Enlisting in USAF, Any Advice? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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BayouGlocker
12-13-2010, 20:46
I know I'm a little late to the party, but at almost 23 years of age, I've decided to enlist in the AF. Going through some things trying to get a waiver, since I was diagnosed with childhood asthma. I ran track and cross country in high school, so hopefully this will be cleared up.....

I'm very interested in Security Forces, but open to other jobs as well.

Anyways, as a (hopeful) recruit, any advice?

trdvet
12-14-2010, 14:47
Congrats and you picked well. 3 years Army here.

I would pick a technical job so when it comes time to get out of the military I could have a skill that transfers to the civilian world and hopefully one that pays well.

pennlineman
12-14-2010, 15:36
Congrats and you picked well. 3 years Army here.

I would pick a technical job so when it comes time to get out of the military I could have a skill that transfers to the civilian world and hopefully one that pays well.


I agree. I was combat arms. It was fun but didn't do much for me when I got out. I had no interest in being in law enforcement. There are some high tech jobs in there, let them train you and you'll be set for life.

Good luck with your pursuit.

MrMurphy
12-14-2010, 15:57
I was Security Forces. Most of you training will NOT cross over and most of the copstuff they teach you in the academy you will never (unless you make sergeant.....maybe) have a chance to do.

If you need info, PM me. I will tell you the non BS version and it's recent (I got out in Dec 2008, i have guys working in the academy now who were troops of mine who are now instructors).

AZ Husker
12-14-2010, 17:30
Isn't Security Forces guarding a missal silo in South Dakota at -35 degrees?

pennlineman
12-14-2010, 17:35
Isn't Security Forces guarding a missal silo in South Dakota at -35 degrees?
That or a B-52, Same weather.

Jolly_Giant
12-15-2010, 20:48
I just got out of the Air Force. I would recommend a flying job. You are enlisting so that would be: A Linguist, Loadmaster, boom operator or gunner. Take it from someone who knows. If you are going to be in the Air Force, you want to be a flyer.

bluelineman
12-15-2010, 22:32
Great posts above. Also remember, unless it's in writing, it's not guaranteed.

Ralff
12-16-2010, 07:36
How smart are you? If you're really nerdy you can try for 9S, but you have to like algebra, calculus, chemistry, physics and geology. Bonus points for interests in D&D and World of Warcraft.

8th SPS USAF
12-16-2010, 10:20
I was in LE from 1971/1974 Loved it. Worked as PD officer for 3 years
after that. NRA trainer and help train local PD's. I would guess that things
have changed alot since then. But you get the best of most things,
chow, rooms,etc. Good luck

8th

JBnTX
12-16-2010, 10:26
....I'm very interested in Security Forces....


DON'T DO IT!!!
Not Security Forces, Hell No, No Way!!!

...And I know what I'm talking about because I spent 21 years in the USAF
as a Security Policeman (1971-1992). I retired a Master Sergeant in 1992.

Security Forces (as it's now called) is nothing more than a plain old security
guard job. The only difference between it and a civilian security guard job is
what you're guarding. Nuclear weapons versus some warehouse somewhere.

Where will your Security Forces training get you a job after you leave the AF?
You guessed it! A security guard job. Think about it!

Don't get me wrong. I loved the job, but it's not for everyone. Hell, it's not
for 95% of most people. I liked it because I have a tremendous amount of patience,
don't mind boredom, I like guns, the outdoors and I like being alone.

Does that describe you?

Unless you like standing all alone out in the freezing rain or the scorching hot sun
for hours at a time, stay away from security forces.

As previously stated, get a specific job guarantee in writing before you sign anything.
Security Foces is the largest enlisted career field and chances are that's where you'll end up
if you don't get a specific job guarantee in writing before you join.

Recruiters are always pressured to fill SF job slots because the USAF always needs them due
to the high turnover rate. They will stick your ass there in a heartbeat.

Please don't misunderstand my rant. I loved every minute of every day while
I was a Security Policeman, but I saw many, many, many unhappy people in that job.

