What it takes to be a Battlefield Airman

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We all appreciate and admire the incredible sacrifices members of the U.S. armed forces make on our behalf. But few of us really know of the months of sacrifices these military members go through in training just to have that honor of donning the uniform. For instance: The Battlefield Airman. A Battlefield Airman is a member of the special operations unit of the Air Force. The men and women who are part of Battlefield Airmen go through some of the most intense training imaginable, all for a spot in one of five career paths.



These are the members of special operations who jump out of planes and SCUBA in order to recover and save their fellow aircrew. Pararescuemen, or PJs, are also paramedics and go through some of the most intense schools in the Department of Defense.


Combat Control

Combat Controllers are the experts in air support coordination. This group of special operations works incredibly close with the Army’s Special Forces and NAVY SEALs in order to provide close air support, air traffic control and communications.


Combat Weather

Combat weathermen are specifically trained by the Air Force to provide weather information to the special forces units. You can only imagine how important weather data are to the planning and carrying out of military missions.



SERE stands for Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape. These battlefield airmen train other military members on how to act and respond while in hostile environments.


Explosive Ordinance Disposal

EOD technicians are responsible for safely removing and destroying bombs and improvised explosive devices in the field. These members spend every day training on identifying, handling and disposing of explosives.


Air Force Specialties (AFSC)

The BA initiative encompasses the following specific Air Force Specialties (AFSC).