AFCLC, Air Force Culture and Language Center, Air Force's Global Classroom

LEAP Spotlight with Maj. Wesley Meredith

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“I joined the Language Enabled Airman Program in 2010 for Swahili, which I learned while growing up and going to school in Kenya. I started with a limited knowledge of Swahili, but through LEAP, I grew my language capabilities. I went on my first Language Intensive Training Event in 2015 to Tanzania. I have been able to go on two more LITEs for Swahili since then, and each time I have returned with an improved proficiency and confidence in the language. Combined with the eMentor courses, LEAP enabled me to maintain and grow my proficiency in Swahili year to year.

“In my current capacity, I am working on my Ph.D. in International Affairs with a research focus on the U.S. and Chinese Great Power Competition in Africa and how it’s playing out through aid and development. I am specifically looking at the differing motivations behind why the U.S. and China provide aid and development finance to sub-Saharan African nations. This past year I was also approved for deliberate development to become a Foreign Area Officer in large part due to the language and cultural credentials LEAP provided me. I am moving to AFRICOM J5 this summer. I am looking forward to applying what I have learned in academia as well as the language and cultural competencies made possible through LEAP to help the Air Force mission in Africa.”

-LEAP Scholar Maj. Wesley Meredith-

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