Dropping out after BCT?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by Badfinger, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. Badfinger

    Badfinger Member

    Dec 5, 2016
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    So if a Cadet decides that USAFA and the subsequent military career is not for them and they want to leave USAFA after BCT, what is the process? How long does it take to out-process? Does the AF fly them home? Do they have to reimburse the AF for anything? Do they still go through A-day proceedings?

    Had an interesting debate at my work with a Naval Academy graduate and a USAFA graduate (both about 15 years ago).
  2. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna 5-Year Member

    May 10, 2011
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    Basically, they'll tell their chain of command they want to leave, and the squadron AOC will start the ball rolling. There's a series of appointments and tasks that need to be completed for a cadet to leave. For a voluntary resignation right after BCT (most people call it the Form 34 process), it would probably wouldn't take more than a couple of weeks at most. If there's a medical issue and becoming a turnback is an option, that can extend the process. I've seen Form 34 departures happen on the same day the cadet wishes to leave (very rare), and I've seen them take over a month.

    The process takes longer if it happens during the semester. For example, if a cadet decides to Form 34 right before final exams in December, they will almost certainly be required to return after winter break to finish outprocessing. If there are pending disciplinary or other issues, that extends the process too.

    The AF won't pay to send them home and won't collect any money, but will keep some of the issued gear. Typically, until a cadet physically departs USAFA, they will be required to attend mandatory activities, classes, and formations (mostly for accountability.) So, yes, it is likely that a cadet who expressed a desire to outprocess at the end of BCT would be present for the Acceptance Day parade.

    Some of this info may not be 100% current if the process has changed recently.
  3. raimius

    raimius 10-Year Member

    Jun 9, 2006
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    I hope they're not basing their decision off BCT alone.
    USAFA10s likes this.
  4. USAFA10s

    USAFA10s USAFA Class of 2012 Kirtland, AFB 10-Year Member

    Nov 18, 2007
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    ^^ agree with raimius, almost everyone thinks at some point that the military isn't for them during BCT, but that is not a clear picture of USAFA or the Air Force at large, it's more of a blurry snapshot.
  5. j4313n

    j4313n New Member

    Mar 14, 2017
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    So to outprocess, they have to speak to several different people before it can be approved. It needs to go through their AOC and then their Group Commander. Then, they'll begin the outprocessing procedures. They'll return some of the things they were issued (however they get to keep most of it) and sign a lot of forms. For me, the process from start to finish took a day and a half. From the time I stated I wanted to initiate the process to getting dropped off at the airport was 3 days. The Academy will not pay for their flight upfront, but once you get your separation orders, you can send in your travel receipts and get reimbursed. Know that there is not a lot of time to plan ahead for flights and transportation; they told me one morning I would be done outprocessing by 1900 and to book a flight for either that evening or the next morning.

    I left for medical reasons, but still on a Form 34 Voluntary Disenrollment. If they make it through BCT, encourage them to stay for at least the first semester. It's totally different as a cadet than as a basic. If they don't want to, be supportive, no matter how much you want to pull your hair out. It's just not for some people, and that's okay. Help them figure out a new plan and go from there.
  6. 6KDogwhistle

    6KDogwhistle Member

    Aug 2, 2014
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    Not to be a "hoorah" boy and apologies for hijacking the thread but the Air Force is nothing like BCT and life at the academy does not reflect active duty for the most part. Jump through the hoops, play the game, keep your eyes on the prize, and the reward will be great. Think "training", be able to differentiate that with reality, and keep the emotions out as much as you can. Mind over matter, remember!
    tex2021, AROTC-dad and NavyHoops like this.