Commercial Aviation Diploma

Offered in partnership with Southern Interior Flight Centre (SIFC), this two-year program integrates the flight training required by Transport Canada with business administration courses applicable to the aviation industry. Students emerge with commercial aviation licensing requirements and the knowledge to navigate the world of flight, both on and off the ground.

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A male international student and a female student stand in front of a small airplane.


  • Kelowna
View schedule and campus details
  • Full program offered
  • Partial program offered



Delivery options


Tuition and fees

2023-24: ~$70,000

  • January start (fees including Private Pilot License (PPL)):

    PPL:    $27,615.00

    Year 1: $38,025.14

    Year 2: $31,395.00

  • September start (students must already have PPL):

    Year 1: $38,025.14

    Year 2: $31,395.00

  • Fees may change substantially and more than once in a given academic year due to the significant volatility of the aviation related cost components beyond control

  • Tuition fees for the flying portion are dependent on the number of hours required to complete the flying and training requirements.

  • These fees above do not include fees and costs included but not limited to Activity fee, Health & Dental, Student Association fee, Education Technology fee, Development fee, as well as books and other pre-flight or in-flight tools, Transport Canada Exams and Flight Tests, Aviation Medicals, and no-show fees or other monetary penalties.

  • All amounts are approximate and are subject to change.

  • Detailed domestic tuition and fees information

Program details

Please note, students entering the September intake must have their Private Pilot's License. Those entering the program in January do not require their Private Pilot's License until September. This admission requirement can be satisfied by taking the required private pilot's training courses and labs (AVIA 104, 105, 106, 107).

The Commercial Aviation Diploma (CAD) program is for individuals who are interested in pursuing a career in commercial aviation. The program provides students with university-level business competencies as well as Transport Canada commercial aviation licensing requirements. Graduates are qualified to be employed as pilots with charter companies, regional carriers and private corporations, and upon attaining sufficient flying hours, will also have job opportunities with major airline companies. Graduates may also find employment in other aviation-related careers.

The Commercial Aviation diploma program consists of two distinct and separate areas of study - aviation and flight training courses, and university-level academic courses. The flight training is taught at the Southern Interior Flight Centre facility located at the Kelowna International Airport and consists of Transport Canada-prescribed flight training, simulator training, aviation theory and exams. The academic portion of the program is completed at Okanagan College and consists of eight 3-credit courses taken as part of this program.

The Commercial Aviation program is made available through a co-operative partnership between Okanagan College and the Southern Interior Flight Centre (1993) Ltd. The academic portion offered by Okanagan College is subject to normal Okanagan College regulations and tuition fees. The aviation and flight training portion is offered by Southern Interior Flight Centre and is not subject to Okanagan College control and regulations, although all tuition fees for academic courses and flight training are paid to Okanagan College. Okanagan College will maintain records of the student's flight training achievements as provided by Southern Interior Flight Centre on the official Okanagan College transcript.

Fees (subject to change): Students with an approved Canadian Private Pilot's Licence can expect to pay approximately $59,000 for tuition and flight training fees. Students without an approved Canadian Private Pilot's Licence can expect to pay an additional fee. Tuition fees for the flying portion are dependent upon the number of hours required to complete the flying and training requirements. These hours will vary according to the skill level of individual students. Please note that students who book an aircraft, simulator or instructor are responsible for related charges and cancellation penalties will apply. Fuel costs will be reimbursed to students at the Kelowna fuel rate set by Southern Interior Flight Centre. Costs above this rate are the student's responsibility.

Student Dress and Survival Equipment: Students will be required to wear the prescribed clothing for commercial pilots and should anticipate the costs of purchasing and maintaining their clothing. Prescribed clothing consists of: black pants, socks, dress shoes, and tie plus a white "pilot" shirt. Students should anticipate preparing and maintaining their own personal survival pack to be carried on cross-country flights.

Course Registration Requirements: Aviation courses must be taken in the prescribed order and must be taken in concurrent blocks each semester as shown in the program outline below. All semesters must be taken contiguously (with allowance for summer break). Students unable to meet this requirement must withdraw from the program.

