United States Air Force Air War College International Fellows students visited Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., Feb. 27 to gain a better understanding of U.S. military operations and see how Luke is building the future of airpower.
The students spent the day at the Air Training Center learning about the F-35 Lightning II before visiting the 63rd Fighter Squadron to see the aircraft.
“This is the capstone for international officers at the U.S. AWC Regional and Cultural Studies program,” said Navy Capt. Quinn Skinner, U.S. Air Force AWC instructor. “Students spend a year at the U.S. AWC studying other cultures as part of the curriculum, and we bring in students to study U.S. history, economics, and political and military culture.”
The AWC Regional and Cultural Studies program is designed to broaden the educational and cultural experience of AWC international students and strengthen U.S Air Force international relationships.
“One of the big objectives of the program, other than educating students about the U.S. and its military policy, is also relationship building,” Skinner said. “These students are the best their country’s air forces have to offer, and a large percentage of them will go on to become chiefs of staff of their air forces and in some cases ministers of defense. Having those relationships built on a personal level and having them experience the fabric of the United States is a big part of that.”
This year, students visited St. Louis; Phoenix; Tucson, Ariz.; and Honolulu looking at various government, cultural and military venues like Luke.
“This helps them get a good picture of what the U.S. is all about, and with this visit at Luke, some of the innovation the United States brings,” Skinner said.
Skinner is grateful Luke was able to help the U.S. AWC accomplish its mission and show the international students how Airmen at Luke are building the future of airpower.
“The experience was great, and we appreciate the support from Luke Air Force Base and the 63rd Fighter Squadron,” Skinner said.