AS500 Question

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by WannaBeOfficer, May 14, 2015.

  1. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    Hello,

    I was not given a FT slot this year. After then initial news of allotments coming out, I quit the program: I am a student and I work full-time to pay my own tuition. So in my mind doing something that I believed I had gotten dismissed from did not make sense. Because of that, I was not put back into the pool when the extra slots were given out.

    I got word a few weeks ago that I would be allowed to come back as a 500, can someone tell me the PRO's an CON's of this track?

    Also any other information on being a 500 helps. Will it look bad next year when I go back up for FT?
     
  2. AlphaAlphaSigma

    AlphaAlphaSigma Member

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    Pro: You have another chance of getting a FT slot
    Con: Your heart may not be in it for another year of FTP training. I have seen that the 500s that succeed were ones that stuck with a full year of 500 FTP training and never complained. The 500s that started to question whether or not being a 500 is worth it had a decline in FTP performance and overall decline in attendance which leads to disenrollment. If you go into your 500 year with a mindset that you have another opportunity to earn an EA you will succeed. If you go into 500 year expecting to get an EA because you think the Air Force owes you something you're gonna have a bad time.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I would also double check on how this will impact your graduation date. Unless something has changed they require at least 3 semesters as a POC. You become a POC upon graduating from SFT. Thus, if you are to graduate May 2017, make sure that can still occur and not be backed up to Dec. 2017.

    I have heard that some dets. classify 500s as a POC, if this is the case than my statement would be moot.

    I agree with Alpha you need to enter with a mindset that there is no guarantee of selection. Yes, this year had a 90%+ selection rate, but last year it was less than 60%. There is no guarantee so you need to decide for yourself if the answer is not being selected next year would you still do it?

    How badly do you want to be an AF officer is the question only you can answer from your soul.
     
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  4. Fayt42

    Fayt42 Member

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    I was an AS500 myself so here's my advice:

    - Take the fall semester off and focus on yourself, social, and grades. Don't think about ROTC and come back in the Spring to re-compete. Use that time to get your ranking up whether through community service or again grades.
    - When you come back in the Spring, all the stuff you were trained in is muscle memory so you may be a little rusty but you will know more than your peers guaranteed. Take that time to help out your fellow FTP and you will stick out with the cadre.
    - When you're an AS500 you've already completed your ARSC100-200 so you have some time off by only going to just LLAB and PT.
    - You will need to extend your graduation by a year but if you have enough credits and plan your courses you can try to file for a waiver that allows you to take ARSC300-400 classes for a year and commission (my cadre told me however that unless you're JAG or Medical the chances are that are low).
    - Always remember that there is no guarantee you will be selected. Use that to motivate you to work harder. For me it was like experiencing failure and not wanting to go through it again.

    The biggest challenge for me was coming back to the program and seeing my fellow friends become a POC. It took me a while to get used to it but when you take that semester off it really helps. As mentioned by Pima, you have to ask yourself how badly you want to become an AF Officer. One of the driving questions that my mentor asked me was "10 years from now, will you regret the decision you made?" For me, I can proudly say No, I do not regret my decision as I will be commissioning in mere days.
     
  5. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    At my det, we cannot take the Fall off, we have to be present the entire year. I believe that was the stipulation my commander gave to me, and to the few 500's we had last year.

    I talked to my commander, I will be graduating the same time I scheduled to, and I just have to take grad courses for one semester, then my last semester in ROTC will just be AS 400 class. Which was my plan anyway, as I was supposed to so a dual bachelors/masters degree.

    The issue I have is going to be with the new 200. With the selection rate being so high, I feel like I will not be looked at as anything other than a liability. I mean, I didn't get selected once, why would I have anything insightful or helpful to offer? I am just concerned about how the dynamic that already exists between the new 200's will impact my year.
     
  6. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Member

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    At my detachment, 500s MUST stay another year. This is due to your Aerospace Studies classes.

    The AS300 class can ONLY be taken by current POC, ie AS300s. AS500s CANNOT take the AS300 class. They must wait until they are actually a AS300 before being allowed to take this class.

    Basically, this means that they take no Aerospace Studies class their AS500 year (junior year), and then are required to stay another 2 year (senior, and then fifth year) in order to complete all of the classes.
     
  7. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    Hotwheel: I am aware of all that information. My question was does being an 500 look bad the next time you go up for the board?
     
  8. hotwheelsearl

    hotwheelsearl Member

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    Got it. I won't say anything because I don't know for sure.

    What I do know is that all of the 500s at my Det are going to Field Training this year.
     
  9. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    Does anyone else have any advice on how to make the best of a 500 year?
     
