Ongoing efforts to provide a diverse workforce that equitably reflects the demographicsof the nation was a top priority and a military necessity for the U.S. Air Force (USAF);however, military leaders promoted a lower percentage of female officers into field graderanks. Significant research existed about the challenges women face in the armed forces,but little was specific to women’s successes and even less on women in the field gradeofficer corps. The purpose of this qualitative narrative inquiry study was to present theexperiences of USAF female officers who had successfully obtained a promotion to thefield grade officer corps to understand the factors affecting female officers as theynavigate the challenges of the gender retention gaps. This study presented theexperiences of nine field grade female officers in the USAF who shared theirperspectives in semi-structured interviews. Seven themes emerged during the analysisand the interpretation of narrative inquiry based on the synthesis of the lived experiencesof the women who participated in this study. The seven themes were consistent jobperformance contributing to promotion, mentorship contributing to promotion, the effectsof certain job opportunities contributing to promotion, professional military educationleading to promotion, reasons for remaining in the USAF, issues causing high femaleretention loss, and advice to women contemplating separation. The study indicated thecontributing areas that could cause female field grade officers to achieve promotion in theUSAF even though they navigated through gender retention challenges.
|Advisor:||Stout, Mary W., Eylers, Hinrich|
|Commitee:||Amason, Robert F., Johnson, Karen K.|
|School:||University of Phoenix|
|Department:||School of Advanced Studies|
|School Location:||United States -- Arizona|
|Source:||DAI-A 82/7(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Organizational behavior, Womens studies, Military studies|
|Keywords:||Air Force officers, Female military officers, Field Grade Officers, Military Gender Retention Gaps, Promotion factors, Retention|
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