On November 14, 2019, Diplomatic Security tweeted a video of the formal opening of the Foreign Affairs Security Training Center (FASTC) located in Blackstone, Virginia.
According to state.gov, the Department of State, working with the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), conducted environmental studies at Fort Pickett, which showed that the site was suitable for FASTC. In 2015, GSA purchased property and secured land use agreements for approximately 1,400 acres of publicly held land. On February 25, 2016, construction began for the FASTC project.
The final FASTC construction update notes that Hensel Phelps is the general contractor responsible for building the third and final construction phase of FASTC. The venues for this phase include the High Speed Anti-Terrorism Driving Course (West), Explosive Simulation Alley, Venue Classroom buildings, Indoor/Outdoor Firing Range, Central Warehouse, Armory, Parking Area for Training Vehicles, and a Fitness Center. Turnover of the Contract 03 venues to the State Department reportedly began in summer 2019. The Armory, Warehouse, Mock Urban Driving Track and a Parking Area have already been turned over to State for their use according to the FASTC September newsletter.
According to Diplomatic Security, DSS will train roughly 10,000 students at FASTC, including DSS special agents, other Foreign Service personnel, other U.S. government employees assigned to U.S. embassies and consulates, and some foreign nationals. The Foreign Affairs Counter Threat (FACT) course, required by Department of State personnel assigned to overseas posts was scheduled move to FASTC this year.
For more information about FASTC, visit https://www.state.gov/FASTC
WATCH: Today, DSS marked the opening of the Foreign Affairs Security Training Center (FASTC). DSS training at FASTC will enhance U.S. diplomatic efforts by preparing the foreign affairs community to face modern security challenges. pic.twitter.com/14ctfzvqa6
— DSS (@StateDeptDSS) November 14, 2019
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- FASTC Fort Pickett v. FLETC Glynco: GA Senator to Hold Hearing on Diplomatic Security Training Center Oct 2015
- GAO: FASTC Fort Pickett Fully Meets Requirements, FLETC Glynco, Not Really Sept 2015
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- A Look at the DOS Foreign Affairs Security Training Center (FASTC) in Fort Pickett and Nottoway County April 2015