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More than 200 students graduate during IAAFA's second 2023 cycle

  • Published
  • By Vanessa Adame
  • 37th Training Wing Public Affairs

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas – More than 200 international military students from 12 partner nations and the U.S. Air Force filled an auditorium here for a ceremony to mark the end of their training at the Inter-American Air Forces Academy.  

Students graduated, Aug. 9, from twenty courses in professional military education and leadership, aircrew training and technical courses. Group General (Brig. Gen.) Rogelio Jorge Amador Mendoza, Deputy Chief of Education of the Mexican Air Force, served as guest of honor for the event. 

For his first visit to IAAFA, Amador toured the campus and visited the 318th and 837th Training Squadrons. He also stopped at the Security Forces Annex Museum, before heading to the graduation banquet.  

“IAAFA’s primary mission to provide comprehensive training and education fits very well with the needs of the Mexican Air Force, and most partner nation air forces,” Amador said. “The exchange of knowledge not only enhances our operational procedures, but also strengthens the training of our members which reflects IAAFA’s mission and vision.” 

Although only a small number of Mexican members have attended the academy within the last year, Amador said the Mexican Air Force would resume sending students to the security cooperation schoolhouse.  

“We are neighbors, we are training partners … we have a very important historic relationship,” he added. 

Col. Bryan Tuinman, IAAFA commandant, spoke to the new graduates and emphasized the importance of earning a certificate or wings from IAAFA.  

“It is more than an achievement, it is also a commitment to cultivate deep, enduring relationships through security cooperation, a commitment to continuous improvement and a commitment to accelerate change,” he said. 

IAAFA is the only Air Force institution that teaches technical, professional military education and leadership, as well as aircrew training in Spanish to more than 30 partner nations across the Western Hemisphere.