TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. --
The Tyndall Focus 5/6 professional development organization successfully completed seven Air Force specialty immersions in 2016.
The program allows Airmen to experience another career field before beginning the process of cross-training as a first term Airman.
“I am a food services Airman, and I recently saw an ad for the immersion program so thought it would be really interesting to shadow another career field,” said Airman 1st Class Casarah Pine, 325th Force Support Squadron food services specialist. “I entered the military under open General. Before joining the Air Force, I worked as a wildland firefighter, and if I am able, I plan to eventually cross train back into firefighting.”
Pine used the program to get a firsthand experience into the daily life of Tyndall fire protection specialists with the 325th Civil Engineer Squadron after seeing the ad.
“The whole experience was very enjoyable,” Pine said. "The fire staff were all helpful and welcoming. Staff Sgt. [Luis] Mendiola allowed me to participate in a vehicle extraction training, and I was able to get hands-on experience with the Jaws of Life tools on a training vehicle.”
The program provided seven different Airmen with the chance to take a peek into another career field.
First term Airmen only get one chance to successfully cross train; after that, they have to try again as career Airmen. This usually means re-enlisting for a minimum of four years.
“The program was established to help Airmen understand the bigger picture of the Air Force,” said Staff Sgt. Tyler Huerta, one of the main organizers for the program. “Normally we are only concerned with our job and the part it plays in the Air Force mission. This program allows Airmen to shadow other career fields to see how their jobs fit in the mission. Also, this program is great for anyone thinking of cross training. It would give them the opportunity to see what the career field is like before committing to cross training.”
The program is by-application, and the first step is determining which career field an individual will shadow and then coordinating work center schedules to allow the individual time to participate in the program. Airmen can also contact their squadron first sergeants for getting in contact with the immersion program.
Some immersions may take all day while others may only be a few hours.