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COMPTON, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, May 18, 2023/ -- Kollab Youth and Alaska Airlines are partnering to introduce careers in the aviation industry to underrepresented youth with the goal of molding the next generation of pilots, flight attendants, and technicians. The event will take place on Monday, May 22nd, 2023 from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Compton Airport located at 961 W Alondra Blvd, Compton, CA 90220.

This partnership focuses on the effort to bring more African American representation into the aviation industry. During Monday’s event, youth will learn about the education, certification, and skillsets needed to work in the trade.

Kollab Youth and Alaska Airlines are committed to ensuring inclusion in the aviation industry; one way to reach that goal is to provide opportunities to youth who would otherwise not be able to explore careers above and below the wing, including speaking to a pilot.

“Diversifying our workforce are priorities for Alaska Airlines. For example, black female pilots make up only .5% of all pilots across the industry in 2022. We’re working on changing that through opportunities like this partnership with Kollab Youth,” said Ronald Limes, Alaska Airlines captain and chief pilot for Sea-Tac International Airport. “It’s important for youth to see professionals who look like them in these roles so they know these careers are out there and they’re attainable. Alaska is committed and excited to be a part of inspiring our next generation of aviation industry leaders.”

Consulting firm Oliver Wyman estimates that airlines in North America will face a shortage of nearly 30,000 pilots by 2032 despite efforts to close the gap. The supply of new pilots will grow, but not enough to offset a continuing wave of retirements, the consultant firm says.

“It is critical more than ever that our educational opportunities extend beyond the classroom and into hands-on experiences that allow our young people to achieve. Compton Unified School District is committed to providing these opportunities through direct service and strategic partnerships. As the Legislative Representative of the Board of Education – I am thankful to Kollab Youth for providing such an amazing experience for our youth”, stated Denzell O. Jordan Perry, Legislative Representative, and Trustee, Compton’s Board of Education.

Today’s youth may be part of the solution to the pilot shortage in the future while creating stable careers for marginalized populations, which may be life-changing for themselves, their families, and their communities.

“We are so excited for this event to help our youth be exposed to such a fantastic industry to work in with so many benefits personally and professionally. Many young people will find their first jobs in travel, become active participants in the labor market, accelerate developmentally, and gain useful long terms skills, for a fabulous future,” stated Mary Hewitt, CEO of Kollab Youth.

About Kollab Youth
The Kollab Youth Workforce Development Program is an award-winning 501(c)3 public charity organization and CA DAS Registered Pre-Apprenticeship Program created for under-resourced middle and high school students. Kollab program helps them explore career opportunities in business, STEM, and other emerging 21st-century careers that are high growth and high-wage jobs. Kollab Youth receive mentorship from industry experts and earn resume-worthy work experience through paid apprenticeships and internships connecting them with the future workforce and preparing them to compete in tomorrow’s workplace. Website

About Alaska Airlines
Alaska Airlines and our regional partners serve more than 120 destinations across the United States, Belize, Canada, Costa Rica and Mexico. We strive to be the most caring airline with award-winning customer service and an industry-leading loyalty program. As a member of the Oneworld Alliance, and with our additional global partners, our guests can travel to more than 1,000 destinations on more than 25 airlines while earning and redeeming miles on flights to locations around the world. Learn more about Alaska at and follow @alaskaairnews for news and stories. Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air are subsidiaries of Alaska Air Group. In California, Alaska operates over 330 peak day flights from our hubs in San Francisco and Los Angeles, as well as other cities across the state including our key focus cities of San Diego and San Jose. As the only national airline based on the West Coast, we’ve proudly served our guests throughout California for more than 40 years.

Mary Hewitt
310 303 2869

Mary Hewitt
Kollab Youth
+1 310-303-2869
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