Prior enlisted, questions about AFROTC.

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by WestCoastStudent, Aug 29, 2014.

  1. WestCoastStudent

    WestCoastStudent New Member

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    Hello everyone,
    I am a prior enlisted, recently separated (Army) college student who will be attending University of West Florida in Pensacola soon (currently attending school in California). My ambition for my next career path is to fly a fighter or bomber aircraft for the Air Force, or possibly the Navy or Marines, if things so happen to work out a different way. I have done research about the AFROTC program, but was hoping someone could enlighten me about some of the processes involved with becoming a pilot through AFROTC.

    First, I am using the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill to pay for my schooling. Is this allowed while attending AFROTC?

    Second, and I might be going out on a limb here with this question, but I sustained a back injury while I was in the Army for which I received surgery, but recovered and returned to duty in full capacity. It is not an issue for me, however, I have been told that new accession standards may be an obstacle due to having this past injury on my record. I still have 4 years of Inactive Ready Reserve on my contract. If I were to get into the POC, would the affiliation with POC allow me to circumvent new accession standards? (I.E., could I just transfer my IRR obligation towards my Air Force time, or something of that nature)

    Third, is anyone familiar with UWF's AFROTC program, and if so can they tell me about it?

    And Fourth, is there a selection process of some sort to get into AFROTC? How exactly does all of that process work? Can anyone else working towards a pilot slot tell me about that process as well?

    I realize some of these questions may be best suited for a detachment commander or maybe even a recruiter, but I am trying to get my ducks in a row and figure out my facts before I start asking questions in person or over the phone.

    Any information is greatly appreciated.

    Sincerely,

    WestCoastStudent
     
  2. Akrogan

    Akrogan Member

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    Look at UCF...I'm a cadet there and the cadre, staff, and program are all top notch. They treat prior enlisted very well too, we have a few. Just some food for thought, great school too. Also if you study a technical degree, you have a higher shot at getting an in college scholarship and commissioning.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    1. You want to be a pilot.

    This will require an FC1 flight physical. You may be qualified for pilot training, but not ejection seat due to your back injury! No fighters for you!

    You may be DQd totally, and the AF will own you, thus you could be flying a desk only.

    Before you jump to the Big Blue make sure you are realistic from a medical perspective.

    2. Be realistic about fighter and bombers, let alone going UPT

    Do you have any pilot hours?
    ~ That is part of what the Army calls accession boards.
    ~ How well do you do regarding standardized testings?
    ~~ You will be required to take the AFOQT and TBAS for selection.
    ~~~ AF board works on the premise you have to accept whatever they select you for out of the 4 options. They may say you are going ABM or RPA and never offer Pilot!

    To wing out of UPT is a 65% chance at best. Out of those that wing only 20-25% go fighters. In other words 15% on a good day.

    Laughlin's last drop last week was the following:
    T38 (fighter)
    B2
    16

    T1 (heavies)
    AC 130
    4 C 17
    C 5
    E 3
    HC130
    U 28

    do the math. 2 out of 11 went fighters. Less than 20% that winged, now add in those that washed out at IFS or UPT,and you are looking at maybe 10%.

    3. How old are you right now?
    UPT has a cut off age.

    You will need to go to SFT and be a POC for at least 3 semesters before commissioning.
    ~ Our DS was casual status for 10 months before starting UPT.

    Will you make the age cutoff?

    4. The service payback does not start until you wing, with casual status and the time to wing you are looking at 10+ years from commissioning before you can leave, honestly it is closer to 11.
    Commissioning is the key word here. For you it means probably 13 years at least.

    I am not trying to be DebbieDowner,but trying to make sure you understand just the hurdles.

    Your big ones right now will be SFT, and your major, your GPA, your test scores and flight hours.
    ~ I am assuming as prior E your CoC ranking and PFA will be strong.

    Good luck and thank you for defending this great nation.
     
  4. WestCoastStudent

    WestCoastStudent New Member

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    Akrogan,

    I will definitely check it out. Thank you.

    Pima,

    I appreciate your honesty. I don't need anyone telling me that getting into fighters is a cake walk, because everyone knows it isn't.

    I was in an airborne unit and returned to jump status after my injury, as well as deploying to a combat zone, so do you still see an issue with that? I feel like a waiver would be quite possible given my history.

    I'm not trying to sound arrogant, but I know what it takes to get through military courses with high attrition rates. I have done some things in the Army that a lot of other people didn't make it through. So I'm game for whatever I have to be game for. And if not, then I eat my own words. But I am not worried about making the cut for fighters. If I end up flying a bus, then oh well. I'm not going to cry about getting trained and paid to fly an airplane. Regardless, I am confident in my ability to end up where I want to be.

    I am 23 and so I have until I am 29 from my understanding, so yes, I will make the cutoff.

    Do you know if the Air Force offers the CRO program through ROTC(just out of curiosity for a second choice, supposing pilot wouldn't work out)?

    I am working on my standardized testing. I don't really have much of a life as all of my time is spent studying, so I am dedicated to being able to ace those tests. From my understanding you don't take those tests until your junior year, correct?

    Also, is it mandatory to have pilot hours? Wouldn't that be redundancy to learn to fly on your own? Or does the Air Force favor such experience?

    And what exactly is SFT?

    I thank you for your response, and please forgive my ignorance to this whole process. My brain is still stuck on Army mode after being out close to a year, and I am trying to learn how the aviation world works. I greatly appreciate the help.
     
  5. Zero

    Zero Member

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    Getting through the door is relatively easy, your POC entry will depend on your GPA/PFA/CC ranking. Tech degrees help, but if that's not your thing I wouldn't sweat it, its harder but still doable. They had a rated questionnaire for this year, the rates were decent even for non tech rated.

