Gunter NCO Academy is closing its doors

  • Published
  • By Brian Ferguson
  • Barnes Center for Enlisted Education

The Air Force Noncommissioned Officer Academy at Maxwell Air Force Base - Gunter Annex, Alabama, is closing indefinitely once the current class graduates on May 12, 2023.

Students scheduled to attend the Gunter NCO Academy should receive a message informing them of the class cancellation along with rescheduling information. Airmen should not plan to travel to Maxwell AFB - Gunter Annex to attend the NCO Academy.

“Now that Tyndall Air Force Base’s Paul W. Airey NCO Academy is back open, we don’t need to keep the Gunter NCO Academy open,” Col. Anthony Babcock, Thomas N. Barnes Center for Enlisted Education commander, said. “There aren’t enough students to support it.”

The Gunter NCO Academy, previously closed in 2013, reopened in April 2019 to become the temporary home of the Airey NCO Academy after Hurricane Michael, a category 5 storm, devastated Tyndall AFB, Florida, on Oct. 10, 2018.

The academy continued to operate from Maxwell AFB - Gunter Annex until Oct. 1, 2020, when the Airey NCO Academy began its transition back to Tyndall AFB. The newly renovated Airey NCO Academy launched its first virtual class on Aug. 3, 2021, and saw its first in-residence students on Nov. 15, 2021. The Gunter NCO Academy continued to operate with its own dedicated staff, graduating 1,051 Airmen since October 2021.

“Closing the Gunter NCO Academy will not impact our ability to train and educate NCOs,” Babcock said. “It returns us to normal operations and provides room for expanding the Chief Master Sergeant Leadership Academy and Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy, which are located in the same building.”

The Air Force NCO Academy is the second level of enlisted PME consisting of 196 classroom hours over 25 academic days. The academy develops the leadership capabilities of NCOs to successfully lead teams, strengthen their organization’s culture, solve problems collaboratively and expand their understanding of the Air Force’s role in joint operations to achieve national strategic objectives.

Airmen should contact their unit training manager with any questions or concerns.