Scott Air Force Base IL plays a key role in the military mission
Twelve Airmen from the 375th Air Mobility Wing recently completed the first iteration of a Warrior Airman Readiness course designed to enhance combat readiness and warrior ethos.
The course, which took place June 6-12, provided Airmen with life support skills such as tactical care of combat casualties, responding to direct and indirect fire, as well as a gas mask and protective procedures.
“The intent was to provide a course that would build basic warrior skills while earning certificates for some of our readiness requirements,” said Senior Master Sergeant. Stephane Beck, 375th Civil Engineer Squadron Operations Engineering Superintendent.
This hands-on course, he added, was a way to build on the computerized training modules for better “muscle memory”.
Currently, students have the opportunity to volunteer as the course is offered within their organization. This can be beneficial for Airmen who are preparing to deploy or who are due for annual career-specific training. Each course graduate will walk away with the following certificates: CPR, TCCC, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and High Yield Explosive or CBRNE.
In addition to these certificates, Airmen also trained in Scott’s cantonment area, which is modeled after a deployed base with minimal infrastructure. This, by design, prepares Airmen for deployments and gives the training a realistic feel while still being in a safe and controlled environment.
Staff Sgt. André Boulware, a participant from the 375th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron, said the course reminded him of how to don MOPP (protective clothing), how to cover assets in the event of an attack and how to (decontaminate) without a line of decontamination.
“The hardest part was being on the pitch,” he said. “It was difficult because I’m not an outdoors person, but having a warrior mindset helped me overcome it. I was reminded that we have to practice our way of fighting – that our haters don’t care about being comfortable.
Feedback from Airmen was positive and many said they felt better prepared for the deployments, however, Beck said his team was already looking at ways to improve training.
“We organized this first course to generate lessons learned so that we can develop the course in the future and improve it with each iteration,” Beck said. “One of the great things about Scott Air Force Base is the level of innovation everyone here has. It’s great to see and (with this collaboration) we’ll make sure we provide them with the right level of training to (be ready for real-world deployments).