the ots peeps, we are far outnumberd...
Yeah. Step on our toes and we'll start making up crazy stories that we've pieced together from hearsay on the internet on what your job is like.

...oh, wait.
 

Roddy_Piper

Resident Knucklehead
Jun 15, 2008
3,339
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Vegas baby
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i guess that came out wrong. i wasn't really thinking what i was saying. what i meant by "real" controllers was that the guys from the FCT, DOD, military, etc were no longer going into the FAA as much as before. therefore there was a shortage that needed to be filled. they did that by hiring off the street people again.

guess i should've said "people with controller experience" instead of "real controllers". sorry for offending anyone.

btw, to the guy that said they are still hiring "real" controllers...ur not a controller till u start getting certifications. the academy is not controlling. it's classroom learning. after u graduate and start getting ratings then you become a controller. that's what i was told about 12 years ago. my first day at the tower i called up on the phone at the front door for them to let me in. the guy that answered asked who this was. i said "i'm the new controller". he said "u mean your the new trainee, ur not a controller till ur checked out". ouch...my harsh introduction to controllers and their views.
 
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Roddy_Piper

Resident Knucklehead
Jun 15, 2008
3,339
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Vegas baby
www.myspace.com
All those real controllers were off the street at one time or another. No big deal.
ALL?? are u saying that every controller in the FAA was OTS?? not even all the 81 hires were OTS. A LOT came from the military and were offered to just stay in the FAA and separate from the military.

i was really talking about the ones getting into the FAA more recently. like after the hiring freeze that ended in 04/05. those were not ALL OTS. in fact if anything they were ALL ex-military controllers or CTI.
 

Mizzou80

Senior Member
Sep 24, 2008
281
0
16
It's true, the perception with others in my class and myself is that Stuck Mic is really a pre hiring forum, and not really useful for anyone after they leave OKC. I know that before the change of ownership, it got pretty hot with controversy between different groups. I haven't seen any of that on the new site and happy that it is that way. I see NATCA try to generate interest once in awhile, but nothing from folks who are in the facility training program. Maybe it is fear that what they post may impact their career at the facility? I don't know. It would be nice to hear from them though.
I think part of the issue with that is that there is so little "official" information about the hiring process. Their is really not many other places for a new person to go. Personally I think thats a failure on the part of the FAA AND NATCA. If these kinds of forums were not out there an applicant would be hard pressed to find out what the hiring process is. It makes it doubly hard because the hiring process is so diffrent from any other job that most people have ever applied for before.
 

Rosstafari

Daaaang.
Aug 17, 2008
1,149
22
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40
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I think part of the issue with that is that there is so little "official" information about the hiring process. Their is really not many other places for a new person to go. Personally I think thats a failure on the part of the FAA AND NATCA. If these kinds of forums were not out there an applicant would be hard pressed to find out what the hiring process is. It makes it doubly hard because the hiring process is so diffrent from any other job that most people have ever applied for before.
Hit the nail on the head. It's incredibly difficult to find good information about a career that, for most people, is kind of mysterious. And, like you said, the FAA doesn't do much to clarify things for us. During the application process, Stuck Mic has been a huge help to me.

And I don't think anyone misunderstood what you meant by a real controller, Roddy. Even though I do have extensive FSX experience.



That was a joke.
 

SRQ

Senior Member
Jul 25, 2008
233
1
18
Sarasota/Indianapolis
ALL?? are u saying that every controller in the FAA was OTS?? not even all the 81 hires were OTS. A LOT came from the military and were offered to just stay in the FAA and separate from the military.

i was really talking about the ones getting into the FAA more recently. like after the hiring freeze that ended in 04/05. those were not ALL OTS. in fact if anything they were ALL ex-military controllers or CTI.
Even the military started somewhere, I presume off the street when they entered the military.
 

Tye

Rookie
Nov 14, 2008
49
0
6
Even the military started somewhere, I presume off the street when they entered the military.
Congratulations Captain Obvious!!! You've cracked the Mother F..ing code!!! At some point in life every ATCer gets taught how to properly use a head set, be it in College, the Military, or OTS in Basics!!!!


P.S. You must be F..ing Brilliant
 

SoCal_ATCer

Senior Member
Jan 6, 2009
247
6
18
So Cal
Congratulations Captain Obvious!!! You've cracked the Mother F..ing code!!! At some point in life every ATCer gets taught how to properly use a head set, be it in College, the Military, or OTS in Basics!!!!


P.S. You must be F..ing Brilliant
Damn...you rail roaded the shit out of that guy. Must feel good. Obviously he was responding to something someone had commented on a previous post; Captain Obvious.


As far as the actual question concerning this thread, I think I will be the first to actually respond. While it has a very broad scope I will attempt to give some sort of insight.

My personal experience in the FAA started in April 2006, that is when I took the ATSAT in northern Indianapolis. I went to the academy in April 2007 and checked out of my facility in January 2008. The training was pretty straight forward though I believe it was probably different than most programs. Its even a lot different today than it was back then.

The job is everything I have wanted in a career. There is plenty of opportunity to be promoted, the job is different literally on a daily basis, and the people I work with are pretty cool. I remember watching ATCers at MSP tower several years ago and remember how awesome it would be to be apart of a team that worked so well. Obviously the pay is a situation that would make things more bearable if it were close to where it was at.

Apart from that, the FAA has some really bad habits. It seems about once every few months they come out with some changes in how we do things; seemingly for no real concrete reason. And then a few months later it gets changed back to the way it was. Most things appear to be a knee jerk reaction. Instead of taking a step back to analyze a situation they just throw all kinds of BS at a problem in hopes that it will work. Most of the things contradict each other and it just causes more problems.

Be ready to have the FAA try to put a wedge between you and your fellow co-worker (union busting). Every year I have been given a form basically to rate myself against the other controllers, for what reason I am not sure. Additionally, and you see it on the threads all the time, there can be a rift between the different niches of ATC. Old PATCO vs NATCA, OTS vs CTI vs VRA, new hires that got per diem vs new hires that didn't get per diem. I'm not saying this is always the case at all but those are certainly the lines that are drawn.

All in all a great career choice for the reasons listed above and I am looking forward to moving on up the ladder.
 
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Rosstafari

Daaaang.
Aug 17, 2008
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Helpful post, SoCal. Thanks.

On the rifts you mentioned at the end... go on that a little bit more, since a couple of people who were around for the "old" StuckMic have mentioned it rearing its head here. I know NATCA is the biggest union, is there really much to PATCO and anything else out there? Are there two unions just because they have different approaches, or is it something more?

And is there really much of a rub between OTS, CTI and VRA after a couple years? I know that vets will always have their own level of understanding going on -- as an ex-Army friend of mine describes it, he says it's like being around old frat brothers -- but once you've checked out and have become a "real" controller, to borrow a Roddyism, is it really that big of a deal anymore?