Branching National Guard for aviation

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Roway, Mar 20, 2013.

  1. Roway

    Roway Member

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    We have an AROTC MSIII son considering this. Does anyone know any pros and cons on this ? He wants aviation but doesn't think he will be high enough on OML to get it for active duty regular Army.
     
  2. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    I can tell you what happened with a few cadets at my son's school, my son branched Aviation although it was Active Duty.

    There were two cadets in his class that wanted Aviation as well, one was originally National Guard and the other was on scholarship. The cadet on scholarship was in the same situation as your son, he was sure he was not going to be high enough on the OML to get AD Aviation. During his junior year he met with the National Guard and put his application in for Aviation, he switched from scholarship to SMP and joined the National Guard, he did not go to BCT or AIT, it was not needed. He went before the flight board and was accepted to Aviation. Both he and the other cadet that was already NG were accepted and branched Aviation.

    One thing to consider is which National Guard unit he wants to join, it has to be one with an Aviation Unit. The unit will also determine which helicopter he flys, if the unit is Blackhawks that's what he will fly. The NG will determine which airframe he flys based on their need and what airframes they have at the unit. Both of the cadets that were from my son's school were assigned Apaches. There are some cadets that actually switch to NG so they can be guaranteed which airframe they fly.

    Unlike Active Duty, NG flight students will all know what they are going to fly when they start flight school. Active Duty do not find out their airframe until Selection Day and it is based on an OML they are on from the beginning of their training up to Selection Date. For AD they have a list of available helicopters and the No. 1 on the list picks first and then it just goes down the list. NG guys don't need to worry about this because they already know what they will fly.

    If your son goes this route just make sure he understands that it is extremely difficult to switch back to Active Duty. Some cadets try this as a back door to Active Duty and the Army knows this. So if your son is willing to switch over to NG and understands that he will probably stay in the NG then it's a great way to get into the Aviation Branch. One thing I did hear is that promotions after O-2 can be a little slower depending on the NG Unit then it is in Active Duty. Your son would need to be willing to relocate if there are no NG Aviation Units near his home or if he was looking to fly a specific airframe that was not part of a local NG Unit.

    My son has enjoyed Flight School, it's not easy and it is long. If your son does branch Aviation the move to Ft. Rucker will be a PCS move and the Army will pay for him and his belongings to move. He can expect to be at Ft. Rucker for 14 to 18 months depending on training schedules. My son joked that he has done more studying at Flight School then he did in all of College, he also says it is worth it.

    Just as a side note, my son's flight class is having their Selection Day tomorrow so he'll know then what he is flying.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2013
  3. Roway

    Roway Member

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    Thanks for the quick response! That's exactly the kind of info he is looking for and I will pass it on to him. He's really struggling with this decision and the more information he can get the better.
     
  4. Roway

    Roway Member

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    Oooops, I forgot to say Good Luck to your son on Selection Day!!! Hope he gets everything he is hoping for!
     
  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Jcleppe.

    Wow, time really does fly! Wasn't it only yesterday we all were talking about commissioning and pinning on our DSs?
     
  6. Packer

    Packer Member

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    Wow, I can't believe that much time has passed. Best wishes for your son getting what he would prefer to fly.
     
  7. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    Congrats and Best Wishes to him, he has been at it for almost a year with very few breaks. Very good kid. Good luck!
     
  8. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    Its a viable option BUT definitely makes sure he gets a LOA (Letter of Acceptance) to the unit and branch before he signs.
     
  9. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    What air-frame is he hoping for? I have heard awesome stories about Kiowa pilots from our Ranger cadre.
     
  10. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    They're all true.
     
  11. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Gee, let me guess which airframe is YOUR favorite Scout? :smile:
     
  12. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    6'-5"+ is a tight squeeze in a Kiowa.
     
  13. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Looks like he'll have to make that tight squeeze after all.

    Selection was this morning and Son chose Kiowa, it was his first choice.

    He is excited, and we are very proud of him.
     
  14. Jcc123

    Jcc123 Member

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    Good for him, Jcleppe!
     
  15. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    Congrats! Very happy for him.

    Stealth_81
     
  16. Thompson

    Thompson Member

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    Ah!! So cool! Soooo happy for him!
     
  17. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Congrats to elder DS. Can't wait to hear some new awesome stories about those adventurous Kiowa pilots! :thumb:
     
  18. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    Great News!

    Congrats!
     
  19. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    And now he'll be able to tell you what my username means.

    Congrats to him. Now it'll finally get fun.
     

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