Usually pilots are quite happy to help and advise.
I only wish, this is not a very friendly industry at that level.
By some you will be observed as being a potential threat to their position which they fought hard for to earn.
Also they jobs are generally not advertised. If a jump pilot is leaving they ask him/her if they can recomnend anybody and everybody
has a flying buddy somewhere looking for a position.
Then become a flight instructor, you will learn more about flying and people then you have learned during your Private,Instrument and Commercial put together.
Think about your flying time, it's not all about total time. every job has it limitations.
How much cross country time you think you will get flying jumpers?
How much instrument time you think you will get flying traffic watch?
How many instrument approaches will you do flying pipeline patrol?
Flight instructing will give you all of the above.
A buddy of mine did some turbine flying at a skydive place.
Being a CFI/CFII they asked him to do some flight reviews and IPC's with their pilots expecting him to pencil whip 'em.
He refused to sign them off as they were clueless about airspace, procedures, requirements etc.
I had an FAA inspector tell me that flying skydivers is the easiest way to run into a violation or get your ticket pulled.
Not all of them are bad obviously but some will expect you to fly through cloud, drop above an overcast, exceed flight time and airplane limitations etc etc etc.
A flight instructor needs to teach and not to sell.There are plenty of schools out there where you do not ahve to go hunting for your own students but students are provided to you.
Anybody else you can snare, great,but it won't be held against you if you don't.
A school should not be a loose group of semi self employed flight instructors just doing as they please. You should be trained on their equipment, given a syllabus briefing and shown how to teach what and when to teach it.
Plenty of good schools like that.
Ask yourself what you want to do and how to get there.
I believe flight instruction is one of the best ways.
Since you haven't started on your commercial yet; find a school where they are willing to combine your Commercial and your Flight Instructor training.
Use the CPL to transition to the right seat and use your CPL checkride as a rehearsal for your CFI check ride. Perfectly legal and will save you a lot of money.
PS...get out of Oregon and move to a state with a lot of flight training going on;
- New Mexico