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Air Education and Training Command leaders are diligently working to remove barriers, promote mutual respect, and encourage tough conversations in safe spaces.

The First Command is leading efforts to strengthen diversity through deliberate actions to raise awareness about opportunities; developing partnerships with underrepresented groups; removing barriers to serve and providing mentorship to our current force.

 Air Force Instruction (AFI) 36-7001, Diversity & Inclusion, broadly defines diversity as “a composite of individual characteristics, experiences, and abilities consistent with the Air Force Core Values and the Air Force Mission. Air Force diversity includes, but is not limited to: personal life experiences, geographic and socioeconomic backgrounds, cultural knowledge, educational background, work experience, language abilities, physical abilities, philosophical and spiritual perspectives, age, race, ethnicity, and gender.” The Air Force increases its warfighting capabilities and lethality by attracting talent from a diverse body of applicants and leveraging their unique characteristics, experiences, and abilities.


Learn more about the U.S. Air Force Rated Diversity Improvement Strategy here. 

Learn more about the Department of the Air Force Barrier Analysis Working Groups (DAFBAWG) here. 


Seven online courses every Air Force leader should take

  • Published
  • By Miriam A. Thurber
  • Air Education and Training Command

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO—RANDOLPH, Texas--If you’re looking to grow as a leader, consider enrolling in one of AETC’s free DigitalU Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Education and Training Courses. Any Airman—active duty, reserve, guard or civilian—can enroll in one of the 22 online courses specifically designed for people-focused leaders.

We recommend looking through all the offered classes and choosing one that best fills in your personal or professional blind spots, but here are seven you can’t go wrong with:

Dread-Free Difficult Conversations. Overcome your discomfort and assertively lead productive, empathetic conversations with win-win outcomes. Time to complete: 1 hr. 47 min.

The Emotionally Intelligent Leader. Learn how to manage the emotional climate of your team to build trust, authentic relationships and effective teams. Emotional intelligence is considered one of the strongest attributes of a leader, which is why, in industry, leaders with high emotional intelligence earn an average of $29K more. Time to complete: 5 hr. 18 min.

Unconscious Bias: Fuel Diversity and Become a Better You. A powerful way to grow your self-awareness and reveal your hidden biases. You’ll learn how your biases may negatively impact your relationships and the career growth of yourself and those you supervise and, most importantly, you’ll discover strategies to mitigate your biases. Time to complete: 2 hr.

Navigate & Respect Age, Ethnic & Racial Differences. Understand and overcome the challenges of working in a multigenerational environment with these simple steps to leverage age diversity. Time to complete: 40 min.

LGBT+ 101. The complete course to help you understand the various people in the LGBTQ+ community. You’ll learn how to have good, respectful conversations because you’ll understand what terms mean, which ones to use and which to avoid. Yes, you’ll be learning from a member of the LGBTQ+ community. Time to complete: 1 hr. 11 min.

Be a Great Mentor: A Practical Guide to Mentorship. Grow your career through mentoring, whether you’re a supervisor, leader, subject matter expert or individual. This is a NASBA CPE accredited course. Time to complete: 1 hr. 5 min.

How to Lead & Coach Millennials & Gen Z. Increase your level of influence and promotability by tapping into the optimism and creativity of your team! Time to complete: 53 min.

To register for classes, create an account through DigitalU. After finishing the course, don’t forget to upload your certificate of completion to your professional development records.

“Diversity and inclusion are essential to mission readiness,” said Maggie Laws, Chief of Diversity and Inclusion at Air Education and Training Command. “We succeed when we fully embrace dignity and respect throughout the force—that starts with your personal and professional growth as an inclusive leader.”

To learn more about diversity and inclusion in AETC, check out this page.


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58 SOW Diversity and Inclusion
377th Air Base Wing
Video by Senior Airman Ireland Summers
Jan. 5, 2022 | 2:32
U.S. Air Force Col. Michael Curry, 58th Special Operations Wing commander, speaks about diversity and inclusion at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 5, 2022. More