DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. --
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Steven Rybicky, 68th Rescue Squadron medical logistician, graduated from the Army’s Air Assault School at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, Aug. 10, 2021.
Rybicky entered the Army’s Air Assault School at Fort Campbell, Kentucky on Jul. 27, 2021, along with 350 other military personnel. Over the 11-day course, many people were cut and on the final day only 143 graduated.
“I was given the opportunity from my commander to go,” Rybicky said. “I did my research on the course and it looked like a fun, humbling challenge and a good opportunity to learn from another military branch.”
Day zero starts at 4:45 a.m. when members are assigned a roster number, given a list of mandatory items they have to keep with them throughout the remainder of the course, and required to run two miles under 18 minutes in uniform. Afterwards, they perform physical training for 1-2 hours before completing a course consisting of 11 obstacles, two of which are mandatory and give students confidence to work at higher elevations.
“I think this course is great for people that work in areas that require you to do more than just your Air Force Specialty Code,” Rybicky said. “It challenges you mentally and physically to really help develop [as a] multi-capable Airmen.”
Phase I is Combat Assault, which is geared towards preparing Airmen for hand and arm signals along with aircraft safety orientation. Phase II is Sling Load Operations, consisting of planning, inspecting and preparing sling loads, and the responsibilities of personnel. Phase III is Rappelling Operations, where students learn how to tie a hip rappel seat, and rappel at higher levels. Each phase is three days long with a major physical training event and final exams.
“Being the first and only one in my career field to attend and graduate was an amazing opportunity I am grateful for,” Rybicky said.
Other personnel that attended the course included Rangers, infantrymen, cadets, intel, nurses and many other military members.
In an ever changing world, having the ability to adapt to changes and be multi-capable is paramount in keeping the Air Force ready to respond to potential conflicts anytime, anywhere.