The Defense Intelligence Agency has created a new training and development center for its 2,000 personnel at MacDill Air Force Base, which is the first of many agency satellite learning centers around the globe.
The agency, which provides intelligence to warfighters, policy makers and planners in the Pentagon and intelligence communities, is transforming the Regional Joint Intelligence and Education Center at U.S. Central Command into the Southeast Enterprise Learning Center, said spokesman Jim Kudla.
The agency is expanding its The Academy for Defense Intelligence, based at its Washington headquarters, as a way to maximize training dollars for the personnel it trains, said Kudla.
Because the academy already has personnel in place at MacDill, “we have begun the process there and we will take advantage of Subject Matter Experts assigned to either Centcom or U.S. Special Operations Command to serve as adjunct instructors to teach,” said Kudla.
The learning center at MacDill was recently created and has reached initial operating capability, said Kudla, but it will take several years before it is fully operational in the agency’s academy network.
Until then, “the focus of the instruction will be on the needs of the population near the location,” said Kudla.
The first step was relocating “the center of gravity for training in Foreign Disclosure from DIA Headquarters in DC to MacDill,” he said.
DIA personnel and interagency partners will receive training in the rules and regulations about what intelligence information to provide to foreign partners, Kudla said.
Eventually, that training will be expanded to other intelligence issues and topics, he said.
“While the training and professional development will largely be intelligence-focused, we will offer other training as well,” he said. “Two examples will be leadership development and professional writing courses.”
The enterprise learning center system is being set up, said Kudla, to address “a long-standing concern of DIA members at locations outside DC, which is that if you are outside DC, your opportunity to participate in training and personal development is significantly less than if you are inside the National Capital Region. That concern is growing as resources are more tightly constrained and travel and training money has become more dear.”
Those attending the Southeast Learning Center will receive instruction from those on location as well as by distance learning, said Kudla, with the idea being that eventually, instructors from MacDill can teach remotely as well.
While the program will start with MacDill personnel, it will eventually expand to reserve components in the Tampa area and Orlando, as well as to U.S. Southern Command, based in Miami, said Kudla.
The concept was first announced publicly Tuesday morning by DIA Director Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn at the GEOINT 2013* Symposium at the Tampa Convention Center.