Photo by Grant Ammon
Army Lt. Gen. P. K. Keen, the Military Deputy Commander for USSOUTHCOM, met with Foreign Area Officers (FAOs) attending a Latin American in-residence course at NPS for the School of International Graduate Studies (SIGS) Joint Foreign Area Officer Skill Sustainment Pilot Program (JFSSPP). Keen spoke for nearly an hour to more than 35 participants in the course, which ran from February 21 through March 4. JFSSPP participants are non-matriculated students who come to NPS for topical short courses relating to the culture, history, language, politics and security of the regions in which they work.
Keen also made time to speak to select students from the regular NPS student body during his visit.
Keen was an ideal presenter for the course given his extensive experience working in Latin America. He has been assigned as a Special Forces Officer in the Republic of Panama, a Military Group Training Officer in Honduras, a FAO and student at the Brazilian Command and General Staff College, the Commander of U.S. Military Group in Colombia, and as the Commander of U.S. Army South.
The JFSSPP is an advanced education and skill sustainment initiative for Foreign Area Officers from all services - Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines. Recognizing foreign language ability and specialized regional knowledge as mission critical skills, the JFSSPP fulfills a Department of Defense mandate to provide resources and opportunities for FAO skill sustainment and professional education.
The JFSSPP partners with the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center (DLIFLC) to provide customized language training and sustainment support to participating FAOs. The DLIFLC, also based in Monterey, is the largest language institute in the United States with an educational mandate for all Department of Defense personnel.