MrMurphy
12-16-2010, 12:37
Exactly.

If you know what you're getting into, not a problem. Believe the recruiter BS that you'll be rolling in a Crown Vic with an M9 chasing parked cars? Yeah..........sure.

I spent my time sitting in a Humvee with a machine gun waiting for the worst to happen. It never quite did, though we had many interesting times. Nowdays, SF=deployment. Whatever other job you have is irrelevant, you WILL deploy. Repeatedly. Since that was what i was after i had no problem with it, except they only sent me to Al Udeid (vacation spot)......whatever, it was better than no deployment.

If you know how to play the system you can get what you want. Go in blind? Yeah, you'll be guarding silos in the northern tier.

bluelineman
12-18-2010, 11:48
Funny you guys should mention security forces. Back in the day when I was in 7 level school, out class leader was a MSgt cross-trainee. He knew exactly how many steps it took to go around a B-52. BTW, I forget the number, but it was a lot. :supergrin:

Mwildt
12-21-2010, 17:53
23? I went through basic at 27, it wasn't bad.

I'm 2T2X1 - air transportation, in the reserves. Mindless job and there really isn't much of a future outside of UPS, FedEx or working for an airline. I joined for the GI Bill mainly, so that's not a concern for me.

We had a guy that F'd up and told a doctor he had asthma as a child when he went to sick call in basic. A few days later he was packing his bags and heading home. Hope you can get your waiver.

I wish I would have gone active out of high school, but that's long since passed. Listen to what others have said here. I've met several former load masters and a handful of linguists. All of them spoke highly of their former career. The former security force members I've met echo what has been said here as well. A few loved it while most could not wait to cross train.

If you have any questions about basic let me know. It's still fairly fresh in my mind and I went through the 8.5 weeks opposed to the 6.5 weeks.

Rocknropes
12-21-2010, 22:30
Considering where you are located, have you been in Barksdale yet?

bluelineman
12-21-2010, 22:30
23? I went through basic at 27, it wasn't bad.

I'm 2T2X1 - air transportation, in the reserves. Mindless job and there really isn't much of a future outside of UPS, FedEx or working for an airline. I joined for the GI Bill mainly, so that's not a concern for me.

We had a guy that F'd up and told a doctor he had asthma as a child when he went to sick call in basic. A few days later he was packing his bags and heading home. Hope you can get your waiver.

I wish I would have gone active out of high school, but that's long since passed. Listen to what others have said here. I've met several former load masters and a handful of linguists. All of them spoke highly of their former career. The former security force members I've met echo what has been said here as well. A few loved it while most could not wait to cross train.

If you have any questions about basic let me know. It's still fairly fresh in my mind and I went through the 8.5 weeks opposed to the 6.5 weeks.

PM sent re: 2T2X1.

Mwildt
12-21-2010, 23:33
PM sent re: 2T2X1.

Back at you.

Edmo01
12-22-2010, 00:12
I know I'm a little late to the party, but at almost 23 years of age, I've decided to enlist in the AF. Going through some things trying to get a waiver, since I was diagnosed with childhood asthma. I ran track and cross country in high school, so hopefully this will be cleared up.....

I'm very interested in Security Forces, but open to other jobs as well.

Anyways, as a (hopeful) recruit, any advice?

Don't try to hide an illness when you fill out the forms. If they need a waiver, they'll get one. Otherwise you risk being discharged if the find out at a later date that you were less than honest.

Get in shape prior to basic... Running, situps, pushups, pullups, etc. USAF Basic Training is more physical than it used to be and you'll be challenged physically and mentally. The training will go easier if you are already in shape. Don't wait for them to get you into shape.

Pick a job you think you'll enjoy. Every job has a suck side, but most are rewarding. There is always the "needs of the Air Force" with regards to job placement, so you might not get what you want. Flying jobs mean long hours, time from home, and lot of study and challenge. However, they can be very rewarding. I flew most of my 21 years and enjoyed it.

