By 1st Lt. Casey Mull, 94th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Members of the 94th Airlift Wing participated in the base’s first three-day flight commanders’ course during the December drill weekend.
Course participants represented all groups in the wing and gained valuable skills to strengthen teamwork and their understanding of Dobbins.
“As I was setting up the course, my focus was to ensure that future leaders of the 94th would gain valuable insights from senior leaders, acquire new leadership tools, and literally share every day information,” said Lt. Col. Jennifer Berry, 94th AW process manager. “‘Nuggets’ that take years to understand, but if you learn them earlier in your career, it can make all the difference.”
The course supports the Air Force Chief of Staff’s squadron revitalization implementation plan. Graduates of the course should be “equipped and motivated to strengthen their squadron by leading, development, managing and communicating with competence and confidence.”
Course participants’ learning began on the Sunday and continued through midday Tuesday. Berry partnered with Lt. Col. Kim Christman, 80th Aerial Port Squadron operations officer, and Maj. Rebecca Nistler, 94th Operations Group executive officer, to facilitate the course. Numerous speakers brought their expertise to share from squadrons and wing support agencies.
Group and squadron commanders nominated participants and their work began even before the formal course. Nominated individuals included junior officers and senior non-commissioned officers. Participants met with their commander to discuss the reason for their selection and their commander’s perspective in the weeks leading up to the course. The participants will not fully complete their learning until February, as they all have follow-up work.
Course participants document and begin implementing a professional development plan and meet again with their commander over the next two months. The eighteen participants were only the first participants of the flight commanders’ course. As part of the squadron revitalization implementation plan, the course will continue to be offered in the future. These first participants provided feedback to strengthen future iterations.
“I think the course is beneficial from several perspectives—officers and enlisted working together, personal experiences and professional development from every direction and it’s all accomplished within the same organization,” said Master Sgt. Brian Cochran, 94th Maintenance Group crew chief. “It’s always good to network, but this event allows you to accomplish that on base. I would definitely recommend the course to anyone in a supervisor position or has that potential.”