CAREERS THAT REQUIRE OUTSTANDING VISION
When you were young and imagining what your career would be when you got older — pilot! astronaut! brain surgeon! — you probably didn’t factor in how your vision would affect your career path. Unfortunately, as we get older, we realize that certain factors may preclude us from landing our dream jobs. For example, having an outstanding vision is a prerequisite for many aeronautical jobs. Here are some of the aeronautical careers that require good vision.
Air Force Pilot
This is a position with some of the strictest vision requirements around. To qualify for the air force in general, individuals cannot have a refractive error worse than + or – 8.0. Certain positions, including that of air force pilot, have even stricter vision criteria.
Although airline pilots have less strict vision requirements than air force pilots, they must still adhere to certain vision standards. For instance, to become a commercial airline pilot, an individual must have 20/20 distance vision or better, separately in each eye. Near vision and intermediate vision for commercial airline pilots must be 20/40 or better, separately in each eye.
Air Traffic Controller
It makes sense that air traffic controllers should have good vision, considering the position requires them to stare at tiny marks on a screen to ensure there are no air traffic collisions. Air traffic controllers rely on their vision to ensure that thousands of people are safe when they fly. That is why the position requires that applicants have near and distance vision that is 20/20 or better, separately in each eye.
What to Do If You Don’t Meet the Vision Criteria for Your Ideal Career
If you fail to meet the vision requirements for your chosen career, there is still hope. Undergoing LASIK surgery or another type of vision correction procedure such as PRK can correct your vision, and often provides patients with 20/20 vision or better.