Aerospace and Defense Workforce Development
According to the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, the aerospace industry is the second-largest industry in the state, making an annual economic impact of over $44 billion. More than 120,000 Oklahomans are employed by 1,100 entities across the state, with aerospace manufacturing in particular experiencing exponential growth. Some of the world’s most successful aerospace companies—including NORDAM, American Airlines, Spirit AeroSystems, and Boeing—are headquartered in Oklahoma, including the two largest maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) facilities in the world: the Air Logistics Complex at Tinker Air Force Base and the American Airlines Maintenance and Engineering Center in Tulsa. The Oklahoma Air & Space Port in Burns Flat—a public-use airport and industrial park just 30 minutes from Weatherford that supports aerospace testing, research and development, flights, and launches on the nation’s longest and widest runway—is one of just 12 such facilities in the country and one of even fewer with an FAA-approved spaceflight corridor not in Military Operation Area (MOAs) or restricted airspace.