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First Term Airmen experience Pacific Air Power

ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- Every month, new Airmen from the First Term Airmen Center here at Andersen are given a tour of the installation, introduced to the mission and various career fields play a role in Pacific Air Power.

First term Airmen are those who are between the ranks of E-1 and E-3, and just completed basic military training and technical school. FTAC is a week long course designed to familiarize members with their first military assignment, outlets and resources that are available to them. Following the completion of the course, the Airmen are taken to locations such as the base museum, Military Working Dog facility, an aircraft static display and Commando Warrior.

“We conduct the Air Power tour, which is the Command Chief’s program, because it is important for the Airmen to know how different jobs relate to the mission here,” said Staff Sgt. Jamia Benedict, FTAC cadre. “We also use it as an opportunity for them to get to see different areas of the base.”

The first stop of the tour is a visit to an aircraft static display that is deployed here, typically a bomber or re-fueler such as the B-1B Lancer or KC-135 Stratotanker. At this stop, students are able to communicate to maintainers and crew members and take a look inside the cock-pit.

“I really enjoyed the tour,” said Airman first Class Felicia Clemons, 36th Medical Squadron medical technician. “My favorite stop was the passenger terminal, because it was a two-in-one deal with the museum and static display. Being that this is my first duty station, it was nice to stop by the museum connected to the terminal and see a little bit of the history of where the Air Force has come from just in Guam alone.”

The base museum is the next stop on the list of locations to visit. Here, the base historian shares stories of Andersen AFB in the past. With various displays of model aircraft and pictures dating back as early as 1800, Airmen are able to gain some historical knowledge on the history of the base.

"It's very important for the Airmen to know about the history of the base and the wing,” said Jeffery Meyer, 36th Wing historian. “I believe it builds morale knowing the accomplishments of past Airmen who walked on the same ground, did the same mission, or stood under the same unit flags. Andersen AFB is one of the most historic bases still active in the U.S. Air Force, it's always awesome to be able to share the history and the Heritage Hall with them.”

The 36th Security Forces Squadron military working dog kennel is a popular stop for the Airmen. Handlers and K-9s demonstrate how the MWD’s perform in various scenarios when faced with certain situations. Not only do the Airmen get to experience the MWD’s in action, but the K-9 team uses this opportunity for handlers to train with their military working dogs.

The final stop on the Pacific Air Power tour is Commando Warrior located at Northwest Field. Members from the 736th Security Forces Squadron give students the opportunity to get in the rollover machine. The machine is designed to give members the chance to experience a real-time rollover in a military Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle, which is used in deployed environments.

“This is a great opportunity for our new Airmen to experience, as most of them will deploy at some point in their career,” said Tech. Sgt. Daniel Rose, 736th SFS Commando Warrior curriculum developer. “Some Airmen are stationed here for two to four years and never get the chance to visit Northwest Field, this tour gives them that opportunity.”

The Pacific Air Power tour is held once a month and is offered to all first term Airmen. To sign up for the tour, call the First Term Airmen Center at 366-7830.