HomeNewsArticle Display

Special Warfare Training Wing activates to better train global combat Airmen

Members of the  Special Warfare Training Wing honor the fallen with memorial push-ups after the SWTW activation ceremony at Joint Base San Antonio-Medina Base, Texas Oct. 10, 2018. The mission of the new wing is to select, train, equip, and mentor Airmen to conduct global combat operations in contested, denied, operationally limited, and permissive environments under any environmental conditions.(U.S. Air Force photo by Andrew C. Patterson)

Members of the Special Warfare Training Wing honor the fallen with memorial push-ups after the SWTW activation ceremony at Joint Base San Antonio-Medina Base, Texas Oct. 10, 2018. The mission of the new wing is to select, train, equip, and mentor Airmen to conduct global combat operations in contested, denied, operationally limited, and permissive environments under any environmental conditions.(U.S. Air Force photo by Andrew C. Patterson)

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) -- To meet the demand for special operations warfighters and improve retention rates for these critical career fields, Air Force officials activated the Special Warfare Training Wing Oct. 10.

The mission of the new wing is to select, train, equip, and mentor Airmen to conduct global combat operations in contested, denied, operationally limited, and permissive environments under any environmental condition.

“This new wing will help us provide additional oversight and advocacy for the complex, high-risk and demanding training that's necessary to produce Airmen to meet the requirements of the joint force,” said Col. James Hughes, SWTW commander.

The new wing headquarters and subordinate organizational structure will consist of approximately 135 personnel. The existing Battlefield Airman Training Group, which was activated in June 2016, has been renamed to the Special Warfare Training Group and will report to the new wing.

Building upon what the Battlefield Airmen Training Group has started, the previously established five pillars of marketing and recruiting, manpower and leadership, curriculum, equipment and infrastructure will serve as a starting point for the wing.

“Keeping these pillars in mind will allow us to continue focusing on building the best Airman we can from the time they step into a recruiter’s office up until the end of their careers,” Hughes said.

“Wings move the ball forward at an operational and strategic level,” Hughes said. “They can provide structure, oversight, strategic vision and unity of command. But to become a leader in the special warfare community, we have to continue pushing the envelope of science and technology. It all comes down to doing everything we can to create Airmen capable of problem solving across a wide-range of national security challenges to meet the joint force’s needs.”

Additionally, the wing will focus on improving human performance by staying at the forefront of science and technology with the addition of the Human Performance Support Group. The Human Performance Support Group is a one of kind unit that will integrate specialists from a variety of sports and medical fields into special warfare training to optimize physical and mental performance, reduce injury and speed rehabilitation to create more capable and resilient ground operators.

“By pushing the limits of science and technology, we’re going to find the most efficient and effective methods for improving human performance,” Hughes said. “We’re going to take what we already have learned and enhance how we produce the most physically and psychologically fit Airmen possible for the joint force.”

Special Warfare Airmen, previously known as Battlefield Airmen, are the critical ground link between air assets and ground forces. They are trained to operate as a ground component to solve on-ground problems with air power; often embedding with conventional and special operations forces. Their requirements have grown substantially since 2001 due to the effectiveness of and increasing demand for the precision application of air power in the joint combat environment.

Seven Air Force specialty codes currently fall into the Special Warfare category: pararescue, combat rescue officer, combat control, special tactics officer, special operations weather team, tactical air control party personnel and non-rated air liaison officer. These airmen share ground combat skill sets and a sharp focus on joint, cross-domain operations.

The first step toward more efficient and effective training is to combine the courses of initial entry for all special warfare candidates into one cohesive course.

“The various Special Warfare Air Force specialty codes are a lot more similar than they are different,” said Chief Master Sgt. James Clark, SWTW command chief. “These courses of initial entry are the bedrock of lethality and readiness. By combining them, we’re making the pipeline much more efficient, while also building a team mentality that focuses on our similarities, rather than our differences.”

“This change is also the first step toward answering the most important question facing the SWTW: How do we create and develop the most adaptive and agile leaders possible?” Clark said. “It starts by continuing to be critical of ourselves, while searching for any way to become more efficient in everything that we do.”


For more information on the Special Warfare Training Wing, click here.

Engage

Facebook Twitter
#TBT: The 146th Air Support Operations Squadron spent a week w/their British and Estonian counterparts working a va… https://t.co/d8ClxzmFq2
#TBT: The 146th Air Support Operations Squadron spent a week w/their British and Estonian counterparts working a va… https://t.co/AoV8IAwvih
Enlisted leaders from around the world converge in #Jordan for the 4th annual Sergeants Major Symposium.… https://t.co/XMwVjiAAQp
RT @AirmanMagazine: Help us select the "Airman Top Shot" of the week by liking, commenting and sharing your favorite @usairforce photo. The…
Listen in as the first #Airman to refuel a KC-46A Pegasus from a KC-135 Stratotanker recounts his experience! @22ARW https://t.co/qAWLiQsHdo
RT @DOD_Outreach: .@NASCAR driver @BubbaWallace is used to acceleration, but got to experience 9 G’s during a @USAirForce F-15 flight at @S
RT @USAFCENT: @iqAirForce #F16 Fighting Falcon #aircraft flies a mission above the Iraqi-Syrian border alongside Co… https://t.co/1gZfXiMi2O
#VandenbergAFB aids during exercise Patriot Hook 2019, trains for real-world scenarios in the event of a regional e… https://t.co/IqnN00cJv1
.@SecAFOfficial underscores space strategy and partnerships with allies. https://t.co/X391mBc6E6 https://t.co/CFk69M8WW4
RT @SecAFOfficial: Thanks for inviting me to be part of @Policy_Exchange’s launch of the space policy unit #PXSpace! Great dialogue on #spa
#USAF's new rules on the #OCP uniform aims to better fit our #Airmen's needs as they perform the mission, while hol… https://t.co/cd6hd13Y21
As we continue the #MonthoftheMilitaryChild, check out how @341MissileWing youth build resiliency through gymnastic… https://t.co/kphokVfZTq
Things are heating up at #MountainHomeAFB! Watch as #Airmen @366FW fire department conduct #LiveFireTraining to ens… https://t.co/WRqHdMKdQs
RT @AusAirForce: Friends in high places... literally! Glad to continue the strong cooperation & mateship with @usairforce 🇦🇺🇺🇸 #AusAirForce
#Congrats to the #USAF 2019 Secretary of Defense Environmental Award winners! https://t.co/5j07VznEsc
RT @DeptofDefense: For 41 years, the Global Positioning System has helped us find our way in the world. It’s a system that our modern way o…
#DYK: In 2015 the worldwide C-17 fleet reached 3 million flying hours. The equivalent of flying around the #Earth 5… https://t.co/U01R6Y1gPe
#USAF and @Nationals partner up to teach 40 new commanders and their spouses leadership techniques.… https://t.co/doApMhiIWX
#Airmen & #Soldiers in #Kuwait teamed up to train military working dog handlers on decontamination of their K9s in… https://t.co/QtlvQGUgyF
.@179AW #Airmen know the hardest part isn't the jump, it's the preparation for the heavy drop beforehand. https://t.co/WMV2fBXN2x