ILROC bridges gap for logistics officers

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Brig. Gen. Ronald Jolly Sr., 82nd Training Wing commander and career maintenance officer, delivers opening comments to the first in-residence Intermediate Logistics Readiness Officer Course class in more than five years at Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas, March 5, 2018. Jolly thanked Maj. Jonathon Elliott, 363rd Training Squadron ILROC instructor, for his dedication to helping develop and teach the revamped course. Elliot is currently the only instructor who will teach ILROC classes. (U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Jacqueline Jastrzebski)

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas –The revamped Intermediate Logistics Readiness Officer Course celebrated the start of its first iteration March 5, 2018, at Sheppard Air Force Base signifying a necessary addition to the education and development of Air Force logistics readiness officers.

The new course is designed to span a total of three weeks and will cover two blocks of instruction. The first block will highlight joint and Air Force logistics doctrine while the second will touch on providing support to the maintenance mission and introduce the roles and responsibilities of a field grade officer.

“The purpose of this course is really to bridge the gap during the middle of a loggie’s career and get them ready for more responsibility as they progress,” said Brig. Gen. Ronald Jolly Sr., 82nd Training Wing commander and career maintenance officer.

An in-residence intermediate logistics course existed prior to 2013 when the Air Force transitioned the course to an online format. In 2015, the course was done away with all together.

The revamped ILROC is set to fill a mid-level void for officers at the ranks of captain and major.

“If you come to training as a lieutenant and your next opportunity is 16 years down the road as a lieutenant colonel, that’s an issue,” said Capt. Boyd Stewart, 363rd Training Squadron Logistics Readiness Officer Course instructor. “This keeps logisticians focused on development and education throughout the continuum of learning.”

When the Air Force discovered it could better meet the needs of logistics officers, it did not have to look far for course development guidance.

The Maintenance Officer Intermediate Course is also taught by Sheppard’s 363rd TRS and served as inspiration for the ILROC curriculum as logistics and maintenance so often go hand in hand.

“The networking, crosstalk and sharing of experiences from different commands and locations will make this course meaningful,” said Maj. Jonathon Elliott, 363rd Training Squadron ILROC instructor.

In addition to developing officers who are well versed in logistics concepts, doctrine and core competencies, the squadron’s instructors believe it will help create a stronger network for logisticians throughout the Air Force.

“There is so much value added by bringing folks together and strengthening the network worldwide of logisticians because using your network is how you get things done in this career field,” Stewart said.

All parties noted the intensity of the course makes it much better suited for in-person instruction rather than the previous online format.

“You’re talking very specific concepts in the course and now students will get that classroom interaction to really drive the information home,” Jolly said.

Another improvement to the course will aid in development of junior officers, too. Course writers added specific periods of instruction where the mid-level officers will spend time discussing ways to develop those who work under them.

Focused and intentional development and training through ILROC will better prepare officers for future assignments as squadron commanders and beyond while giving them the necessary skills to develop the Airmen around them.