AF expands management options/Accessions

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by fencersmother, Jun 14, 2010.

  1. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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  2. USAFMortensen

    USAFMortensen Member

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    Pretty crazy stuff. I've seen a ton of young Airman get kicked out just over these past few months for normally routine follies. For example two Apprentice air traffic controllers that just washed out of the career field for not being able to handle the stress, in the past these two would be given an opportunity to re class into another AFSC, however with all the force structuring they are both being forced into separating.
     
  3. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    USAFMort, that is especially sad about the Air Traffic Controllers. My eldest S is an ATC (soon to be NAVY PILOT!) and he saw a lot of young ppl wash up in that field on the civilian side. Despite the hype, there are no jobs in that field on the civ side either.

    From what I hear, some of the AF jobs they are pushing at the AFA seem to include "Maintenance officer." This sounds like "running the mechanic's shop" to my ear. Does anyone know exactly what this job might entail? Do Physics majors do this job? (Seems a waste of a Physics degree but what do I know?)
     
  4. USAFMortensen

    USAFMortensen Member

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    Ya I am currently active duty ATC and you see it happen all the time, but now they are just getting booted from the service.

    And sorry i know very little about the specifics on the Maintenance side of things, but it is a crucial part of what we do in the Air Force and is very much an important job.
     
  5. Bundy

    Bundy Member

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    The article states...

    "Expanded officer measures include waiving active-duty service commitments in targeted year groups; waiving all but two years of commissioning commitments for Air Force Academy and ROTC graduates as well as waiving their education and scholarship recoupment costs..."

    Does this mean "five and dive" is now "two and dive"???
     
  6. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    In a word: NO.

    Look at a couple key statements: Both officer and enlisted accessions will be reduced to meet mission requirements. Voluntary and involuntary initiatives also will be implemented as appropriate. Eligibility for these programs will vary by Air Force Specialty Code and years of service to ensure the Air Force has the right balance of skills needed to meet current and future mission requirements.

    And then...
    In an attempt to limit the impact to Airmen who are currently serving, Air Force officials will adjust accessions. Decisions to reduce accessions will be based on career field manning and future growth.

    Expanded officer measures include waiving active-duty service commitments in targeted year groups; waiving all but two years of commissioning commitments for Air Force Academy and ROTC graduates as well as waiving their education and scholarship recoupment costs; and lowering the Reserve obligation for Palace Chase transfers from a three-year commitment ratio to one year for each remaining year of ADSC.


    And finally
    Officers with more than six and less than 12 years of commissioned service in specific career fields and year groups will be offered voluntary separation pay as a means to encourage their transition from active-duty service. Should this incentive fall short of encouraging the number of transitions needed, a reduction in force board will convene in September to identify officers for transition by April 1, 2011.

    A force-shaping board also will convene at this time to identify officers with less than six years of commissioned service in designated career fields and year groups for continued retention or separation.


    So what does this mean and why do I say "NO" to the "two and dive?"

    In the past (this has happened a lot since I started in 1979) what this means is that the AF goes through ALL the career fields and determines which are "overmanned" and need to be reduced. Then the AF decides what year groups (for officers this is the year you were commissioned) are "overmanned" and need to be reduced to "even out the progression of officers in grade in the next XX years." The AF goal is to have a "neat curve" of career fields, manning, and grade progression for the present and the future.

    So...how does this affect your typical AFA graduate? The answer is: it most likely doesn't affect them. SOME, yes; but most, no. Why?

    Because most AFA graduates enter rated assignments (pilot, ABM, WSO, EWO) and those historically are NOT touched as they're the "tip of the spear" and we need them up front. The fields you "normally" see "at risk" are things like:

    Public Affairs
    Administration
    Medical Services (not physicians, nurses, but admin types)
    OSI
    Varied engineering positions
    Accounting and Finance
    Budgeting
    Contracting

    And others...it's just too early for my aging mind to list them all. NOTE: they are typically in "support" roles.

    So lets say "your graduate" is in one of the "targeted fields for reduction." What will happen? The AF will say "Career field/AFSC is XX% overmanned and will be reduced by voluntary/involuntary means."

    The officers in the "eligible" year groups will be "racked and stacked" by their first "O-6" (Colonel) rater above them. This is "typically" the Operations Group Commander or Support Group Commander. The "R&S" will be based upon their performance to date, commanders comments/recommendations, etc...etc... This is MUCH like a promotion board.

