by Airman 1st Class Luke W. Nowakowski
460th Space Wing Public Affairs
1/14/2016 - BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Buckley
Air Force Base has brought college level courses to the base, holding
the inaugural class Jan. 12, 2016, at the Airmen Center for Excellence
on Buckley AFB, Colorado.
Colorado Christian University was chosen by Buckley AFB to provide the
courses being offered. Each course fulfills a requirement for a
Community College of the Air Force degree.
Buckley AFB leadership has been working on providing college level
courses to members of the base community and it has finally come to
fruition this year through a partnership with CCU.
"This was a long process spearheaded by our Force Support Squadron team,
specifically the Education and Training Section," said Col. Scott
Romberger, 460th Space Wing vice commander. "They solicited for
universities based off specific criteria, such as cost, fees,
accreditation, course length, established Memorandum of Understanding
with Department of Defense, accessibility and flexibility, among other
factors. From that list, the options were narrowed until the wing
finally selected CCU. Even after selection, there were base visits from
the CCU President, legal reviews, and additional MOUs needed between the
university and installation."
Having the ability to attend college level courses on the instillation
has made earning a higher education more convenient for service members
who work on base every day. Now, they don't have to look online in order
to obtain the requirements outlined for a CCAF.
"I find it difficult to do courses online and prefer to have human
interaction," said Master Sgt. Corinne Zimmer, 460th Space
Communications Squadron network operations section chief. "The courses
offer me both the ability to have the human interaction, the flexibility
of on-line access, and face-to-face time with the professor if I have
The new partnership between CCU and Buckley AFB encourages service
members to obtain higher levels of education because of the ease of
enrolling and attending class. As well, tuition assistance offered by
the Air Force covers the entire cost of each course, making it a free
and easy way to extend future education opportunities.
"Colorado Christian University is very honored and excited to have the
opportunity to provide higher education courses in a focused and
accelerated format to the airman and other service members at Buckley
AFB," said Roger Chandler, Student Success vice president. "We feel this
is a natural extension of our already existing relationship. CCU is
committed to supporting our local troops with fully accredited higher
education courses that will accelerate and help complete their Community
College of the Air Force degree. In fact, it is our desire to help all
of the Buckley AFB service members to get the most out of their
educational benefits so that the CCAF degree completion is only the
first step in their educational career. The opportunity of earning a
Bachelor or Master's degree should be on everyone's agenda and CCU can
help them realize that dream."
This new pathway to achieving a higher level of education will provide
Buckley personnel with an easily accessible free option to enhance not
only their knowledge, but the mission as well.
"Our military is blessed with the smartest, best trained, best equipped,
and most prepared forces in its history," Romberger said. "Part of that
success story is providing higher level educational opportunities, like
we now have here on base, which go beyond what is taught in basic
training and technical schools. The fact that our Team Buckley
personnel can earn higher level education right here on base, not only
helps our people both personally and professionally, but in many cases a
force multiplier toward mission accomplished. Higher level education
ensures Team Buckley is more resilient and better prepared to face all