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More airport operations/management academic programs at both the high school and community college levels would help the airport industry. With baby boomers currently reaching retirement age at the rate of 10,000 each day, and later generations much smaller in size, new employees are not entering the workforce swiftly enough to replace those leaving because of retirement, illness, and other complicating factors.

As a result, the aviation industry, like others, is experiencing a significant labor shortage. With no end in sight, the industry has joined forces in a number of unique partnerships in an effort to not only enhance the quality of current aviation graduates, but also stimulate interest in aviation careers among college students, high school students, and even middle school and elementary school students.

The TRB Airport Cooperative Research Program's ACRP Synthesis 103: Promoting Aviation Career Education in High Schools and Community Colleges points out the many characteristics of high school and community college aviation programs throughout the country, which could prove useful to airport management. By better understanding the academic programs producing the next generation of aviation professionals, airports can develop proactive efforts to promote the airport profession to aviation programs in their local area and influence young people to seriously consider airports as a viable career path, thus positively affecting the future of the airport industry.

Suggested Citation

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2019. Promoting Aviation Career Education in High Schools and Community Colleges. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

166 pages | 8.5 x 11 |  DOI:

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