Keesler keeps civilians focused on learning

KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. --

Keesler Air Force Base, under the direction of the Keesler Total Force Development Center, is helping put civilian personal development at the forefront with developmental classes for civilians working on base.

The Keesler Total Force Development Center has taken the professional and personal development courses available to military members and designed a program to similarly grow civilians as leaders.

“The Total Force Development Center here has set up a program through the Total Force Development Council to help individuals grow as leaders and employees,” said Dr. Wayne Clark, 81st Mission Support Group deputy director. “They have the opportunity to take classes to learn about leadership. These classes are free and taught by a trained facilitator but do not count toward a certification to college credit.”

These classes are meant to bring knowledge and a culture of education and growth to civilians at Keesler.

“Civilian development is about a culture change,” Clark said. “We are trying to find new ways to educate and enhance the growth of the base’s civilian population. Civilians can focus on developing themselves through mentorship and education like our military counterparts.”

Civilian development courses will allow those on base to access information they may not be able to in the civilian community because they are not in a supervisory role. The classes focus topics including leadership, process and improvement and critical thinking to help prepare individuals for future roles as supervisors.

“The TFDC's philosophy is to provide deliberate force development by organizing the units’ professional development, leadership development, daily mentoring and technical skills development under the auspice of the Total Force concept,” said Senior Master Sgt. Tiffany Patterson, 81st Training Wing career assistance advisor. “Through the council, all forces are strengthened with professional development tools that will enhance military services, sister services and their respective units.”