IAFAA adapts to COVID-19 demands

  • Published
  • By 37th Training Wing
  • Inter-American Air Forces Academy

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas - In the rapidly evolving environment around the new coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19, the Inter-American Air Forces Academy (IAAFA) at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland has implemented a number of precautions and safety measures to ensure the safety of the faculty and students.

During initial response, the IAAFA team worked diligently to ensure the prompt and swift return of international military students to their respective home countries where borders were still open, explained Javier Peraffan, IAAFA’s International Military Student Officer. For the three students who remain at the Academy, Peraffan alongside the Student Affairs Flight are ensuring student safety by keeping them informed of all pertinent COVID-19 developments in the local area and in their home countries. Additionally, the IAAFA team translated JBSA guidelines for preventative measures such as social distancing, and they ensure around-the-clock availability of cadre members for students’ needs. 

As the crisis develops, IAAFA is working with the Defense Language Institute English Language Center, or DLIELC, also at JBSA-Lackland, to enroll their remaining three students into an English learning course.  This initiative will continue their IAAFA experience and ensure these students further their education here at JBSA.

IAAFA Commandant Col. Isaac Davidson is committed to maximizing the capabilities of innovative technology in order to keep advancing the Academy’s mission while ensuring the safety of its members and their families.

The Classroom of the Future was originally an IAAFA initiative to support borderless learning and innovative technology and it has been easily expanded to facilitate the Academy’s collaborative projects, allowing them to continue virtually unimpeded. 

In addition to supporting the Academy’s movement-restricted operations, IAAFA’s Professional Military Education (PME) instructors have employed CoF under its original intent to instruct students from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, and the United States.  These efforts allowed students who were attending PME courses at IAAFA to graduate 27 March 2020 instead the originally scheduled date of 15 April.  The students are able to create collaborative presentations, present required briefings, share experiences, and interview leaders.

Beyond continuing their own mission, as a unit of the 37th Training Wing, IAAFA cadre have volunteered to support other training missions across the Gateway Wing, including augmenting the Basic Military Training and Technical Training missions.

The Air Force is committed to preserving the ability of our servicemen and women to provide for national defense and current worldwide military missions. IAAFA will continue to meet the challenges of COVID-19 together with its partners to protect its staff and students and to transform the learning experience.

For additional info on the 37th TRW’s response to COVID-19, check out the FAQ sheet, found HERE. For the most current information, we encourage you to follow the 37th Facebook page, found HERE.

IAAFA, a unit within the 37th Training Wing, provides military education and training to military personnel of the Americas and other eligible Partner Nations. Since 1943, IAAFA has been recognized worldwide for providing world-class professional military education, operations and technical training. Their focus is fostering enduring, strong friendships and security cooperation.