SKILLS TRAINING COURSE
Field, Florida 32544
884-2174/2173 DSN 579-2174/2173
Welcome to AST
to the Advanced Skills Training (AST) course, and the start of your training to become a Combat Ready
Special Tactics Operator. AST Cadre are centered on excellence, committed to
building and maintaining a consortium of joint and unilateral special
operations training activities focused on the training of special
operators. Located on the 2003
Department of Defense Military Installation of the Year, Hurlburt Field,
Florida. Students will grow in
experience and knowledge during their 12 month training course, with emphasis
on a hands on approach to learning. In
addition to the special operators curriculum, the course offers the opportunity
for Combat Control, Pararescue and Combat Weather trainees to interact and
train in a joint team environment.
Colonel Craig Rith
720th Group Commander
Lt Col William Sherman
Major Michael Flatten
AST Flight Commander
SMSgt Gary Maddock
Mr. Ronald Childress
Director of Training
Advanced Skills Training
Provide combat ready combat
controllers to ensure special operations is America’s future of choice in the
AFSOC Advanced Skills
Training School was activated at Hurlburt Field under the 720th Special Tactics Group. In 2000, the school was chartered to decrease the time a three
level trainee was in training for the five level. Up until the school started, the average time in training for a
combat controller to obtain their five level was over two years while assigned
to the units. This time has been
decreased to less then 12 months and the units receiving a combat ready five
level. The curriculum has grown from a
one month Initial Familiarization
(IFAM) course with 14 students
to a one year course that encompasses all the core tasks in the Combat Control
Career Field Education & Training Plan (CFETP), teaching over 120 students
Advanced Skills Training
(AST) is a twelve-month program designed to afford the most opportune training
for newly assigned Special Tactics operators. AST also provides STS operators
the ability to become mission ready prior to joining individual STS teams. This schedule is broken down into four phases of training. These phases are
designed to provide each student with the necessary skills to advance to the
next phase of AST. This course will test the trainee’s personal limits through
demanding mental and physical training.
You will only succeed by giving 100% at each and every training event.
AST uses guest speakers from
time to time as subject-matter experts.
These individuals enhance our course through their backgrounds,
experiences, academic training, and job experiences. To ensure frank, open discussion between speaker and students, AST
uses an academic freedom policy that states the remarks made by the speakers
are non-attributable and cannot be quoted outside the academic environment of
AST. Please help us honor this policy.
Prerequisite to AST is the award of the 3-skill level, CCT School,
Pope AFB NC. The entry for ST PJ class
is the awarded 3-skill level.
Pre-requisite for the CWX entry to AST is the successful completion of
the AF Weather Initial Skills Training Course (3-skill level award), Weather
Flight Operations Course, and Weather Physical Abilities and Stamina Test.
Air National Guard (ANG)
personnel (1C2X1) are authorized training quotas to this course. Seats will be coordinated through HQ
ANG/XOOE and the AST training manager.
The Objective of AST is to provide Special Tactics Squadron
Commanders with 5 Level combat ready Combat Control Team (CCT) members. This eliminates strains on unit manpower, equipment
and upgrade time within each squadron. The AST program is a four phase layered
training approach that will increase the CCT initial training course graduation
rate and increase overall CCT production. Students must maintain a high state
of physical conditioning to meet the demands of follow-on training and
The course lasts for 12 months.
Classes typically start on the first day of each quarter.
Number of Training Hours: Total
training hours: 2412
is on Hurlburt Field, on Florida’s Northwest Gulf Coast, 5 miles west of Fort
Walton Beach. The main gate is on US
Highway 98 (Miracle Strip Parkway). AST
is at 665 Red Horse Road.
single, enlisted students will be assigned a dorm room in the Special Tactics
dorm for the duration of their training.
This applies to Pararescue and Combat Weather trainees as well.
Report to AST, 665 Red Horse
Road by 0830hrs day of class start date. (Unless otherwise specified by the
instructor cadre will dictate the uniform for each training event. The whole team will wear the same uniform
and maintain uniformity during all mandatory formations. The PT uniform is: Black shorts, white
T-shirts with name stenciled (during water phase), and running shoes and socks.
Physical training uniform will be kept in good repair. Only White socks, no
designs, are authorized to wear with the PT uniform.
Note: The PT uniform will be worn during physical
conditioning or as directed by the cadre. The PT uniform is never worn to an
official appointment, dining hall, or on or off base activity. Highly shined boots will be worn with BDUs
during appointments and during other daily base visits.
All students residing on base will receive BAS. You
will utilize the dining facility when the training schedule allows, or when
directed by the phase instructor. Breakfast and lunch are mandatory formations
on training days.
The following lists unauthorized attire at any
military dining facility:
Civilian attire that is not neat, clean, or does not
present a proper image
combination of military and civilian attire
Attire with advertises profanity, obscene gestures,
or racial slurs
Excessively short shorts, sleeveless shirts (i.e.
tank tops, muscle shirts, or shirts with the sleeves removed)
body piercing, tongue studs are not authorized in AFSOC
PT gear is not authorized in the chow hall.
