Staff Sgt. Felicia R. Rivers Airman Leadership School to Accept Civilians at Robins

Holly Logan-Arrington

Thursday, August 19th, 2021

Certain Air Force civilians now qualify to attend the Staff Sgt. Felicia R. Rivers Airman Leadership School at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia.

The school is the first level of Professional Military Education enlisted Airmen experience. The five-week in-resident course of study is designed to be an entry level leadership enhancement course to prepare junior Airmen for positions of greater responsibility by strengthening their ability to lead, follow, and manage, while also gaining a broader understanding of the military profession and their role within the Air and Space Forces.

ALS is an Enlisted Professional Military Education course for Airmen with three to five years in service, ready for supervisory responsibilities. The course teaches leadership skills required of supervisors and reporting officials throughout the Air Force, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard.  ALS enhances the development of Senior Airmen by strengthening their ability to lead, follow, and manage while gaining a broader understanding of the military profession.  The principal instruction method is guided discussion.

Master Sgt. Shane Flot, ALS commandant at Robins, said the goal of this ALS opportunity is to introduce Air Force civilians to the Air Force culture and prepare them for future leadership and supervisory roles.

ALS is considered a professional military development course separate from the normal Air Force Civilian Developmental Education. The ALS will offer voluntary openings to accommodate civilian participants in their 24-day curriculum.

Appropriated fund career appointment or career-conditional civil servants with at least 12 month of time in federal service may apply. They cannot have more than 10 years of service by their nomination date. They must also have an acceptable performance rating and have not been in a supervisory position for more than three years.

Civilian employees in grade levels of General Schedule 4 -8, NK I to NK II, NJ I to NJ II, Wage Grade 4 – 8, Wage Leader 1 – 9, Wage Supervisor 1 – 5, and NH II may apply to ALS. However, exemptions to pay grades may be waived on a case-by-case basis, based on the work center needs and approved through the nomination process.

Applicants to this program must not have previously attended EPME. All civilian applicants must have the approval of their first and second-level supervisors to attend.

Upon completion civilian attendees will receive 192 hours of training credit and a certificate of course completion. Additionally, all attendees are also eligible for EPME awards.

All civilian attendees are required to commit to a Continued Service Agreement obligation of 12 months upon completion of ALS. This time does not start until after the selectee finishes the program. If a select leaves the Air Force before completing the established period of service, they will be required to reimburse the Air Force for any tuition, travel, per diem, books and materials, fees, administrative overhead costs, and other related expenses paid in connection with the training.

ALS students are expected to meet daily dress and appearance standards, which includes clean, in good repair, presentable, and winkle/lint free attire.

Attendees will be required to participate in a variety of exercises and activities to include but not limited to: team-building and simulation exercises, drill and ceremony, and personal health and wellness activities to help maintain an appropriate level of physical fitness.

All applications must be completed and submitted to the ALS workflow, 78FSS.FSDA.ALS@us.af.mil , by Sept. 30.  The application should be named in the following manner:  FY22 ALS Application – Last Name, First Name.

Flot said opening ALS attendance to civilians is good for the Air Force mission and the workforce as a whole.

“This is an excellent opportunity to strengthen partnerships between our civilian and military workforce,” he said. “It is always beneficial for military and civilian leaders to gain an outside perspective when it comes to the organizational mission. It is also extremely important that our future frontline supervisors understand how civilians and military members are vital to the mission. By integrating the Total Force initiative, it will create improved dialogue during discussions throughout ALS.”