The JetBlue Foundation and the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP) Help Fuel Students Interest in Aviation

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The JetBlue Foundation and the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP) Help Fuel Students Interest in Aviation

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Wednesday, August 16, 2017 - 8:35am

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Throughout the summer, the JetBlue Foundation partnered with the Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals (OBAP), to inspire more than 150 high school students through the Aviation Career Education (ACE) Academy. Students in Boston, New York, Long Beach Calif., Orlando Fla., San Juan Puerto Rico, and St. Croix were able to explore the various career opportunities available within the aviation industry.

ACE Academies provide a comprehensive overview of the airline industry. Students are exposed to aviation history, flight operations, flight planning, airport fire and rescue and engineering. Each program sponsored by the JetBlue Foundation also includes a designated “JetBlue Day” where students tour JetBlue’s operations and the corresponding airport’s control tower. JetBlue crewmembers and pilots volunteer their time to plan and host these programs to introduce kids to pursue careers in aviation. Crewmembers bring the airline experience to life by providing a behind-the-scenes look at the JetBlue’s operation by sharing their professional journeys and offering career advice to students.

Ramone Golding, a student at Bronx Aerospace High School was surprised by the variety of job options that aviation provides, noting “I didn’t know that there were so many different jobs within the aviation sector. When you think of aviation, you only think flying a plane, but we learned we could be anything we want to be within aviation.”

Ramone first became interested in aviation at age 11 by watching YouTube videos. He was fascinated with the process of building an airplane and the engineering behind flight, describing it as magical. He hopes to be a pilot someday.

Current JetBlue Flight Operations Intern, and a previous ACE Academy student, Justin Thompson recognizes the value of programs like the ACE Academy. “The main takeaway I want students to have is that there’s a wide array of different races and faces in aviation. For example, our Assistant Chief Pilot is black. Having that visual gives students a different perspective. It doesn’t matter who you are or what your background is, ACE Academies show - if you ultimately want to pursue something, you can do it,” said Justin.

About the JetBlue Foundation

Since its inception in 2013, the JetBlue Foundation has provided more than $500,000 in grants to more than 26 aviation-focused programs. Beyond grants, the JetBlue Foundation also supports STEM education to empower and provide opportunities underserved communities through mentoring, internships and more.

Keywords: Responsible Business & Employee Engagement | ACE Academy | Diversity & Inclusion | Jetblue | Jobs | OBAP | Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals | aviation

CONTENT: Article