The Sky Is Not the Limit

May 17th, 2016 Posted in In Case You Missed It

Editor’s Note:  Major Sean J. VanHoltz ’87’s article was originally run in the fall/winter 2009 edition of The Spartan.

VanHoltz ski shotMajor Sean J. VanHoltz ’87 graduated cum laude from CCC with a degree in telecommunications, followed by a B.S. in Aviation Business Management from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, FL, in 1991. After working as an Aviation Insurance Underwriter, Sean attended USAF Pilot Training and served six years full-time in the U.S. Air Force. This gave Sean the education and experience he needed to work for Gulfstream Aerospace and Flight Safety International in Savannah, GA, as a Gulfstream GV pilot instructor.

In 1999, Sean was hired by US Airways and became an instructor pilot in the Airbus A320, while maintaining his operational currency and flying combat sorties in the C-130 with the Air National Guard as a Traditional Guardsman. Immediately following 9/11, Sean accepted a voluntary furlough from US Airways and returned to active duty military status at the 174th Fighter Wing in Syracuse, NY.

While at the 174th he was selected as the Director of Operations of the 274th Air Support Operations Squadron, a special operations unit where he was trained as a Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) qualified Air Liaison Officer (ALD). During this assignment he obtained experience in the F-16D “Viper.”

T1The U.S. Department of Homeland Security recruited VanHoltz as a Federal Regulatory and Law Enforcement Agent in 2004 to help build their aviation security program. Subsequently, he returned to Traditional Guardsman status with the Air National Guard.

Due to his unusual background, Major VanHoltz was selected as an Interagency Liaison Officer to the Department of Homeland Security in Washington, DC.  After four years in this position, he was selected to work on the Joint Staff at Headquarters NORAD and USNORTHCOM in Colorado Springs, CO, on active duty status.

VanHoltz aviationnet idCurrently, VanHoltz is scheduled to begin Joint Instructor Training at Naval Air Station Pensacola, FL, in the T-1 Jayhawk in the fall of 2009. He will spend the next four years as a Weapons System Officer Instructor teaching USAF, Navy and Marine officers low-level radar navigation, electronic warfare, and weapons employment. His student officers will earn their wings through this advanced flight training program and will subsequently follow a training pipeline to the F-15E Strike Eagle, F18 E/F Super Hornet, B-1B Bomer, B-52 Bomber, or the EA-6B.

The next step, following this assignment, will be to either attend F-15E WSO training or return to the 174th FW to fly the new MQ-9 Reaper until his retirement. His future plans include obtaining his Ph.D. while working retirement days as a college professor at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, while flight instructing as a hobby and telling war stories.

So you see, the sky is not the limit after leaving CCC.

Comments are closed.