Confusion between Local Liaison Officer/Admission Liaison Officer

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Zeke, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. Zeke

    Zeke Member

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    My Summer Seminar application had some contact information on a "Local Liaison Officer". I already contacted and talked to her via telephone back in November 2010, and she was a big help by both asking me questions and answering some questions that I had.

    Now I know that I am supposed to contact my "Admission Liaison Officer" sometime during my application process, but I need to know if a "Local Liaison Officer" is the same as an "Admission Liaison Officer".

    If all else fails, I could always call the Academy Liaison Department and ask who my ALO is.

    Please try to answer this question... I've been wondering about this for a few weeks.
     
  2. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Once you get qualified to be an applicant they will assign you an ALO. I have never heard the term Local Liaison Officer. ALO's traditionally are local.

    Right now ALO's are very busy with AFA candidates and ROTC candidates, you are way ahead of the game. Just sit back and wait. Calling them today and pestering them about next yrs application can do more harm than good. Squeaky wheels get oiled, but it doesn't mean it is done without creating negative attention.

    We know you are excited, and your day will come. Just enjoy life right now, get great ACT/SAT scores, register for the toughest course next yr, practice the CFA, and be active outside of school.

    There are many cadets at the AFA who got apptd without meeting or talking to an ALO before July/Aug.

    Your resume is what matters, and the ALO will make their determination based partly on that. Calling them monthly to keep your name in their mind will have no impact on their recs if your resume has wholes in it.
     
  3. buff81

    buff81 Moderator

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    You can always email the person you spoke to in November and ask your question. She can reply in her own time. As a FFR for West Point, I wouldn't mind if a candidate did that. I wouldn't recommend you calling the Academy though.

    PIMA is right. There are more pressing things you can work on now to help your application. But if this is really bothering you, just send your contact an email.
     
  4. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    It is possible that your "Local Liaison Officer" and your "Admissions Liaison Officer" are the same person. However; it's possible that the "Local Liaison offcer" was an ALO that happen to be local to your area, and volunteered to make this initial contact. A city like Denver or Albuquerque could have say 5 ALO's, but maybe only one of them volunteered to handle this initial contact for summer seminar applicants. Our small town has 2 ALO's to handle this town. So; as PIMA said; once you are "officially" an applicant, you will be "officially" assigned an ALO. Don't sweat it. You'll find out in June/July. Best of luck. Mike....
     
  5. DevilDog

    DevilDog Member

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    I am not sure I agree with this advice. A friend of mine asked me if I would help them navigate thru the process for admissions to the AFA. His son is a sophomore. I spoke with my son's ALO and asked him if it was too early. He said that he would rather start with them early so he can guide them with what to take in school, ec's, and everything else that the young man will need to do.
     
  6. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    The thing is all of them are volunteers, they have jobs, families and candidates.

    I suppose the best way to approach this is from how competitive the area is. Our son's ALO had 10 AFA candidates, and about 10 AFROTC candidates, this was on top of his full time job and his own family. We had a great ALO.

    Also remember ALO's that are a great one will spend time with the candidates prepping them for their interviews, and tweaking their essays. Our DS's ALO not only did that, but also took them to Daedalion dinners and kept in constant contact with the RD for the AFA. On top of that they need to submit recs for each candidate for their board.

    If the ALO has 10 candidates and are giving their all, you can see how limited their time would be to work with a student who has yet to be classified as an applicant.

    I am not saying not to contact them, what I am saying is don't get bent out of shape over this now. Your priority should not be talking to the ALO, it should be making your resume as competitive as it can be. The ALO is going to say the same thing to you that Flieger or other posters will say. Whole Candidate is your goal. If you have no sports and only score avg on the CFA it is going to hurt you. If you are not taking the most rigorous course load it is going to hurt you.

    They can't give you insight on your chances, because the AFA won't assign them applicants until July. LY you could have been ranked number 1, this yr you could be ranked number 10.

    Here's the real question. Why do you want to talk to the ALO? Is it because you want to get your name out there? Is it because you want advice on bettering your chances?

    If it is the latter, than Flieger who is a Regional ALO (not local) can give you just as much insight.

    Finally, ALO's do change, you can start as a sophomore, but 2 yrs later they can move and you are starting off at the exact same place as those who have never talked to one.

    I get concerned when posters get wrapped up in talking to an ALO so early. That is the Mom in me. SLS list has not even come out yet, the poster doesn't even know if they will like that life. It always appears to me as they are wishing their life away.

    It is great to have goals, and you should strive for them, but you will miss these days when you are doing 100 butterfly kicks or sitting at attention chewing 7 bites before swallowing.

