Trained For Space, By Space

Air Force Space Command recently took responsibility for space operators’ initial qualification training from Air Education and Training Command, according to a Dec. 2 release. AFSPC will now conduct both officer and enlisted undergraduate space weapon system training, as well as advanced platform-specific training. The intensified training track is aimed at developing “more proficient” space operators with “the skills and knowledge needed to support the dynamic and evolving space mission,” states the release. AFSPC’s longer curriculum will increase technical training, give deeper understanding of orbital and electromagnetic dynamics, increase combat support focus, and implement “performance-based” evaluation. AFSPC is also delegating platform-specific qualification to the individual units operating them to provide more up-to-date instruction. Since AETC “specializes in high throughput, fundamentals courses,” and AFSPC provides niche capabilities, it is better suited to effectively training operators in house, according to the release. AETC handed over training responsibility at the beginning of Fiscal 2016, and the first undergraduate space training class is slated to graduate in February 2016.