UPT Class 24-07 Graduation

  • Published
  • By TSgt Javier Cruz
  • 14th Flying Training Wing

Sixteen Undergraduate Pilot Training 2.5 student pilots of Class 24-07, graduated on April 12, 2024, at the Kaye Auditorium on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. The UPT 2.5 graduation ceremony officially marks the completion of initial flight training in the T-6 Texan II as students earn their wings and begin the next phase of advanced pilot training for the Air Force’s newest pilots.  

Pilots advance to graduate training in one of two new programs: Air Mobility Fundamentals, or Fighter/Bomber Fundamentals. These new programs, like UPT 2.5, capitalize on and incorporate modern training tools and methods that provide a unique advantage through innovation. 

AMF currently leverages the “Mid-Tier Device,” a simulator that replicates the T-1A Jayhawk, to prepare graduates for mobility or tanker platforms. The Air Force’s first-ever F/BF class began at CAFB in June 2023. The new program both combines and streamlines legacy T-38 Graduate Pilot Training and T-38 Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals into a unified syllabus for graduates continuing to fighter or bomber platforms. 

The Class 24-07 graduation speaker was Colonel Taylor Ferrell, 12th Flying Training Wing, commander, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph.  

Col. Ferrell is a 2000 graduate of Centre College and was commissioned through the University of Kentucky ROTC program. He previously served as the commander of the 18th Operations Group, Kadena Air Base, Japan. Col. Ferrell is a graduate of the USAF Weapons School and served as the Chief F-15C Weapons School Instructor. He is a command pilot with over 2,000 flying hours primarily in the F-15C. 

The 12th FTW is responsible for four single-source aviation pipelines; Pilot Instructor Training, Combat Systems Officer Training, Remotely Piloted Aircraft Pilot Indoctrination, and Basic Sensor Operator Qualification. The wing manages all airmanship programs for United States Air Force Academy cadets and Introductory Flight Training for all Air Force Airmen scheduled to enter pilot, combat systems officer, or remotely piloted aircraft training. The wing also hosts an Introduction to Fighter Fundamentals program and conducts Electronic Warfare Training for the U.S. Air Force and multi-national forces. 

Students are also recognized with additional accolades through academic and professional military achievement such as: Order of Daedalians AETC Commander’s Trophy, Distinguished Graduate Award, Academic Award, Military Training Award and Flying Training Award. 

CLASS 24-07 Graduates 

Capt. Mathew T. Aguilar 

2nd Lt. AJ T. Arteaga 

2nd Lt. Nicholas A. Bomm 

2nd Lt. Alexander J. Brady (Academic Excellence Award) 

2nd Lt. Kienan J. Brady 

2nd Lt. Devon A. Davis-Ruscilli (Military Training Award) 

Capt. Austin M. Graf 

1st Lt. John M. Hayes 

2nd Lt. Shane A. Hester 

2nd Lt. Ryan M. Hoke 

2nd Lt. Luke J. Lanning 

2nd Lt. Colin J. Long 

2nd Lt. Scott M. Potter (Distinguished Graduate) 

2nd Lt. Madison E. Varnier 

1st Lt. Jesse S. Sidhu (AETC Commander’s Trophy, Distinguished Graduate, Flying Training Award) 

2nd Lt. Claire D. Van Houten