New Training Pathway Joins JetBlue Pilot Gateway Programs®, Enabling Skilled Veterans to Transition Their Unique Experience and Leadership to a Rewarding Pilot Career in Commercial Aviation
JetBlue (Nasdaq: JBLU), today announces the launch of its eighth Gateway development program, Gateway Rotor Transition Program (RTP). Gateway RTP establishes a prescribed talent pathway for U.S. military-trained rotary wing aviators to transition their existing expertise as helicopter pilots and acquire the necessary skills and certifications needed to join JetBlue as a first officer. Accepted candidates will receive a conditional job offer prior to beginning their focused Rotor Transition Program. After completing all regulatory FAA requirements and syllabus of both flight lessons and ground school developed for Gateway RTP, candidates will proceed directly to JetBlue as a first officer new hire trainee.
JetBlue has partnered with SkyWarrior Flight Training LLC in Pensacola, Florida to offer this customized training program where, in addition to SkyWarrior’s established commercial, instrument, multi-engine and Air Transport Pilot training, pilots will be immersed into JetBlue procedures, philosophy and operations from JetBlue pilots with prior military rotary wing experience as well as current instructors and mentors from the airline. With this announcement, JetBlue seeks to immediately fill a limited number of spots in the first Gateway RTP class to start in fall 2023. The airline looks forward to scaling the program in the future, bringing more skilled veterans to JetBlue. Interested applicants can learn more about Gateway RTP at jetbluegateways.com or apply now at careers.jetblue.com.
“We’re incredibly proud to support our veterans, both customers and crewmembers alike,” said Warren Christie, head of safety, security, fleet operations, airports, and JetBlue University, JetBlue. “With Gateway RTP, we will provide these accomplished U.S. military rotary wing aviators the additional skills and certifications necessary to bring their professional experience and technical abilities to JetBlue”
Gateway RTP optimizes training by offering early exposure to Part 121 aviation concepts and philosophy along with integrated full-motion simulator training. The program also takes concepts the candidates are well-versed in, like crew resource management and threat and error management, and helps focus on how they apply in commercial airline operations through customized progression modules. Through their training, successful pilots will complete foundational training, earning their fixed wing Private Pilot through Commercial Multi-Engine Certificate before attending Jet Transition training at JetBlue University and ATP/CTP course completion.
“Training military pilots is at the foundational core of SkyWarrior’s business, and the Rotor Transition Program is one of the most satisfying training models we have been a part of. It is a privilege to work with such professional pilots and help bridge the gap to propel them into a new career…. It’s just really something special to be a part of,” said Gregory Sigler, vice president, SkyWarrior Flight Training LLC. “We started our first RTP program in 2017 and it is just unbelievable to see so many of our former students living their dream as professional airline pilots. These former service members and their families have sacrificed so much, it is just an honor to be the vehicle that propels them to the next step in their aviation journey.”
Now in their 15th year, JetBlue’s Gateways are the longest running development programs of any U.S. airline, bringing hundreds of skilled pilots to JetBlue. The airline continues to grow and refine its Gateways into a suite of pathways where anyone with the passion and raw talent can train and join JetBlue as a fully qualified first officer or aviation maintenance technician.
“We’re proud of the incredible talent pipeline we’ve built with our Gateways,” said Nancy Hocking, Director Gateway Programs, JetBlue. “Not only does it provide a clear path for future pilots and technicians, by making these careers more accessible to talented individuals who might not have thought of them as a real option, we’re opening opportunities to a much larger audience while maintaining the highest standards required of these critical roles.”
With approximately 500 active participants across its Gateways and more than 10% of the airline’s new pilot hires in 2023 expected to come from one of the Gateways, the potential for growth is extremely high. JetBlue has shown that by casting a wider net and taking steps to remove the unnecessary barriers to entry, it can meet the growing need for aviation professionals while also opening the door to more candidates from underrepresented communities, including women and people of color.
Upon successful completion of the requirements of their Gateway programs, participants join the ranks of JetBlue’s 5000 pilots, where many continue to share their experience, helping to mentor and guide future pilots. With these proven paths to becoming a pilot, JetBlue has not only successfully demonstrated the potential of its programs, but also built a network of expertise to help encourage the next generation of aviation professionals.
JetBlue onboards hundreds of pilots and maintenance technicians each year and remains an employer of choice for aspiring aviators. Its Gateway programs are just one recruiting pipeline for internal and external candidates. For more information on JetBlue’s Gateways programs visit pilots.jetblue.com/, and for other jobs at JetBlue visit careers.jetblue.com/
Serving those who serve
JetBlue is proud to support U.S. active duty military, retired military and veterans, National Guard and Reserve, and their families year-round. The airline offers several military discounts and benefits for travel throughout its network. JetBlue accommodates those and their families enrolled in Veterans Advantage, as well as offering assistance for U.S. active duty military traveling for leisure, such as discounts on base fares and free checked baggage. Additionally, JetBlue supports its active military and veteran crewmembers through its ‘Vets in Blue’ crewmember resource group and annual veteran hiring event.
For more on how JetBlue is serving those who serve, visit https://jetblue.com/flying-with-us/military-customers.
JetBlue is New York's Hometown Airline®, and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, Los Angeles, Orlando and San Juan. JetBlue carries customers to more than 100 destinations throughout the United States, Latin America, Caribbean, Canada, United Kingdom and France. For more information and the best fares, visit jetblue.com.
SkyWarrior Flight Training LLC is a highly respected leader in the industry, a pioneer for many programs, and the provider of choice for the U.S. Navy’s Naval Introductory Flight Evaluation program. Located in Pensacola Florida, SkyWarrior was built on the foundation of doing training the right way with safety always at the forefront of every operation. Since 2017, SkyWarrior has trained and assisted over 600 military rotary wing pilots in their transition to commercial airline operations.
JetBlue Corporate Communications