Career Opportunities: include pilots with charter companies, regional carriers and private corporations as well as additional job opportunities with major airline companies.

Campus Start date Schedule
Kelowna Jan. 08, 2024

To qualify for the January intake, students cannot hold a current Canadian Private Pilot License. Obtaining the Private Pilots License (PPL) is part of the program. If you have your PPL, please apply for Fall.

Kelowna Sep. 04, 2024

Students starting in the fall require a private pilot license to enter the program.

Kelowna Jan. 06, 2025

Admission requirements

  • B.C. secondary school graduation (or its equivalent), or mature student status.
  • English 12 with minimum 60% or alternatives.
  • Students graduating from secondary school in or prior to 2012:
    • Principles of Mathematics 11, or an equivalent Advanced Level Adult Basic Education mathematics course; or a minimum grade of 70% in Introductory Mathematics 11; or a minimum grade of 60% in Applications of Mathematics 11.
  • Students entering Grade 10 in or after 2010 and/or completing the new mathematics curriculum:
    • A minimum of 60% in one of Pre-calculus Grade 11, Foundations of Mathematics Grade 11, or Apprenticeship and Workplace Mathematics Grade 11, Workplace Mathematics 11, or the equivalent Advanced Level Adult Basic Education mathematics course.
  • Category 1 Aviation Medical.
  • Letter of recommendation from the Southern Interior Flight Centre indicating successful completion of a personal interview, aptitude test, and proof of financial ability.
  • Proof of ability to meet Transport Canada Aviation Language Proficiency Requirements.

NOTE: Canadian private pilot training is included in the program and requires a minimum of two semesters of full-time attendance. Students must complete the Canadian Private Pilot Licence prior to continuing in the program. Students with a Canadian Private Pilot's licence at admission, with approval of Southern Interior Flight Centre, may be granted exemptions from the private pilots training courses and labs -AVIA 104, AVIA 105, AVIA 106, and AVIA 107. Contact the flying school for details.

Program outline


Students must complete the program as prescribed below. Required aviation courses must be taken in a prescribed order and must be taken in concurrent blocks, see course descriptions for details.

Semester 1

AVIA 104 - Introduction to Aviation Theory
AVIA 105 - Aviation Language Proficiency
AVIA 106 - Pilot Skills Lab I
AVIA 107 - Pilot Skills Lab II
AVIA 112 - Navigation and Air Regulations I
AVIA 113 - Meteorology I
AVIA 114 - Flight and Aircraft Systems I
AVIA 115 - Flight Lab I

Semester 2

AVIA 122 - Navigation and Air Regulations II
AVIA 123 - Meteorology II
AVIA 124 - Flight and Aircraft Systems II
AVIA 125 - Flight Lab II

Semester 3

AVIA 212 - Advanced Flight Operations I
AVIA 213 - Instrument Procedures
AVIA 214 - Advanced Avionics
AVIA 215 - Flight Lab III

Semester 4

AVIA 222 - Advanced Flight Operations II
AVIA 225 - Flight Lab IV
AVIA 226 - Human Factors
AVIA 227 - Aviation Skills

Required Academic Courses

24 credits of academic courses must be completed as part of this program; substitute courses may be approved as appropriate.
BUAD 111 - Financial Accounting I
BUAD 116 - Marketing
BUAD 123 - Management Principles
BUAD 128 - Computer Applications I
BUAD 251 - Personal Financial Planning
BUAD 262 - Organizational Behaviour
CMNS 112 - Professional Writing I
MATH 114 - Business Mathematics

Successful completion of the required courses as listed in the program outline with a minimum graduating grade average of 60% and a letter from Southern Interior Flight Centre indicating satisfactory completion of aviation theory courses, Transport Canada Commercial Pilot Licence, a Multi-Engine Instrument rating, and the IATRA written exam.

Additional information

View the official Calendar details and policies
Learn more about the department
View the Tuition and fees page


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