Good luck if you decide to go in.

Edmo

Sigluvr
12-25-2010, 17:31
Go Combat Arms. I didn't know that was an option until I was allready in. BTW Guaranteed Electrical translated into Boiler Tech. Not a bad job, but I never did figure out how that worked. I tried to re-train but the waiting list was to long for CATM, so I just got out. I don't regret a minute of it though (OK maybee a few.)

Good Luck.

MrMurphy
12-25-2010, 21:13
You can't enlist straight into CATM.

DaveUSAF
12-26-2010, 09:49
I spent 21 years in Communications as a 2E173, Ground Radio Maint Tech and retired in 2002 as a MSgt (E-7). There are so many options with this job but you would be best in it if you have an aptitude for electronics. There are slots with Special Ops, NSA, NASA, R&D, etc, all while being in the Air Force. On the plus side I was able to ge an Instrumentation Tech job at a Power Plant that pays very well.

If you want a challenging job, check out Pararescue, Combat Control Team, Combat Weather to just mention a few.

Since Security Forces restructured awhile back, there are not different jobs or career fields like LE, Security Police, and CATM. They are a large pool and assigned from that at their duty station depending on needs. A former Security Forces member may correct me on this. I know manning was so low at Malmstrom when I was there that they forcast their leave a year in advance where I could ask and usually get leave a day in advance.

I had an excellent recruiter when I went in but I pretty much aced the ASVAB so they knew I wasn't just a warm body in a slot.

Personnally, I would not mention the asthma if you have not had any problems in the last several years. I found out from my mom I had asthma as a child but I already had 10 years in the service so I never said a thing since it was a non issue.

Good Luck

DaveUSAF

LajesField, Azores 82-84
Dobbins AFB, Ga 84-88
Incirlik AB, Turkey 88-89
Malmstrom AFB, Mt 89-96
Incirlik AB, Turkey 96-98
Tinker AFB, Ok 98-00
Osan AB, Korea 00-02

MrMurphy
12-26-2010, 10:26
CATM is a seperate branch inside SF. You generally switch over and stay there. For years. Sometimes if manning's tight they'll pull you (I deployed with a CATM SSgt who had that happen, he was a regular line NCO instead of CATM as we didn't have a role for that) but they generally stay in CATM from SSgt through TSgt since there's not too many MSgt spots in CATM available, then go back to flight or retire.

BayouGlocker
12-27-2010, 15:04
Thanks for all the replies. I'm still waiting on the local hospitals and clinics to get my records to my recruiter. Longest and most annoying thing so far.

Thanks for the imput about SF. It's something I am interested in because I am interested in a possible carreer in law enforcment. I'm also a gun nut (go figure, this is GT afterall...).

However, I am keeping my options open. When I was in high school I got a 90 or something on the ASVAB, so we'll see how things go when I'm finally able to take it again. I've been told that depending on how things work out, they could stick me in a job that requires higher scores, simply because they need the guys who can qualify for those jobs.

For all I know, I could end up assigned something I never would have dreamed up, and end up loving it.

As far as getting ready for basic goes, I'm going to start getting with some buddies and working out. I'm already in decent shape, but would like to build up my strength and endurance a bit.

Gunner442
12-27-2010, 20:28
DON'T DO IT!!!
Not Security Forces, Hell No, No Way!!!

...And I know what I'm talking about because I spent 21 years in the USAF
as a Security Policeman (1971-1992). I retired a Master Sergeant in 1992.

Security Forces (as it's now called) is nothing more than a plain old security
guard job. The only difference between it and a civilian security guard job is
what you're guarding. Nuclear weapons versus some warehouse somewhere.

Where will your Security Forces training get you a job after you leave the AF?
You guessed it! A security guard job. Think about it!

Don't get me wrong. I loved the job, but it's not for everyone. Hell, it's not
for 95% of most people. I liked it because I have a tremendous amount of patience,
don't mind boredom, I like guns, the outdoors and I like being alone.

Does that describe you?

