The officer’s ranks that the graduates of flight course 173 received today come with great responsibility. In the presence of Hatzerim AFB Commander, Brig. Gen. Avshalom, IAF Flight Academy Commander, Col. M, the course commanders and their families, the graduates of flight course 173 took another step forward on their way to becoming IAF aircrew members.
“You are a course that impressed us commanders with the leadership you have displayed, the responsibility you have taken for your actions, the open and honest discussion you promoted around you, and the rich values you brought with you and shared with us – your commanders up until this week, your brothers in arms beginning next week”, shared Col. M’.
“In a few minutes, we will reveal the ranks on your shoulders and you will join the ranks of the defenders of this land, the greatest right there is”, said Hatzerim AFB Commander. “Beside the right stands a great obligation, to lead, with the power of your character, an entire force. To be determined yet modest, lead with humility and fairness”.
As a result of stormy weather, the ceremony was held in a closed auditorium in Hatzerim AFB. This Thursday, the graduates will proudly receive their flight wings and officially join the ranks of the IAF’s aircrew members, putting three grueling years behind them.
“The responsibility that rests on your shoulders is vast, you proved that you are worthy of carrying it. The basics of combat aviation, values of command and leadership, these are the tools we have given you”, said Brig. Gen. Avshalom. “Alongside the challenges, you will receive extraordinary satisfaction and enjoy our country’s intoxicating sights. Soar to great heights, deepen your roots and return home safely”.
“Due to the circumstances the ceremony is modest and intimate, but I must say that I am quite glad that this is how it turned out”, added Col M’. “The ceremony is only backdrop, but the ranks on your shoulders are the true meaning, and sometimes background noise obscures our vision”. “The course has ended; your job has just begun. We believe in you – it is now your turn to break through and realize your potential”.
An Immediate and Self-Teaching Generation
The graduates of flight course 173 were the first to experience the changes that the IAF Flight Academy has underwent in the past few years. These changes are part of an effort to accommodate its instruction methods to the level of technology and operational activity that the graduates will meet in their squadrons, and to the characteristics of the technological generation. “We are widely occupied with developing and advancing”, shared Lt. Col. Caspy, the Academy’s Chief Instructor. “The methods of instruction are very different than the ones we used a decade ago. Our goal is to make the information more accessible, in the spirit of the current generation of cadets that is immediate and self-teaching”.
The cadets of today receive tablets equipped with instructions, drills and lectures. “It replaces the lecture and presentation model, we understood that their attention span has deteriorated so we developed the ‘reverse classroom’ technique in which the cadets arrive to class with a lecturer after seeing the lecture on their tables, so they arrive with complex and comprehensive questions. You can see the change when they are up in the air as well, they arrive prepared and can save the instructors’ remarks and listen to them later”.