    Once the R&S is complete, the results will be forwarded to the AF for determination. Example, of there are 300 YY Officers to be looked at and the plan is to cut 130 of them...all things being equal, you do NOT want to be in the bottom 130 of the R&S! If you are, you'll be told "thanks for your service, but you are "excess to the needs of the AF..." and you'll be a civilian typically in less than 8 months. Depending upon how the AF/DOD is doing this, you may or may not receive a nice payout.

    THESE are the officers that "may" have their service commitments reduced or waived. For those NOT selected, or in those career fields NOT targeted...NO WAIVING OR REDUCTION of commitment occurs.

    So no, it's not a "two and dive" type deal.

    This is a VERY simplified explanation...I hope it helps?

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  7. bandit

    bandit Member

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    From the numbers I have seen posted here and other forums, it would seem to me that only a bit more than half go into rated positions.

    Also I have read a statement recently that some USAFA grads are being discharged after not completing their initial skills training and being responsible for recoupment of their tuition costs.

    I was wondering if anyone with knowledge could put this into terms a "non-military" person could understand. Particularly what exactly is "Initial Skills Training (ITS)". Would that be UPT for pilots? What about other AFSC's. I can see how someone might not complete UPT for all kinds of reasons, but not sure on other AFSC's
     
  8. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    You're correct, about 50% give or take go into rated areas. Semantics: "most, fewer, more, etc..." that's all.:smile:

    Failing initial skills...yep, you're correct; for a pilot designee, UPT would be initial skills training. Of course, it could also be "follow-on weapon system trainng" as well (UPT is over, you go to F-16 school and bust out of that). For other folks (AFSC's) they all have initial qualification training to attend...fail that and you can very easily be separated. However in "normal" times, that's not often done as we can use officers in other areas.

    BUT...in "abnormal times" this can be a ticket to civilian life and a big bill theoretically from the gov't for your academy career. But...doing a quick search on the AF website, and a few more here at the base, I can't find any "examples" of AFA graduates being separated for failing initial qualification training. On a separate website there was the example of a UPT student that was "washed out" and being told "you're facing a separation board" only to find that they were being sent to UAS training.

    And that doesn't surprise me. The AF (or any other service) isn't in a rush to "get rid of" a newly minted academy graduate. Am I biased in saying that over an OTS/ROTC graduate? Yes, probably; but I think you'd find that the "powers that be" would also look at the other commissioning source and see how much $$ the service has invested in the person.

    The services "generally" will do what they can to keep someone that is giving their best to serve. Now, do something dumb (like the navy guys shooting protected waterfowl, new marines cheating on a test, etc.) and that's a completely different situation.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  9. bandit

    bandit Member

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    Thanks for the ITS explanation.

    I think some discussion about cadets having to pay back tuition has come up due to this recent article. In the article it says "over two dozen junior officers" and then "many of them usafa or rotc grads". Which I guess could mean a lot of ROTC and at least one USAFA grad based on the way it was worded.

    http://www.airforcetimes.com/community/opinion/airforce_editorial_drawdown_062110w/

    Which was responded to by the USAFA Director of Communications and posted in another group.

    "While the 2009 year group is not eligible for current Air Force involuntary
    Force Management programs such as Force Shaping, Reduction-in-Force, etc.,
    if a member fails to complete initial skills training (IST) he/she may be
    subject involuntary separation.

    In accordance with Air Force policy, an officer may be involuntarily
    separated if they do not complete IST and there is no requirement for their
    continued service. Under this policy, officers with less than 6 years of
    service who fail IST will be reviewed by a panel which will recommend
    whether an officer should be reclassified or discharged based on mission
    requirements, academic specialty, education costs, unique qualifications,
    etc. If recommended for separation, officers are subject to recoupment of
    education assistance, special pay or bonus money received."
     
  10. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    Excellent link, thank you!!

    Yes, I can see that and it fits what's been done in the past. If an officer is training into a field that is declared "overmanned" then they really are at risk should they NOT complete initial training.

    It's an ugly cycle...those of us that have been around a while...we've seen this several times in the past. It's not fun, it can be "devastating" to folks...but it happens.

    The ONLY way to avoid this is NOT be in the group they're looking at...and if you are, then be the VERY BEST that you can be such that they do NOT want to lose you.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  11. vampsoul

    vampsoul Candidate

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    If a military member- we'll use AF since this is the AFA forum- is told their area is overmanned, can they ask to be moved to a less crowded specialty to avoid separation?
     
  12. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    In some cases, yes. In recent years, the air force set up a blue-to-green conduit which allowed certain officers with transferable skill sets (most notably intel officers) to transition to the Army.
     

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