Vance enlisted receive 14 CCAF diplomas during graduation ceremony

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  • 71st Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. -- Fourteen Team Vance enlisted members received their associate degrees from the Community College of the Air Force during a commencement ceremony May 13 in the Base Auditorium at Vance Air Force Base.

Col. Paul Miller, 71st Mission Support Group commander, and Chief Master Sgt. Kristy Earls, 71st Flying Training Wing command chief, presented the graduates their CCAF diplomas.

Five members of the 71st Operations Support Squadron earned their degrees in Air Traffic Operations and Management: Airman 1st Class Garret Allen, Senior Airman Xavier Collins, Staff Sgt. Taylor Kenney, Senior Airman Dillon Ramsey and Staff Sgt. Heather Reed.

Staff Sgt. Bradley Green, with the 71st Operations Medical Readiness Squadron, earned a degree in Bioenvironmental Engineering Technology.

Staff Sgt. Derrek Martinez, with the 71st Healthcare Operations Squadron, earned a degree in Biomedical Equipment Technology.

Three Defenders with the 71st Security Forces Squadron, earned degrees in Criminal Justice: Staff Sgt. Cody Blanco, Staff Sgt. Melissa Garcia and Tech. Sgt. Adam Hart.

Staff Sgt. Amanda Elsom, with the 71st Force Support Squadron, earned a degree in Education and Training Management.

Staff Sgt. Kyle Bledsoe and Staff Sgt. Jacob Booker, with the 71st OMRS, earned degrees in Practical Nurse Technology.

Staff Sgt. Pablo Alfonso-Garcia, with the 71st Flying Training Wing, earned a degree in Criminal Justice & Human Services.

In addition to receiving their diplomas, several graduates were awarded scholarships by local organizations.

Chapter 990 of the Air Force Sergeants Association and Tinker Federal Credit Union partnered to present $500 for future education to Hunt, Alfonso-Garcia, Green and Collins.

The Air Force Association presented the Pitsenbarger Award, which includes $750, to Alfonso-Garcia. The award is given to encourage an enlisted member to continue their education.

During the ceremony, Airman 1st Class Sarah McNeil sang the national anthem and Chaplain (Capt.) Christopher Black gave the invocation.

The guest speaker was Lt. Col. Christian Price, the 71st Installation Support Squadron commander.

Tech. Sgt. David Harbaugh was the master of ceremonies.

CCAF evolved in the early 1970s as a means of gaining accreditation and recognition for Air Force training. Air Force leaders recognized the need to enhance the skills of noncommissioned officers as technicians, leaders, and citizens. CCAF was established April 1, 1972, at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas.