Professional Development Classes

Join AFCEA for custom instructor-led comprehensive classes on topics of high importance. These classes can be scheduled to meet customer demand and conducted in person or online based on need. 

Efficient Way To Train

Bring AFCEA’s Professional Development Center courses to your site, saving the time, expense and frustration associated with travel. The cost per student is often dramatically lower, and the ability to train locally adds to convenience and productivity. Classes can be offered online (real time or on demand) to both organizations and individuals.   

World Class Expert Instruction 

The AFCEA Professional Development Center's instructors include highly regarded government and industry experts, university professors and published authors.

Tailor Classes to Meet Your Needs 

Instructors can tailor their classes for the students of the sponsoring organization. 

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A century-old wireless technology is experiencing a resurgence of interest from warfighters worldwide. Fourth-generation (4G) wideband high frequency (HF) radios are now emerging to satisfy military needs for an alternative to satellites for mission-critical beyond line-of-sight communications. In the more than 100 years since Marconi demonstrated trans-Atlantic communications, HF radio has matured from a quirky, temperamental medium requiring highly trained operators to a reliable, low-cost, automated technology with global reach. This class was developed to satisfy the need of government and industry worldwide to understand and apply 2G and 3G HF systems and the exciting new 4G wideband (WBHF) technology for sending video and high-speed data over HF radio. 


The objective of this class is to help military officers, government personnel and industry managers understand the opportunities and challenges presented by HF radio communications and the ability of the new generations of HF radio technology to overcome the difficulties and provide reliable, economical, long-range communications. 


This class is particularly suited for: 

  • U.S. and allied communications engineers and planners, who will learn how to apply modern high-frequency radio technology  
  • U.S. and allied acquisition professionals who must make decisions about HF radio systems 
  • Industry sales personnel who want to understand the emerging generations of HF radio technology 


Dr. Eric E. Johnson has been a key contributor to HF radio automation for more than three decades, both in the United States and in the NATO Beyond-Line-of-Sight Communications Capability Team. He has chaired the NATO CaT and the Government/Industry Technical Advisory Committee that guides the development of U.S. military standards. He is the author or editor of four of the current generation of U.S. and NATO standards for HF protocols and modems: MIL-STD-188-141D, STANAG 4538, MIL- STD-188-110D and STANAG 4539. Dr. Johnson is the lead author of “Advanced High-Frequency Radio Communications and Third-Generation and Wideband HF Radio Communications.” He is professor emeritus of electrical and computer engineering at New Mexico State University. 



Satellite communications dominate current and planned military and government communications systems and make net-centric warfare possible. This class provides a review of current military satellite communications as well as a look into the future of developing technology. Internet protocol (IP) and IP over Satellite (IPoS) are addressed, showing this protocol's strengths and weaknesses as a facilitator of net-centric warfare. The topics provide a perspective of satellite communications for use in military applications. 


This class describes the fundamental aspects of satellite communication systems engineering with emphasis on the description of current and projected satellite networks in a networked communications environment.  


The class is designed for military communications systems planners, engineers, managers, operators, system analysts and decision-makers who need a review of military satellite communications concepts and implementations. A general background in communications is recommended. 


Introduction and System Review 

  • Basic Principles of Satellite Communications, frequencies, orbits, design rationale 
  • Overview of Military Satellite Communications Systems, including UHF, SHF, and EHF architectures 

Satellite Links 

  • Model of a satellite communications system 
  • Link calculation components 

SATCOM Terminals 

  • Terminal View of Link Equations 
  • UHF, SHFn and EHF Terminals 
  • Future Terminals Planned 

UHF Military Satellite Systems 

  • Fleet Satellite Communications System
  • UHF Follow-On System 
  • Mobile User Objective System 

CDMA/AJ/IP over Satellite (IPoS) 

  • Code division multiple access and anti-jam formulas 
  • IP, Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) & Universal Datagram Protocol (UDP) 
  • Performance Enhancement Protocols 

Net-Centric Warfare Workshop 

  • OSD Philosophy and Directions 
  • Impact of Technologies on Net-Centric Warfare 
  • Latency and Remote Access Exercises Mega Satellite Systems 

CONOPS and Budgeting 

  • Concepts of Operations 
  • Starlink, OneWeb Telesat & Other Systems 
  • Advantage & Disadvantages of Each Constellation 


James A. Mazzei has spent the last 20 years providing consulting services to DoD and intelligence community customers under a contract with a federally funded research and development center. His principal areas of expertise are DoD satellite systems, commercial satellite systems, satellite earth stations and distributed networks. He has more than 30 years of satellite communications experience in the Air Force and industry in technical and management roles. Mazzei's experience in industry encompasses testing and production of major systems as well as systems engineering and technical assistance. In addition to his consulting services, Mazzei has served as an adjunct professor for satellite communications, data communications, computer networks, network management and executive programs. 

