Grass roots programs

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Mikeandcris, Dec 5, 2015.

  1. Mikeandcris

    Mikeandcris Parents of 2014 Grad and F-15 Pilot

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    Many parents clubs host Grass Roots programs wherein interested high school students and their parents are invited to a gathering hosted by the local parent club in order for students to meet current cadets...and for prospective candidate parents to meet parents of current or graduated cadets. Because the first semester ends on Dec 18, many clubs host it on Sat or Sun Dec 19-20. (There are other variations of grass roots....cadets visiting high schools, congress reps hosting events, etc, but the parent club grass root program, which varies from club to club, is pretty common.) We recommend you investigate whether a grass roots program is being hosted in your area and attend. (BTW, if you're in the greater Sacramento/Redding/Stockton area, pm me for details.)
    Here is part of a post by Christcorp from 8 years ago giving further information:

    Just go as you are. It's not really going to get you any points a year from now when you're applying, because you wore a JrROTC uniform to a grass roots forum. Most ALO's in large areas with a lot of applicants, might not even remember you a year from now. That's not to say that they/we don't care, just that at a grass roots, we're trying to instill interest and answer questions for a lot of individuals all at the same time. Definitely go to the forum. It's great having an actual cadet there.They will tell you the straight up truth of their perspective. The academies have more than enough qualified applicants. They don't need to recruit. The choose cadets for the grass roots program who have been successful at the academy, but allow them to tell you the facts. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. ALO's are too far removed from the academy to give you a modern and accurate perspective about actual life there. (We're OLD!!!). So it's definitely your chance to hear about the discipline, GREAT food, classes, career opportunities, education, etc... It's definitely worth going to. Best of luck. Mike....

    Ditto. (Thanks Mike!) Mike and Cris
     
  2. kmlDad2020

    kmlDad2020 Member

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    My DS and I attended the grassroots event MikeandCris is referring to. It was both of our first real personal interaction with the USAFA family. The feeling we both experienced was akin to how I felt the first time we visited the Academy - inspired. The excellence there was palpable. Prior to the grassroots event, DS had a few "paths" that he was considering. Being there, interacting with the cadets, ALO's and parents, it was like the clouds parted and his future became crystal clear. Since that day he has been 100% focused with steadfast resolve. Thank you for that!! DS now has an LOA and has his MOC interview in two hours, fingers crossed. :)

    MikeandCris, we will be there on the 19th. Hope to see you there!
     
  3. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    I think a lot of applicants, parents, and interested people sometimes mix up the academy's motives on things like grass roots meeting, congressional town halls, summer seminar, etc. these aren't "recruiting tools". Believe it or not, the academies have more than enough qualified applicants. It's not like the academy is trying to spread the word.

    If you take the emotion and personal affect out of the process, you can realize that thing like grass roots and summer seminar actually saves the academy and military money. The more you, the applicant knows, the less chance that you, the applicant might quit the academy during basic training or in that first 2 year period. It actually costs the academy a lot of money to put people through BCT and school. The more informed and educated you are about the academy, the better decisions you can make as an applicant and as a cadet.

    I bring this up because I want applicants and their parents to know that these programs truly are for you the applicant. There's not recruiting motive or anything similar involved. The academy gets more than enough qualified candidates. But it would be great if the academy could get really knowledgable appointees walking in the door who don't quit a few weeks or months after starting, because they didn't know what they were getting into.

    Don't get me wrong. These programs aren't going to give you all the knowledge you need to guarantee everyone will stay at the academy all 4 years. Until you're actually there, you'll never realize fully what you've gotten into. But these programs are designed solely for you, the applicant. I've been to a lot of these. And it's also true that the alo will not most likely remember everyone there. So don't go to these outreach programs trying to impress anyone by wearing ROTC, cap, scout uniforms. Just go and be yourself. Think of it like going to an open house designed to provide information. The difference however, is that the academy isn't really trying to lure you in. We get plenty of applicants. We simply want you more informed so you'll make more informed decisions. Then, you'll have a greater probability of staying, which means we save a lot of money and have a better informed cadet Corp.
     
  4. buffalo

    buffalo USAFA 2013

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    Is grass roots not over the Thanksgiving holiday anymore?
     
  5. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    It's expanded. Traditionally, it's around turkey day. But a lot of cadets go home at Christmas, spring break, summer break. Many are cited and willing to share their expriences at the academy. I commend the parents clubs and ALO's who can use this opportunity to arrange meetings for future applicants to gain knowledge. But yes, traditionally, the main grass roots is still around thanksgiving.
     
  6. zachtx

    zachtx Member

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    The USAFA endorsed program that lets you miss a few days of class was moved from Thanksgiving to Spring Break.
     

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