My AFROTC EA 2011 Chances?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by signification, Dec 21, 2010.

  1. signification

    signification New Member

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    Hey, this is my first post here, but hopefully not my last.
    I saw another thread regarding the 2011 EAs and I figured I'd post my stats here to get some outside input.

    Let me get the ugly off my chest first:
    I feel what's hurting me the most in this program is my GPA and the fact that I am a non-tech major.
    My University's cGPA has me at a 2.49. This is not factoring in transfer credits I have earned. If you factor those in I should be at a cGPA of 2.8. I'm unsure if this will be calculated in my package though. Can anyone give me input on this? They should calculate transfer credits with the University's GPA upon submission of my application for an EA right? I've talked to the NCOs at my detachment, but they haven't gotten back to me yet.

    Now here are the good parts about me:
    On the PFA I scored a 100.
    I'm in Honor Guard and a new member of the Drill Team.
    I have a lot of PA involvement in the detachment.
    I'm known by the cadre and POC.

    I feel that my commander's rating should be pretty decent, especially with the amount of cadets that are not getting themselves involved in the program. Could favoritism be a beneficial factor?

    On a side note, I'm not looking for scholarship. It's not why I'm in this program. I'm in it to be a leader in the USAF. This is a career.

    My ultimate question to you: Will my GPA completely ruin my chances at an EA for Summer 2011, or will all the other good points about me balance it out? I have heard GPA is the #1 factor, but can't your commander's rating help you out- possibly even fight for you?

    Thanks for any input you might have!
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010
  2. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    That gpa is going to hurt, there just is no way to put that nicely.

    The AFROTC program is run from a nationalistic approach. The board meets and assigns points to give you an overall score. Above it you are fine, below it and you aren't.

    The commander's rec matters, and it matters a lot. However, as much as your commander may like you or respect you, you need to remember it is their arse on the line when they put you up.

    It is great that you are involved, I am sure that will help with the rec. HOWEVER, even a 2.8 as a non-tech major and a sterling rec might not be enough.

    Nobody can give you a clear cut answer. All you can do is try.

    Best wishes.
     
  3. kevster

    kevster Member

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    I agree with Pima. That GPA is not going to help you much. Last year our det had a GPA cutoff of around 3.2 for EAs. A few suggestions.

    1) Apply this year and see what happens. It never hurts to try. If you have not already, meet with your O-6 and talk to him about your concerns.

    2) If this means a lot to you and you have the finances try and become a 250 (5 year plan). We had a few cadets last year who did not get EAs and they elected to stay another year so they could have another go at it.

    3) Look into other branches. You will find that Army ROTC is somewhat more lenient with academics (this is not meant as a slight in any way).

    However be careful with #3. Each service has a "culture" that comes with it. Its kinda hard to explain in words. If your a Air Force brat (like myself) and you know this already then just skip to the end of this post. However, if not, let me try and explain with an analogy.

    Think of the armed forces as our entire country. Within our country we have different regions with different mannerisms and traditions (North, Mid West, West coast,.....). Think of the the USN, AF, CG, and USM all as different regions in the country. They all fit under the same category (Military) but have different ways of thinking and operating.

    So I guess what I'm trying to say is don't think that going AROTC will be the same as AFROTC. If the the AF is what you really want to do then go for it! However, if you simply want to be an officer then maybe look into other options.

    In conclusion I think the realistic plan will be #2. If you really focus and are able to hit around a 3.5 these next three semesters you should be fine for next years boards! Best of luck bud! :thumb:
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010
  4. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    To pile on kevster's post about Army vs AF from someone who lived it as a spouse for 20 yrs and dated an AFROTC cadet for 5 yrs prior to that (25 yrs total). The AF takes the butt of every joke when it comes to the military.

    Reality is there is some truth in all of those jokes

    1. AF members live BANKERS hours

    ~~~They do! Your duty day is 8-4 for the most part.
    ~~~They do not have meetings to decide when they will have the next meeting!


