Home » Topics » Academics » JU Partners with Delta Air Lines to Launch Aviator Careers

JU Partners with Delta Air Lines to Launch Aviator Careers

 In line with its mission to prepare students for life-long success, achievement and leadership, Jacksonville University today announced a partnership with Delta Air Lines to mentor and develop the most talented students in JU’s premier School of Aviation through the Delta Propel Pilot Career Path program.

“For more than 30 years, Jacksonville University has graduated some of the finest professional pilots in the world, many of whom have gone on to fly for Delta,” said Captain Matthew Tuohy, Director of the JU School of Aviation. “We are honored Delta Air Lines recognized our aviation school as one of the best in the U.S. and selected it for the elite Delta Propel program.” 

Delta Propel was launched in 2018 in partnership with eight universities to cultivate the next generation of pilots. This year, Delta is expanding this industry-leading program with a limited number of world-class aviation programs, including Jacksonville University. The program complements the traditional, existing paths to becoming a Delta pilot – an honor reserved for only the most exceptional professional pilots. 

Capt. Matt Tuohy (center), Director of the JU School of Aviation, stands with Jim Graham (right of Tuohy), Delta’s Senior Vice President of Flight Operations, and the rest of the Delta Propel team.

“While we have an incredibly talented and highly skilled team of pilots already in place, we are always preparing for the future,” said Jim Graham, Delta’s Senior Vice President of Flight Operations. “Propel is an additional avenue for Delta to proactively identify, select and develop the next generation of Delta pilots, and we are excited to partner with Jacksonville University and offer the Propel Program to their students.” 

The Delta Propel program will offer qualified Jacksonville University aviation students three paths to becoming a career Delta pilot: 

  • Flying for one of the Delta Connection Carriers
  • A job-share flying for Delta Private Jets and instructing for one of Delta’s partner collegiate aviation institutions, or
  • Flying military aircraft for the Air National Guard or Reserves.

After a rigorous interview and evaluation process, Delta will offer successful candidates a Qualified Job Offer (QJO), detailing a defined path and accelerated timeline to become a Delta pilot. Selected candidates will also accumulate flight hours by instructing at the university where they trained. Delta will also offer selected candidates one-to-one mentoring with an experienced Delta pilot.

This innovative approach to recruiting and professional development allows Delta to offer support and flexibility for future aviators, as it expects to hire roughly 8,000 pilots over the next decade to staff the thousands of flights it operates around the world. 

About the School of Aviation

For more than 30 years, Jacksonville University’s School of Aviation​, located in the Davis College of Business, has been educating and training future professional pilots and aviation executives with one-of-a-kind industry partnerships and a world-class curriculum centered on a strong business foundation. Accredited by the Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI), the School’s students benefit from a one-of-a-kind partnership with L3Harris Flight Academy, offering airline-oriented flight training and a direct career path to the airlines. JU’s School of Aviation offers a Restricted-Airline Transport Pilot (R-ATP) certificate for qualified aviators with 1,000 flight hours, and JU is one of only 36 universities in the nation selected by the Federal Aviation Administration to educate future air traffic controllers under the Collegiate Training Initiative (CTI).

By Jim Mullay