    The ALO is going to tell you the same thing as everyone else here.

    Take the most rigorous course load
    Score high on your SAT/ACT
    Practice the CFA to max it
    Be well rounded...sports, clubs, volunteering.
    If you have a medical issue be prepared to address it


    Again, the question begs to be asked what is the primary reason to contact them now if they give you the same advice as those who have walked the path before you?

    Are you going to ask about LOA chances? They can't answer that because they do not sit on the AFA board.

    Are you going to ask nom chances? They can't answer that because they have yet to see your competition, and many have candidates that meet different MOC boards (cong), our DS's ALO had candidates from 2 congressional districts, and may not be the only candidates for that MOC from an ALO perspective. An MOC can have 2 or 3 ALO's.

    Are you going to ask a DodMerb question? They can't answer that because it is DodMerb that does that.

    So what exactly is the need to hook up with them now in Feb instead of July? What is their intentions?
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011
  7. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Every individual I speak with who aren't eligible yet to apply to Summer Seminar, or already applying to the academy, the 1st place I steer them towards for Q&A, information, ideas, etc... is this forum. Right here. I've given out hundreds upon hundreds of business cards with this forum's address on it. Even if the individuals only Lurk, this forum is a wealth of information. "By the way TacticalNuke: I need more cards. LOL".

    Anyway; there are cadets, applicants, parents, and even ALO's on this site. For the individual who visits this forum in their Sophomore year, if they line up everything in advance, they can have their application and nominations done in no time. EXAMPLE: I've been working with applicants for the air force academy, AFROTC, and enlisted, for close to 9 years. However; I and my son used this site and others prior to his even applying for summer seminar. By the time came for him to apply for summer seminar: (he applied 2 weeks before the deadline); he/I had a much better understanding of the ENTIRE PROCESS. Until then, I was helping applicants with the application process, but I didn't have a lot of experience with the larger picture. Then; when my son came back from Summer Seminar, he was already set up as an applicant, he was able to complete the entire application in less than 4 weeks. He had everything lined up ahead of time; prior to the application. Contacted the appropriate teachers that would need to provide references. Spoke with his school's admin. Got transcripts, ACT/SAT scores, etc... all lined up. The school and teachers (Even though it was summer) was expecting him. My son had everything HE COULD DO, done in 4 weeks. He had taken care of the DODMRB physical, and set up the CFA with the ALO. He started the application process the 2nd week of June; after returning from Summer Seminar. On July 19th, he was 100% complete. Including DODMRB and CFA. He had the paper work for his presidential at the academy ready to go. That too was already approved by the July 19th time frame.

    The point is: The counselors at the academy admissions said that my son was the very first applicant totally 100% complete with their application, in the country. That was done and finished on July 19th. He sat around and waited, and received an Early Appointment using the presidential nomination, at the end of October. So; while it's important to have an ALO, and the vast majority of individuals applying really DO NEED THEIR ALO; if you are READING THIS POST, then you are a member of this forum. You are in the MINORITY of applicants. (<5%). You have the advantage of learning from this forum. If you learn properly from here, you will find that you need your ALO mainly for their interview, possibly assist in arranging/monitoring the CFA, and being a go between if certain steps in the process aren't falling in line correctly. But as far as the actual application process goes; individuals on the forum need a LOT LESS ASSISTANCE from their ALO. They are still there for you; but the more RESPONSIBILITY you take for your own future, the more control you'll have. Plus, your ALO will notice and appreciate this.

    So; if you have/know individuals who are interested in the academies, and they are sophomores or younger, you don't need to be contacting ALO's, the academy, local liaison officers, etc... Give them instructions to this forum. If they truly care about the academy(ies) being an option for their future, they can learn everything they need about the process here. Then, when they actually need ASSISTANCE with the process from their ALO, they will be more prepared and able to accomplish it. Good luck. Mike....
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Again CC you are my hero (after Bullet :wink:).

    This advice is so true. If you are a poster on this site you will gain more insight from here than the ALO.

    Reasons why:

    1. They have walked the walk and have the t-shirt to prove it!
    2. Posters actually will be more honest on an anonymous forum than to the ALO.
    ~ That honesty allows other posters to be brutally honest, which in turns helps them regarding the WCS.
    3. ALO's are an integral part of the process, but you can't get apptd without a nom...see CC's post. On a whole they have little to no impact on the nom process. Most ALOs who sit on a board will recuse themselves when it comes to a candidate they are affiliated with,


    Again, ask yourself why it is so important to talk to them now? What is your goal, especially as CC stated if you are on this site you are already at an advantage. If it is to give you an illusion that you have a chance, OKAY, you have a chance! I have no clue what the competition for 16 looks like, but there you go, I said you you have a chance.

