Military members find rewarding careers with OSI

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- If someone were to ask you, "What does the Air Force Office of Special Investigations do?" how would you respond?

If you said, they are the people who wear civilian clothes and investigate military members using drugs, you would be correct, but that is not all we do. The AFOSI has many other roles and responsibilities which play a vital part in making Eielson AFB, the Air Force, and the Department of Defense a safe and enjoyable place to work and live.

Special agents are all volunteers who come from virtually every career field in the Air Force and include enlisted, officers, and civilian personnel. Together, they form a highly trained team that investigates crimes against persons and property, defeats and deters contract fraud, combats threats to our information systems and technologies, and provides the Air Force and DoD counterintelligence support to force protection.

A job that involves excitement, endless opportunity, continuing education and training to keep abreast of evolving technologies, and most importantly career satisfaction.

Once accepted into the career field, recruits begin their initial law enforcement training at the Air Force Special Investigations Academy located on the grounds of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center located in Glynco, Ga., where all new AFOSI recruits receive their initial investigative training.

The 18-week special investigator's course includes instruction in law, investigative responsibility and jurisdiction, report writing, forensics, interview techniques and many other subjects designed to prepare special agents for the challenges of investigative duty.

The training opportunities do not end there. Once recruits master the basic skills of becoming a federal agent, they can request and compete for specialized training in fields such as:

-Forensic science, where agents learn detailed techniques for collecting, preserving, evaluating evidence.

-Computer crime investigators, where agents match wits against hackers attempting to disrupt our information systems.

-Technical services, where agents are trained in the latest methods of technical and photographic surveillance.

-Polygraph, where agents conduct polygraph examinations into virtually every aspect of our investigative and counterintelligence missions.

-Some agents receive specialized training in the art of protective services. These agents often become personal security advisors for senior military leaders and travel with them while visiting high-threat areas.

In addition to some of the specialties listed above, AFOSI also has a cadre of agents who step up to even more challenges and opportunities to become members of our Anti-terrorism Specialty Team.

These agents receive specialized training focused on the counterintelligence mission and at times operate in very remote locations in support of contingency operations. Some of their training includes highly advanced tactics, weapons, and combat communications.

Of course, you do not have to opt on a particular specialty to become a special agent. In fact, the majority of AFOSI agents are not specialists and enjoy the everyday challenges that come from working at detachments and operating locations in more than 221 locations world-wide.

Regardless of the specialty or training, each agent, like other members of the Air Force, must be prepared to deploy in support of combat operations. It is during these operations that our expertise and knowledge of counterintelligence is vital.

As the only Air Force organization responsible for conducting counterintelligence, AFOSI works off base with host-nation security officials to identify potential threats and threat information and then provide that information to the installation commanders, and national command authorities to ensure the safety of our personnel and resources.

Being a member of the AFOSI is both exciting and a challenging. Although we do not always wear the blue suit, we are still proud members of the United States Air Force. Yes, we are the ones who conduct felony level investigations, but we also conduct many other activities and operations that afford you the opportunity to live and work in a safe environment.

If you would like more information on applying for AFOSI special agent duty, please visit our public website at http://www.osi.andrews.af.mil or contact AFOSI Det. 632 at 377-1852.