    2. AF members have great bases and amenities

    ~~~They do! They have a smaller pool of members, and although their fiscal pool is smaller, they also have less places to spread the wealth. It also means less wear and tear on the bases and their amenities.
    ~~~They also know that to train an F-22 pilot costs millions of dollars, keep him and his family happy and they are less likely to bolt.


    3. AF 1st builds their runways, than the golf course and than housing.

    ~~~That reinforces point number 2.


    4. The AF pays better, and EVERYONE gets some type of bonus.

    ~~~Not true, HOWEVER, look an Army jump pay. It has not been increased for decades, meanwhile the AF hands out 100K bonuses on top of increasing flight pay.

    5. The AF deployed stay in the Holiday Inn, whereas, the Army stays in a tent

    All of these characterizations are based on some form of truth. The Army is a great branch, but when it comes to being on the short end of the stick, I think they are the ones holding it.

    Military life is 24/7/365. You need to want to serve, but you also need to want to serve that branch in that field.

    Military pay, job security or serving the country is not enough to give your life for. You need to WANT to be in that branch. You NEED to be ready to say:

    My wedding date is cancelled because they deployed me
    I am okay missing the birth of my child, or their 1st birthday
    I am fine living in Korea for a yr or 2 and not coming home
    I love the sea and 6 months out there is A OK
    I don't mind that the closest thing to a shower is using baby wipes.

    The AF, Navy and Army have specific missions. If it is a way to pay for college and that is your only motivation, than look for other ways. If it is a specific career field, than make sure it exists when you switch branches. If the career field is not an issue, than take the time and talk to people regarding each branch. (Scoutpilot on here is a great resource for the Army, USNA85 is great for the Navy, and Flieger is great for the AF). Do due dilligence, this is a big commitment.
     
  5. signification

    signification New Member

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    Thanks for these long and insightful posts, I really do appreciate them. :smile:

    I should have worked harder my Freshman year before joining this program, I probably wouldn't be in the position I am in now.
    Regarding the GPA "cut-offs," looking at the statistics at a national scale- surely there are cadets below 3.0 that earn an EA slot?

    What are the percentages to calculate your package? I know the score you earn is spread amongst everyone you're competing against in the nation and there will be a cut-off at about the 2,200th slot. But in terms of GPA, PFA, and CC

    I never really considered other branches because I absolutely love the AF, but now I might want to.

    I was considering Navy before Army. My father is retired Navy; and although he said he doesn't recommend I pursue it, I feel that it was because he was enlisted and only joined because he needed something to get by in life. I desire this as a career as I stated earlier. Do you have any info on the differences in these lifestyles?

    Would I be a candidate for Navy/Army OCS? Or should I try and push my graduation date back and pursue the 2yr Program in Navy/Army ROTC?

    Again, I am ready to say YES to those things you listed. This is something I strive to do; I am not in it for scholarship or financial aid, although those would be nice! I really want it to be a lifestyle.
     
  6. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I am sure there are people with below 3.0, the question is did they have a reason? A 2.9 tech major is a different ball of wax than a 3.2 education major.

    You need to keep up the faith. Even if you do get it, it isn't over because you will still need to prover yourself as a C300. In AFROTC that is when your AFSC comes down, and your gpa, PFT, AFOQT, and rec all add into your career board.

    Again, it is a nationalistic approach.

    Honestly, I do not have that answer, but let's say it is like AFSC. 65% is the commander's rec. Here's your problem, the commander is AD and he will be reviewed upon the amount of cadets that get into the AF programs. He is going to place the likely candidate at the top of the list because he wants a high acceptance rate for his own OPR. His goal is the best officer for the AF regardless of how he feels about them personally.

    I get you want to serve the military, and right now it is important to decide in what position. The Army is not the Navy, the Navy is not the AF and the AF is not the Army when it comes to missions. They do overlap, but if you want to fly Helo's the AF should not be your choice. You want to be on a boat than the Army is not your choice.