Unless you like standing all alone out in the freezing rain or the scorching hot sun
for hours at a time, stay away from security forces.

As previously stated, get a specific job guarantee in writing before you sign anything.
Security Foces is the largest enlisted career field and chances are that's where you'll end up
if you don't get a specific job guarantee in writing before you join.

Recruiters are always pressured to fill SF job slots because the USAF always needs them due
to the high turnover rate. They will stick your ass there in a heartbeat.

Please don't misunderstand my rant. I loved every minute of every day while
I was a Security Policeman, but I saw many, many, many unhappy people in that job.

I gotta agree yet disagree. Security forces( Security Specialist) 1988-2004, 1st Sgt 2004-2007. Retired in 2007. I was SAC ( Barksdale LA), USAFE ( Europe), AMC( transports), and 1st Sgt for a C-130 Sq, and a Civil Engineer Sq. Yes, like any police job the hours and shifts can suck. It can be boring no doubt. But, I've done my time on the "stone" guarding nukes, etc. I've also worked in the armory, training, and as a Anti-Terrorism/Force Protection NCO. The career field is not for everyone... Currently SF is heavily deployed in Afghanistan, and Iraq so lots of time in the "box". And yes, SF does go outside the wire. As far as jobs, and you might think this is BS, but I tool my SF background, earned a degree on my off duty time(on-line) and now currently work in the homeland security world for a governmental agency. I would also agree that a flying job(loadmaster) is a pretty good life, and worth considering. I was able to work embedded security with the aircrews, which was very cool. PM me if you want, I married a LA girl...

bluelineman
12-27-2010, 23:24
Thanks for the imput about SF. It's something I am interested in because I am interested in a possible carreer in law enforcment. I'm also a gun nut (go figure, this is GT afterall...).

Keep in mind that having military police on your resume doesn't necessarily transfer to civilian police jobs. In Texas, most agencies (in this area) don't recognize military police as having experience in the civilian world.

Donny Doyle
12-28-2010, 06:00
I turned 23 my first week at Lackland Basic Training back in 1982. Did four years refueling planes. No regrets, met Pres. Reagan had plenty of good times mainly because I STAYED SINGLE !!!! Don't get hung up on this bit of "I have to have a job that relates to the civilian world when I get out stuff" That's years away and who knows what you'll be interested in doing for a living then. Stay away from the dope guys, keep alcohol to a min, and keep a positive attitude and you'll enjoy your time. Remember that 100 years from now there will be records of your military service for your great-grandkids to read so behave yourself.

page329
12-31-2010, 10:04
How smart are you? If you're really nerdy you can try for 9S, but you have to like algebra, calculus, chemistry, physics and geology. Bonus points for interests in D&D and World of Warcraft.LOL @ Ralff. Are you a 9S?

Advice to the OP:
1. First and foremost: No matter what job you do, GET IT IN WRITING. There are plenty of horror stories of people not getting a contract for their job and they end up flipping omelettes for 4-6 years.

2. I'm a 9S100, which as Ralff alluded to is a highly technical career field. If you can qualify for it I would give it the highest recommendation (requires the highest ASVAB scores). Most recruiters are unfamiliar with this field because there are so few of us in the AF, so you will have to press on them if you are really interested. If you don't qualify for it, you should still try for something technical or that has a security clearance because both will provide you the best options for a job once you decide to leave the AF. Flying jobs are also very cool, but not sure of the employability factor after the AF for those jobs....

3. If you are very physically minded and in great shape (mentally as well as physically), you can try Pararescue, Combat Control Team, TACP, or Combat Weather

4. It's my advice that you should stay away from Security Forces, Crew Chief, or any services related fields. I've known people in all theses fields and they have some of lowest morale and job satisfaction for a multitude of reasons

Hope this helps. Whatever you do...good luck!

