Air Force base facing dilemma of aging workforce


The Wright-Patterson Air Force Base might look into attracting and recruiting nontraditional employees

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio

A B-25 bomber lands near the Air Force Museum at the Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, Tuesday, April 17, 2012. Twenty of the World War II bombers flew in for the 70th anniversary of the Doolittle Raid on Tokyo. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) – An Ohio airbase is facing the increasingly common dilemma of an aging workforce.

The Dayton Daily News reports around half the 30,000 people working at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base are nearing the end of their careers.

Air Force Gen. Arnold Bunch Jr. says filling those jobs and taking care of employees is “critical.”

More than a third of employees at the Air Force Research Laboratory are eligible to retire.

This could be challenging because nearly 70% of the lab’s workforce has at least a master’s degree. According to a U.S. Census estimate from 2017, only 10% of Ohioans 25 and older hold an advanced college degree.

The president of the Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education says the Air Force should focus on attracting and recruiting nontraditional candidates.

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