- The Air Force has been grappling with a deepening pilot shortage for some time.
- The recent announcement of a pilot-training program that will include enlisted airmen sparked suggests the service would train enlisted fliers for the first time since World War II.
- The Air Force has said the program is strictly to evaluate training and teaching methods, however.
An email from the chief of the Second Air Force obtained by an unofficial Facebook page in late November appeared to suggest that the Air Force was looking to train enlisted airmen as pilots for manned aircraft — the first time enlisted personnel would receive such training since World War II.
But several Air Force officials have said that the program, called Pilot Training Next, is just to evaluate how airmen learn and how technology can play a role in improving learning. The program, they say, is not designed to put enlisted personnel in the pilot’s seat after it is completed.
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Featured image courtesy of U.S. Air Force