With a central location in the United States and several airports offering connecting flights across the country, Kansas has a need for the added safety and security that the presence of federal air marshals provide.
The largest and busiest airport in Kansas is the Wichita Mid-Continent Airport. The $10 million state-of-the-art facility provides regional service for four major airlines. Federal air marshals flying through Kansas make connecting flights to major air traffic hubs throughout the country like Chicago, Dallas, Denver, and Atlanta.
Employment Requirements for the Federal Air Marshal Service
For those interested in learning about how to become a federal air marshal, there are several minimum requirements that interested candidates between the ages of 21 and 36 or who have prior federal civilian law enforcement experience must meet:
- A bachelor’s degree in any field from an accredited university; OR
- 3 years of general experience that includes progressive experience in problem solving, planning and organizing, and effective communication; OR
- A combination of education and experience in these areas
Individuals who meet these qualifications are selected for pre-employment screening. This process will include:
- Physical examination by medical staff, including extensive drug and alcohol screening
- Psychological assessment
- Background check for top level security clearance
- A battery assessment test with writing, situational judgment, and logic-based reasoning
- A panel interview
Training for the federal air marshal Service involves a two-phase training program that includes 35 days of basic training and 44 days of intensive air marshal training.
Federal Air Marshals and Small Airport Safety
While people often expect threats to national security to occur at large airports that see millions of passengers each year, federal air marshals understand that sometimes smaller airports are the easiest targets for terrorist attacks.
The Wichita Mid-Continent Airport underwent one such threat in December of 2013 when an airport employee was arrested by federal agents for attempting to detonate a car bomb in a secure part of the airport tarmac. While the man acted alone, he claimed the bombing was on behalf of Al Qaeda.
These kinds of terrorist threats are exactly the types of activity that Federal air marshals work tirelessly to prevent. Federal air marshals are aware that a terrorist plot could unfold anytime and in any airport throughout the United States. They work in a variety of airports, regardless of size or the number passengers, to ensure that these potential threats are met with a swift and decisive response.