careers on aircraft

Discussion in 'Life After the Academy' started by lukeS, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. lukeS

    lukeS Member

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    What are some officers' jobs that require at least occasional work on a plane? This is for any branch.
     
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Coast Guard....you would fly them. You would have three general options, HC-130, HU-25, and HC-144.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Not sure what you mean by occasional work. In the AF the only job I can think of that allows the flying portion to be "occasional" would be flight doc. Their 1st job is to be a doc, and they fly minimally to keep their ratings current. Otherwise, your 1st job is to fly and your second could range from Wing IG to Scheduling to Weapons. To bring that fact home, if the squadron says fly, you fly and your 2nd job understands that you won't be in on that day.

    UPT is very expensive, millions are spent to get a military member through. They don't spend that kind of money unless they expect your 1st job to be a flier.

    You are not going to see the PA officer occasionally fly. His job is to be a PA officer. You are not going to see the maintenance officer take up a plane to check the air brakes, that is left to the pilots.

    The only other ones that occasionally fly are Wing, Vice and DOG, because their 1st job is the Wing, they leave the flying to the puppies.
     
  4. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Outside of the pilot, the USAF also has Combat Systems Officers (formerly called Navigators) for aircraft which require them. There will be less and less of these guys around as technology advances. Still, they are needed in certain aircraft, especially strike stuff. When I was at Minot, I knew several B-52 Navs (now CSOs), and each Buff crew needed three CSOs on board (radar navigator, navigator, and electronic warfare officer). Another rated field is Air Battle Manager (ABM), and these guys fly in AWACS or JSTARS aircraft and are heavily in demand by theater commanders. ABMs act as weapons controllers on a large mission crew, and control air-to-air and air-to-ground contacts for all assets (fighters, bombers, attack, cargo, etc) in an area.

    Also, there are some officer aircrew positions that are not rated, although they are few and far between. Even missile officers can get a chance to fly, although it would be in a highly specialized aircraft with a very specific function. I have a good friend who flew as a non-rated mission crewman after his first missile assignment.

    In the end, unless you are an aircrewman, you really won't have much cause to be in USAF aircraft on a frequent basis (other than as a passenger). I had to ride in UH-1s fairly frequently to get to missile sites when the weather was too bad to drive, but I'm guessing that isn't what you're asking about.:biggrin:
     
  5. Kero

    Kero Member

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    For the navy, other than pilot and NFO, I can only think of enlisted aircrew positions.
     
  6. kp2001

    kp2001 USMMA Alumnus

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    Navy Officer positions that require "occasional" flying:

    Some intel specialties
    Aerial Observers (rare, usually prior Enlisted with specific training)
    Aerospace physiologist
    Flight Surgeon
    Aerospace Optometrist
    Aeromedical Safety Officer
    Flight Nurse (Seen the rating badge, but never met one)

    (notice a trend of medical type positions?)

    I'm sure there are a few others out there that I can't think of right now, but this is a pretty good list for non-pilot/non-nfo jobs that include at least a little flying.
     
  7. Kero

    Kero Member

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    Sorry, KP I didn't mention all the flight doc jobs, occasional was the key word I missed.
     
  8. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    Jobs not in control of the stick, but with a job on the aircraft?

    Folks here named a few, but there are still many unmentioned.

    Let's add a few, based on the mission they perform:

    - Electronic Warfare: Folks like the EWOs on EA6-Bs (two EWOs in back, one pilot, one NFO). Or the folks in the back of the EC-130s (bunch of them in the rear of the a/c, performing the real job on that bird). Or the guys running the sensors on the RC-135s, or Rivet Joint. Heck, the Army has a few electonic warfare birds, using crews just like the other services.

    - Command and Control: ABCCC crew (Air Borne Command and Control bird, large crew of comm guys and senior officers controlling the battle). Or perhaps a Air Battle Manager job on a E-3 (mentioned before) or the Navy's E-2 Hawkeyes. Heck we even have folks on Air Force One working comms.
    EC-1

    -Intel / Surveillance: Again, Rivet Joint. Plus lots of smaller platforms in all the services working ISR now.

    - Strike / CAS platforms: Besides the CSOs already mentioned on F-15Es, B-1s, B-52s, and F-18E/Fs? How about the two guys running the sensor suites and targeting in the back of the AC-130?

    - Other, various missions: Here's a stretch -- Jumpmaster for an Army Airborne unit, or just plain ol' paratrooper (ain't getting to jump unless you have a plane to get you there!). Or better yet, ANY Special Forces officer They ALL jump. or use planes during insertion. Hurricane hunter weather officer. Astronaut trainee. Frankly, there are just so many positions in the military that may require you to be on a plane sometime, the list can get pretty long and obscure...

    And if you REALLY want to occasionally work on a plane: maintenance officer. You'll definitely work ON a plane, but that may have not been what you had in mind... :biggrin:
     

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