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Army or Air Force ROTC?

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Old 10-04-2010, 10:52 AM   #1
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Army or Air Force ROTC?

I really want to fly in the military and i'm stuck between these 2 options.

Army ROTC- it's the Active Duty option. I keep all benefits, pay, medical, etc, and maintain my time in service while I go to school for 2 years. I already have my AA and will be transfering to the school as a junior which is one of the requirements. I can try to branch aviation and hopefully get it, but it is ultimately up to the Army and how I do in School along with Feild Training.

Air Force ROTC- I have to get out of the Army, support my family and complete 2.5 years of manadatory AFROTC classes since i'm prior service. I really want to fly C-17s or KC-10s. I know they are cutting back officers and it's very hard to get a pilot slot, but I really want to fly. I will have my GI Bill which will pay for all of my schooling and give me $1400 a month for a housing allowance. I have a house to live at rent free, so the housing allowance will be pocketed.

I have 6 years in the Army and would like to make a career in the military. Any help/advice would be appreciated! thanks in advance.
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Old 10-05-2010, 12:10 AM   #2
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ARMY
pros:
1. Easier/faster promotions
2. More bases
3. You know the regs
4. More likely you can get ROTC scholarship and use GI bill as secondary income (trust me, Ive seen it happen). Can also use GI Bill 2/ AFROTC as well but I dont know if it will be primary or secondary income for you since you have to ETS.
5. Field training for ROTC is over the weekend once or twice a semester depending on your school and if you go out for "RANGER Challenge" teams.
6. If you wanna be a nurse, doc, dentist, etc you're basically guaranteed an MOS.

cons:
1. Most likely will NOT get aviation (and if you do the chiefs fly, once you make O2 or so you pretty much fly a desk from what I've been told).
2. You pick 8 or 10 mos's (again iirc) and a combat arms branch must be in the top 3 - iirc you must have at least 3 or 4 combat arms n all your choices.
3. More bases.... I got 2 friends in Korea right now.
4. More likely to be deployed - you're active now so you may not care about this.

My background: 4yr ROTC scholarship awardee. 6yrs AD time w/ Army as 66H (RN). Finished ROTC in 2002 and I know its changed a bit - A friend was an ROTC nurse counselor for one of the East Regions (just PCS'd out this summer) and told me about some of it.
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Old 10-05-2010, 06:57 AM   #3
JTaco386 [OP] JTaco386 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saulibiomd View Post
ARMY
pros:
1. Easier/faster promotions
2. More bases
3. You know the regs
4. More likely you can get ROTC scholarship and use GI bill as secondary income (trust me, Ive seen it happen). Can also use GI Bill 2/ AFROTC as well but I dont know if it will be primary or secondary income for you since you have to ETS.
5. Field training for ROTC is over the weekend once or twice a semester depending on your school and if you go out for "RANGER Challenge" teams.
6. If you wanna be a nurse, doc, dentist, etc you're basically guaranteed an MOS.

cons:
1. Most likely will NOT get aviation (and if you do the chiefs fly, once you make O2 or so you pretty much fly a desk from what I've been told).
2. You pick 8 or 10 mos's (again iirc) and a combat arms branch must be in the top 3 - iirc you must have at least 3 or 4 combat arms n all your choices.
3. More bases.... I got 2 friends in Korea right now.
4. More likely to be deployed - you're active now so you may not care about this.

My background: 4yr ROTC scholarship awardee. 6yrs AD time w/ Army as 66H (RN). Finished ROTC in 2002 and I know its changed a bit - A friend was an ROTC nurse counselor for one of the East Regions (just PCS'd out this summer) and told me about some of it.
Thanks for the input.
Since I would do the green to gold active duty option, I have to use my GI Bill. The best perk about it is I get to remain on active duty while going to school.
I know promotions would be faster, but I really want to fly. I know if i dont get a pilot slot, then I would accept another job within that branch. I have looked into the medical field, but flying is what I really want to do in the military. I really appreciate your advice. I'm still weighing my options. I have a little bit of time to decide. I will be taking my AFOQT next month.
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Old 10-05-2010, 04:34 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saulibiomd View Post
ARMY
pros:
1. Easier/faster promotions
2. More bases
3. You know the regs
4. More likely you can get ROTC scholarship and use GI bill as secondary income (trust me, Ive seen it happen). Can also use GI Bill 2/ AFROTC as well but I dont know if it will be primary or secondary income for you since you have to ETS.
5. Field training for ROTC is over the weekend once or twice a semester depending on your school and if you go out for "RANGER Challenge" teams.
6. If you wanna be a nurse, doc, dentist, etc you're basically guaranteed an MOS.

cons:
1. Most likely will NOT get aviation (and if you do the chiefs fly, once you make O2 or so you pretty much fly a desk from what I've been told).
2. You pick 8 or 10 mos's (again iirc) and a combat arms branch must be in the top 3 - iirc you must have at least 3 or 4 combat arms n all your choices.
3. More bases.... I got 2 friends in Korea right now.
4. More likely to be deployed - you're active now so you may not care about this.

