MOODY AIR FORCE BASE – Current and former special service personnel shared their knowledge with Airmen during a developmental special service expo.
Because of their unique leadership roles, the US Air Force has identified 10 special duties as enlisted development positions: Career Support Advisor, Military Training Instructor, Military Training Leader, Military Academy Training Instructor Air Force Family Preparedness Center Airman and Warrant Officer, First Sergeant, Air Force Honor Guard Warrant Officer, Recruiter, Professional Military Education Instructor, and Specialized Training Instructors identified by the prefix “T”.
DSDs not only provide the opportunity to pursue a different career path, they also offer various other benefits.
“It gets exposure to higher headquarters leadership, promotes professional development and gives people a different perspective of the Air Force,” said Tech. Sgt. George Roberts, chief of aircraft structural maintenance for the 23rd Maintenance Squadron.
These opportunities give Airmen the opportunity to see beyond their professional field, broaden their point of view, and help them grow as professionals.
“I got a better general understanding of how other career fields work,” said Master Sgt. Jason Olds, fuel superintendent for the 23rd Logistics Readiness Squadron and pre-military training leader. “My job was to make sure I left the Air Force better than during my time. Becoming an MTL broadened my horizons and helped shape my leadership identity.”
There are many benefits to doing a DSD and Master Sgt. Derek Longshore, Career Assistance Advisor for the 23rd Force Support Squadron, recommends these steps if an Airman is interested in a DSD position:
– Create a MyFSS and MyVector account to receive specific messages related to DSD.
– Let your chain of command know that you are interested in a DSD position and nomination
– Contact other Airmen who have completed a DSD to learn more about features, lifestyle, etc.
– Go to myPers and refer to the PSDG DSD document (January 14, 2022) for more information
– Contact your professional support advisor if you have additional questions
Special development duties are temporary in nature. They are carried out for a period of up to three or four years and focus on the appointment of staff sergeants, technicians and majors.
Taking a detour on your career path can be a big decision, but when asked what advice he has for Airmen who were on the fence, Olds had guidance to give.
“Take that leap and get out of your comfort zone, because it will really open up new opportunities for you and help shape you into the person you are meant to be.”