HomeNews

Recruiting efforts pay off in form of young, bright engineers

Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)

Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)

EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --

Brain power is key to testing the most advanced aircraft and aircraft systems in the world. Where better to find that brain power than within the halls of the finest universities in the world.

Each year, the 412th Test Engineering Group sends recruitment teams as far away as Georgia in search of young talent to pave the way for the future of flight test at Edwards AFB. This effort by the group seems to be paying off with 63 new engineers hired in the past two years.

“The 412th TENG's recruitment program is the best recruitment outreach program at Edwards,” said Brianna Van Norden, former 412th TENG Recruitment Management specialist now with the 412th Range Squadron. “Young people can bring important insights to testing here at Edwards AFB, especially with rapid changes in technology. If you put time and effort in who you are trying to recruit, ultimately the development of your organization benefits with a team of enthusiastic new talent.”

According to the Department of Education website’s science, technology, engineering and math page, only 16 percent of high school seniors proficient in math are interested in a career in science, technology, engineering and math — collectively known as STEM. The federal government has identified the need for increased emphasis on STEM education as the path to remain a global power.

The developmental testing of the fifth-generation F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and the new KC-46A refueling tanker — along with the continual technological upgrades to every aircraft in the Air Force’s inventory — highlight the need for new employees with STEM backgrounds heavily at Edwards.

“Formal technical background is essential to the work we do here," said David Wheaton, 412th Test Wing senior technical director. "We test state-of-the-art, cutting-edge aerospace systems and technology. It is the most advanced technology in the world. The warfighter uses the systems we test in combat.  Our engineers get directly involved with the end users of these systems and technology — very cool,” Wheaton said.” 

Three of those newly hired engineers hit the ground running, fully immersing themselves in the world of test. All were hired straight out of college following university visits from Edwards recruiters.

Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Kevin Butler, 775th Test Squadron, is a flight test engineer responsible for making sure weapon-related integration is being tested appropriately, currently for the 419th Flight Test Squadron. Butler has been at Edwards for a little over a year after graduating from U.C. Davis with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and then a master’s degree from U.C. San Diego in materials, solid mechanics and design. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Recruiting efforts pay off in form of young, bright engineers
Kevin Butler, 775th Test Squadron, is a flight test engineer responsible for making sure weapon-related integration is being tested appropriately, currently for the 419th Flight Test Squadron. Butler has been at Edwards for a little over a year after graduating from U.C. Davis with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and then a master’s degree from U.C. San Diego in materials, solid mechanics and design. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Photo By: Kenji Thuloweit
VIRIN: 171020-F-LO365-006

“One of the main reasons I wanted to go into testing was that the job is constantly changing, I never do the same thing two days in a row,” said Kevin Butler, 775th Test Squadron. “I am also in a position where I get to test cutting-edge technology and work with all of the various people who developed it.”

An armament flight test engineer, Butler ensures weapon-related integration is tested appropriately. Most recently with the 419th Flight Test Squadron, he played an integral part of the test firing of a new U.S. Navy Long Range Anti-Ship Missile from an Edwards B-1B Lancer.

Fresno, California, native Amarachi Egbuziem works for the 772nd Test Squadron at the Benefield Anechoic Facility, the largest anechoic facility in the world. Teams test electronic warfare systems on aircraft in an environment free of electromagnetic inference from the outside.  Egbuziem started working there after graduating from California State University, Fresno with a degree in electrical engineering,

Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. She joined Team Edwards right after graduating from California State University, Fresno with a degree in electrical engineering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. She joined Team Edwards right after graduating from California State University, Fresno with a degree in electrical engineering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. She joined Team Edwards right after graduating from California State University, Fresno with a degree in electrical engineering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Recruiting efforts pay off in form of young, bright engineers
Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. She joined Team Edwards right after graduating from California State University, Fresno with a degree in electrical engineering. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Photo By: Kenji Thuloweit
VIRIN: 171023-F-LO365-003

“When I found out that there was a place where you could just do testing and not have the headache of design, I knew I had to try everything in my power to get an interview there,” Egbuziem said. “What I like about my job is that most days there is an issue and I get to try and fix that issue by testing and playing with equipment. You wouldn’t be able to do that with most aircraft; that is why I think this squadron is very different from the rest. There is also a great sense of accomplishment when you walk into the chamber, right before a test begins, and you see the aircraft amongst all of the RAM (radiation absorbent material) that took weeks to put into place, it looks amazing.

Another Fresno State graduate, Daniel Ciolkosz, works as a radar engineer at the 416th Flight Test Squadron testing all new and legacy radar systems for F-15 and F-16 fighter jets.