Mazzei is the author of SIGNAL Media articles "The Future of Military Satellite Communications Starts Now" and "Crisis Pending in Military Satellite Communications," where he details the challenges military faces in SATCOM as well as some solutions. 



The critical role of communications and networking in the defense community is widely recognized. The field is both broad and dynamic; while progress proceeds at a phenomenal pace, new issues and problems arise almost as fast. The underlying principles, however, change either slowly or not at all. A conceptual understanding of these principles can help those who work in all aspects of the field to understand the basics, which help guide planning and decision-making. The class includes a discussion of analog and digital communications, packet and circuit switching, voice and data  networks, and the physics of radio, terrestrial, and satellite links. 


This class provides an overview of the key principles of communications and networking theory, using operational military communications systems as examples. The objective is to provide a mixed technical and non-technical audience with a conceptually rigorous technical foundation covering a wide array of topics, based on the view that in the future, all forms of military communications and networking will be tied more closely together. This class will allow graduates to converse more intelligently with subject matter experts and pave the way for further learning in more specific areas. While equations are kept to a minimum, the concepts presented are rigorous. 


Those who have responsibilities for planning, acquiring, managing, monitoring, operating and/or regulating communications or networking programs or systems in a military-oriented environment. The class is specifically intended for those who do not have an extensive formal background in the principles of communications but find themselves in a position where such a background would prove useful. It should also be of interest to engineers trained in other areas and communications specialists seeking to review and expand their knowledge of the theory and practice of military communications. 


Terry L. Stockholm is a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel communications/electronics and information technology specialist with more than 40 years of expertise in the C4ISR arena. He has served at the Federal Emergency Management Agency as the deputy chief of IT operations and chief of IT disaster operations nationwide. He was a contractor supporting the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) chief information officer during the standup of that department, division chief in the DHS Wireless Management Office, and after Hurricane Katrina, he was tapped by the secretary of Homeland Security to evaluate and recommend changes to ensure all levels of responders can communicate during a similar disaster. He had multiple tours at national and international spectrum management offices and deployed to Operations Desert Storm and Provide Comfort as a senior communications planner. He has commanded a communications squadron and served a tour of duty on the National Airborne Operations Center supporting the president in nuclear command and control. He attended the Communications-Electronics Maintenance Officer School, Inter-service radio frequency management course, U.S. Marine Corps Command and Control Systems Course and the Air War College. Stockholm holds a Master’s in systems management from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor’s in chemistry and biology from Wright State University. 





U.S. Intelligence: An Introduction, provides a broad overview of the roles, functions, activities and current issues facing the U.S. intelligence community (IC). This class is specifically designed to provide government, military, academic and contractor professionals working with the IC a firm basis for understanding the community’s roles, needs and culture. 

This class places special emphasis on the ongoing changes in intelligence, the issues that these changes raise, the changes that have been implemented since 2001 and how they are progressing. The two-day course is comprised of the following core modules with associated learning objectives, each of which helps meet the needs noted above. 


Legal Basis and Budgeting 

The laws and executive orders that govern U.S. intelligence and the structure of the budget, including the makeup of the two main components, the National Intelligence Program (NIP) and the Military Intelligence Program (MIP). 

Learning Objectives: Understanding the laws that govern U.S. intelligence structure and activities and understanding the basic composition of both parts of the intelligence budget, as well as major sub-components of the budget. 

Structure and Missions 

  • The key organizing and methodological principles that guide the structure and function of the IC 
  • The role and function of each main agency and of the DNI 
  • The issues that continue to be problematic in managing U.S. intelligence 

Learning Objectives: Understanding the various types of functions carried out in U.S. intelligence (analysis, operational, acquisition) and the roles played by each of the major intelligence agencies, the inherent issue of coordination, and a sense of how the DNI is faring. 

