What are my options?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by 00x0, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. 00x0

    00x0 New Member

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    Hello all,

    Thanks for this great forum. I am interested in joining the USAF, as an officer for a rated slot. I am aware that it's a difficult goal that has it's own set of requisites. But I'm willing to pursue it no matter. I graduated with a bachelor of science degree in engineering (not aerospace, but electrical) out of a civilian college in 2014. I didn't graduate from a US mil Academies or a ROTC program. I'm aware of the OTS route. But it has always been known that that route is almost non existent now, the probability of an acceptance is way too slim. And AF ROTC is/was the way as I was told. I do have about 1-2 yr of work experience in the private sector. Enrolling into a ROTC program for another 4 yrs? don't think I will still be eligible. But I would like to know your thoughts? I welcome all replies.
     
  2. Sampia

    Sampia Member

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    Hello and welcome to the forums. I can't answer your question but I would suggest posting it elsewhere, such as the ROTC area. Just thinking it might not get much notice down here in the "off topic".
     
  3. FalconsRock

    FalconsRock Parent

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    If you already have a BSN, then ROTC will not help you. Have you spoken to an officer recruiter?
     
  4. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    I have met a USMA cadet ( many years ago) who received an appointment after graduating with a BA from a state school, so while not easy, it has been done.
     
  5. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    OTS or guard/reserve is probably your best option.
    Some people hit the "do over" button and started a 4 year degree (some at a service academy), but that is a long road to take (and an SA is likely out due to age, if you graduated a couple years ago).

    Guard and Reserve are not as well known, but have some really good deals. I highly encourage you to investigate that route, as well as active duty OTS.
     
    NavyHoops and AROTC-dad like this.
  6. Jcc123

    Jcc123 Member

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    If you aren't set on Air Force, Army ROTC will allow you to participate in the program while obtaining a masters degree. You'll commission after 2 years, and can compete for an aviation slot (rotary wing) as well.
     
    FalconsRock and AROTC-dad like this.
  7. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    And there is Navy AOCS (Aviation Officer Candidate School) for those who like flying at night trying to hit a wet, slippery carrier deck with their hair on fire.
     
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  8. 00x0

    00x0 New Member

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    Thanks for all your suggestions. I haven't spoken to a recruiter yet. I just want to learn a little more before doing that first. But after speaking with a few detachment for an AFROTC slot over the phone. AS expected, I am automatically disqualified, if I already had an undergrad degree. Which sums it up into three choices; OTS, Army ROTC as a grad then compete for an aviation slot, fixed/rotary wings? (I supposed there's nothing like that for the AFROTC), and Navy AOCS. I'll investigate those routes then. Thanks
     
  9. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Who in earth told you that?

    I have several friends where their DSs went rated via OCS in the last 3 years.

    What you need to understand is how OCS rated boards work. They could offer you CSO or RPA. Guessing that you are 24 now. By the time the OCS board meets and if you get CSO, than you are looking directly down the barrel for Pilot from an age perspective.
    ~ 24 now, meet the board at 25. Finish OCS at 26 as a CSO. Finish CSO at 27, SERE/Water Survival/OPS training. MQ at 28.
    ~~ Assume you get to xtrain, that means when you are done with UPT and operational you will be 30 -31, and now owe them 9 more years from winging as a Pilot.

    If you are serious about going AF rated, than get some flight hours under your belt. It will be part of the score.
    ~ OCS boards meet in July and Jan.
    ~~ Even 15-20 hours will help.
    ~ Raimius is right, investigate the Guard/Reserve route
    ~~ You will enter at UPT/UNT knowing this is your airframe
    ~~ However, the process is different for Guard/Reserve compared to OCS
     
  10. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    I too would strongly recommend the Guard/Reserve route. In my sons' UPT classes, several grads had gone that route and were quite successful.
     
  11. Sledge

    Sledge Member

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    Is it still run by Marine DI's?
    [​IMG]
     
  12. 00x0

    00x0 New Member

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    Thanks everyone. Yes, you got my age right on pima. But how would I get some flight hours, if I'm still a civilian? flight schools?
    Also, I'm wondering if I should get some more experience under my belt first, say for another 1-2 years before I apply, just to get my chances up by a few notches. Especially since I was recently offered a position from a Federal agency. But will my chances vary when I apply, and I'm 26 then?
    If I understood correctly, the national guard is not part of the airforce? and by air frame, you mean the responsibilities. How soon should I speak with a AF/ANG recruiter ?
     
  13. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Yes, civilian flight training at a local airport gives you experience and more point in your application.
    I would not wait. Better to have a couple shots than put all the money on black and see what happens.
    The Air National Guard is a part of the Air Force, but it is also a state rather than federal function. Their commissioning programs and selection processes are different than active duty Air Force. (Reserve is somewhat similar, but totally federal.)
    "Airframe" refers to which aircraft you are selected to fly. USAF pilots don't switch back and forth between aircraft (with some exceptions).
     
