by Master Sgt. Raheem Moore
Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs
11/3/2010 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- Air Force officials added a new enlisted career field for cyberspace defense operators Nov. 1.
The new specialty code, 1B4X1, is a retrain-in only specialty focused on computer network operations. The initial 1B4X1 cadre will comprise Airmen who are retraining from intelligence and cyberspace support specialties.
"The 1B4X1 cadre will solidify and strengthen our ability to establish, control, defend and leverage cyberspace," said Lt. Gen. William T. Lord, the chief of warfighting integration and chief information officer. Their expertise is vital to achieving information dominance in the cyber domain."
Air Force officials are investing in its cyberspace professionals, cultivating career fields that are trained and equipped as robustly as air and space forces, and this restructuring helps with that process.
"Individuals were identified by their major commands based on current or past duties, special experience identifiers and training courses they attended such as undergraduate network warfare training," said Senior Master Sgt. Williamenia Shaw, the cyberspace assistant career field manager.
The first enlisted course of undergraduate cyberspace training starts in January 2011 at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., and will comprise 12 students retraining into the 1B4X1 career field. Fifty Airmen per year are scheduled to attend UCT in fiscal 2011 and 2012.
The officer cyberspace defense operator AFSC stood up in May and the first class of 16 officers will graduate from officer UCT in December.
Airmen in the 1B4X1 career field will also have the opportunity to attend professional continuing education for cyberspace. Officials will release guidance shortly on how Airmen can crosstrain into the 1B4X1 AFSC.
Major command officials will have to complete the identification and conversion process of enlisted members to the 1B4X1 career field by Nov. 30.
11/5/2010 1:00:55 PM ET I am excited about the new AFSC but I also agree with the need for a UDM AFSC. Cyber warriors are needed and while I am even now thinking of cross training into this field I wonder what the future of this field will be as more jobs are being contracted out.
Joshua Allen, Maxwell AFB
11/5/2010 6:01:08 AM ET Most unit deployment managers aren't in a UDM billet they do it on top of their regular job or they do it instead of their regular job and nobody becomes an expert. They are all just trying to get by because as soon as they learn their job their stint is over.
Sgt Peanut, conus
11/4/2010 6:03:36 PM ET UDM billets are being civilianized.
Arctic Warrior, CS
11/3/2010 6:55:43 PM ET Really If any career field should be created it should be the UDM. We've been fighting deploying mobilizing and training for the last 20-years. However the AF still sees fit to ensure Airmen and equipment are handled via the additional-duty designation. I AM NOT bashing it's tough and I know it. UDMs could also deploy and perform similar front-end duties prep for redeployments improve deployment processes programs conduct training etc. Well at least I might not get those wonderfull and VERY lucrative offers from our friends in Africa anymore.