Career Development Course
While assigned to AST,
students are enrolled in two Combat Control Career Development Courses
(CDC). These courses are published to
provide information that is necessary to satisfy the career knowledge component
1C251A covers three volumes: Vol. 1
Titled Getting There, Vol. 2 Individual Skills, and Vol. 3 Missions and Equipment. Successful completion of the “A set” is
required before the student is enrolled in the 1C251B course. The “B set” covers Vol. 1 Air Traffic
Control Fundamentals, Vol. 2 Finer Points of ATC, Vol 3 Assault
Zone Operations, and Vol. 4 Fire Support. Students must pass both End of Course exams with a minimum score of 65%.
has an established Test Control Facility, manned by an authorized Air Force
Institute for Advanced Distributed Learning (AFIADL) Test Control Officer. This
capability takes advantage of Computer Based Testing and provides the student
immediate feedback on course results.
The entire CDC program is managed from “cradle to grave” at the AST
typical enrollment will find a student having enrolled and completed both sets
of CDCs within 10 months.
uses an innovative Mentoring Program to provide the leadership, guidance, and
continuity needed to professionally develop each student and ensure their
success during upgrade training. Each
Mentor is a retired Combat Control Senior NCO who possesses extensive educational and work experience
background in program management for Combat Control and Special Tactics
draw on their 20+ years of experience to facilitate technical assistance in the
evaluation, development, and instruction of all training. Mentors also facilitate the safety of
training and the evaluation process for the AST Flight Commander, and act as
his advisor for all matters pertaining to discipline and standards.
are responsible for the morale, health, and welfare of the AST students. Each Mentor maintains a close relationship
with their students from class start date until graduation. They provide career development for each
student by acting as trainers, evaluators, safety monitors, and personnel
managers. They counsel students on
career progression, personal matters, job performance, duties and
responsibilities, military customs and courtesies, civilian directives, and all
matters pertaining to military service.
Mentors also provide their
students with the information, background experience and other services
necessary to successfully complete each block and phase of training. The AST Mentoring Program is the foundation
for student Combat Readiness. It
ensures each student has the opportunity to conquer all training challenges in
a safe training environment. Through
Mentorship, AST remains committed to providing Special Tactics Squadrons with
highly motivated 5-Level Combat Controllers.
Duration: 90 Days
The mission of the water
phase is to prepare Special Tactics operators for the Combat Diver
Qualification Course (CDQC) and prepare operators for continued stress induced
waterborne operations through their career.
During this phase you will participate in extensive physical
conditioning with emphasis on swimming, running, and calisthenics. This phase will help prepare you for the
rigors of training and the demands of this career-field. The first two weeks of this phase will
involve base and squadron in-processing.
Academic training accomplished in this phase includes dive physics,
decompression dives, dive tables, dangerous marine life and terminology.
Completion of Pre-SCUBA is your “ticket” to attend SCUBA School and earn your
At the Combat Diver
Qualification Course (CDQC) you will become a combat diver and learn to use
SCUBA to infiltrate areas surrounded by water undetected. This course provides training to depths of
130 ft, stressing dive physics and development of maximum underwater mobility.
Phase break down of
WAT-1 In-processing Admin
WAT-2 Physical Training Practical
Open Water swim 11.0
WAT-3 Water Confidence Practical
Water treading 8.0
Drown Proofing 8.0
Knot Tying 8.0
Equipment treading 8.0
Buddy Breathing 8.0
Weight belt swim 8.0
Flooded mask drill 8.0
WAT-4 Academics Admin
Dive Physics 20.0
Dangerous marine life 8.0
Allotted for document and make up training. 80.0 hr
Phase I (CDQC) Admin
Class room/practical at Key
West NAS, 200.0 hrs
Duration: 90 Days
This phase is conducted at
Hurlburt Field, FL and Fort Bragg, North Carolina as well as other locations.
Ground phase will teach various skills that are essential for a Combat
Controller to know. You will accomplish
the majority of Career Field Training Program objectives in this phase to
include: command and
control, Air Traffic Control, fixed and rotary wing call for fire (CFF)
training, portable and vehicular communications, and demolitions. Additionally,
you will become familiar with survey techniques including: AUTOCAD and Global
Positioning Systems (GPS). You will become well versed in assault zone
procedures, including actual Drop Zone (DZ) and Landing Zone (LZ) assault
training missions at various locations around the continental US.