    Ask yourself what do you want to do 24/7/365 in the military. Intel, than OK any branch can work. What is your career goal?

    Officer and enlisted lifestyles are different.

    The running joke is Officers make a MILLION plus bonuses.

    Do you want to live on a boat?

    The only time I have ever seen AF and Navy candidates cross services has always been to one reason.

    FLYING.

    No AF guy wants to serve on a boat or a sub if he can get the same job in the AF.

    No Army guy wants the Navy either.

    I have to say I chuckled at your last statement of " Do you have any info on the differences in these lifestyles?"

    Have you never heard of the statement if the ARMY/MARINES wanted you to have a spouse they would have issued you one?

    Did you miss the fact that I stated the AF does not hold briefings for the sake of it, and they are known as the "corporation" branch because SERIOUSLY, duty day is 8-4 and that is how they roll.

    You need to ask them on your best options.

    In the end of the day, talk to your COMMANDER, not the NCO. Discuss this with him. Ask him where he racks and stacks you against your peers. DO not discuss flipping into a new branch. If you walk out with a good feeling, than trust that, but if he says "I CAN'T PROMISE YOU ANYTHING". Than it is time to re-evaluate the situation.

    This is winter break, the det leadership should be there sometime during the break, make an apptmt via in person or on the phone.
     
  7. kevster

    kevster Member

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    Yes like Pima said tech and non-tech are looked at differently. We were actually told at the beginning of the year that tech majors would actually get a bump up in their scores. Also language majors often times get a little help in the selection process simply because they are in high demand.

    Our det has this for our EA scoring system.

    Commander's Ranking - 50% (In our det this ranking is heavily weighted on GPA)

    GPA - 20%

    PFA - 10%

    SAT/ACT - 10%

    In regards to the Navy vs Air Force life I'll give my .2 . However before I continue take my analysis with a grain of salt. Put more weight on what Pima says regarding AF life, she lived, breathed, and raised kids during it all.

    Anyways my senior year I was deciding between AFROTC and NROTC. In the end I wanted to fly and the AF gave me a better shot at doing that. However I live in annapolis and have a lot friends that are Mids and USNA grads that I was able to question about navy life.

    It seemed like the Navy was great for young guys. Most of my mentors and friends said that during their 20's they absolutely loved going out to sea. They said the sea almost became part of them. However late 20s early 30s all of a sudden kids and families come along. Now the thought of being at sea away from your newborn and wife ......... kinda sucks. Now certainly it wasn't all that terrible. They just all agreed that their priorities had changed. Most of the guys I spoke with retired as O-5s because they really didn't want to be away/ moving with kids going into H.S.

    Pima is 110% correct with her observations of AF life.

    If you think the AF is laid back wait till you see the aviation community. My pops was pilot for 22 years so my "story" will just reflect what I have experienced. I also believe that Pima's husband was a WSO so she can definitely chime in.

    In my case we moved but not as much as most ....
    Arizona - Dont really know....I was all of 3 months old
    Oklahoma - Pops in UPT at Vance.......T-37........T-38....
    Oklahoma x2 - Pops FAIPed out of UPT..... T-38 IP(3 more years in the great city of enid :rolleyes:)
    Texas - Pops would kill to get a Strike or a Viper but the AF doesn't have any available so ....... IP in T-1s! Welcome to Lubbock!
    Oklahoma x3 - ..... Pops gets assigned to 135s ..... Tinker AFB!
    - Gulf War a few deployments (mom still gets emotional talking about it).
    Maryland - Pops interviews and gets a pretty sweet job at Andrews flying some important people around.

    As you can see we haven't moved to much during my dads 22 yr career but this is EXTREMELY rare from what I hear.

    My dad definitely was home every day around 4PM like pima said.

    Whenever I visited him at work it seemed like he and all the other pilots/navs were pretty laid back and great group of guys. There wasn't much of a hoorah! vibe there. Actually they always seemed like a bunch of happy kids who were having the time of their lives. :shake:

    Anyways just my obnoxiously long .2 . Hope this helps a little.
     
