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ALS - preparing Airmen for the next phase of their career

Story and photo by Senior Airman Robin Drake
Thunderbolt staff writer

Students from a previous Airman Leadership School class attended a social at the enlisted Club here on base to celebrate their graduation.

Class 05-D of the Chief Master Sgt. Aubert E. Dozier Airman Leadership School began here April 1.

The ALS program is a 24-day course of instruction that focuses on preparing senior airmen for the roles and responsibilities as supervisors and rating officials.

Students can expect that the average length of class each day in ALS will last eight to 10 hours, said Senior Master Sgt. Bruce Napier, ALS flight chief.

Academics are comprised of instruction in the development of combat leaders, the supervision of Airmen, an appreciation for the profession of arms and communication skills.

Combat leader training includes joint force components, national security strategy and terrorism.

Enlisted force structure, mentoring, time management and problem solving are contained in the blocks of instruction focused on the supervision of Airmen.

An appreciation for profession of arms incorporates Air Force culture, history and drill and ceremony.

Interpersonal communication, public speaking, grammar and narrative writing are elements contained in teaching communication skills.

In addition to knowledge from academic instruction, students receive nine semester hours of college credit with the Community College of the Air Force.

Physical training is also incorporated into the ALS course so that students may maintain the Air Force fitness standards.

ALS is a mandatory course required by members prior to promotion to staff sergeant. In some cases an individual may attend ALS after promotion to staff sergeant due to a deployment or an illness.

Staff Sgt. Jenelle Ray, 6th Security Forces Squadron, crime prevention manager, already possesses the rank of a non-commissioned officer, due to a deployment that inhibited her ability to attend ALS.

"In ALS you are learning constantly on how to be a better supervisor and lead by example," said Sergeant Ray.

A wide-variety of personnel from around MacDill attend the training course.

"You get to interact with other career fields and learning the different jobs is interesting. It makes the class colorful and you get to make new friends," said Sergeant Ray.

A formal graduation and awards banquet conclude ALS for those individuals who successfully complete the course.




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