Base selection, Job assignments

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by fencersmother, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    After having read Absolutely American, I understand the process at USMA of "choosing" branches and bases for the cadets at West Point. I assume the process works similarly at USAFA, with the difference being UPT assignments for those going to be pilots.

    Any input on this?

    Thanks!
     
  2. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Not having read the book, I'll just describe how USAFA does it.

    During 2 degree year, cadets input their top 3 rated choices, and top 6 non-rated choices. They are allowed to weight their choices, to a certain amount. Cadets submit Form 94's to help rank them. The info on the Form 94's can move a cadet up or down from their OPA rank, this is called "order of merit." USAFA then uses some formula, based upon order of merit and cadets' wishes to distribute the slots they recieve from AF Personnel Command.
     
  3. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    I was reading up on Combat Rescue Officers, out of curiosity (one of the things I may want to do in the Air Force) and on one of the documents about their selection it states "Military service academy cadets are encouraged to initiate phase I applications during their sophomore year.” Do you know why they want the possible CROs to apply so early? I couldn’t find it anywhere. The thing I read was a little dated though (oct 1, 2006).
     
  4. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    FutureAFA, I just know a little bit about this since one of my guys was looking into that "field." Apparently, the physical demands for CROs are extraordinarily difficult and it is suggested that cadets begin training very early in their careers. Well, that was the scuttlebutt on the home front.
     
  5. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    I’m not doubting that. I know it is incredibly difficult (one of the appeals for me) because of the attrition rate alone! But what confused me is that I don’t see why they would want somebody to apply for a spot for phase two of selection before the cadets have to make the decisions on what career path they want to take? I understand that maybe they don’t want somebody signing of for CRO then being denied a chance to start the pipeline, but it is kind of early to tell somebody that they have a spot in phase two selection 2 full years before they go off to the pipeline, right?

    Maybe I overlooked something (probably) but thats why you all are here to clarify these things right:thumb: :yllol: Too bad there isn’t as much information out there as there is for perspective pilots!
     
  6. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    CRO is one of the few AFSC exceptions to the standard process (OSI is another). It is a separate selection process, and requires a lot of work.
     
  7. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    That makes more sense now thanks!:thumb:
     
  8. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    I was reading on some site that those who try out (?) for CRO but are turned down, are separated from the AF. Is that correct?
     
  9. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    When I was reading it was a little ambiguous, I know that if they say they want to leave in phase two of selection they aren’t allowed to try again, yet if they are performance dropped they can try once more. I read that they are separated from the AF too, but to me it was unclear if that’s what was meant. Its really hard to find articles on it, because so few people do it.

    I just found http://www2.afsoc.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-100128-051.pdf which describes the entire process of getting selected. 2.7.2 talks about coming from Air Force Academy.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
  10. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Left, right or indifferent this is probably the most selective career field to get into for the AF. If this is what you want, just realize it is not for the faint of heart, you need to fight for it.

    I don't know the stats, but my bet is you have a better chance of getting an F-22 out of UPT.
     
  11. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    Thats true. But I’d say it’s worth it, for me personally. Special forces are something that has been a goal of mine for a while, and Combat Rescue seem’s pretty fitting. Although I don’t need to decide for a LONG while. I probably will go to PJOC (Pararescue Orientation Course) this summer for CAP, I will definitely apply for it at least. I want to just get a feel for some of the things they do, and the type of training. It is also said to be the hardest National Cadet Special Activity out there, which makes it more exciting.

    I also know that it is not impossible, if I try hard enough though. :thumb:
     
  12. PDub

    PDub Prospective

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    There were three Firsties in my squadron last year who left during their Firstie year to attend Phase 2 of STO/CRO. They were definitely three of the most physically fit people I know, and one of them got sent back because he passed out during one of the underwater exercises. They do not give second chances - if you fail to complete an exercise you can consider your STO/CRO career done for good. The other two passed Phase 2, but only one of them decided to continue to pursue the goal. We asked what advice he had to give for aspiring STO/CROs, and he said is to quite simply work out, every single day, including swimming skills. He said that since second semester of his 4 dig year he worked out every single day for at least an hour and half(even on weekends and during leave periods), focusing on exercises that are tested in Phase 2, such as swimming, pullups, running, and pushups. Even with that type of commitment Phase 2 was still an extremely challenging ordeal, and to simply keep up with the minimum physical requirements throughout the years academics will suffer and you can expect to do poorly on some classes, but it's about shifting priorities if you want to go the STO/CRO track.

    The reason for having Phase 2 before graduation is that once you begin the actual STO/CRO training they have certain minimum physical and psychological requirements that they must be confident that you have met. They can't be worried about the little stuff like swimming ability and fear of heights when they actually need you learn the technical stuff. FutureAFA, at USAFA there are a lot of things that happen that are not the most convenient to cadets, and the early STO/CRO application process is one of them. During BCT, 4 dig year, and throughout your USAFA career you'll come to find that lots of unfair things happen here (and probably everywhere) but sometimes we gotta just play along.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
  13. futureAFA

    futureAFA Member

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    Thanks for the advice, and clarification on why Phase two is during the time at Air Force Academy. I do work out all the time and swim whenever I can, although there aren’t pools close enough to me for the time I have available.
     

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