    You can use GI bill for ROTC and even ROTC classes if your crosstown as well as your primary school. You also get your BAH equivalent to E-5.

    Back injury is a question for the DODMERB doc if you get a thumbs up then ask a flight doc. If you don't know one, call one, if you cant call one ask your ROTC recruiter/cc whoever it is you talk to about it and see what they say, worst would be denied at Wright Pat your 300 year in the FC1. In short, don't take no for an answer until a doctor says no and your waiver is denied, in the end even if you cant fly fighters you may luck out with bombers or have to go heavies. If you truly want to fly you wont really care if its a medical DQ, nothing you can do about it now right?

    Rated selection in ROTC is based off PCSM 2.0 now. Google it, lots of good info. Get some flight hours, even 6 hours will do and pretty cheap to do which puts you in tier 2 bracket. Your best bet: Study Hard, Work Hard, Help your bros/sis in the det and you will do fine. Your PFA/GPA is about the only thing you can control for both FT and Rated, so they are extremely important. Also study for pilot AFOQT.
     
  6. Zero

    Zero Member

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    Yes you can do STO/CRO, you will have that option to notify yes or no your 200/300 year. Usually you will go to their own training thing after FT your 200 year.

    Usually you take the AFOQT before FT. AFOQT and TBAS is on base, your det will offer it throughout the year at times, However since you are prior I am assuming you have a ID card, which means you can do it whenever you want. Call the nearest base and set it up on your own. I suggest you take it ASAP, you can take it twice, 6 months between test so if you do poorly you can retake before your stats are sent up. (no it does not show that you took it twice, most recent score only shows.)

    SFT is FT, its Field Training, think basic but on a leadership level, less yelling more leadership skills. Evaluation, not training per say.

    Hours are not required but the way PCSM 2.0 works it will aid you, the worse you do the more the hours help. Lets say your PCSM is 40, you get 6 hours, it could carry you up to the 60s. In short, its a few hundred bucks, do it. You don't need to get your pilots license, just get some hours it shows the intent.
     
  7. WestCoastStudent

    WestCoastStudent New Member

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    Zero,

    Thank you so much for that information. Loads of help. How does one go about getting flight hours without a license? I am going to fly with a pilot soon, just for fun, would that count as hours?
     
  8. Zero

    Zero Member

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    Not really you need to be the PIC, pilot in command. Buy a logbook, 20 bucks maybe. The hours will depend on your location, get a flight instructor (20-50 an hour) then cost to rent the aircraft. Even if you only get 1 hour its better then none, and usually they will do 1 hour intro flights for 99 bucks. After that its a little more expensive maybe 200-400 per hour in the aircraft. But like I said you have until you go up for rated in your 300 year to get those hours, save some of your BAH to pay for it, just don't forget to do it, the sooner the better. I also sent you a PM.
     
  9. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    I'm not AFROTC and don't know the process for becoming a CRO, but I do have a friend that is in AFROTC who went to some sort of CRO selection program (I don't if it was the actual CRO selection or if they do one just for ROTC cadets) a summer or 2 ago. I'm sure there's a bunch of stuff to do in order to get to the selection point, but it seems to be possible for AFROTC cadets.
     
  10. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Westcoast,

    What I was stating regarding your back is that the FC1 physical means you have to meet not only the DoD standards, but also the FAA.

    You will be sent to Wright Pat AFB for a 3 day medical exam. Everything from dental to eyes to EKGs and in between will be performed. Including reviewing your military medical history.

    As an example, Bullet went through it and was originally DQd because they stated he had more than a 19 degree curve in his back. He fought it by going to a nationally renown Scoliosis specialist surgeon and they accepted the fact that the xray was done improperly and he was below the max allowable curve.

    He jumped with the 82nd as an ALO for two years and not once did that become an issue if he was jump qualified, but every year he had his long physical the flight docs kept an eye and reviewed his scoliosis to make sure he could still remain in ejection seat cockpits.

    He had a friend that had a bad jump and broke their ankle. The guy was medically DQd from flying ejection seats, but was still allowed to jump.

    We had a friend that played FB for the AFA, and injured his back. He went onto be a WSO (aka CSO now). They played intramural flag FB in the wing. One game he took a spill, re-injured his back and was placed on DNIF. He fought for years to get back in the cockpit, and eventually they gave him an exception to medical policy, but the catch was no ejection seats.

    That is the point I was trying to make, when it comes to ejection seats they are very cautious about who is qualified and who is no.
    ~ heck if your sitting height is too short or too tall they will immediately say you can go to UPT, but you will track heavies.
    ~~ This is why tall people like Flieger or known to slouch and short people or known to sit as straight as possible.

    As far as redundancy regarding getting a PPL or at least some flight hours they do it because they have realized that the more hours the student has the higher chance of winging. If you have a PPL you also get the option to waive attending IFS.
    ~ IFS has a 25-30% wash out rate.
    ~~ DS's IFS class started with 28. 21 graduated.

    This also saves the AF big time money. IFS is a 3 week course, and if you think 200-400 an hour is expensive it is much more they spend on these students, since you have to include TDY pay, per diem and travel costs for 3 weeks, plus the overhead to run the school house.

    I would suggest you read Raimius blog starting at post 15
    http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showthread.php?t=35795&page=2

    It will give you a great insight of what life will be like starting at IFS and going through UPT.

    Good luck and best thoughts.
     
  11. WestCoastStudent

    WestCoastStudent New Member

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    Thanks for the info Pima, I will keep it in mind.
     

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