The Aviation Department at San Diego Christian (SDC) prepares men and women to serve the Lord as professional aviators in missionary, military, commercial, unmanned aerial systems (UAS) and in aviation management. Through a seamless integration of faith, academics and flight training, you can complete your certificates and ratings in an accelerated program allowing you the opportunity to begin your professional aviation career while completing your degree requirements.
Our flight school is less than a mile from campus, has its own academic classrooms on site, and was just chosen as the only flight school in the nation by Boeing as a pilot production school for them. As you read more about our programs, we hope you will take the opportunity to visit campus—we would love the opportunity to get to know you better.
There has never been a better time in history to begin a career in professional aviation. We offer training in Private, Instrument, Commercial, Certified Flight Instructor (CFI); CFI Instrument (CFII); Multi-Engine Instructor (MEI).
SDC has a letter of agreement (LOA) with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) authorizing our graduates with 60 approved aviation units to apply for their Restricted Airline Transport Pilot (ATP-R) certificate with only 1000 flight hours rather than 1500 flight hours for non-aviation university graduates.
SDC also has multiple agreements and partnerships leading directly to careers including:
Military friendly: We have students in Air Force ROTC, USMC guaranteed pilot program, and augmenting the US Coast Guard. In addition, we are fully VA GI Bill® offering training in Private, Instrument, Commercial, CFI, CFII, and MEI with a yellow ribbon addition to help pay for costs for our veterans and San Diego BAH rates. (link to military page)
SDC is a VA GI Bill® aviation approved College in Southern California with private through instructor flight training covering Restricted Airline Transport Program (R-ATP) to allow our students to go to airlines at 1,000 hours, AFROTC, USMC Pilot Program, European Aviation Safety Association (EASA) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) training.
Internships: Multiple internships available to students giving both experience and academic credit.
Missionary Loan program: This program provides funds to those called to missionary aviation to help defray costs through donations given to the program to distribute.
Student community and involvement: Alpha Eta Rho (AER), Sigma Delta Chi chapter is a professional co-ed fraternity available at SDC. Our National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) Hawks Flight Team has competed at the national championship level eight years in a row.
SDC aviation department meets all Restricted Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) requirements in our Part 141 program allowing our graduates to fly for commercial airlines at the reduced 1,000 hours versus 1,500 hours.
Aviation degree will require a minimum of 124 credit hours:
- 62 – General Education credit hours
- 47 -Credit hours in the Aviation Program
- 15 -General Elective credit hours
Aviation management degree is also offered.
Required program specific courses and credits for aviation majors.
Students pursuing a degree in aviation from SDC can choose from the following concentrations:
- Aviation Management
- Commercial Pilot (single engine and multi-engine)
- Military Pilot
- Missionary Pilot
- Unmanned Aircraft Systems Operator and/or Sensor Operator
John Andersen, PH.D
Director of Aviation
- B.A., Electrical Engineering
- M.B.A., Embry-Riddle Aeronautics University
- D.B.A., California International Business University
Dr. Andersen has a background in both business and aviation, having spent 35 years working for United Parcel Service in various operations and staff-level management positions. He was an integral part of the airline startup in 1989 and retired from UPS in 2013 as an International Chief Pilot and FAA Check Pilot with ratings in the Boeing 727, 757, and 767 aircraft. Flying at UPS was Dr. Andersen’s secondary responsibility, as he was primarily a staff-level flight operations management person, responsible for hundreds of employees and management of people in various positions, with different backgrounds and cultures.
He has an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering, an MBA in Aviation Management from Embry-Riddle (ERAU), and recently completed his DBA at California International Business University. In addition to academic pursuits over the past few years, he taught at ERAU and more recently here at SDC. He also volunteers as a Lead FAA Safety Facilitator (FAAST TEAM) lecturing about aviation safety to flight instructors.
SDC has graduates that are making an impact in all disciplines of aviation. We are proud of all their accomplishments and the following stories are merely a small representation of the breadth and depth of their impact.
“SDC is the place where my dreams started to come true. I deeply wanted to be a pilot and at SDC I received the training I needed, and now I’m flying! To major in aviation, you have to be dedicated and diligent. It takes work and sometimes it’s stressful, but it’s always fun. SDC has the best flight instructors and ground courses. You won’t find a better aviation education.” – Josh
“I wanted to say thank you again for helping me get to this point, words cannot describe how grateful I am. I will graduate USMC: The Basic School (TBS) in September and then I will head straight to Pensacola to start pilot training!” – Lt. Dominic Anxo, USMC Pilot Training
Alumni Success Stories
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