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AFMC Command News

OC-ALC partnerships foster engineering opportunities

  • Published
  • 72nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

The Educational Partnership Agreement between Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex and Oklahoma Christian University creates many science, technology, engineering, and mathematics related opportunities for students and Airmen alike.

This partnership, signed on April 28, 2021, provides options for enabling STEM learning including activities that can help students learn about accelerating insertion of technological advances into the Complex’s industrial operations, enhancing graduate and undergraduate programs, and otherwise stimulating research and development in engineering and science fields.

Oklahoma Christian University’s Entrepreneur Scholars Program, (starting this fall) was developed by faculty leaders to leverage this EPA. This program includes a guided team oriented learning experience that enables students to gain entrepreneur, leadership, and innovation capabilities in cooperation with Tinker AFB and private sectors partners.

This unique collaboration offers students the opportunity to work with OC-ALC engineers to develop STEM related skills and set the stage for options to enter into additional agreements. Cooperative research and development agreements are of special interest, as they allow all parties to engage in engineering/development work as well as support commercialization or technology transfer of new technologies to the private sector.

 “It allows our engineers to be engineers,” said Christopher Monsey, Acquisition and Intellectual Property Counsel with Air Force Sustainment Center. “The Air Force needs to enable our engineers to work on engineering and development projects to ensure they create and maintain the technical knowledge required to enable them to perform their inherently governmental functions.”

Additionally, technology transfer and other public private partnership authorities and agreements provide options for follow-on activities beyond EPA STEM learning activities.

In some cases, the intellectual property that comes out of these follow-on efforts can be licensed out to private companies.

 “We have lots of people who invent lots of things, but it doesn’t have anywhere to go,” said Zachary Coulson, 76th Aircraft Maintenance Group mechanical engineer. “This allows for a pipeline of innovations, a series of relationships in order to get maximum value for the warfighter, and makes it to where we can start doing next-level engineering work and research.”

The Oklahoma Christian University Education Partnership Agreement is one of multiple collaborations between the OC-ALC and local universities to share ideas and advance technologies.

For more information on growing innovation ecosystems and collaboration possibilities under various public private partnership authorities reach out to the AFSC Office of Research and Technology Application at afsc.en.tech@us.af.mil.