Chief first enlisted to attend AAMOC

Chief Schultz first enlisted to attend AAMOC

Chief Master Sgt. Rob Schultz (left), 62nd Maintenance Group superintendent at McChord Air Force Base, Washington, and Col. Jason Dickinson, commander of the 162nd Maintenance Group in Tucson, Arizona, discuss their functions in a simulation during an Accelerated Aircraft Maintenance Officers Course at Sheppard Air Force Base Nov. 7. The chief is in a unique position in the typically all-officer program after he was selected to serve as the 62nd MXG superintendent. The course is giving him an overview and better understanding of flightline maintenance operations after spending 21 years as an aerial port Airman. (U.S. Air Force photo by Alan Quevy)

Chief Schultz first enlisted to attend AAMOC

Chief Master Sgt. Rob Schultz, 62nd Maintenance Group superintendent at McChord Air Force Base, Washington, and Col. Jason Dickinson, commander of the 162nd Maintenance Group in Tucson, Arizona, perform their portion of an Accelerated Aircraft Maintenance Officer Course simulation Nov. 7, 2017, at Sheppard Air Force Base. Schultz, who spent 21 years as an aerial port Airman, was sent to the Accelerated AMOC to gain a better understanding of flightline maintenance operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Alan R. Quevy)

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --

The Accelerated Aircraft Maintenance Officers Course at Sheppard Air Force Base often has a mixture of active duty, Guard and Reserve officers ranging from lieutenants to colonels attending four weeks of instruction, but a different rank of Airman has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the officers in the most recent class.

Chief Master Sgt. Rob Schultz, the new superintendent for the 62nd Maintenance Group at McChord Air Force Base, Wash., is the first enlisted Airman to take part in the typically all-officer course to learn more about flightline maintenance operations. The majority of his 21 years in the Air Force has been spent working in air transportation, which included working side-by-side with maintainers.

Although there is a close relationship between the career fields, there are a few differences.

“Seventy-five percent of the personnel – I think we’ve got upwards of 1,300 Airmen there – are maintenance,” he said. “Although I have a lot of experience being around maintainers, I don’t have any formal training in maintenance.”

Schultz said he and leadership were looking for the right class that provided the right fit to learn more about the maintenance operations side of the 62nd MXG. The AAMOC was the opportunity that gave him a “wave-top overview” of the career field.

The chief said the course has reinforced some of the information he has learned over the years as well as added some new details and aspects to how the many pieces of flightline maintenance function.

For example, fuels operations is one area that jumped out at him because he didn’t have a concept as far as what they do and how they fit into the puzzle. Through AAMOC, he was able to see the function of fuels at Sheppard and gain a bigger understanding.

Schultz said one benefit that he has received that he will be able to use as group superintendent at McChord is being able to see the type of training maintenance officers undergo.

Jeff Bachert, an AAMOC instructor who also served as an enlisted maintainer for 10 years and maintenance officer for another 12, said having the perspective of a chief master sergeant and a group superintendent has been an addition to the course.

“As a maintenance officer, you’re in a group where 99 percent of them are enlisted,” he said. “We don’t normally get that perspective in this course.”

The final few days of the course consisted of the class putting what they learned into practice with a flightline operations simulation. Each officer and the chief were given specific duties to perform, all working together to effectively manage a flightline.