ASAM course prepares mobility experts for future fight

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  • U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center Public Affairs Office

 Fifteen U.S. Air Force officers graduated from the 11-month Advanced Study of Air Mobility program June 2 at the U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey.

U.S. Air Force Gen. Jacqueline Van Ovost, U.S. Transportation Command commander, attended the ceremony as a keynote speaker and explained the importance of Mobility Air Forces.

“We’ve been able to project and sustain the Joint Force at an impressive pace and scale. And over the last two years our logistics prowess has continually been on display for the world to see. A capability that is the envy of our partners and the bane of our adversaries. But in the future, our Joint Logistics Enterprise will be pushed to extremes never before seen,” Van Ovost said.   

Gen. Van Ovost added, to be effective in the future, logistics cannot be an afterthought in planning or execution. Critical thought that enables changes begins in the minds of the students in programs like ASAM.

“Take action, think differently, and lead boldly, because our pacing threat will be different,” she said. “Your backgrounds carry the depth and breadth that our mobility enterprise needs to remain competitive into the future.” 

ASAM is one of the USAF’s intermediate developmental education programs. The goals are to provide a select group of officers with an in-depth education in logistics and air mobility, to develop key mobility advisors to serve on the staffs of the war-fighting commands and prepare future leaders for air mobility operations.

“Once they leave the schoolhouse, they will have the knowledge that allows them to serve on a combatant commander staff or as a commander,” said Allen Harris, ASAM program manager. “They have a better understanding of the flow of logistics, Mobility Air Forces, how to problem solve and work in a joint environment. They will provide a capability to assist combatant commanders that not many other officers have, and the information needed to move forces and equipment in and out of high valued theaters.”

The 11-month education program has four distinct parts: an accredited Air Force institute of Technology Master of Science in Operations Management Degree, Air Command Staff College distance learning, U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center events and site visits to Department of Defense, allied, and corporate entities relevant to mobility.

“This is an exciting time to be a part of the Air Mobility enterprise,” said Maj. Gen. John Klein, U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Center commander. “We are going to need the expertise of these graduates for the Pacing Challenge our military will face. We need innovative thinkers who can strategize and come up with ways to rapidly position forces and cargo around the globe via airlift and air refueling. This will prove to be a significant advantage in the complexities of strategic competition.”

Maj. Gen. Klein added, it is crucial we prepare for new threats our Air Force has not faced over the past several decades.

“The ever-improving capabilities of potential adversaries and the tyrannical distances across the Pacific offer fertile ground for innovative solutions,” Maj. Gen. Klein said. “It’s crucial that our Global Air Mobility Support System is prepared and equipped to deploy, maneuver, sustain, and redeploy forces at a tempo and scale we haven’t experienced through a contested environment. These graduates will be the leaders who implement systems like GAMSS and our Next Generation Air Mobility Operations Wings increasing our readiness and ability to sustain our warfighters.”

Students worked with industry professionals, mentors, and service members in respective fields to study and formulate options to address challenges facing the Air Force and Mobility partners.

“ASAM has provided me a 30,000-foot view on how all the moving parts come together to create Rapid Global Mobility,” said Maj. Millie Hale, ASAM student. “Their mission was to cultivate mobility experts to advise future leaders as well as lead Air Mobility Command in the future and I think we are ready for the task at hand.”