Southeastern University and International Aero Academy, both based in Lakeland, Florida, announced last week the launch of an aviation program that will provide a fast track to a professional pilot career. The partnership will pair four-year and two-year bachelor’s and associate’s degrees from SEU with IAA’s accelerated FAA Part 141 pilot training programs, based at Lakeland Linder International Airport, operating a fleet of new Tecnam P2008 aircraft. United Express operator Trans States Airlines also announced it will join with SEU and IAA to offer a pilot pathway program.
Students in the program may choose to complete their degree online. By working as a flight instructor while completing their degrees, SEU students will log up to five times as many flight hours as peers from other programs, the university said. “Students will have the opportunity to complete their private pilot license and their commercial multi-engine and flight instructor ratings during their first eight months of enrollment, allowing them to work as flight instructors in their first year—building flight hours and earning wages, while accelerating their post-graduate careers,” said Kent Ingle, president of Southeastern University. Students also will have the opportunity to interview with Trans States Airlines, and may transition directly into Trans States’ first-officer training program when they’re ready. SEU says the program will enable students to move from the start of the degree program to a job as a first officer, flying regional jets, in as little as 30 months.