    That is harsh, and I know it is, but so is the AFA. If it was a cake walk they would not lose 25% of each incoming class. If it was cake walk to get the BFE their rate would be 100% acceptance and not 17%.

    I love everyone who wants to live and die for me to say this crap, but the fact is sugar coating will never help you IMHPO.

    Your ALO next yr will be your BFF. They will be your 3rd parent. The question is...next yr when you are going through this process do you want their attention diverted for the Class of 17 or do you want them 100% all about you getting in for 16? Asking them to divert their attention to 17/18 means less time for you. How will you feel in that scenario? It will be a make or break for you, do you really want them spread out too thin because some jr who has yet to get SLS is taking up your ALO's time? In 9 months from now, there will be you as a candidate and a kid(contacted ALO in Nov) while you fight for your AFA career, think about it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011
  9. Mongo

    Mongo Banned

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    Agree completely. Nearly every single one of my Naval Academy candidates would have done better somewhere in the Admission process had I spent 15 minutes with them during their Junior year: Extracurriculars, leadership, senior year courseload, SATs/ACTs, timliness of application and nomination packages, etc. etc. I would never dream of saying no. Someone in this situation has a much better cance of success than the individual who I don't find out about until the day after applications are due.
     
  10. DevilDog

    DevilDog Member

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    CC asnd Pima, my son's ALO is a Colonel in the AF. I agree that this forum is a wealth of information. During my sons application process, I had to help his guidance counsellor because she never had a student apply to an Academy. Last year she had two and both were accepted. In any case, most of the help I gave her came from reading these forums. I do not see the harm in a student contacting the ALO before their junior year. Not only that but if the ALO that guided my son thru the process says he would rather the young man get in touch withhim early so he can help guide him, then I am going to heed his advice.
     
  11. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Devil,

    I think the thing is we must respect each side.

    I don't know how competitive it is for your area (nor when it comes to the OP). I don't know if the ALO has a job besides being an ALO.

    I respect that for your ALO this is their opinion. I adore ALOs, they truly never get enough respect.

    For me, our DS's ALO had alot of candidates for the AFA every yr, he had a job and a family. I don't think if a sophomore in hs called him he would be spending unlimited hours with them. Of course, we had an AFB and each HS had AFJROTC so that could be a factor compared to an ALO at Ft. Riley.

    The fact is the OP needs to give more info.
     
  12. Zeke

    Zeke Member

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    I first asked if there was a difference between a Local and Admissions LO, but my question has been answered in the most part: there pretty much isn't a difference, my ALO probably would change within a year anyways, and, well, some people haven't even heard the term of Local Liaison Officer.

    I guess I have a new question... when I should contact my Admissions Liaison Officer? Like I said, I'm a Junior in high-school and I have already been accepted to the Seminar.

    As for my confusion between a Local and Admission LO, I'm most probably going to give the Liaison department a call just to absolutely make sure who my officer is.

    I'll make my new question easier by being very specific.
    1. Does and will the ALO contact me at all? If so, around when? (this question might have been answered previously... I just want to make sure by asking again)
    2. Should I contact my ALO right now, or is it too early? Again, like I said, I could easily find his/her information by calling the Liaison department at the Academy. Yes, I have the number.

    Speaking of, the reason why I want to talk to the ALO is because I want to know the basic gist on how the application process goes. Above all, I want to show that I am interested in applying, because it is my ultimate dream to attend the United States Air Force Academy, one day become a United States Air Force Officer, and protect the United States of America against all enemies in the domains of air, space, and cyberspace.

    I appreciate all of your inpupt. I didn't know that there would be so many replies in such short notice. Thanks everyone.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011
  13. Casey

    Casey USMA 2015

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    Just my take:

    For me, I made the contact with both my ALO and MALO junior year, probably a little bit after this time as I had heard back from all the seminars, had their info, and was just dropping them an e-mail to get to know them and to ask for advice on the seminars. E-mail was the best for me as I know that both are very busy people, and this gave them their own time to respond to me when they saw fit. Neither of them ever brushed me off or acted like I was contacting them too early; actually my MALO was extremely happy. He had had an info session for interested class of 2015 applicants earlier in the year which unfortunately he was detained from coming so this was my first contact with him (his wife ran it instead and we got to talk to a WP cadet there as well as graduates which was pretty cool).

