career advancement

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by muffa1, May 4, 2013.

  1. muffa1

    muffa1 New Member

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    two questions
    1. What are the eye sight requirements for USAF pilots?
    2. Is it possible to reach high command or leadership positions in the USAF without being a pilot? I am an old army brat. My father was an army aviator. I am familiar with the milestones for advancement in the army but not for the airforce. For example LTC battalion command, COL brigade, war college, staff position, Division command. I understand the USAF has a similar pyramid of command levels, but what if you are not a pilot? I am guessing but do not know that you would reach a ceiling at some point. Any insights? Thanks
     
  2. Arizona

    Arizona 2017 USAFAPs appointee

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    Muffa I can't speak to the exact requirements in #1 but when it comes to our rank structure you will not be held back from leadership positions just because you weren't a pilot.
     
  3. USAFretired1996

    USAFretired1996 Member

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  4. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Our close friend's father was a Maj. Gen. He was maintenance.

    It will become later on aspects just like your father's path. Making Gen. without going to ACSC in residence (CGSC), and than going to AWC/NWC as an O5 will greatly reduce your chance for success, be it rated or non-rated.

    You can fly a desk and make rank. Just like rated, your career progression, jobs you take will be a huge factor.

    It has been said for yrs now in the rated world, you will have to step out of the cockpit to make rank. You can fly 20 yrs, just don't expect to make rank. Most Wing Kings have PME (schools in residence) and a joint tour under their belt.

    This is the outgoing Supe's bio. He was a pilot, but look at how often he flew a desk.
    http://www.af.mil/information/bios/bio.asp?bioID=5596

    Bullet did CGSC as an AF O4 at Leavenworth. There were 60 AF O4's. The majority were not fliers. As a realtor in No VA, many of my clients that had a Pentagon assignment were O6's. The fliers were the minority of those clients. As you can see in both of these examples. There are many that have a great career and never flew in an aircraft.

    OBTW, are your eyes an issue? Is that why you are asking? Usually they want correctable to 20/20. At least that is what I recall, somebody else can tell you exactly.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  5. Ambition

    Ambition USAFA Class of 2017

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    After studying brief summaries of the education and careers of the last 10 Airmen in charge of the AFSC, the position of Chief of Staff, the position of Vice Chief of Staff, AFSOC and AFMC, I can safely say that even without flying you will have plenty of opportunities to rise in the ranks as long as you are proactive about assignments and schooling and do well at what you do.

    Of course, I have certainly seen a correlation of Airmen who got their first assignment in the Major Command they led 30 years down the road, but I have also seen Airmen who do the opposite.

    I don't have the primary experience, but I would say that if you do well at what you do (and many other things!) you should not have a problem with your career down the road.

    Also, I wonder if this is the sort of thing an Intelligence Analyst might be doing.
     
  6. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    To the first question, the listed physical requirement for pilot are :

    •Normal color vision
    •Distant vision: Uncorrected 20/70, but corrected to 20/20.
    •Near vision: Uncorrected 20/30, but corrected to 20/20
    •Meet refraction, accommodation and astigmatism requirements
    •Corrective eye surgery could be a disqualifier
    •Have no history of hay fever, asthma or allergies after age 12
    •Meet Air Force weight and physical conditioning requirements
    •Have standing height of 64 to 77 inches and sitting height of 34 to 40 inches


    If you are considering USAFA but you don't meet the vision requirements, they have a program where you can get PRK surgery at the Air Force's expense when you are a Junior and you can then be pilot qualified. My son had the surgery and is a pilot now.

    Stealth_81
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  7. muffa1

    muffa1 New Member

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    Thanks to all for your replies. The vision question was for my son...I am a 55 yo physician. My father had 20 15 vision and I thought you might need 20 20. The career question was for my curiosity. Back in the day, in the army, a successful combat command may not have been necessary for advancement, but was very helpful. I know that times have changed. I can give my son advice and some dated input about the army, but really dont know much about the USAF. Closest I came to AFB was Pope when we were at Fort Bragg and Ramstein when we were in Germany.
    Thanks again and good luck to you all
     
  8. packermatt7

    packermatt7 USAFA Cadet

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    Keep in mind that the eye test here is extensive. I've had a few friends be disqualified for things they had no clue were wrong with them (depth perception test). So don't come here thinking pilot-or-bust. It sounds like you're already thinking of other opportunities, which is good. Losing pilot qualification can be very difficult for people, but there are great opportunities elsewhere.
     
  9. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    Excellently said! :thumb:

    My best friend at USAFA (and next to my wife, still my best friend) was the #2 grad in Aero Engineering...had a UHT slot to Fort Rucker. Literally 4 days before graduation he lost his pilot slot due to an illness he had as a doolie! "They" came back and told him that on reflection, they'd decided he was DQ for flying...welcome to engineering!

    My best friend today...

    PhD in Engineering (MS and BS too; all in three different disciplines)
    International Award Winning author (published over 400 times)
    Captain at a Major Air Carrier with over 20,000 hours of flying time
    (he did the flying ON HIS OWN DIME)

    As him what he does for a living and he'll tell you he's a pilot. BUT...he brings in a LOT more with his engineering expertise.

    And he NEVER gave any of this a thought until the AF told him: "You can't fly."

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
  10. nn139

    nn139 USAFA Appointee 2017

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    That's an awesome story! I aspire to be like your friend one day.
     
  11. PresidentFetz

    PresidentFetz USAFA 2017 Appointee

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    You guys are worrying me about becoming a pilot. When I took my DODMERB medical test, for eyesight, the lady said I the only thing on which i lacked was depth perception. I hope that it were the conditions around me rather than the actual test, because that would CRUSH me. I have backup plans in the Air Force, but still...geez. The test had 8 sets of 4 squares, and she had me put on 3d glasses. I had to pick which square in each set was 3d. Is that how USAFA does the test? Because after the 4th or 5th set, I COULD NOT tell which square was 3d. They all looked the same 2d to me.
     
  12. aggie83

    aggie83 Member

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    Son had to redo original depth perception test from DODMERB doctor. We took him to an opthamologist and he passed fine. Has passed all vision tests at Academy, graduates this month, and starts UPT this Nov. He wears contact lenses with 1.25 power but correctable to 20/20. His eyes were not bad enough to qualify him for PRK so he has a vision waiver.

    DODMERB doctor also messed up his sitting height measurement. We just had to have it remeasured by a nurse and all was fine.
     
  13. cryosk8trboi

    cryosk8trboi Member

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    its relatively the same for the pilot qualifying test, but much more thorough. the very first one will be six rows of dots, and in each row you identify which one stands out.
     

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