“I love being able to talk with the best pilots in the world and work on systems that will have a real world impact on the warfighter risking their lives. I really enjoy being able to make a difference with helping the Air Force decide on whether or not to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on a specific system.”

Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Daniel Ciolkosz works as a radar engineer at the 416th Flight Test Squadron testing legacy and new radar systems for the F-15 and F-16. He writes test plans and flight cards, executes the test, then analyzes the data. Ciolkosz helps test the radars in operationally representative scenarios to understand the characteristics of the system under real-world situations. He joined Team Edwards after his current flight chief visited California State University, Fresno, on a recruiting trip in search of talented college graduates. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Amarachi Egbuziem works with the 772d Test Squadron, which oversees electronic warfare testing at the Benefield Anechoic Facility. “I knew I wanted to become an engineer when I was in the sixth grade. There was no other job where I could build and play with electronics all day. It was an easy choice. I knew about Edwards from a career fair at my school.” (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Recruiting efforts pay off in form of young, bright engineers
Daniel Ciolkosz works as a radar engineer at the 416th Flight Test Squadron testing legacy and new radar systems for the F-15 and F-16. He writes test plans and flight cards, executes the test, then analyzes the data. Ciolkosz helps test the radars in operationally representative scenarios to understand the characteristics of the system under real-world situations. He joined Team Edwards after his current flight chief visited California State University, Fresno, on a recruiting trip in search of talented college graduates. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kenji Thuloweit)
Photo By: Kenji Thuloweit
VIRIN: 171023-F-LO365-416

Ciolkosz’s current flight chief visited his university as a recruiter and hired him soon after.

Those interested in a career at Edwards AFB can visit http://edwardscareers.com. The 412th TENG also has a Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/412TENG/.

USAF Comments Policy
If you wish to comment, use the text box below. AF reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.

This is a moderated forum. That means all comments will be reviewed before posting. In addition, we expect that participants will treat each other, as well as our agency and our employees, with respect. We will not post comments that contain abusive or vulgar language, spam, hate speech, personal attacks, violate EEO policy, are offensive to other or similar content. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly "off topic", promote services or products, infringe copyright protected material, or contain any links that don't contribute to the discussion. Comments that make unsupported accusations will also not be posted. The AF and the AF alone will make a determination as to which comments will be posted. Any references to commercial entities, products, services, or other non-governmental organizations or individuals that remain on the site are provided solely for the information of individuals using this page. These references are not intended to reflect the opinion of the AF, DoD, the United States, or its officers or employees concerning the significance, priority, or importance to be given the referenced entity, product, service, or organization. Such references are not an official or personal endorsement of any product, person, or service, and may not be quoted or reproduced for the purpose of stating or implying AF endorsement or approval of any product, person, or service.

Any comments that report criminal activity including: suicidal behaviour or sexual assault will be reported to appropriate authorities including OSI. This forum is not:

  • This forum is not to be used to report criminal activity. If you have information for law enforcement, please contact OSI or your local police agency.
  • Do not submit unsolicited proposals, or other business ideas or inquiries to this forum. This site is not to be used for contracting or commercial business.
  • This forum may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand, informal or formal complaint, or any other form of legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal and/or administrative remedy.

AF does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this forum is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. AF may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person. AF does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those websites that may be reached through links on our website.

Members of the media are asked to send questions to the public affairs through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Reporter questions will not be posted. We recognize that the Web is a 24/7 medium, and your comments are welcome at any time. However, given the need to manage federal resources, moderating and posting of comments will occur during regular business hours Monday through Friday. Comments submitted after hours or on weekends will be read and posted as early as possible; in most cases, this means the next business day.

For the benefit of robust discussion, we ask that comments remain "on-topic." This means that comments will be posted only as it relates to the topic that is being discussed within the blog post. The views expressed on the site by non-federal commentators do not necessarily reflect the official views of the AF or the Federal Government.

To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information, such as name, Social Security number, DoD ID number, OSI Case number, phone numbers or email addresses in the body of your comment. If you do voluntarily include personally identifiable information in your comment, such as your name, that comment may or may not be posted on the page. If your comment is posted, your name will not be redacted or removed. In no circumstances will comments be posted that contain Social Security numbers, DoD ID numbers, OSI case numbers, addresses, email address or phone numbers. The default for the posting of comments is "anonymous", but if you opt not to, any information, including your login name, may be displayed on our site.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comment policy. We encourage your participation in our discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.

News Search