ALO Issues

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by armybratkl, Sep 18, 2009.

  1. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    I have had some issues with scheduling my interview with my ALO, and I was wondering what exactly I should do.

    Part of the issue is my fault, I will admit. I was not proactive enough and did not call my ALO soon enough, partially from a busy schedule, and partially from slacking on my part. Anyway, my ALO called me Friday night (the 11th) and left a message which I received Saturday afternoon. I called back immediately, and did not get a response. I called again Sunday around noon, and once again did not get a response, but left a message.

    She called me back that night around 8:00. After confirming that I was still interested in the Academy, she informed me of what I still need to complete, which I am well aware of, and I politely informed her of the status on my DoDMERB.

    Then things got a bit confusing. She told me that we have to complete my interview as soon as possible, because she has a deadline to meet for the Academy. (There's a deadline for an interview?) She then informed me that she had tried multiple times to contact me, and I had not responded. (I double-checked my email, so unless she left a phone message and it was deleted by my parents, I had had no previous contact with her). She re-emphasized that the interview needed to be completed ASAP: "I think we probably need to get this finished by....Monday." She was telling me this on Sunday night, and expecting me to drop everything immediately because she had some schedule of which I was uninformed? And if she had to meet this deadline, why did she not contact me before Friday evening?

    I politely informed her that I would be unavailable for an interview on Monday -- I had swim team practice immediately after school, and after that I had my calculus course at the local junior college. I told her that I would be available on Tuesday or Thursday, however. "Tuesday and Thursday are too late." (Am I missing something here?) She also told me that she NEEDED my resumé. She then said that she would have to contact the Academy to see if it was possible to submit the interview after the deadline (again, deadline??) and she would call me back. She asked what time she could contact me on Monday, I told her after 9:15.

    I get back from my calculus class Monday, no phone messages, and there are no calls later, either. Tuesday comes around, and there are still no phone calls. I call her, get no response, and leave a message. Wednesday, still no phone calls. I stay up extra late Wednesday night after my class to write and send my resumé. Thursday, no email response, no phone calls, so I call and leave a message again. Now, it's Friday night, and I have still not received anything from her since last Sunday.

    I spoke with the JROTC instructor at my school briefly about her, and he mentioned that some students have had a fairly easy time with her, and others have had difficulty getting in contact with her. I also spoke to two other classmates of mine who are applying. One said he had no difficulty at all. The other said today that she actually had difficulty contacting him. He told me she called him a few times, and when she called him on Tuesday, they scheduled their interview... for today.

    I feel as though I am missing out on some crucial bit of information. Why does she put effort into contacting another candidate (whose GPA and ACT scores are nearly identical to my own, and our ECs are similar in strength), yet she seems to ignore me completely? I understand that I am living right next to an AFB, so there are many AF Brats who are applying, and she probably has her hands full. However, I do not think it makes any sense that she would contact my classmates several times, when he made little effort to contact her, yet would not contact me when I have been making the effort the past week. And on top of it, she called him the same day that I called her back. :confused:

    Anyway, I'm frustrated and confused. My mom told me not to worry, because other students have had problems with her before, but that doesn't help. Does anyone have any advice?
     
  2. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    Hi!

    Okay, first things first: BREATHE....again, BREATHE...

    Better? :biggrin:

    Contact with your ALO should "ideally" be VERY easy. You were notified you were a candidate and in all the information you received it listed your ALO's name, phone, e-mail, etc. Here's where I point a finger: you should have contacted her within a day or so...show's a deep interest.

    Of course, a pointed finger has 3 more pointing back at me...which means I should also be a bit proactive. As the ALO what I would have done is check you out at the school you're at. I call the counselor, speak with them; get some background, etc., whatever they're willing to tell me. I also confirm your phone number with the school to make certain the wrong number wasn't inserted up at USAFA by an errant finger strike on a keyboard.

    It HAS happened.

    Then...as the ALO, I'd wait...a bit; probably 2 weeks, to see if you're going to call me (You DO want to attend USAFA and I'm part of the process...) to introduce yourself. If I don't hear from you after those 2 weeks, I'm going to call AND e-mail you. Which means I hope you've given the AFA an e-mail address that you check DAILY AT A MINIMUM because that's how ALO's live: E-MAIL!

    BUT...I do have a deadline! When an AF Form 4060 is assigned to an ALO there is a "due to USAFA/RRS by XX YYY 2009" date and that is a HARD DATE. If we are going to be late, we need to have a BUNCH of really REALLY good reasons and we're still going to get a tongue lashing. The first one's we had due in AZ were 11 SEP 2009. I called my ALO's that week checking on the status of a BUNCH that weren't complete yet: "have you spoken/met the candidate, are they interested, have they started their online candidate package, etc...etc..."

    IF the answer is: "Yes, I've spoken with them, they're interested BUT they've not really started their candidate package..." that's about the ONLY reason the AFA will consider extending the deadline. And trust me, it doesn't leave a good taste in the ALO's mouth to see that.

    And regardless of the reason, a "late" form by an ALO is VERY VERY BAD to the ALO. It can impact their career if they have more than one or two; especially in the same "cycle" and they've got no really decent explanation.

    Why?

    Because it could harm the candidate! Think about it: you do ALL your stuff early, etc...etc...and then WE as ALO's don't get your evaluation up in time for the selection board to review your package at the earliest opportunity. Did we just harm your selection prospects? Perhaps.

    It sounds to me from your post that there's some "blame" to pass to both of you, as you honestly mentioned (kudos to you there!!! :thumb: )

    Now...the difficulty reaching your ALO is NOT good. If you are still having that much difficulty (going a week with no contact is NOT good) then you have a couple options:

    a. Contact your counselor up at USAFA and ask for another ALO's contact information (ask for the LOD) to call.
    b. Contact me privately and we can exchange information that way. I can get that information as well.

    The one thing that really bothers me is that she's had little difficulty contacting your friend but seems to have a very hard time reaching you. That keyboard error keeps coming to mind...

    Either way, you need to get this done as quickly BUT as accurately as you can!!!

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  3. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    Thank you for the explanation. :]

    The deadline for the interview makes much more sense to me now, though I still wonder why she would not have contacted me earlier if the deadline was approaching (barring an incorrect number, of course, which would explain that).

    Even IF there was a mistake then, there shouldn't be any confusion now with phone numbers. I'm certain that I have the correct number from listening to the answering machine message (and it's the same number she contacted me from), and I have left both my home phone and cell phone numbers for her in messages several times.

    I guess I'll give her until Tuesday, or possibly Thursday if I have a lot going on. Thank you again for the explanation and my options. :]
     

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