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Five Airmen awarded Olmsted Foundation scholarships

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) -- The Air Force has selected five officers for the award of an Olmsted Foundation scholarship, sponsored by the George and Carol Olmsted Foundation, which offers outstanding young military leaders the opportunity to become fluent in a foreign language, pursue graduate study at an overseas university and develop understanding of foreign cultures.

Capt. Danielle Caretti, Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, selected to study in Montenegro; Capt. Brad Fisher, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, selected to study in Ukraine; Capt. Collin O’Bryant, Pueblo City, Colorado, selected to study in Romania; Maj. Steven Christopher, Creech AFB, Nevada, selected to study in China; and Maj. John Gerlach, JB McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, selected to study in France. They were chosen by the Air Force Personnel Center selection board and the Olmsted Foundation Board of Directors.

“Participants will experience cultural immersion in a selected country, providing an in-depth understanding of foreign languages and cultures,” said Tech. Sgt. Rebecca Fobbs, the Officer Developmental Education NCO in charge. “As a key security cooperation program, the Air Force provides many training opportunities that enable us to amplify our collective strengths and improve our ability to confront shared challenges with our international partners.”

The selected officers could spend up to a year in language proficiency training at the Defense Language Institute, if needed, followed by two years of study in a foreign graduate program.

"To maintain superior agility in the future, the education and training of our total force must be relevant and responsive,” Fobbs said. “The Olmsted scholarship offers our officers a rare, invaluable opportunity to develop academically as well as culturally. This ultimately builds enduring partner capabilities and capacities to ensure regional and global security in the air, space and cyberspace domains.”

For more information about Air Force personnel programs, go to myPers. Individuals who do not have a myPers account can request one by following these instructions.