RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas –
An annual course started by the Air Force Reserve Command in 1994 to prepare company grade reserve officers for leadership roles in coalition environments is coming to the United States for the first time.
Randolph's 340th Flying Training Group will host the International Junior Officer Leadership Development Course, which runs Saturday through Aug. 13 at the Drury Plaza Hotel-Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio.
"The course is an opportunity for company grade officers to get together for leadership training," said Capt. Farrah Schluter, 39th Flying Training Squadron executive officer. "We're expecting 40 attendees from the United States and five other countries."
Captain Schluter said leadership from the 340th FTG, a tenant unit that provides associate instructor pilots for Air Education and Training Command's undergraduate pilot training mission, and Headquarters AFRC Professional Development Center developed this year's curriculum to institute a continuum of learning for CGOs in the United States and internationally.
The course's theme is "Combat Training for Junior Officers in Today's World Conflicts - Preparation, Execution and Reconstitution." Its goal is to "encourage company grade officers to work together as an international team, learning about leadership, team building and cultural diversity."
The course will feature sessions devoted to each day's theme as well as a full day of activities Tuesday at Lackland Air Force Base, a tour of the Alamo Wednesday afternoon and a visit to the Warrior and Family Support Center and the Center for the Intrepid at Brooke Army Medical Center Thursday afternoon.
Captain Schluter said San Antonio's facilities provide a backdrop for some of the daily themes. Tours of basic expeditionary airman skills training and security forces training at Lackland are highlights of the "Training for War" theme Tuesday while the visit to BAMC is part of the "Fall Out From Combat" theme Thursday. The Alamo tour complements the "Combat" theme Wednesday, with an emphasis on leadership displayed at the Battle of the Alamo.
"There is so much going on in San Antonio that we wanted to take advantage of all the resources that are available," she said.
Wednesday's activities will also include an enlisted speaker panel featuring Randolph Airmen.
"We will have people who have deployed recently," Captain Schluter said. "They will talk about their experiences as leaders or as subordinates while they were deployed."
A leadership exercise following the panel discussion will give reserve CGOs an opportunity to present briefings on how they would handle a variety of scenarios.
Maj. Gen. Don Ralph, mobilization assistant to the commander, U.S. Strategic Command, Offutt AFB, Neb., and Cols. John Thompson, future learning adviser to the Air Education and Training Command director of plans, programs, requirements and assessments, and Terry Ross, 340th FTG commander, will serve as mentors and facilitators during the course.
"CGOs will be able to talk to them and get their perspectives on leadership," Captain Schluter said.
Course participants, who will work in teams throughout the week, will also benefit from the expertise of other officers and Department of Defense civilians, she said.
The course will culminate in a graduation ceremony Aug. 13.