NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – Tennessee State University’s Air Force ROTC Detachment 790 is having an open house and student orientation this month to showcase its program that was founded by two of the original famed Tuskegee Airmen.
The event will be August 7 and 9 at 12 p.m. in Kean Hall (Room 106).
In 1951, the United States Air Force established a Senior Reserve Officer Training Corps Detachment at the university under the instruction of two of the first Tuskegee Airmen, Col. Howard Baugh and Lt. Col. Hannibal Cox.
Years later, the Detachment moved its operations from the Hale Field House to the north end of the Floyd-Payne Campus Center. A predominant feature in front of the entrance to the AFROTC unit is the USAF T-38 Talon static display, flown by Gen. Lloyd W. “Fig” Newton, the highest ranking officer to graduate from the Detachment. The four-star general was also the first African-American selected to fly in the world-famous U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.
“There’s a long history of Detachment 790 commissioning black officers, specifically black pilots,” says Capt. Tim Amos, assistant professor of aerospace studies, and the Detachment’s recruiting and education officer.
Earlier this year, the Detachment received a new state-of-the-art flight simulator. AFROTC officials say the simulator, which has the latest flight software, will help cadets prepare for the Test of Basic Aviation Skills (TBAS), a computerized psychomotor, special ability and multi-tasking test battery, as well as the Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT).
“The flight simulator is an important part of enhancing Detachment 790’s training program to meet Air Force goals,” said Maj. Michael Gordon, assistant professor of aerospace studies and Detachment Operations Officer. “This will introduce cadets to flight training and inspire them to pursue aviation careers in the Air Force.”
Lt. Monica Cooper, a Gold Bar Recruiter who recently joined the Detachment, says her main objective is to reach out to high school students, particularly minorities.
“My goal is … to get awareness out there to high school students that Air Force ROTC is an opportunity to pursue officership, and also to pursue the ideal career opportunities,” says Cooper.
To learn more about Detachment 790, visit http://www.tnstate.edu/afrotc/join.aspx.
About Tennessee State University
With more than 8,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 24 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.