  14. DevilDog

    DevilDog Member

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    Don't try to go thru an SA. My son has a very good friend that graduated from a very well respected university, but wanted to become an AF pilot. He applied and was admitted to USAFA. That young man was older than everyone else, and basically started college all over again. He got a pilot slot upon graduating, then did not do well in flight school. He was dropped. He could have achieved the same thing going OCS or OTS. He now has a different job and will most likely leaving the AF in a few years. We also have a family friend that went to school with my son from elementary school thru USAFA. She went there to be a pilot. She got a slot, but also did not make it. Now we are waiting to find out what she will be doing if anything. Go OTS.
     
  15. 00x0

    00x0 New Member

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    Thanks everyone for chiming in. I cant say how much I appreciate everyone taking their time to share their experiences/opinions with me. I"m not planning on starting all over again. I've paid my dues and have done my 4 years :). I know I should start talking with a recruiter. I'd like to know difference between the guard reserve V.S the AF - in terms of their missions, and their airframes. And why someone would want to join the guard over the airforce? it seems the ANG reserve is more limited to some extent than the airforce? I'm undecided on which recruiter I should contact first. What I'm more worried about is what will happen if things don't work out.

    I'll go a bit off topic: In today's economy, the job market is very competitive as we all know. And for the ones who are in beginning of their career, finding an opportunity can be a hard task for them in the beginning. I was recently blessed (also worked hard for it) and got hired at a state job. Moreover, I've received an offer to a national security position at a federal agency a few weeks ago. But my dream was never to spend the rest of my life behind a desk. I don't want to miss out on a chance(if theres still any) to follow my heart. At the same time, I fear of failing. Especially that a lot (if not all) of where I am now, I owe it all to my folks. Not making it is like having the work/time they spent with/on me down the drain...
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2016
  16. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    Here is a quick breakdown of the differences from the perspective of a rated slot:

    Active Duty - Go through the OCS process and get selected for a rated slot. As PIMA said above, the odds of this are not impossible and people do it. If selected, you will go to UPT and at the end of 54 weeks of training you will be assigned an airframe (specific aircraft) based on your ranking in your class. You will then be sent to specialized training (FTU) and then assigned to a base that has that particular aircraft. If it doesn't work out (you bust UPT or FTU), you will be given a different ASFC and serve your commitment in that job.

    Air National Guard - You will apply to specific units in the ANG that you are interested in. Some people only apply to fighter squadrons or tanker squadrons based on a particular airframe that they want, others will apply to any unit that is hiring just to get to fly. The amount of openings per year for each unit vary widely. Some fighter units only hire one person every two years. Others hire three or four or more per year. Once you get hired by the ANG unit, you will be put on active duty orders for about three years. One year for UPT and another two (or three) for experience or "seasoning" training in the unit. Note that the airframe that you are going to fly is already determined before UPT because you will fly the plane that that your hiring unit flies. After your active duty time, you will become a traditional guardsman, holding your civilian job, and flying for your Guard unit one or two weekends (or weekdays if scheduled). You will fly extra days when scheduled in order to keep your required flying times, and then doing the full two-week summer training and also deploying when the unit is assigned to deploy. Your civilian job is protected during your deployed times. Note that there are some people who fly full-time for guard units. These people hold a full-time job in the Guard and also are a pilot in their regular guard role. (It gets complicated, I know). Others are known as "Guard Bums" who don't hold an actual full-time job with the unit, but they also don't have another civilian job and they just pick up additional flying days as much as possible to make a living. If you bust training you are released from the unit and commitment, unless you were prior enlisted in the unit.

    Air Force Reserve - Very similar to the Guard in the hiring and training process, except it is a Federal unit and not a state-affiliated unit like the Guard. You apply to Reserve units and get hired and then go through training. You know which airframe that you will get because each unit only flies one kind. The Reserves also tend to have more full-time pilots than the Guard. In the Reserves they are called Air Reserve Technicians and they are working for the Reserve unit full-time. You can fly for a Reserve unit and hold a full-time civilian job just like in the Guard.


    A great plece for you to go and start reading about all of this stuff is on BaseOps: http://www.flyingsquadron.com/forums/ Just go on there and read as much as you can, especially in the ANG & AFRES discussion area and in the General discussion area for OCS information. Read a lot before you start asking question there because they have little tolerance for people who do not at least do some research before asking.

    Stealth_81
     
  17. 00x0

    00x0 New Member

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    Thanks stealth_81 for the link and that detailed breakdown. Everyone, thanks for all your help. I really appreciate those that took the time to answer my concerns. I can see now why the guards/reserve were strongly recommended. I'll have to go and read up some more..
     

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