The Air Force is looking for eight technical sergeants or staff sergeant-selects to begin retraining for its new human intelligence career field.

The job, which is currently done by 40 to 50 airmen on three-year special duty assignments, will become a permanent assignment for the retrained airmen. They will work for intel communities such as the Defense Intelligence Agency, National Air and Space Intelligence Center, Air Force Special Operations Command, and sometimes a few assignments overseas. 

"This is one of those very diverse specialties," Chief Master Sgt. Adam Watson, deputy chief of staff career field manager under the deputy chief of staff for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, told Air Force Times Sept. 2. "The job could be anything from debriefing an air crew that just flew from in from an austere airfield in [a certain] country and writing up an intelligence report, to working at trade shows, to being in deployed environments with other HUMINT operators in the other services, to working with the local populace populous."

The goal over the next few years is to "develop a cadre of ISR professionals who have a deeper expertise in space, cyber, and human-derived intelligence and equip them with the analytic expertise and tools that will help answer questions associated with these increasingly contested domains," according to Air Force ISR 2023, a strategy document released in 2013 by Lt. Gen. Robert Otto, deputy chief of staff for ISR the strategy says

Under the current system, "the subsequent assignment [after special duty] doesn't create that career-long expertise," Watson said. "Your skills didn't atrophy in your primary career field. In the future, with the 1N7 career field, you're going to cross over from medical, or security forces, or intel, and adopt this career field for the remainder of your Air Force career."

A small pool of enlisted airmen can soon retrain into a brand new Air Force career field that could take them into cutting-edge assignments worldwide.

The service will create the 1N7X1 human intelligence Air Force specialty code by Oct. 31 as part of a growing demand for human intelligence professionals in the service, Air Force spokeswoman Capt. Trisha Guillebeau said. 

The first eight airmen must apply by Nov. 1 for 2016 slots.  Only eight tech sergeants or staff sergeant-selects will be able to apply through retraining for the 1N7X1 Air Force specialty code for the first term in 2016. what is the deadline to apply and when does retraining begin?mh AIRMEN ARE ELIGIBLE TO RETRAIN/APPLY NOV. 1 FOR 2016 SLOTS//OP By the end of 2016, However, the Air Force would like to expand the career field to 85 billets, Watson said by the end of 2016, said Chief Master Sgt. Adam Watson, deputy chief of staff career field manager for ISR

"We are going to incrementally try to grow per fiscal year until we’re 100 percent," Watson told Air Force Times Sept. 2. "The [training] school house can right now only absorb eight airmen, possibly more, but we’re going to need to work with the school house to figure out if they have the surge capacity," he said.

Most sought for the initial assignments are airmen who have had special duty as The Air Force is looking within the  the 8D000 strategic debriefers special duty identifier to be the initial group of personnel in the 1N7X1 AFSC upon stand-up in October

"Given the SDI construct, and soon the lateral-AFSC construct, personnel in this field come from a variety of backgrounds and Air Force specialties," Guillebeau said. "Airmen in the AFSC are subject to worldwide assignment in any number of commands," she said. The career field will be managed by the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance.

Currently, the Air Force operates it's Human Intelligence, or HUMINT, component only as a three-year special duty assignment.

At any given time, there are roughly 40 to 50 airmen working under Air Force HUMINT, Watson said.

HUMINT airmen work for intel communities such as the Defense Intelligence Agency, National Air and Space Intelligence Center, Air Force Special Operations Command, and a few assignments overseas, Watson said.

"The subsequent assignment doesn't create that career-long expertise," Watson said. "Your skills didn't atrophy in your primary career field; In the future, with the 1N7 career field, you're going to cross over from medical, or security forces, or intel, and adopt this career field for the remainder of your Air Force career."

The interest has expanded to "a field that is growing," Watson said. Deputy chief of staff for ISR Lt. Gen. Robert Otto in 2013 released a strategic vision, called Air Force ISR 2023, which outlined the Air Force's priority to normalize cyber ISR, space ISR, and HUMINT operations.

The goal over the next few years is to "develop a cadre of ISR professionals who have a deeper expertise in space, cyber, and human-derived intelligence and equip them with the analytic expertise and tools that will help answer questions associated with these increasingly contested domains," according to Air Force ISR 2023, a strategy document released in 2013 by Lt. Gen. Robert Otto, deputy chief of staff for ISR the strategy says.

"This is one of those very diverse specialties," Watson said. "The job could be anything from debriefing an air crew that just flew from in from an austere airfield in [a certain] country and writing up an intelligence report, to working at trade shows, to being in deployed environments with other HUMINT operators in the other services, to working with the local populace populous."

Airmen interested in retraining must be eligible under the first term airman program, or noncommissioned officer retraining program requirements. They also should have exemplary written and verbal communication skills. They into the 1N7X1 AFSC should begin the process through their proper Military Personnel Section, Guillebeau said. 

Airmen interested in applying need to have both written and verbal exemplary communication skills, Guillebeau said.

Other requirements for the application include:

  • A narrative biography.
  • Letter of recommendation from the airman’s commander.
  • A screened interview. process
  • A top secret/sensitive compartmented information TS/SCI security clearance.

Those selected personnel will first attend the 1NX Intelligence Fundamentals Course at Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas, for roughly two weeks, unless they have already attended the 1N core course. All will then attend the Defense Strategic Debriefing Course at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, with Army personnel, between four and six weeks, Watson said. 

"The only time an airman wouldn't have to go to Goodfellow is if they're an airman who's have already attended the 1N core course," Watson said. "But I don't see anyone being waived from going to DSDC."

Airmen interested in retraining into the 1N7X1 AFSC should begin the process through their proper Military Personnel Section, Guillebeau said.

Members must be eligible to retrain under the first term airman program, or non-commissioned officer retraining program requirements.

"Creating a career field like this is going to open up doors that we haven’t had access to in the past," Watson said. "I’d like for this to be the development and evolution of Air Force HUMINT."