Help on planning future path!! Enlist or Officer?

Discussion in 'OTS/OCS/PLC' started by futurepilot113, Sep 5, 2018.

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  1. futurepilot113

    futurepilot113 New Member

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    Hello all, Im new to this website and decided to come in since I feel like this website can provide valuable information. A little bit on me, I am a recent college graduate with a business degree with a 3.1 gpa, not the best. During my freshmen year in college, I was in Army ROTC but left the program because I wanted to fly planes and unfortunately the Army did not have that option. I have been looking in going to Air Force OTS, Navy OCS, and Air National Guard OCS. I want to fly fixed wing planes, hopefully fighter jets but I won't mind flying transports or drones. Im not sure if my current package is competitive for any of these but I will try. If I get rejected, I may plan on enlisting in the Air National Guard, use tuition assistance so I can go to grad school. Once I finish grad school, I can apply to OTS with Air National Guard and grad school on my belt.
    The problem is, I am not sure if this is a good route to go. I do have a ppl but not sure how much that will help. My parents discourage enlisting and say that If I want to be an officer than I should go for that. My ultimate goal is to fly for the military.I have wanted to do this for a very Long time. I understand the road to flying for the military is long but I am willing to put in 1oo percent to achieve this goal. If someone can offer me advice, I would deeply appreciate it.
     
  2. Anguswarrior112

    Anguswarrior112 Member

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    Looks like you and me share very similar goals. If your end goal is to fly for the military, then apply for ocs or ots. I might have to agree with your parents on the enlisting part.
     
  3. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator

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    Agree that enlisting is not a great choice if your goal is to fly.

    Don't neglect consideration for Marine OCS as well. They need pilots too.
     
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  4. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    Two barriers to keep in mind:

    1. Only one commissioning attempt per lifetime. So this will require a waiver for you for all branches.

    2. To go to USAF UPT you need to generally commission by age 27. This is 29 if you are prior enlisted.

    Other than that enlisted is a great route to get to pilot if you already have your degree Enlist as a loadmaster or crew chief, wait a couple of years and then put in an OTS package. As long as you're not too old, and your commission waiver is approved, you will be more competitive. Especially if you get your private license during that time.

    Most ANG pilots are prior-E, btw. Probably closer to 80 percent.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2018
  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    I'm not sure that's accurate. What is your primary source for this?
     
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  6. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    AFI 36-2005, table A5. 1.

    Also, I had to get a waiver for OTS due to voluntarily leaving ROTC previously. Not hard, but it adds time to the package.
     
  7. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe 5-Year Member

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    Were you contracted when you left ROTC, the OP stated that he left when he was a freshman but did not state whether he was contracted, if a cadet has yet to contract when they leave then there is no official resignation from the program.
     
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  8. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    I was contracted, yes. Left my freshman year, so I didn't incur a service commitment.

    Yes, OP didn't say one way or the other, now that I read it again.
     
  9. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    It’s more like 5-10%. Where are you getting your information?

    Stealth_81
     
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  10. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    Where did you get 5-10%?
     
  11. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator 10-Year Member Founding Member

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    From discussions with current Guard and AD pilots. Specifically from the 176th FS and a couple of other units.

    Stealth_81
     
  12. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    OK. I could see a fighter squadron having a higher percentage of non-priors. Nevertheless, from my firsthand experience in the ANG tanker and airlift world, prior-E is extremely common, especially given the number of FE's, loads, AE crew, and boomers that convert. You also look at the RPA world, where the age cutoff is much higher, and you will again see a bunch of prior enlisted pilots (and straight enlisted pilots in the case of the Ghawk).
     
  13. Anguswarrior112

    Anguswarrior112 Member

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    I wouldn't say you get one attempt a lifetime. It depends on how you did in the program you were before, I was in Army ROTC for a year and left and I was contracted, I needed a waiver for Marine PLC which was the dd785. This form has recommendations of whether or not you should be recommended for another officer program. I received a 4 which was recommended as an average candidate. However if your form ranks you as not recommended then things could be different and harder to apply ocs. If I were you , if you only look to flying fixed wing planes, apply to Navy OCS, Marine OCC, Air Force OTS, broaden your chances. I wouldn't say enlist, if your only looking to be a pilot or an officer and are enlisting to make that route better than you won't be happy and that route can be challenging too.
     
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  14. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    AFI 36-2005, para. 2.8.3 and 2.8.3.1 are the guidance covering this.

    This paragraph states that applicants are ineligible for commissioning in the USAF if they have been "disenrolled from a military service academy for any reason or disenrolled from any other officer training program listed in Attachment 5 because of lack of aptitude, indifference to training, incompatibility, breach of the AFROTC contract terms, undesirable character traits, or disciplinary reasons, may not reenroll in any Air Force officer commissioning program or be appointed to any Air Force component without a waiver from the appropriate nomination authority listed in paragraph 1.5."

    That seems pretty clear to me. OP indicated a desire to enter USAF OTS (AD or ANG are the same) after withdrawing from AROTC. If they were contracted, I feel pretty confident a waiver would be required. But, if it's not, great! Get your DD785 and make sure your disenrollment wasn't coded for any of the reasons above, and there you go.

    I'm not going to argue about whether or not the above AFI paragraph indicates only one commissioning attempt is allowed per lifetime in the USAF, but that would be the general way I would read those two paragraphs. I can think of vanishingly few reasons one would be disenrolled (other than for medical or family/life events) that are not covered above.

    The intent of my statement, though, was simply to advise that a waiver will most likely be required for any USAF commissioning program. That waiver adds a lot of time to the process, and as USAF and especially ANG pilot candidates (both things the OP indicated interest in) are usually pipelined, it is something that can throw a wrench into things.

    Thanks, Anguswarrior for confirming that a waiver was also required for PLC.
     
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