Advanced space combat training squadrons adopt temporary mission for servicemembers transferring to U.S. Space Force

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Frank Casciotta
  • 310th Space Wing Public Affairs

In July, the 319th Combat Training Squadron and their Reserve associate unit, the 42nd CTS, sent eight Airmen and Guardians, including an Alaska Air National Guardsman, to Vandenberg Space Force Base, California, to a three-month course for certification as Air Education and Training Command, Community College of the Air Force instructors in preparation of 450 servicemembers transferring to the U.S. Space Force to become space operators.

Normally, the 319th and 42nd CTS teach advanced space warfighting courses on orbital warfare, space battle management and space electronic warfare. However, due to ongoing facility upgrades at Vandenberg and the number of personnel transferring to the U.S.S.F., the squadrons were given this additional mission for the next year.

“Those we sent for this additional training certification were all volunteers and, even though it was a big ask, they were excited because it’s an opportunity for them to make an impact on these new Airmen and Guardians,” said Lt. Col. Nathan Case, the 42nd CTS commander.

Senior Master Sgt. Paul Watson-Ausencio, the 42nd CTS senior enlisted leader and one of the newly AETC-certified instructors, says he feels an obligation to the supervisors who invested their time and effort into him to do the same for the next generation of Airmen and Guardians.

“Let’s be honest, this is not a small thing to take on, but this enterprise, the 310th Space Wing, has given me so much,” he said. “It’s given me and my family so much, some of the best friendships, supervisors, commanders and people to work with that I’ve ever experienced. Taking this on is just one way I can pay it forward.”

The 319th and 42nd CTS are a total force team of over 150 Guardians, Airman, civilians, and contractors training space warfighters through world-class instruction to overcome the challenges of an evolving and contested battlespace.