Prior Enlisted Cadet Assembly (PECA)


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Jun 3, 2008

I am 20 years old and currently in the process of enlisting into the Air Force. By "in the process" I mean that I'm still in talks with my recruiter, but have decided that I will join. It's just a matter of taking the ASVAB and getting through MEPS now. Anyway, it seems like time is against me considering I need to be accepted into the Academy before I turn 23. I am curious as to what I can do to really help my goal of being accepted into the AFA. I read somewhere that you are able to apply as early as BMT, but they recommended waiting until you at least reached tech school.

I don't have any college credits. I did very well in school, but I regretfully never joined any sports. I can only recall in being in one club that fell apart as soon as it started and possibly a second club. I graduated in the top 11% of my class with a 4.0 GPA. I know I am academically qualified, but my sports/extracurricular activities just don't make the cut. What can I do in and outside of the service to make up for this?

All help would be greatly appreciated.
Okay, when you enlist make sure you volunteer for EVERYTHING. I wouldn't recommend this normally as it makes your life harder but it is a good way to make up for not having much EC stuff from HS. Another thing is that if you had a full time job after graduation and did a good job they will look at that.

Personnaly I was in a similar situation but my grades were much worse. I ended HS with a 2.9, so I am going to the Prep school. In the time have been enlisted I volunteered to be an element leader in basic, an airman leader and a drill team member at tech school, and have gotten about 4 letters of appreciation for random things I have helped with in my unit. I also volunteered for a local fire department.

If you don't have any college credits I would also recommend trying to get your CDC's done as early as possible and take some basic classes. Depending on your AFSC you could be through basic, tech, and all your CDC's in a manner of months. Also your OJT and tech will count for some credits from CCAF.

Best of luck.
For your situation, I would try to just pick one or two organizations for which to volunteer and put a lot of hours into those orgs. The USO is good as well as Ronald Mcdonald House, and CAP (Civil Air Patrol) also has opportunities past high school near most bases. These just some of things I myself was considering. The more hours you put in, the better it looks. Getting Quarterly awards at your first base will also help as it shows you are good at your job. I would suggest accepting a job that has a short Tech School so you can get to your first duty station as quick as possible. Like Bluesuiter said, becoming an Airman Leader in tech school is definitely looked upon well by the academy. Good luck.
Thanks for the responses, it is much appreciated.

BlueSuiter: I am curious as to how long after your first day of BMT you applied for the Academy? Like I mentioned in my original post, I'm in a race against time due to my age (or at least, that's how I feel). I'll be turning 21 in tech school (more than likely; I've DEPed in, but don't have an AFSC yet), so I'm curious as to what sort of timeframe I'm looking at as far as applying goes.
what is the timeline for current airmen

when is the earliest date that i can apply for the academy and the prep school, is it after basic training or tech school that i can apply?

and what should i be doing to increase my competivetness