- Associated Press - Thursday, February 20, 2020

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Graduates from the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado are expected to cross-commission into the Space Force this spring, military officials said.

About 60 cadets would be commissioned into the new armed service branch, which formed in December with the signing of the $738 billion National Defense Authorization Act, the Gazette reported.

“They’re doing Air Force Academy curriculum, and they’ll just be directly commissioned into the Space Force,” academy Vice Superintendent Col. Houston Cantwell said.

Academy leaders and members of the Colorado’s congressional delegation announced the cross-commission plan at an oversight Board of Visitors meeting Wednesday. The plan would be similar to how the U.S. Naval Academy commissions Marine officers.

It is unclear how exactly academy leaders plan to commission cadets into the Space Force.

There are talks about offering juniors interested in joining the Space Force multiple job fields to choose from, including intelligence, cyber, acquisitions and engineering, leaders said.

“It’s important for the Air Force Academy’s long-term mission, and not only in near-term Air Force strategy, but long-term space strategy and tactics to have that sort of core knowledge here,” said Republican U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, who was at the meeting Wednesday with Republican U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn.

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