The new programme is designed to offer new pilots jobs upon graduation. As long as students meet the programme’s qualifications upon graduating and ExpressJet has current openings, they are guaranteed a job at the company.
EMU’s Media Relations Department said that the old contract between Express Jet and the university only guaranteed an interview out of school. Now graduates from the Eastern Eagle Flight Centre will be guaranteed a job, as long as they meet the company’s basic requirements and the company is hiring.
“I don’t believe that there would be any better time than now to get involved with [the industry],” Colleen Redmond, the director of Marketing & Recruitment at the Eagle Flight Center said. “Because of the situation that the industry is in with their need of pilots.”
According to The Wall Street Journal, the shortfall in qualified pilots is partly due to a large number of pilots retiring. An act of Congress mandates pilots retire at 65. Also, a change in FAA requirements for airlines pilot requires pilots to now have to complete 1,500 hours of flight time before getting permission to fly professionally. This is up from the 250 hours previously required.