Other Training Classes
At present, this album presents training-related patches from five different programs: the Striker programs of Air Force Global Strike Command, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the School of Advanced Nuclear Deterrence Studies (SANDS), the now defunct (for Missileers) Space 100 course, and the Nuclear Maintenance Officer Course conducted by Air Education and Training Command:
STRIKER: Air Force Global Strike Command offers two special training programs, “Striker Intern” which is about a year, and “Striker Pathfinder”--about twice as long as the Striker Intern program. Each of these is described in the text accompanying its associated patch.
CSIS: The Center for Strategic and International Studies was founded at Georgetown University to conduct policy studies and strategic analyses of political, economic and security issues throughout the world, with a specific focus on issues concerning international relations, trade, technology, finance, energy and geostrategy. It maintained its affiliation with Georgetown University until 1987, shortly after incorporating as a non-profit organization on 29 December 1986. In 2003, the CSIS’s Project On Nuclear Issues (PONI) was created to address a growing shortage of nuclear expertise as a result of the end of the Cold War. Its primary goal is to "build and sustain a networked community of young nuclear experts from the military, the national laboratories, industry, academia, and the policy community." From the Website: “"Perhaps the most critical challenge in sustaining the US nuclear deterrent after the end of the Cold War is maintaining the human infrastructure necessary to support US nuclear capabilities.”
SANDS: The School of Advanced Nuclear Deterrence Studies was founded in July 2015 by Air Force Global Strike Command “to develop field grade officers into the next generation of nuclear deterrence leaders and experts.” It was created by the AFGSC commander, General Stephen W. Wilson, who said of it, “SANDS is for the best and brightest of the command. It will draw on educators and curricula from across the nation. These students will be the ‘Jedi Knights,’ the really smart folks every combatant command wants.” Initially a 10-month course by the Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) conducted at Kirtland AFB, NM, in 2018 the school was moved under Air Education and Training Command to become the USAF's premier nuclear deterrence theory and strategy institution, and simultaneously relocated to the Air University campus at Maxwell AFB, AL, under the aegis of the Air Command and Staff College. The SANDS instructs 12-15 students annually from the Air Force, Army, Navy and International Officers. Over the course of the year (actually, 13 months now), students study international relations and nuclear strategy culminating in a research thesis and joint warfighting exercise.
SPACE 100: In a belated response to the report published on 11 January 2001 by the Commission to Assess U.S. National Security Space Management and Organization (i.e., the Space Commission), in 2004 AETC redesignated Officer Space Prerequisite Training (OSPT) as the Space 100 course, with some minor courseware adjustments, and continued to teach it. “Space 100 sets up credentialed space professionals with a baseline of knowledge, then we lay out that foundation early on and give them guidance of what we expect to see from them for their 20 years, whether they are enlisted or officers.” Space 100 classes began in Oct 2004. For officers, the course was 6 weeks long; for enlisted members, it was 3.5 weeks--both taught at Vandenberg AFB. Space 200, intended for officers with 8 to 10 years of experience, began a year earlier at the National Security Space Institute. Patches have not been observed for Space 200 or Space 300 classes, and very few have been seen from Space 100 classes. After missiles were transferred from Air Force Space Command to Air Force Global Strike Command in 2009, missile operators were dropped from the Space 100 program and now get Missile Initial Skills Training (IST) only.
NMOC: The Nuclear Maintenance Officer Course is conducted by the 363d Training Squadron at Sheppard AFB, TX to training Air Force officers who are assigned Air Force Specialty Code 21MX. This is just one of the courses taught by this unit. Other related courses include: Munitions and Missile Maintenance Officer Fundamentals Course (MOFC), ICBM Maintenance Officer Course, and Nuclear Accountability Course. Upon successful completion of the MOFC and the appropriate AFSC awarding follow-on course, graduates are awarded the entry level “21M1” AFSC with the appropriate “A”, “I” or “N” shred.