Airman Uses Career Break to Become a Chaplain

A US Air Force Airman took a unique opportunity — offered by the Air Force — to become a chaplain.

In 2014, the Air Force began offering a limited “career intermission program,” with the intent of allowing Airmen to leave the service for one to three years and a guarantee of a return to their previous position. Part of the logic behind the program was that by giving Airmen a “break” — and potentially letting them see the other side of the fence — they’d be more willing to stay committed to the service for the long haul.

Then-TSgt Travis Barrino saw a different opportunity:

Barrino…always felt a calling to be a pastor. As an active-duty chaplain’s assistant, however, he didn’t have the necessary education and experience qualifications for his dream job–to be a chaplain…

Barrino was one of the first Airmen to apply and be selected to participate in [CIP], and was able to attend seminary as a full-time student.

Now-Lt Barrino — with an upcoming promotion to Captain — is a newly minted chaplain, serving in the US Air Force in a manner that matches his goals, passions, and experience and also benefits the armed forces.

Seems like a win-win. All God had to do was create CIP.