down of training
GRD-1 Communications Admin
COMSEC 0.5hrs AN/PRC 117F 8.0
GRC-206 (V-6) 12.0
HPW 4.0 hrs
SMP-2000/1000 1.0 hr
SST-181 1.0 hrs
GRD-2 Survey Admin
Classroom 40.0 hrs total
Intro to surveys 0.5 hrs
Use measuring tools 0.5
GPS in Surveys 0.5 hrs
Cameras in surveys
HLZ Survey Planning* 1.0
HLZ survey Prep* 1.0
Conduct HLZ survey* 4.0
Complete HLZ survey* 4.0
DZ survey plan* 4.0
DZ survey prep* 4.0
Conduct DZ survey* 5.0 hrs
Complete DZ survey form* 6.0 hrs
Tactical DZ academics
GRD-3 Demolitions Admin
Intro Demolitions 6
Demolitions theory 4.0
Traffic Control Admin
Classroom (Intro) 4
Assault zone operations Practical
Classroom 2.0 hrs
Local LZ/DZ missions 30.hrs
GRD-6 Assault zone operations Practical
OFF-station LZ/DZ operations 80.0 hrs
GRD-7 Fire support
Classroom / Practical
Helo CFF 40.hrs
Fixed Wing CFF 40.hrs
GRD-8 RRR Admin
Classroom 80.0 hrs
Duration: 90 Days
This phase is conducted at
Hurlburt Field. Students will be
exposed to various methods of employment that Special Tactics operators use to
include: Static line and Military Free Fall Air-borne operations. Alternate Insertion/ Extraction methods with
helicopters to include fastrope, rappel, rope ladder, and hoist
operations. During this phase students
also learn military dive operations that include compass and search dive
procedures. Small boat operations
include preparation for employment, capsize drills, intercostals, riverine,
Small unit tactics skills
are sharpened with weapons, dismounted patrols, and tactical vehicle operations. As in the other two previous phases of
instruction, PT will consist of full battle dress uniform, LBE, weapon,
swimming, running, rucking, trail runs, and obstacle course.
Phase break down of
EMP-1 Static Line Operations Practical
AMP-3 Dive Operations Practical
EMP-4 Small Boats Practical
EMP-5 Alternate Insertion/Extraction Practical
EMP-6 TAC vehicles Practical
EMP-7 Weapons Practical
EMP-8 Small Unit Tactics Practical
EMP-9 RAMZ Practical
EMP-10 RRR Admin
Duration: 70 Days
At MQT, students learn the skills encompassing mission
planning that includes various types of orders, planning considerations, ST
Intel support capabilities, and use of Falcon View mission planning software.
They will use this planning process during every full Mission Profile (FMP).
The students receive a mission Frag Order and plan and
prepare for a 3-Day FMP that includes a Helo Soft-Duck insertion, overland
movement, target recon and exfil to friendly lines.
recall procedures and assume an alert posture with a 30minute response
Students will travel to Sandrock, AL. where they
learn military mountaineering techniques to include: basic securing/hauling
systems, stokes litter, single man pick-offs, rappelling, bouldering and rock
also receive classes on the history, purpose and detailed planning
consideration required to successfully execute a full blown airfield seizure.
They learn how to build bike-bundle packages and conduct a day Jump Clearing
Team operation. A night airfield seizure FMP is conducted with 5-8 fixed and
rotary wing aircraft at OLF Choctaw, FL or Tonopah Test Range, NV, followed by
a detailed aircrew/instructor debrief.
Phase break down of
MQT-1 PJ/CCT/WX INTRO/Cross
MQT-2 Mission Planning Admin
MQT-3 Reconnaissance Admin
MQT-4 RECON Full Mission Profile Practical
MQT-5 PR Introductory/Training Admin
MQT-6 PR Full Mission Profile Practical
MQT-7 High Angle Climbing Practical
MQT-8 Urban CAS Full Mission Profile Practical
MQT-9 Airfield Seizure Full Mission Profile Practical
MQT-10 Academic Admin
completing all four phases of training, graduating the Combat Diver Course,
Military Free Fall Parachutist Course, and passing the two Career Development
Courses, you are now ready to become a Combat Control Journeyman.
student has unique time constraints for being upgraded to a five level
journeyman. If you re-trained from
another AF specialty code, you may be upgraded at the 9 month point. All other trainees must have 12 months from
the time they graduated the Combat Control Apprentice course at Pope AFB. (Prior service included in this rule).
trainees are given a physical training evaluation prior to graduation. Your next assignment could be across the
street or around the world. Your mission will be the same: A highly trained weapon system and force
multiplier, ready to deploy and to be “First There”!
As of October 2003:
have graduated since April 2001.
53 Students are currently
Hurlburt Field Map
(Bldg 99134) 665 Red Horse Road
Hurlburt Quick Reference Directory
DSN: 579-XXXX Commercial:
Military Clothing Sales 884-7395
Gym (Bldg 90517) 884-6884
Area Travel (SATO) 581-9676
(Commando Inn) 884-7115/6245
Barber Shop 581-8893
Food Court 581-6008
Post (16 SOW) 884-7774
Post (AFSOC) 884-2171
Room (Eglin AFB) 883-8227
Support Center 884-5441
and Wellness Center (Bldg 90232) 884-6949
Mall Barber Shop 581-4334
Mall Shoppette 581-0488
Equipment Rental 884-6939
and Tours 884-7848