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MSU cadets explore variety of careers at Columbus AFB

Capt. Aaron Bath, 49th Fighter Training Squadron instructor pilot, shows the T-38C Talon to Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, on the flight line at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Pilots gave brief descriptions of the different aircraft and what they’re used for at Columbus AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Capt. Aaron Bath, 49th Fighter Training Squadron instructor pilot, shows the T-38C Talon to Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, on the flight line at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Pilots gave brief descriptions of the different aircraft and what they’re used for at Columbus AFB. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Capt. Amessia Brown, 14th Medical Operations Squadron Public Health Flight commander, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Columbus AFB hosted a career day inside the BLAZE Chapel annex for cadets to see firsthand how an operational base works and obtain a better understanding of the interactions within each career field. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Capt. Amessia Brown, 14th Medical Operations Squadron Public Health Flight commander, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Columbus AFB hosted a career day inside the BLAZE Chapel annex for cadets to see firsthand how an operational base works and obtain a better understanding of the interactions within each career field. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Capt. Tara Dixon, Columbus Air Force Base chaplain, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Cadets were allowed to explore their primary career goals in the Air Force, but were highly encouraged to check out the other fields available to them. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Capt. Tara Dixon, Columbus Air Force Base chaplain, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Cadets were allowed to explore their primary career goals in the Air Force, but were highly encouraged to check out the other fields available to them. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Col. William Denham, 14th Flying Training Wing vice wing commander, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Denham thanked the students for visiting Columbus AFB, adding that whatever career they decide to join, there will be incredible opportunities for them while executing the mission of the greatest Air Force in the world. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

Col. William Denham, 14th Flying Training Wing vice wing commander, talks with Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets Nov. 9, 2018, at the BLAZE Chapel on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. Denham thanked the students for visiting Columbus AFB, adding that whatever career they decide to join, there will be incredible opportunities for them while executing the mission of the greatest Air Force in the world. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman Hannah Bean)

COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Over 70 Mississippi State University Air Force ROTC cadets had the opportunity to visit Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, Nov. 9 and learned about various career fields in the Air Force.

Career day was inside the BLAZE Chapel annex and cadets learned how an operational base functions and obtained a better understanding of the specifics within each career field. They were also taken on a tour and were shown aircraft of the 14th Flying Training Wing.

“It’s a good opportunity for them to interact with members currently serving in that career beyond the scope of what they read on a website or in a textbook,” said Lt. Col. Joseph Cassidy, MSU Air Force ROTC Detachment 425 commander. “The ability to come out to a base and see how things work on a military installation firsthand brings ROTC academics to life. It also gives them a chance to interact with individuals their age in an informal setting.”

A variety of careers were showcased at the career day, including civil engineering, public affairs, security forces, logistics, and more. Cadets were given the opportunity to visit each field and ask any questions they had about the Air Force and what it has to offer.

“Most of the time you have cadets who first come into the program straight out of high school, they know they want to join the military, but they don’t know exactly what they want to do,” said Courtney Conway, MSU Air Force ROTC Detachment 425 cadet. “They get to come here for this career day and visit with officers in careers ranging from intelligence to public affairs to communication. It’s really great for them to see that it’s not only pilots in the Air Force. You have a huge range of careers that are open.”

Cadets were allowed to explore their primary career goals in the Air Force, but were highly encouraged to check out the other career fields available to them. This gave them an opportunity to discover how each occupation interacts and works together to complete the mission.

Conway said she enjoyed this opportunity and felt it was very beneficial.

“Even though I know my job going into the Air force, I’m talking to them and finding out how these different jobs relate to each other and how they intertwine,” Conway said.

Cadets were allowed further research the available careers in a more in-depth approach, allowing opportunities to discover the possible accomplishments or goals they could achieve through stories given by fellow officers.

“I hope they gain a greater understanding on the roles various careers have in accomplishing our Air Force mission and the role some of these careers will have in interacting with their primary career interest or goal,” Cassidy said.

At the end of the career day, Col. William Denham, 14th Flying Training Wing vice wing commander, thanked the students for visiting Columbus AFB, adding that whatever career they decide to join, there will be incredible opportunities for them while executing the mission of the greatest Air Force in the world.