Smooth move

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Tori Schultz
  • 6th Air Mobility Wing public affairs
"For me the transition from technical school to the operational Air Force was smooth, I didn't have any real issues," said Airman 1st Class Sandra Matos, 6th Comptroller Squadron lead defense travel administrator. "I was just anxious and nervous about moving somewhere new and different."

Matos attended technical school at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., for financial management for three months.

"I love the people I met, and the friends I made," said Matos. "Tech. school was a great opportunity to make connections and a good learning experience."

For Matos living near a beach was a mini dream of hers, which made MacDill AFB, Fla., the perfect first duty station.

"I felt nervous and I didn't know what to expect," said Matos. "At the same time, I was so excited and ready to start the next chapter of my career."

The easiest part about transitioning from tech. school to the operational Air Force for Matos was the relaxed environment and the willingness, from fellow Airmen, to help her out in any way they could.

"It was difficult for me to learn all the different aspects of my job," said Matos. "However, I have adapted well and have amazing mentors and co-workers to push me in the right direction."

When Matos first arrived to MacDill she reached out to her sister, Michele, for advice.

"My sister has recently retired from the Air Force and lives in the area," said Matos. "She has been extremely helpful and I couldn't thank her enough for looking out for me; she's given me advice and tips on just about everything Air Force wise."

Matos has been at MacDill for two months and is starting to get settled into the operational Air Force.

"While it has been a crazy ride going through all the training, being operational is so rewarding in itself and I've become more independent and self-reliant," said Matos. "I'm glad that I made it, and I look forward to many more opportunities to come my way.

When asked what advice she would give to other Airmen transitioning from tech school to the operational Air Force, Matos said, "I would tell them to ask their sponsors as many questions as possible about the area and their job. It makes you more prepared when you know what you're getting yourself into."