    That said, I would never pester either of them. If I had a question that I could not answer through research, that's when I contacted either of them, and honestly, that didn't come up all that often. As you'll be told at any of the seminars if you go, all the representatives for the Academy are there to help you, but you need to give them the same courteousy they'll give you. Look up stuff that you have questions on and see if you really can't answer it yourself.

    I also made sure to update both of them with activities and they were able to put in their input on what they thought would make me more competitive, but we had been around WP enough that really, I knew what would make you competitive and what I needed to do.

    It was more logistical ?'s that came up that I needed help with (USAFA not liking the forms we sent into for the presidential nomination on dad's service record, etc). I think one of the things that was really good about this whole process for me personally was it showed how self-sufficient I could be. I hardly ever needed my parents to do something for me (making calls and contacts is something you should be doing on your own) and a lot of the information is out there already that people have questions on. These applications are marathons, not like any other kind of college application, and a lot of the way they're made I think is probably just to see how well you follow directions and how self-sufficient/driven you are
     
  14. Zeke

    Zeke Member

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    Thank you very much. I wouldn't think of pestering them either. I'm thinking that I should just talk to my Local Liaison Officer - who I e-mailed and conversed with over the phone back in November/December - whenever I need help.
     
  15. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    The application process and similar questions can all be answered here. But I think as a "JUNIOR", that you definitely should contact your ALO. Remember; in my other post; I was speaking of Sophomores and such NOT contacting ALO's until later on, and instead coming to forums like this. But besides answering application questions, I think you should contact your ALO. You can go on the academy's web site and actually look up your ALO's name and number. You click on your state; enter your school's name; and it will tell you your ALO's name, number, and email address. It might be one and the same as your LLO. Maybe not. It will tell you. Definitely send them an email. Let them know as much detail as is "IMPORTANT". e.g. you've applied/accepted to summer seminar; that you are in the IB program or taking numerous AP classes; basic academic info like GPA/SAT/ACT scores; basic athletic involvement; etc... You don't need to tell them you're interested in the academy. You wouldn't be contacting them if you weren't. Just be basic. Introduce yourself. Ask if they have any local Q&A or town hall get together's coming up. "We have a regional one each year before christmas".

    Nothing wrong with making this type of contact. Finish the email with letting them know that you'll be contacting them after summer seminar to discuss the CFA, DODMRB, Interviews, etc... Let them know you look forward to meeting with them, and you appreciate their assistance in this very important time of your life. Best of luck to you. Mike....
     
  16. Zeke

    Zeke Member

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    Thanks Mike! I'll be sure to do this.
     
  17. Casey

    Casey USMA 2015

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    CC, I thought Zeke had said he would be applying for Class of 2016, or at least I would assume that's what he would be applying for if he's finished up seminar apps this year which is why I gave my own experiences.
     
  18. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Casey; my screen name may imply "Christian", but I do understand "EVOLUTION". LOL!!! What I mean is; this thread has "EVOLVED". What you said and suggested is quite correct. There is nothing wrong with an individual who is in their junior year, making contact with their ALO. Especially if they've already applied and/or been accepted to summer seminar. So an interested applicant for the class of 2016 (Applying to enter the academy in June 2012) should most definitely drop a quick hello and introduction to their ALO. Obviously, don't expect a lot of attention until June/July of this year. ALO's are still busy with 2015 applicants. But in June/July, it will be your turn.

    My post, a couple a go, about not contacting an ALO and instead being directed to this forum, and the likes, to answer questions, was directed in response to DevilDog's post referencing a sophomore. "In that scenario, an applicant for the class of 2017. I think those interested parties need to wait it out and learn more from forums like this. Is there a law that says they can't contact an ALO? No, they are free to. Some ALO's may not have a lot to do, and might welcome assisting some sophomores. But if a sophomore doesn't get a lot of feedback from an ALO, they shouldn't get upset. They are busy with current applicants and some juniors for next year. Plus; we all know teenagers. Sorry; but what you want today, may not be what you want tomorrow. We want sophomores and freshmen to be excited about the air force academy. Just realize that until you're a junior/senior, the amount of attention provided by an ALO may be sporadic. Sometimes: None. Sometimes: A little. Sometimes: A lot. Depends on the ALO; their current applicants; and how much time they have.

    I don't think you'll find that I contradicted or disagreed with anything you posted. You were quite correct in your opinion/suggestion. Nothing wrong at all. Did I write something that implied that I was disagreeing with you? If so, let me know. I'm sure it was a misunderstanding. But I don't think I disagreed with anything you wrote. Later... mike...
     
  19. Casey

    Casey USMA 2015

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    Haha I think it probably was just a misunderstanding in who you were talking to. Thanks for the clarification
     

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