My background: 4yr ROTC scholarship awardee. 6yrs AD time w/ Army as 66H (RN). Finished ROTC in 2002 and I know its changed a bit - A friend was an ROTC nurse counselor for one of the East Regions (just PCS'd out this summer) and told me about some of it.
.

Excellent info & write up with the pros & cons.

To add to it ... USAF tends to have nicer land bases ... since that is where they are based. Meaning no ships or remote facilities like USMC, USA or USN.

USAF mainly has their defense funds in planes and air bases ... and even if you are not a pilot ... you have a good place to stay.
Yes, there are some exception to this rule.

.
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Old 10-06-2010, 04:02 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOSHeloPilot View Post
.

Excellent info & write up with the pros & cons.

To add to it ... USAF tends to have nicer land bases ... since that is where they are based. Meaning no ships or remote facilities like USMC, USA or USN.

USAF mainly has their defense funds in planes and air bases ... and even if you are not a pilot ... you have a good place to stay.
Yes, there are some exception to this rule.

.
That's what I have seen so far. Im deployed right now and at an air base and the base is awsome....they definitely know how to keep morale up.

If I cant get a pilot slot i will try for navigator or ABM
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Old 10-06-2010, 07:44 PM   #6
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Having tried Army ROTC out I myself I am going to say from experience it is not for everyone especially since you are coming over from the enlisted active duty "real army" side. Not trying to discourage you but you will be placed with immature 18-22 year olds, a lot of whom cannot wipe their a** without asssistance. However they will act as if they are seasoned special forces operatives. The word HOOAH will be used incessantly and Warrior will be plastered on every bulletin board in the rotc building. Excessive face paint is mandatory on the fied exercises as you manuever against al-qeida with your rubber dummy m-16.

With that being said it is definately a means to an end and if you can put up with the BS its worth it to get your bars, especially the route you are thinking of going and the GI Bill and all the other money you can get. However no guarantee of branch assingment is a big issue, you spend two years busting your butt for big army to say sorrry no aviators needed please report to chemical obc. There is a lot of rear kissing that goes on between the cadets and the cadre and to me it seemed that was all ROTC was about, who kissed the most ass and that was how you got a good accessions packet that led to a good branch assingment. It may not be that way in every ROTC Battalion but where I was at it sure seemed that way. It is not for everyone but you have to make that choice yourself.

Is there anyway you can put in a warrant packet??? From what I understand the Army is trying to grow aviation and they need warrant officers. Warrants do the majority of flying as well. Regular officers do fly but they have the admin stuff to handle as well. Just my personal opinion/advice I have been interested in army aviation for awhile I originally joined ROTC to fly army, I dropped it and joined the national guard went to Iraq and now I am back home starting on my own warrant packet to try and fly for the national guard or reserve.
http://www.usarec.army.mil/hq/warrant/WOoverview.html

Like I said this is just my personal advice and story, others may have had better experiences with Army ROTC but good luck in your decision and I applaud you for stepping up and taking control of your career and bettering yourself.
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Old 10-07-2010, 03:20 PM   #7
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From what I've been told, AFROTC is really cutting their numbers, which is unsat in my opinion. I heard an unconfirmed figure of less than 50% of cadets getting slots to Field Training this year.

I'd say talk direct with with the AFROTC detachment at the school you'd transfer to, see what info they can provide you.

-Mike
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Old 10-07-2010, 03:34 PM   #8
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If flying is the most important thing (there are other things to think about), my choices would be:

1 become a warrant officer and get a flight school spot in the Army.

2 Air Force. Pilot slots are hard to get. Also could be nav or ABM.

3 Army. Even if you branch aviation, you'll only realistically fly till you're a major.

My two cents. Hope it helps.........
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Old 10-07-2010, 06:41 PM   #9
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If flying is what you've got your heart set on and you're already in the Army, I would say a Warrant Packet is the ONLY way to go. Going Green to Gold in ROTC makes you one fish in a very large pond. Aviation slots are extremely competitive. I don't know you, so I'm not saying you couldn't make the cut, but being picked up as a Warrant Officer Candidate will guarantee you a chance to fly. What you do with that chance is up to you.
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Old 10-08-2010, 07:09 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the replies and advice, I really appreciate it!
I have applied to become a Aviator in the Army and was Fully Qualified-Non select in September and I will be boarded again in November. I feel though its who you know which helps get you selected. I have applied before in 2008 two times, but was FQ-NS. I will keep trying, but I cant stay in my MOS much longer....it's horrible!
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