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Published August 22, 2013, 02:09 PM

UND graduates receive exemption from aviation rule

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Pilots who graduate from the University of North Dakota aviation school will be eligible to work for commercial airlines with fewer flight hours than required by a new federal rule.

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Pilots who graduate from the University of North Dakota aviation school will be eligible to work for commercial airlines with fewer flight hours than required by a new federal rule.

UND officials say the Grand Forks school is the first college aviation program to receive an exemption from the Federal Aviation Administration requirement that each pilot have 1,500 hours of flying time.

UND graduates will now be eligible for an advanced pilot license when they reach 1,000 hours. Students will have to complete specified courses in order to be hired with reduced flight time.

The FAA has been adopting new regulations following the crash of a Colgan Airlines plane in Buffalo, N.Y., in 2009.

UND aerospace researcher Beth Bjerke (BYUHR'-kee) says the change emphasizes "quality over quantity" in flight training.

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