WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A new study, released just this week by the United Van Lines, shows thousands of people are leaving Kansas for opportunities elsewhere. The study ranks Kansas number five on the list of the most people moving from states in 2016.
KSN wanted to know why. One reason is jobs. The city of Wichita has lost more than 15,000 aviation jobs in the last two years. Local companies have felt that impact.
“We definitely are seeing some jobs move out-of-state, out of the area,” said Angie Duntz, Kansas Workforce Alliance.
According to Duntz, the past several years have been the hardest on the aviation industry.
“We know for a fact that 15,000 jobs in aviation have left to go to other markets,” explained Duntz, and she said those jobs are not coming back.
“Several of the jobs were lost because of technology or corporate structure changes, but we have seen high wage jobs going to places like Dallas or Oklahoma City,” stated Duntz.
The focus is now shifting to bring other industries to Kansas.
“It just means that we kind of have to redefine ourselves and look at other jobs and manufacturing industries and some of the other companies that are moving,” said Duntz.
According to Duntz, right now, Healthcare and IT are the industries providing the most opportunities in Wichita.
And, with an average of 4,000 people a month visiting the Kansas Workforce Alliance site looking for jobs, Duntz is hoping there will be openings for them in the near future.
“So, we do see some hope that maybe some of that job loss will slow down,” Duntz explained.