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A new major takes flight

Stephen F. Austin State University is making history by offering the new Bachelor of Science degree in aviation sciences. This degree allows you to earn a college degree and several aircraft pilot certifications upon graduation.

SFA has partnered with HCH Aviation in Nacogdoches to offer the flying portion of our degree. This partnership allows us to provide instruction in some of the most technologically advanced training aircraft in the world.

A growing field

Pilot salaries range from $35,000 to $250,000 based on experience and type of aircraft flown. 

Boeing released a study in 2021 that projected 612,000 new civil aviation pilots will be needed globally in the next 20 years. In this country alone almost half of current airline pilots will retire in the next 10 years. Post COVID-19 press releases from airline CEOs has been very specific about their need for new pilots. There’s never been a better time to earn a degree in aviation. See the full results of the study.

Boeing study graphic

Unwavering commitment to your success

When you complete your aviation sciences courses at SFA, you'll enjoy a well-rounded education that includes flight training at reasonable rates. 

In September 2021, the Bachelor of Science degree in aviation sciences at SFA was officially approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Until Fall 2022, applicants will need to sign up for aviation courses under the human sciences major — family and consumer sciences concentration.

SFA’s fleet includes Piper Pilot 100 planes that you will fly during your first semester of aviation courses. You will practice using new flight simulators located on the university’s campus.

Flight school is a big investment. By completing the aviation sciences courses at SFA, you'll receive a well-rounded education as well as flight training at a discounted cost. Your investment includes faculty members who will give you the individual attention you need in classes limited to 30 students.

Unit Duration/Flight and Simulator Training Hours Cost
Private Pilot AESL 2 semesters/55 hours $17,091
Instrument Pilot 2 semesters/50 hours $12,274
Commercial Pilot AMEL 3 semesters/120 hours $42,865
    Pilot in Command     1 semester, 60 hours
    Commercial Pilot ASEL     1 semester, 30 hours
    Commercial Pilot AMEL     1 semester, 30 hours
Certified Flight Instructor Airplane 1 semester, 25 hours $7,671
Total 260 hours $79,901

Undergraduate requirements

The FAA requires you meet the following requirements:

  • be at least 17 years old (16 years old for a glider or balloon)
  • be able to read, speak, write and understand English
  • hold a U.S. student, sport or recreational pilot certificate
  • hold at least a third-class medical certificate.

Because our pilots will become instructors, we require a second-class medical certificate. You also must prove your citizenship and undergo an interview by the instructors. Enrollment is limited. Please familiarize yourself with course expectations by viewing the Undergraduate Bulletin.

Application process

View SFA's admission requirements.

Applying to SFA's aviation sciences courses is easy with the ApplyTexas online admissions application. Just follow the steps below to complete a freshman application through The cost for applying to SFA is $50. You'll pay this at the end of the application process. Check to see if you qualify for an application fee waiver.

  1. For your major, select "Aviation Sciences" from the dropdown list.
  2. Submit the following:
    • Official high school transcript (must be received directly from high school)
    • Official SAT/ACT scores (optional for fall 2021)
    • Copy of second-class medical certificate
    • Proof of U.S. citizenship using these approved forms:
      • Valid, unexpired U.S. passport
      • Original or government-issued birth certificate of the U.S., American Samoa or Swains Island and a government-issued picture ID
      • Original certificate of birth abroad with raised seal (Form FS-545 or DS-1350) and a government-issued picture ID
      • Original certificate of U.S. citizenship with raised seal (Form N-560 or N-561) or a Certificate of Repatriation (Form N-581) and a government-issued picture ID
      • Original U.S. naturalization certificate with raised seal (Form N-550 or N-570) and a government-issued picture ID

Students who are not U.S. citizens must enroll in the Alien Flight Student Program. Contact Capt. Jim Williams at for more information.


School of Human Sciences
Faculty Directory

Human Sciences Building North
Room 101

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 13014, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962