National Security Threats in the 21st Century 

  • The main policy issues that drive U.S. intelligence; the role of the National Intelligence Priorities Framework (NIPF) 
  • The intelligence implications of the main policy issues (including terrorism, WMD, failed states, military deployments, et al.) 
  • The role of opportunity analysis 

Learning objectives: Understanding the key issues that currently concern policymakers and how these concerns are then translated into intelligence problem sets, many of which the students will be dealing with. 


  • Review of the strengths and weaknesses of each of the collection disciplines (HUMINT, GEOINT, SIGINT, MASINT, OSINT), the intelligence issues (as discussed in the previous module) for which they are each best suited, and Community collection management issues. 

Learning Objectives: Understanding how the various INTs work, which agencies are responsible for them and the relative strengths and weaknesses of each INT. 

Covert Action 

  • Formally, “activities of the United States government to influence political, economic or military conditions abroad” is among the most controversial activities undertaken by the IC. Covert action raises issues of legal authorities, roles and missions, Congressional oversight, and ethical and moral standards. This module discusses these various issues as well as the types of activities usually conducted as covert action, with historic examples. 

Learning Objectives: Understanding the legal basis and authorities for covert action; the concept of “plausible deniability;” and the types of activities that fall under the term “covert action.” 

Intelligence Analysis 

  • The key issues driving U.S. intelligence analysis, including policymaker focus, workforce issues and the continuing legacy of 9/11 and Iraq weapons of mass destruction. 

Learning Objectives: Achieving a better understanding of the stresses, strengths and weaknesses inherent in intelligence analysis. 

Congress and the Intelligence Community 

  • The role of Congress in intelligence 
  • How intelligence oversight has developed 
  • Key intelligence issues between Congress and the executive branch. 

Learning Objectives: Emphasize a better appreciation of the legitimate role Congress plays in determining U.S. intelligence policy, as well as the political factors that come into play. 

Cyber: An Introduction 

  • Cyber has moved to the top of the national security agenda. This module offers an introduction to some of the historical, policy, legal and intelligence issues related to cyber. 

Learning Objective: Give students a better context in which to think about cyber issues, without the attendant hype, and how they might best be handled. We incorporate threat and collection exercises into the two-day course. These are particularly useful in helping the students to begin applying their knowledge to real problems.   



Dr. Mark M. Lowenthal is an internationally recognized expert on intelligence and the former president of The Intelligence and Security Academy where he now serves as a senior instructor. From 2002-2005, Dr. Lowenthal served as the assistant director of Central Intelligence for analysis and production and also as the vice chairman for evaluation on the National Intelligence Council. Prior to these duties, he served as counselor to the director of Central Intelligence. 

Dr. Lowenthal was the staff director of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in the 104th Congress (1995-97), where he directed the committee’s study on the future of the Intelligence Community, IC21: The Intelligence Community in the 21st Century. He also served in the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), as both office director and deputy assistant secretary of state and has been the senior specialist in U.S. foreign policy at the Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress.

Dr. Lowenthal has written extensively on intelligence and national security issues, including six books and more than 100 articles and studies. He has appeared on each of the major networks, the Lehrer Newshour and Charlie Rose. His op-eds have appeared in The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Dr. Lowenthal received his B.A. from Brooklyn College and his Ph.D. in history from Harvard University. He is on the adjunct faculty of the Johns Hopkins University, the National Intelligence University and Sciences Po in Paris (Institut d'études politiques de Paris). He was an adjunct at Columbia University for 14 years. He is the Executive Director of the International Association for Intelligence Education and a chairman emeritus of the Intelligence Committee for AFCEA. Currently, he is a member of the Intelligence Community Studies Board and the FBI Intelligence Analysts Association.

In 2005 Dr. Lowenthal was awarded the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, the Intelligence Community’s highest award. In 2006, he received AFCEA’s Distinguished Service Award for service to the intelligence community. In 1988, Dr. Lowenthal was the Grand Champion on Jeopardy!, the television quiz show. He has delivered analytic training to federal government, private sector, non-profit and academic clients such as OSAC, NSA, CISCO, Lockheed Martin, HSBC Bank, Citibank, MITRE, Georgetown University, University of California, Zeta, OnCall International and Oracle. Currently, he is the co-chair of the ODNI’s Intelligence Community Studies Board.


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