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How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

Last post 12-02-2007, 10:38 PM by raimius. 4 replies.
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  •  11-07-2007, 6:37 PM 4835

    How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

    I am doing a project in school about careers, and i figured the best way to gather info. is by asking pilots themselves. ^^ i plan on becoming one and i wanted to know what it takes to become one and what life is like. thank you to anyone who can help me in advance.
  •  11-10-2007, 2:13 PM 4850 in reply to 4835

    Re: How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

    I can address part of the AF side.  To be a USAF pilot, you must be an officer.  This means you need at least a 4yr degree and you must go through a commissioning program.  There are three main commissioning sources, the Air Force Academy (where I am), Air Force ROTC, and OTS.  OTS is a 3 month (I think) training program for those who already have their degree.  It can be intense as it must fit a lot of information into a short time period.  The academy is a 4 year university.  It is very structured and combines military, academic, and athletic training.  About 40-50% of the USAF's pilot slots are given to the academy.  That equates to roughly 400-500 per year, with a graduating class of just under 1000.  AFROTC is a program done at a civilian college.  It involves extra classes in AF history and doctrine, along with a leadership lab course.  ROTC also does PT and summer training.  ROTC gets quite a few pilot slots, but not quite as high a percentage, relative to the number of students, as USAFA.  OTS gets relatively few pilot slots, as it focuses more on professional careers.

    At USAFA and in AFROTC, each cadet is ranked on academics, military (leadership and performance), and athletics.  If a cadet is medically qualified, they can select a pilot slot.  However, ranking becomes important because the job possitions are picked by class rank.  If you are last in your class, your options may be fairly limited.  Right now, at USAFA there are about 80 cadets on the alternate pilot list because they were not ranked high enough to choose an open pilot slot first.

    After commissioning and getting a pilot slot, most USAF pilots will go to Unergraduate Pilot Training at an Air Force Base.  I have not done this, so I will not attempt to fully explain UPT.

  •  11-13-2007, 1:23 PM 4855 in reply to 4850

    Re: How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

    thanks, i already plan on a 4-year university, and this will really help with my project.
  •  12-02-2007, 10:00 PM 4911 in reply to 4850

    Re: How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

    I am 20 years old. Currently attending college. I will appreciate if you can provide me with best options for me to become an F-15 pilot. I plan on joining the AF, however, I want to focus immidiately on pilot courses and all the training it takes to become one. Yet, since I do not know the process of it, I will be glad to know more about how to become an F-15 pilot, and what it takes from the begining. My criminal/drug record is as clean as it gets, and I am in great physical shape for I play sports and lift weights constantly. Thank You

    -Felipe

  •  12-02-2007, 10:38 PM 4912 in reply to 4911

    Re: How does one become an Air Force/Navy pilot?

    Join AFROTC, get good grades, do well within the ROTC unit, and stay fit.  Once you can choose your AFSC, pick pilot!  If you have done well in college and ROTC, are medically qualified, and get a pilot slot, do well at UPT.  UPT is where you will track select (heavy, fighter/bomber, helo, etc.)  After you do that, you will go on to further training in your track and can (if you have ranked highly enough to get your choices) choose an F-15 (if one is available).
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