U.S. Space Force Director says Georgia Tech Partnership Key to Advancing Aerospace

Lt. General Nina Armagno Air Force ROTC cadets

Posted November 16, 2021

The U.S. Space Force is entrusting Georgia Tech with educating the next leaders who will defend the nation’s space capabilities, and a new agreement is solidifying this partnership.

Georgia Tech is the latest higher education institution to join the U.S. Space Force’s University Partnership Program, a strategic initiative that looks to train talent for future aerospace jobs, as well as further aerospace research.

Lt. General Nina M. Armagno, U.S. Space Force director of staff, visited the campus on Nov. 11 to discuss the threat the nation’s space capabilities faces from foreign countries and how colleges and universities like Georgia Tech are an integral to recruitment for a robust aerospace and cybersecurity workforce.

“As we embark as a new service, it’s exciting to do so with academic partners,” Armagno said. “We are building something incredible for our nation, and we can’t lose sight of the long-term benefits of the Space Force.”

During her visit, Armagno signed a memorandum with Georgia Tech for the University Partnership Program, one of 11 universities across the U.S. selected for initiative.

Earlier in the day, Armagno spoke to Air Force ROTC cadets about the Space Force, its current challenges, and how they could prepare to become commissioned officers in the sixth and newest branch of the U.S. Armed Forces. The Air Force ROTC is a unit of the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts.

“The STEM path is most desirable if you want to join Space Force,” Armagno said. “The key ingredient, the special sauce is to make yourself indispensable to your unit…More responsibility means more opportunity, more opportunity means a chance for promotion and that’s how you reach your goal.

You are committing to yourself in the defense of our nation, and that is a sacrifice.”

Armagno also spent time speaking with the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs about the daily impact of space on American lives and the role of the Space Force in defending access to space.

Be it mobile weather applications or GPS systems, the satellite technology used to dispense those programs is protected by the Space Force, Armagno said. But, she pointed out, a growing threat from countries like Russia and China will affect America’s ability to protect its space capabilities. That threat is the catalyst for the development of the Space Force.

“Russia and China are threatening the domain we use in day-to-day life and in scientific exploration,” Armagno said. “Space is still a domain that captures our imagination, but it’s threatened.”

Armagno also emphasized the importance of international cooperation in her talk with the Nunn School. Space Force is working with US allies to combine space capabilities and plans to launch several projects in 2022, including communications projects with Norway and launch projects with Brazil.

“We’ve called this the year to integrate the force. We’ve been working on projects with allies, and those are coming to fruition," said Lt. General Armagno.

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Lt. General Nina Armagno patch Air Force ROTC cadet

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