Way back in 2007 or so, as I took my final Air War College by correspondence exam, with a stunning 71%, I boldly declared that that was the LAST work-required schooling I would ever do. I was DONE.
Scroll forward to 2016, and I am now eating my words. My new company requires that I be program management certified, and have given me 90 days to complete it. They are paying for it, and its a valuable thing to add to my resume, so I can't complain. But as I completed my week long "boot camp" class to begin preparing for the test, my brain was mush. MUSH. I fell asleep so hard watching TV last night that my husband actually checked my pulse. Hah!
The more I think about it, I wish this is how the Air Force would do PME:
A: clearly defined condition of employment
B: outsource the training to boot camps
A: Let's stop with the you need it, you don't need it if you are going in residence, oh yes you do to compete for residence stuff. How about a "complete within X months of pinning on X" and then sending you away for an intensive week?
B: If you are not being sent in residence, then at least invest in the correspondence course to make it worthwhile. There are a lot of awesome training companies out there that could do this well, both efficiently and effectively.
This is not really my fight any more, I am just a retiree that thinks there is still room to make the Air Force better, who needs to study a LOT of flash cards in the next few weeks so I get better than 71%.