Many a U. S. youth would rather fly than eat. But eat he must, so what he hopes for is a job in aviation. That aviation's 60,000 jobs may be doubled in the next five years is the encouraging outlook of 36-year-old Employment Specialist Carl Norcross Ph.D., of the New York State Department of Education, in a survey of U. S. aviation as a career* published last week. Less encouraging to every Tom, Dick and Corrigan hoping to zoom into aviation is Dr. Norcross' warning that only the well-schooled, physically and mentally superior applicant stands a chance.
An aviation enthusiast since 1928, Dr. Norcross, in the last two years, has visited all the large aircraft factories, air-ports and flying schools, has conferred with heads of most U. S. airlines, studied facts and figures on the growth of U. S. aviation since 1927, when airlines employed only 462 persons. Some of his findings:
> Since 1930 airline mail-loads have increased over 100%, passenger-miles 500%, freight and express 1,600%. Airline employment has meanwhile increased 350%, from 3,400 to 12,000, may reach 25,000 by 1943. The industry as a whole can expect to employ at least 97,000, at most 120,000, by 1943.
> Stiffest job requirements are those for pilots: 1,200 solo-flying hours, college training, hiring-age limits 22 to 28. Prohibitive cost of acquiring so much flying time sends most candidates into the Army, Navy or Marines for two-to-four-year enlistments. There the Government spends up to $35,000 training each pilot. Flying U. S. air transport this year are 1,400 pilots and copilots, pilots averaging $600 monthly, co-pilots from $190 to $330.
> To get their $100-to-$120-a-month jobs, applicants for the 300 stewardess posts had to be pretty, petite, single, graduate nurses, 21 to 26 years old, 100 to 120 lbs. Many of them found husbands right after they found jobs; few married pilots.
> Workers in aviation manufacture get 37¢ an hour as apprentices, as much as $350 monthly as foremen. Aircraft maintenance mechanics get 40¢ to 80¢ an hour, are required to be certified by the U. S. Government.
* GETTING A JOB IN AVIATIONMcGraw-Hill ($2.50).