SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas – New 2nd Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Andrea D. Tullos wrapped up her first formal visit to the Air Force’s largest technical training wing Nov. 19, having seen and experienced some of the cutting-edge training tools employed today as well as areas that could use a little more attention.
2nd AF provides oversight of basic military training, initial skills and advanced technical training operations for Air Force enlisted members, as well as that of non-rated operations and support officers at Sheppard AFB and other Air Education and Training Command technical training wings.
After an overview of the 82nd Training Wing’s mission, the career security forces Airman began her two-day immersion visit in familiar territory at the 82nd Security Forces Squadron’s MILO training platform. The general saw firsthand how personnel use the interactive simulation training environment to practice responding to different localized threat scenarios.
Tullos was also briefed on the international training mission by the 82nd TRW International Military Student Office. IMSO provides oversight for international training, including technical and English language training as part of the Royal Saudi air force’s $29 billion F-15SA program, the largest foreign military sale in U.S. history.
IMSO anticipates an international population of more than 600 in FY20.
As the largest technical training wing in the Air Force, Sheppard also seeks to be on the leading edge when it comes to providing the most up-to-date and technologically advanced training for young men and women entering the Air Force or its sister services. Avionics training in the 365th Training Squadron is one area showcased to Tullos that displayed a need to bridge the training gap between the past, present and future and preparing avionics Airmen to maintain upgraded and advanced aircraft systems.
For example, Airmen learning the intricacies of heavy aircraft avionics for advanced cargo planes such as the C-17 Globemaster III currently use antiquated equipment more suitable for the C-141 Starlifter, which has been retired since 2006. The general was briefed on the future Heavy Communication Navigation Avionics Trainers and the Trainer Evaluation Performance Aircraft Trainer Set, devices that would bring 21st century technology to the 21st century classroom.
Tullos also viewed the 365th TRS’s advanced tactile and virtual simulators used in F-15 avionics training.
Three squadrons and multiple aircraft maintenance specialties were also highlighted at the F-22 training facility, the location where many fifth-generation fighter aircraft maintainers will begin their careers. The 362nd, 363rd and 365th TRSs employ integrated technology and right-time training to produce crew chiefs, ammo and munitions, and avionics specialists.
The general also visited facilities the housed programs for jet engine and turbo-prop training, het engine mishap investigation, the joint service civil engineering training of the 366th TRS, and the explosive ordnance disposal preliminary course.