A new Air Force Recruiting Service program will deploy USAF and Space Force generals as ambassadors for their services to help underrepresented youth envision a future for themselves in the Total Force.
The “GO Inspire” program, which launched Jan. 1, will match general officers “with teams of top Airmen and Guardians,” AFRS wrote in a Jan. 5 release.
Together, they’ll reach out to young people “from underrepresented groups, or URGs, across the nation,” with the ultimate goal of encouraging more diverse applicant pools for both services, but especially for space and flying career fields.
“The program is as much about the young, sharp Airmen and Guardians our senior leaders take with them to school and community visits than it is about having a general show up and talk about service in the Air or Space Force,” AFRS Commander Maj. Gen. Edward W. Thomas Jr. said in the release.
AFRS is inviting generals from the Air Force’s Active-duty and reserve components and Space Force to take part, according to the release.
The Department of the Air Force hopes that every USAF and USSF general officer will take part in one to two outreach events each year, AFRS Detachment 1 Commander Lt. Col. Annie Driscoll noted.
“We’ll work with senior leaders to track metrics, but the fruits of this labor won’t be measured for years to come,” she said in the release. “That is the nature of youth engagement. We may still be a decade away from seeing any of these young men or women in uniform. In the meantime, we want every young kid who looks up in the sky and sees an airplane or rocket launch to know that it could be them one day. We also want to help clarify the pathway to that seat in our services for both kids and their influencers.”
The joint memo from Air Force Secretary Barbara M. Barrett, USAF Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr., and Chief of Space Operations Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond that directed the program’s creation called general officer leadership “critical” to enhancing diversity and recruitment within the Department of the Air Force, the release noted.