JetBlue brings pilot development program to Broward College students

By Broward College

Airline’s Gateway University provides mentorship, resources and job offers to students

Broward College (Florida) is the first community college in the nation to partner with JetBlue’s Gateway University, giving students from its Emil Buehler Aviation Institute a tremendous opportunity.

JetBlue’s Gateway University, which is a pilot development program, partners with top university aviation programs. They were recently searching for additional partner schools, especially in metropolitan areas where their company has a large presence, according to Russell McCaffery, Broward College dean of transportation programs.

“They approached us for an initial visit and discussion,” said McCaffery. “After a few meetings, site visits and interviews, they officially selected us as one of their partner schools. This reinforces the fact that Broward College provides both quality and value to our students and that we should be one of students’ top choices when considering collegiate flight programs.”

Designed to identify and recruit talented people into the pilot profession, JetBlue’s Gateway University launched in 2008 and provides mentorship and career planning. Students accepted into the program receive a conditional job offer with JetBlue as well as additional guidance and mentorship as they complete their education.

“The program does not guarantee them a job, but it certainly puts them at the front of the line,” said McCaffery.

Pilots have a starting salary of more than $100,000 for a first officer with most major airlines, and there is great opportunity for upward mobility with senior captains making upwards of $500,000, McCaffery said.

Students studying in the pilot program at the Emil Buehler Aviation Institute on Broward College’s South Campus are trained by FAA-certified flight instructors on new, state-of-the-art flight simulators. Training programs are in partnership with Phoenix East Aviation.

Students can earn their Professional Pilot Technology AS degree or various FAA flight certificates, including Private Pilot, Instrument Rating, Commercial Pilot, Multi-Engine Rating, Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) and Certified Flight Instructor Instrument (CFII).

According to some recent reports, long-term demand for newly qualified aviation personnel remains strong; it’s estimated that nearly 650,000 new pilots, 700,000 new maintenance technicians and 940,000 new cabin crew members will be needed to fly and maintain the global commercial fleet over the next 20 years.

This article originally appeared here.

Broward College

is located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.