Profile: Sarah Mutter
"You've got to be a tough chick," says Captain Sarah Mutter of the U.S. Air Force. Military life presents anyone with challenges, but the rewards for the career she has chosen are just as numerous, Mutter said.
While the Air Force is predominantly men, Mutter said it is a great career option for women as well. The assistant professor of aerospace studies is nearing completion of her two-year special assignment at Air Force ROTC Detachment 425 at Mississippi State.
Here she serves as Operations Flight Commander, overseeing all training for the AFROTC cadets. She teaches fundamentals, leadership, and oversees physical training. Of the nearly 60 cadets, she said 10 are women.
"It's not always easy when you have 10 guys around and you have to keep up, but it's also not unusual to see a women do extremely well in comparison to men they're training with. Once you get into this atmosphere, if you have the heart, motivation and determination, the training is very doable," she said.
Rolling into her fifth year on active duty, she went through AFROTC at Rutgers University before commissioning in 2007. Her sister, then active Air Force, motivated Mutter to join as well.
"I knew it was a guaranteed job and travel. I have the urge to travel wherever I can. Of course, you get to serve your country, and as they say, 'do something amazing in the Air Force,'" she said.
Her present position follows assignments in Korea and Guam, both of which she said she would return to in a heartbeat. Europe is another location on her dream sheet.
Mutter said working with the cadets provides her with daily motivation. She explained that the training is preparing college students, most often in their early 20s, to automatically supervise groups of more than 20 people after their commissioning.
"You have to teach them by being an example. In order to become good leaders, the cadets have to be humble. They have a lot of information and skills to learn. I make sure I know their jobs and can stay ahead of them so that I can be a good leader to them," she said.
Next week … Dr. Mike Mabry !