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Student loans available for Delta traineesStudent loans available for Delta trainees

Delta Air Lines is making it easier for employees to transition to career pilot roles by introducing student loans, the air carrier announced in October.

Photo courtesy of Delta Air Lines.

Delta's Propel Pilot Career Path program was created in response to the pilot shortage, offering current employees a pathway to transition to pilot jobs. The air carrier announced that Wells Fargo will offer "competitively priced" student loans of up to $75,000 for qualified borrowers through the bank's collegiate loan program. The loans will be available with fixed-rate and variable-rate terms. Wells Fargo loans are also available to participants in Delta's Collegiate Pilot Career Path, who can borrow up to $25,000 toward flight training costs.

Delta created the Propel Pilot Career Path program to make pilot careers more attractive to current staff, college students, and members of various aviation organizations. The company expects to hire 8,000 pilots in the coming decade. Current Delta employees can qualify for the Company Pilot Career Path program with a private pilot certificate and at least 100 hours of logged flight time.

Delta noted that the Propel program is a defined, accelerated path to help private pilots earn additional certifications, build flight experience, and meet other air carrier requirements.

The airline plans to announce another pathway called Propel Advance in “late 2018” for pilots who already possess commercial, multiengine, CFI, or ATP credentials.

David Tulis

David Tulis

Associate Editor Web/ePilot
AOPA Associate Editor Web/ePilot David Tulis joined AOPA in 2015 and is a seaplane-rated private pilot who enjoys vintage aircraft, aerobatic flying, and photography.
Topics: Financial, Pilot Training and Certification

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