The United States military protects lands, seas and skies. Now, there’s a new branch taking that commitment of safety to a higher level.
“It’s honestly an honor to be able to assist all the other branches and the men and women who serve in them to protect the way of life that we live,” said Specialist 1 Tyler Nollet, who recently joined the United States Space Force, the nation’s newest military branch.
Founded in 2019 during the Trump Administration, the Space Force operates under the Department of the Air Force.
Despite the name, Space Force guardians don’t actually go to space.
Instead, they operate technology orbiting Earth from the ground level, something Nollett wants to make a career out of.
“We are pretty much the people who are talking to our satellites, making sure they’re running the way the need to and looking up at the stars and seeing what’s up there and what it does,” he said.
Although it’s the smallest military branch in the country, with about 5,000 uniformed guardians and 6,000 civilian guardians, there is a big buzz about more Americans joining the Space Force.
“We’ve seen a lot of interest, a lot of inquires,” said U.S. Space Force Major Adrian Law.
Law says there’s been a recent increase of applications. While the pay, eligibility and commitments are similar to other military branches, the qualifications to enlist and career opportunities are much different.
"We are looking for STEM-related, highly-qualified individuals to undertake very critical, and in many cases, highly technical specialties,” he said.
The Space Force has a goal of bringing in 376 new guardians this year and even more next year.
Nollet graduates from tech school in a few weeks and will work as a space systems operator, which he says will take his career to a higher level.
“It's truly an honor and a privilege to be a part of the nation’s newest branch and in my opinion, the nation’s coolest branch," he said.