  8. signification

    signification New Member

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    I was originally pursuing a career in Intelligence for AF. I would still want to do Intel if I can in another branch.
    My back-up plan was Security Forces.

    I do not want to be a pilot surprisingly. I've done a few flights to see if it would suit me and I determined flying just wasn't my thing.

    I realize every branch is to each their own. I didn't mean to phrase my question in a way that would make it seem like I am an uneducated person.
    I realize each has their own culture and their own specific qualities that are geared toward different types of people.

    I understand your 24/7/365; It's not something I doubt at all. Like I've said before, I am more than willing to do all of those things. I want it to be clear that I understand responsibilities when I have them, even if it does mean spending time away from family. The military is serious business.

    I am going to set up an appointment with my detachment's Colonel for sometime after Christmas. Maybe he can tell me where I stand amongst the others in the det.

    Again, I know everything is taken to the National level- but despite my terrible GPA, I know for a fact that the majority of 30-something 200s/250s in the program at my college are not leaders.

    If this is true, and my rather large detachment has this many bad cadets, imagine the other dets in the nation? They can't all be perfect.

    Sure they might look average/good on paper in terms of GPA; but will a commander really ignore the fact that these cadets who are unprofessional, have poor attendance, poor D&C, and lack leadership qualities? Would some of the rank O-6 dismiss these and want these cadets to be future Officers in the USAF?
    You might disregard that and say it doesn't matter, it's based solely on statistics.
    But I guess we'll wait and see. Sure the odds are extremely against me, but you know what, I'm going to continue the start of the next command period with confidence and just see what happens.

    Thanks again for taking the time to reply. I really enjoy reading your posts and I take them to heart.
     
  9. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    A commander looks at the big picture, one that is bigger than at your age you can imagine. His OPR and PRF are going to be reviewed upon his leadership as a commander. Numbers matter when it comes to ROTC. That means everything from PT scores to % of graduates compared to the amount that entered.

    Yes, this is your FUTURE career, but this is their PRESENT career. They are most likely married, with kids and a mtg., they don't want to be passed over on a promotion board and SERB or worse yet, told thanks, but no thanks. (Passed over O4 2X and they kick you out with no bennies...look at your det, I bet there are some O3s hanging about). Passed over for O5 with 16 yrs and they will be gone at 20 yrs to the date. Their career is over.

    The det commander not only has to be concerned with his carrer, your career, but every AD member that reports to them.

    That is the big picture for ROTC commanders.

    Cadet corps range in size. You can't take a leap that because you know that 15 out of the 30 stink in your det are the common make up for each det.

    Flip side, you may have 50% that stink, and another could have 75%. It really does vary.

    I have said this before ERAU states they give out the 2nd highest number of UPT slots after the AFA. Yet, statistically they are below the avg for AFROTC dets.

    Nick stated @68% got SFT, when the national level was much, much lower. He goes to VT and I would bet the majority of ROTC cadets are not only in ROTC, but also Corps of Cadets. I bet the Citadel and Texas A&M also have high numbers compared to a det at UMiami.

    It is a big picture. You are right to talk to your commander. A good commander will be honest on your ranking within the det. Our DS has always had for the past 3 yrs a one on one with the det leadership, and told EXACTLY where he racks and stacks within the corp. He could tell you right now, how many C300s are applying for UPT. and the number he is in that rack and stack.

    Your det commander should be able to give the same info because summer field training board will be meeting shortly. He may not be able to say you are number 12 out of 36, but he should be able to say you are my top 1, 5%, 10%, 25%. 50%, etc. He should also be able to say LY this % went from our school. Thus, if he says you are top 1/3 and 1/2 went you should feel good. If he says top 1/3 went and you are in the top 1/2 you should still have hope because numbers change and you are on the cusp.

    Good luck. Remember it isn't over until you throw in the towel!
     

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