Aerospace professor receives medals

Captain David Magoc takes a break and sits on top of an Abrams tank in Speicher, Iraq.
Photo courtesy of David Magoc / The Collegian

Air Force Capt. David Magoc, an aerospace studies assistant professor at California State University, Fresno received two medals for his service earlier this year.

The first medal, Air Force accommodation medal, was awarded to Magoc for the four years he spent in Langley Air Force Base in Virginia.

“We were able to get representatives from each F-16 base, to include Air Force Reserves and Air National Guard, to map out the process and reduce steps that were not necessary and also combine steps,” Magoc said.

“This process was then standardized across the entire F-16 fleet which meant an airman can go from Luke Air Force Base, AZ to Aviano Air Base, Italy and not have to worry about learning a new process,” Magoc said.

The second medal Magoc received was for the 210 days he spent in Iraq processing more than $16 million worth of equipment. Magoc’s team also received humvees because the military designed a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle that would better protect the soldiers out on convoys.

“The medal in Iraq was for spending my time in the army where I was responsible for receiving army damage, for lack of better choice, blown up equipment they would have to turn in. We were receiving the equipment from Kuwait,” Magoc said.

According to Magoc, that ended up being 1400 pieces of equipment and 792 vehicles.

Captain Magoc explaining operations to visiting Air Force Personnel Center Commander MG McClain, in Iraq.
Photo courtesy of David Magoc / The Collegian

Magoc has been in the Air Force for 20 years. His first assignment was at the Yokota Airbase in Kuwait. He started out as an air transportation specialist loading aircrafts with cargo and passengers for the first 13 years of his career in the Air Force.

Magoc has also worked presidential support at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, and he spent two years in Guam. He has also spent time in Korea, the British Islands, the territory of Diego Garcia and several places throughout the United States.

“I became an officer in 2002. I’ve been deployed three times, twice to Kuwait in Camp Arifjan and then this last time,” Magoc said. “Last year I was a cop spiker in Iraq for seven months working with the army.”

However, Magoc didn’t always want to be in the Air Force.

“I wanted to be a professional athlete,” Magoc said.” I did go to college for two years and I played football. I needed to get some discipline and order in my life,”

When Magoc was 20 years old he knew it was time to get out on his own and the Air Force was the best opportunity to gain job experience and a trade skill.

Magoc arrived at Fresno State in July and already he has had an impact on his students.

Political science major David Hubbard works with Magoc in recruiting and has him as a professor for a senior Air Force cadet’s class with him.

“It’s cool he can come into the program and help bring the standards up even more,” Hubbard said. “It’s cool to see what he’s going to bring to the game. I look forward to seeing what is planned.”

Hubbard said that coming into the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) in the middle of a career could be viewed as a negative thing by the Air Force because that’s three years out of the loop to train future officers.

“He’s in the middle of his career and that speaks volumes about his character. He doesn’t care what the Air Force thinks. He’s willing to take that on,” Hubbard said.

“He’s a great guy and really driven. I hope one day I will be doing the same thing. I want to be training future leaders,” Hubbard said.

Magoc plans to be at Fresno State for three years to help develop the attachment and young officers.

“They’ve already done an outstanding job here. So I’m hoping to continue to build on that here,” Magoc said.

At the end of his three years at Fresno State, Magoc will be eligible for retirement but isn’t planning on leaving the Air Force.

“I think I’m going to continue in the Air Force and go towards my goal to be a squadron commander. The whole part of me becoming an officer was having the ability to lead people and being a squadron commander is the epitome of being a leader,” Magoc said.

If you would like more information on the Air Force ROTC program, contact Capt. Magoc, the Unit Admissions Officer at 278-6204 or

Previous Story

Crim course offers service-learning opportunity in El Salvador

Next Story

Show and tell