JetBlue considers a new approach to training pilots
NEW YORK (AP) — JetBlue wants to recruit a few flight students with no flying experience and train them to become pilots.
The airline says applicants would still need to meet minimum requirements including 1,500 hours of flying experience before operating one of its planes.
JetBlue said Monday it only plans to put 24 students through the training. The airline has about 2,600 pilots.
Still, if JetBlue's request is approved by federal officials it would break from a long-standing pattern in the United States.
Airlines once got most of their pilots from the military. In recent years, many have been aviation school graduates who gained the necessary flying experience on their own, doing everything from towing advertising banners to working as flight-school instructors.