Delta Air Lines is launching a partnership with nine universities across the country this fall. According to the airline, the effort will “go beyond traditional stadium signage to embed the airline and its employees in campus and alumni events, academics and career recruiting and counseling, all in an effort to become a lifelong travel partner to future customers.”

Logo image courtesy of Delta Air Lines

Logo image courtesy of Delta Air Lines

Delta is partnering with Duke University, The University of Florida, Indiana University, University of Michigan, Michigan State University, University of Notre Dame, The Ohio State University, Penn State University and University of Wisconsin. It already has partnerships with Boston College, Georgia Institute of Technology, University of Georgia, University of Minnesota, University of North Carolina, and Syracuse University.

According to Delta, the effort will include:

  • Delta employees providing hands-on help as 10,000 new freshmen arrive for Michigan State Sparty Move-In Day Aug. 30. Delta employees will offer luggage carts, refreshments, and complimentary care packages to help students settle into their new digs.
  • Lighting up the Delta Celebration Grill, built by the Delta TechOps team to look like an aircraft, at select football season tailgate parties for SkyMiles members and those who sign up onsite. Tailgates will feature College Football Legend appearances, a social photo capture and sharing hub, lounge space with feeds of college football games and more.
Celebration Grill - Image courtesy of Delta Air Lines

Celebration Grill – Image courtesy of Delta Air Lines. I’d probably line up for that.

  • Delta being  front and center for Midnight Madness and the start of the 2015-16 college basketball season at universities such as Michigan State and Duke.
  • Partnering with local alumni association chapters to participate in football watch parties with food and beverage specials and premium branded items for SkyMiles members. Participants will have the opportunity to win trips to a home football game during the 2016 season.

Delta also plans to support select students for study abroad or alternative spring break travel, allowing students to participate in volunteer activities worldwide.

My Take

I could probably have used a little help moving in during my college days. 🙂 Seriously, putting yourself in front of the next generation of travelers is smart marketing and could give Delta an edge in earning the travel business of college students as the move into their careers. Might put Delta at the top of list for spring break travel to Cancun too. You can read Delta’s entire press release on the new partnerships here.