  10. WilB-2

    WilB-2 Member

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    I have a few friends going through this right now and I would say have a positive mindset. Take the summer regroup think hard if this is really what you want to do. If it is work hard and get your GPA up and go get your EA slot. At my DET for this years EAs only three 200/250s earn them and that's with myself included. The rest were 500s, so I know it's possible. So just got out there and kick some butt. Participate and as much as you can, study the FTM early so if you have any type of FTP you'll be prepared. Just comeback optimistic, just know what you are fighting for. Never give up on something you love.
     
  11. Vretro

    Vretro Member

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    Don't slack off because you've already been there done that. Make an effort to get to know everyone in your new class as best as you can; you may find you fit in better & mesh well (hopefully not worse) than your previous class. Biggest prob I've seen with 500s is they don't show their face much unless required (PT/LLAB) because some treat it as a chore rather than their choice.
    You're the SME on the FTM on your second go-around, help them out with it. Most importantly- have fun.
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    My advice is:

    Talk to your CoC, not us. Ask them what you need to be top 10% in your unit.

    CoCs rec is an algorithm that HQ AFROTC will use for scoring.

    Your CoC knows what held you back this past board. He knows right now what his returning 100s, soon to be 200s are your competition. the only thing they dont know is if some 250 walks on next fall and blows their socks off.

    Something you have not stated in your post are very critical if you want any true guidance for your chances whether it is worth it to go AS500

    What was your AFOQT?
    ~ Did you take it 2x?
    ~~ If not are you studying for it now?

    PFA?
    ~ are you maxxing it?
    ~~ If not train every minute to show improvement come the 1st day back at school

    CGPA
    ~ Are we talking you are at 3.0 as a non tech major? That is not the median.

    Rated
    ~ Did you sign you will go rated?
    ~~ Do you have any PPL hours?
    ~~~ If not, while studyig the AFOQT, and working out, try to get in some flight hours.

    It is the whole package, and if you are missing something regarding filling the square, your 500 chances will decrease. If you want it, and they offer it, than it is yours to lose. The points I stated are all part of the score. Showing major improvement to your CoC can change their rec. They may say ...they got it now! How can I not rank them higher over the 200 when they now have PPL hours, maxxed their PFA, and on their 2nd AFOQT scored 94% compared to the 200s that have no PPLs, scored 89 on the AFOQT, and 96 on the PFA?

    It becomes for you like an ADAF officer above promotion zone. You have to prove to them that they made a mistake. That is akin to you, like Mom and Dad saying they were wrong. It can and does happen, but it is a heck of a hurdle to clear and the onus is on you.

    Good luck, and more than anything, wherever the chips fall, many people in the world thank you. We thank you because you volunteered so our kids did not have to. That is huge.
     
  13. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    I've talked to my CoC about what he wants to see from me next year. I am going to be retaking the AFOQT with the new 200's in the Fall, my scores weren't bad, but my math score could use some improvement. What held me back was my PFA: I've been working all summer to improve on that. Although, I was told that had I stayed on and finished the year after EA's came out, I probably would have been given one this time around, as someone with lower stats than mine was given one after the initial drop.

    At the moment I am trying to get some perspective on the 500 year in general. I've already been approved to go back, I am just wondering what I can do/what I can expect.
     
  14. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Max the PFA!

    You do realize that you risk it with the AFOQT. It is not superscore or best sitting it is last sitting.

    I still stand my position that if you signed rated, getting some flight hours will help
     
  15. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    I did not go rated, thats the part of the AFOQT that I need to improve on along with the math. My Nav score was fine, my pilot score....not so much...I didn't even finish that section. Yes, I'm aware that its the latest test, I know that I will not get worse, only improve my overall score. There were a few sections that I was determined to finish, and instead of just going through and filling in stuff, I was trying to go for the correct answer, I know now, so the second score will be much, much higher.

    I was going to see about some flight hours. My school offers classes that I could take. Since stretching out my major another year will be difficult, as I took 15 credits this summer so that I could graduate next summer, I need some classes to fluff my schedule for next year.
     
  16. hadha

    hadha Member

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    The biggest tip is to be a leader and a mentor to the other 200s. Our cadet who was ranked last when he competed in 2014 for a slot ended up earning #1 or #2 for his CC ranking this year. Why? His GPA and PFA improved a little bit this year, but the biggest thing was he became a team player. He had already been through FTP, so he worked extra hard not just to perform well, but to help out the other FTPers who were struggling. The commander notices that type of thing (or hears about it from the POC). So, focus on your own package, but also be the guiding force for your FTP class. Being the person the 200s and 250s turn to for support and guidance will do a lot to help you out.
     
  17. WannaBeOfficer

    WannaBeOfficer Member

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    Thanks! Any and all advice is helpful.
     

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