Cross Commission - AF to Navy

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by USAFA_Falcon_15, Jan 21, 2014.

  1. USAFA_Falcon_15

    USAFA_Falcon_15 USAFA '15 Appointee

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    This question is for anyone with experience regarding the exchange. I'm currently a 2dig at USAFA and would like to swap to the Navy to have a better chance at flying choppers. I love the AF and would be perfectly content staying, but I'd just like to research my options.

    1. What are the chances?
    2. What is the process?
    3. What's your experience?
     
  2. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    What makes you think it's that much more likely to fly helos in the Navy? Have you also looked at mission differences in each service for helos? Many differences.

    1. slim
    3. I didn't know of anyone after 2008 who was able to commission non-USMC Navy. I knew several navy exchangers who attempted to go AF and failed.

    Raimius should weigh in on helos from UPT...but chances aren't as bad as you think for getting helos out of UPT.

    My opinion, go to UPT.
     
  3. USAFA_Falcon_15

    USAFA_Falcon_15 USAFA '15 Appointee

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    This is great. My AOC just asked the SAME questions. So, it looks like we're on the right path. Regarding slots, I've been told by some naval aviators that the Navy will tell you what you can't do, rather then what you can do. So, drops seem less stressful. The navy has more Helo spots, behind the Army. I won't consider Army, however. UPT is in Pensacola... nothing more to say there.

    The way USAFA is shifting in pilot slot allotment makes the future seem dim with anything outside of fixed wing. But, this is all very premature. I'm still doing my research, but the biggest thing I'm trying to find out is... Is it possible.
     
  4. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    You can try to cross-commission, but I don't know the odds of getting a flight slot after crossing over. The odds of getting the cross-commission are not very good though.

    If you go the AF route, you'll go to UPT just like every other student pilot, until you get done with T-6s. Then, if you get helos, you'll track TH-1s and move to Ft Rucker. The chances of that vary by class. Since there is usually only 1 helo slot, competition depends on how many people want that. In my T-6 class, 5 people wanted it, but there was only 1 slot. In other classes, sometimes only 1 or 2 people wanted helos.

    AF "vertical lift" (since the CV-22 is a plane-copter-thing called a Tiltrotor) has 3 main air frames. The CV-22 does special operations. The HH-60G (maybe -60M, if they get money) does Combat Search and Rescue. The UH-1N does missile base security and VIP transport.

    (More info on Pg. 2 of the "One Man's Experience" thread that I just reposted.)
     
  5. joephrog

    joephrog New Member

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    Cross-commission

    USAFA_Falcon_15,

    You CAN cross-commission and fly helos in the Navy, however it is all a gamble. I graduated in 1996 and cross-commissioned to the Navy, but there was never a guarantee that I would get a pilot slot. You put your top 3 preferences as what you want to do -- I put pilot, NFO (navigator), and SWO (ship drivers) in that order. I did get a pilot slot and after fixed wing training in Pensacola decided I wanted to go rotory wing. You can definitely choose to select helicopters after primary flight training. It is important though to understand what missions are available and what your deployment schedule will be -- AND you will be deployed on a ship.

    As for the cross-commission process, the senior Naval Officer currently at the Academy is CDR Scott Bell, he is a helo bubba. He can inform you about the actual application process to apply for a cross-commission which also is no guarantee.

    Is it possible? ABSOLUTELY. Will you fly in the Navy? It is a gamble. If you DO get a pilot slot, can you fly helicopters? Without question, YES.

    My advice is contact CDR Bell to see how you can start the cross-commission process. Understand that you might be stuck driving ships which believe me is NOT what you want to do. Don't get discouraged, get informed.

    R,
    Joe Krieger
     

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