LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. --
A little more than a month ago, Air Education and Training initiated the Leading Inclusively Virtual Experience, or LIVE program, modernizing the way military leaders and Guardsmen train to take care of their Airmen. The sessions help grow inclusive-minded leaders and provide different opportunities and scenarios to assist in effective decision-making.
In late February, the 189th Airlift Wing Inspector General team hosted the first class using the LIVE program, which uses mixed virtual reality to create an immersive learning environment where Airmen can have real-time, authentic conversations with human-controlled avatars and other participants.
“When you participate in a L.I.V.E. session, you immerse yourself in a safe, but brave space to practice addressing exclusion using realistic scenarios on Airmen's experiences,” said Master Sgt. Keith Morisette, a 189 AW Inspector General team member. “I’m one of the 189th representatives for the Diversity and Inclusion team headed by the base Community Support Coordinator. During one of our monthly meetings, we got to experience a LIVE event and that was the moment I knew the wing needed to be included in this experience.”
During the hour-long course, volunteers from the group, interact with an actor-controlled avatar. The discussion ensues based on the conversation and a decision is eventually made. The decisions and actions are based on the volunteer and avatar’s interactions. At the end of the conversation, the group participants still in the audience will make observations during a facilitated discussion about the volunteer and avatar’s interaction.
Currently, the program offers six scenarios to choose from: lactation, senior leaders, professional military education, pronouns, practitioner, and spoken accents. The program offers the courses to anyone who can benefit from them. As an ever-evolving force, we must adapt to the changing world around us. Participation in courses like this helps leaders and other individuals understand and connect with a new generation of Airmen.
“I come from a time of PowerPoints and CBTs,” Morisette said. “This course is interactive, new, fresh, and unpredictable. It brings realism and is something you should make every effort to attend to explore individual perspectives and perceptions that create biases and blind spots, and gain understanding and appreciation for others’ lived experiences, perspectives, and perceptions.
For more information on the L.I.V.E. course or to participate in one of the listed topics, contact Lyndsey Ballard at the Little Rock Air Force Base Airman and Family Readiness Center. You can schedule a session by emailing her at email@example.com.