JetBlue (NASDAQ:JBLU) has introduced JetBlue Scholars, a new program that offers crew members an opportunity to earn a fully accredited college degree, with JetBlue covering most of the cost, the company said.
The program takes an unconventional approach to employer-sponsored education by providing alternative college credit options and going well beyond standard tuition reimbursement. JetBlue Scholars addresses the needs of those working full-time with college advisement and resources.
Through a pioneering partnership model, JetBlue has unbundled the higher education system, step-by-step, to make it easier for crew members who have some previous college credit but do not know how to move forward to complete their degree. JetBlue Scholars provides a clearer path and converts aviation and military training and other professional certificates into college credit, helping to reduce the time to complete a bachelor´s degree for crewmembers.
Coursework is completed through three innovative learning platforms — Sophia.org, StraighterLine.com and Study.com. These American Council on Education (ACE-credit) (b) courses offer a variety of online videos, lectures and other content that allows for flexible schedules and self-motivated learning.
JetBlue is also developing new courses internally which prepares crewmembers for college level exams provided by the College Board and Thomas Edison State University. These courses utilize open source material from providers such as Saylor.org and OpenStaxCollege.org. Courses typically take one to three months to complete and all costs are covered by JetBlue. After each course is completed and the final exam is passed, JetBlue facilitates the transfer of college credit(s) to Thomas Edison State University.
Once crewmembers have earned 114-117 credits, they begin completing final online courses with JetBlue´s launch partner Thomas Edison State University. Once 120 credits are reached, the bachelor´s degree from Thomas Edison State University is conferred.
JetBlue is New York´s Hometown Airlineâ¢ and a leading carrier in Boston, Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood, Los Angeles (Long Beach), Orlando and San Juan. JetBlue carries more than 32 million customers a year to 96 cities in the US, Caribbean, and Latin America with an average of 900 daily flights.