Sailor completes Airman Leadership School

By Senior Airman Divine Cox on April 1, 2016

MA2 Christopher Beining, Marine Corps Security Forces Battalion master of arms, Naval Base Kitsap at Bangor, graduated from the Julius A. Kolb Airman Leadership School March 25 as part of a graduation ceremony at the McChord Club, Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Beining was the first U.S. Navy sailor to attend the Julius A. Kolb ALS, here on McChord Field.

The ALS program is a six-week course of primarily guided discussion classroom methodology, experimental activities, and exercises and case studies. It also features uniform inspection, physical training and drill.

"This was a unique schooling opportunity for me," said Beining. "In the Navy, we attend the Petty Officer Indoctrination Course. This ALS course is more than 190 hours of course material, while our (Navy) course is only twenty-two hours."

The instructors and curriculum challenged Beining, while introducing him to leadership techniques that work with other branches of the military, according to Tech. Sgt. James Lee, JBLM ALS instructor.

"I was also challenged as the instructor," said Lee. "I actually had to do a lot of research about the Navy and took it upon myself to take the Navy senior noncommissioned officer academy computer-based training course so I could link in Navy history to better assist the student."

Although Beining was at ALS to learn about leadership and supervisory roles, he also was able to educate McChord airmen on leadership and supervisory roles in the U.S. Navy.

"I enjoyed ALS; it was different from the POIC," said Beining. "It was structured like a college course; there was a lot of studying on your own."

Beining said the focus on academics gave the school that college-like atmosphere.

"Today's military is doing a lot of joint operations," said Beining. "So taking this course gave me some knowledge on how the Air Force works."

"Beining did great throughout the whole course," said Lee. "We both overcame the challenges of learning the differences between both branches, and the willingness to understand how other services do things helped everyone."