Frontier Airlines and the University of North Dakota have announced a new agreement for a career pathway partnership program.
Frontier will join a large array of airlines with a partnership with UND, giving students a more streamlined pathway to an airline career.
After a successful interview with Frontier Airlines, students will be given an accelerated route to meet the hour requirements required by the airline and eventually join Frontier as first officers on the company’s Airbus fleet. As one of the requirements, students must gain the hours required by the FAA, between 1,000 and 1,500 hours total time to join the flight line. To build these hours, UND can hire the students as certified flight instructors.
The pipeline of flight instructors will also benefit the university in its need for advanced flight instruction.
On Thursday, Kent Lovelace, UND’s director of aviation industry relations, expressed his excitement about the new opportunity for UND students to join a major airline right out of school.
“Instead of going to a regional carrier after graduation, students with 1,000 hours of flight time who are selected by Frontier Airlines will go directly to Frontier for training and operating experience, flying their aircraft,” Lovelace said in a statement. “Following around 40 hours of operating experience training at Frontier, a select number of those in the program will come back to UND and serve as flight instructors in advanced aircraft operations courses.”
Elizabeth Bjerke, associate dean of UND Aerospace, also welcomed the new partnership and opportunity for the students.
“We are very excited about this new and unique partnership with Frontier Airlines,” she said. “Not only are they providing an amazing opportunity for our graduates, they are also partnering with the University to provide training and educational experiences for our faculty and staff in order to keep them proficient and current in advanced aircraft operations.”
Bjerke said the partnership will bring immense value to the school. “Providing this valuable experience aligns with our core value of lifelong learning for our faculty and staff.”
Brett Venhuizen, UND professor of aviation and department chair, joined the others in celebrating the new opportunity.
““Frontier is agreeing to provide type ratings—advanced training—for a number of our faculty and staff,” Venhuizen said. “This will allow our faculty to provide instruction that is closely tailored to the instruction that graduates will receive in their new-hire training at the airlines.” said Venhuizen