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Colonel Melissa Youderian

Commander of the Preparatory School

Preparatory School

Official photo of Colonel Youderian.
Contact Information

(719) 333-2583

Email

Bio

Colonel Melissa Youderian is the Commander, United States Air Force Academy Preparatory School, USAF Academy, Colorado. The Preparatory School executes a 10-month highly structured regimen taking Cadet Candidates through basic training to focusing on academics, military training, athletics and character development. Completion of this challenging program for these outstanding young men and women provides them an opportunity to gain an appointment and lead at the United States Air Force Academy.

Colonel Youderian began her military career as an enlisted member of the Army Reserve. She later received her commission from the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado, in May 1998. She spent time overseas in Italy, the Republic of Korea, and Iraq. Colonel Youderian is originally from Lincoln, Montana. She enjoys spending time with her husband and son hiking, cross-country skiing, and playing basketball.

Education

Air War College Correspondence (2015)

Master of Arts, Counseling & Leadership, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Colo. (2010)

Air Command and Staff College Correspondence (2010)

Air Force Incident Management Course (2008)

Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Montgomery, Ala. (2004)

Master of Arts, Criminal Justice, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Mich. (2004)

USAF Security Forces Officer Basic Course, Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio Texas (1999)

USAF Ground Combat Skills Course, Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio Texas (1999)

Bachelor of Science degree in Behavioral Sciences, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (1998)

Professional Experience

Commander, U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, U.S.Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (July 2020–Present)

Executive Assistant to the Commander, NORAD and USNORTHCOM, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Aug. 2018–July 2020)

Executive Officer to the USNORTHCOM Director of Operations, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Apr. 2018-Aug. 2018)

Deputy Division Chief, Homeland Defense and Protection, USNORTHCOM, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colo. (May 2017-Apr. 2018)

Branch Chief, Mission Assurance, USNORTHCOM, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Dec. 2016-May 2017)

Executive Officer to the Commander, Seventh Air Force, Osan Air Base, Korea (Apr. 2015-Apr. 2016)

Deputy Director, Installation and Mission Support, Seventh Air Force, Osan Air Base, Korea (Oct. 2014-Apr. 2015)

Deputy Commander, 90th Security Forces Group, FE Warren Air Force Base, Cheyenne, Wyo. (Aug. 2014-Oct. 2014)

Commander, 790th Missile Security Forces Squadron, FE Warren Air Force Base, Cheyenne, Wyo. (Aug. 2012-July 2014)

Air Officer Commanding, Cadet Squadron Five, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. (May 2010-July 2012)

AFIT Student, Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Master’s Degree Program – University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Colo. (May 2009-May 2010)

Commander, 341st Security Forces Squadron, Malmstrom Air Force Base, Cascade County, Mont. (May 2008-May 2009)

Commander, 341st Security Support Squadron, Malmstrom Air Force Base, Cascade County, Mont. (May 2007-May 2008)

Operations Officer, 1st Security Forces Squadron, Langley Air Force Base, Hampton, Va. (May 2004-May 2007)

Student, Air Force Institute of Technology, Civilian Institute, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Mich. (Dec. 2002-May 2004)

Flight Commander and Section Commander, 31st Security Forces Squadron, Aviano Air Base, Italy (Oct. 2000-Dec. 2002)

Element Leader, 564th Missile Support Squadron, Malmstrom Air Force Base, Cascade County, Mont. (July 1998-Oct. 2000)

Honors & Awards

Air Force Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters

Air Force Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters

Air Force Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster

Joint Meritorious Unit Award

Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor Device and two oak leaf clusters

Air Force Organizational Excellence Award

National Defense Service Medal

Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal

Iraq Campaign Medal

Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal

Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

Korean Defense Service Medal

Air Force Overseas Ribbon Long

Air Force Longevity Service with five oak leaf clusters

Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon with bronze service star

Air Force Training Ribbon

Army Service Ribbon

NATO Medal