Ralff
12-31-2010, 19:51
Yep, cross trained over from 3D back when it was 3C. I'm at headquarters in GEMS. 9S folks are by far the most unique people I think I've ever come across. :rofl:

TSAX
01-09-2011, 06:22
OK, 1st of all there are several jobs from personnel and admin to flight line to medical you can do. I am an HR professional.

Personnel jobs can help you with admin jobs like HR and office type positions. Flight line jobs like refuelers, cargo loaders, crew chiefs can get you jobs at the airport. Medical can consist of dental tech, x-ray tech, etc and lots of hospitals like hiring prior service with experience in the support staff/non doctor rolls. Even working in services you can learn hospitality skills for hotel, travel, etc type jobs.

Now for more about "Security Forces". When I was in the USAF I was I was part of the 2nd class of the new school "Security Forces" program. Before it was just Law Enforcement troops and Security. Now a days what jobs you do fro "Security Forces" much depends on where your stationed and where you go TDY. If you at at a missile/you know what type base you will most likely be on some fire team protecting a silo somewhere. If you are at an priority aircraft base then you will be guarding a plane for a while. If you are at a base that is has mainly basic flight line with a low protection level that is a large hub which is mainly a Law Enforcement base like I was at most of my time then you can actually get some good LE training that will help you on the outside.

I was recruited by a few local LE agencies when I got out. Passed all the tests, back round and if I didn't decide on a career change I would be an LEO now. Many people who were stationed at prior bases said they learned more about LE while at my base then any other. I know that many bases don't emphasize LE training as much of Security because of their mission/commanders preference/lack of quality trainers/whatever else.

Several of the Reservists/Guard/IMA guys at my station where LE on the outside but stated as LE troops in the USAF. Some of the guys in my squadron got out an became civilian LE in the hard to be LE state of CA. One of my MSgts even was sent to a POST ( California Police Officers Standards and Training ) academy while he was in and paid for by my squadron.

The military was a great experience for me. Make sure you read all the documents and get a guaranteed contract/job in writing so you don't get placed into open general. If you do then you will not not what job you get until mid way through basic and you may not get what you want. Good Luck! I wish you well.

md2lgyk
01-10-2011, 10:13
If you decide to try for Combat Control, Pararescue, or other "high speed" career field, be aware that the dropout rate for those is huge. My oldest grandson enlisted for Combat Control (a 6-year enlistment) but washed out of the physical training. I don't know his specific AFSC now, but it deals with satellite communications and he hates it.

MrMurphy
01-11-2011, 11:24
Agreed. CCT, PJ,TACP etc have about a 75% drop rate, and about 50% of those don't last the first month i'd say.

kenga236
01-12-2011, 17:57
Keep in mind that having military police on your resume doesn't necessarily transfer to civilian police jobs. In Texas, most agencies (in this area) don't recognize military police as having experience in the civilian world.

With that said, you still have an edge on someone with no police or military experience. You also get veterans preference points on a police test. Now that we are in a war on terror, every military recruit becomes a veteran of a war, thus getting the bonus points. I am 21 years Security Police / Forces. It's a good job, good money (depending on your rank). If you want to be a civilian police officer, having military police experience is certainly a plus.

___________________
"At the Heart of Freedom, There is Bravery."

BayouGlocker
01-18-2011, 20:53
Thanks everyone for the replies. I know the drop out rate is huge for Pararescue and the other high intensity guys. I also know that I would have to have lasik before being able to qualify for those jobs. Although I am interested in them, I acknowledge my physical limitations.

I did finally get a medical waiver!!! The hospital took forever and a day to get the stuff done, and the AF cleared me in just a few days! It's amazing!!! Now I simply have to get a traffic ticket resolved and I'm golden to go to MEPS.

Another job I've considered is EOD. I know it's a big deal to sign up to work with stuff that can literally blow you to pieces, but I'm mechanically inclined and like dealing with electronics and puzzles. I know this doesn't automatically mean I'll be good at it, much less it be a good idea. If anyone has experience in this field I'd really appreciate sharing it.

Ralff
01-18-2011, 21:06
Thanks everyone for the replies. I know the drop out rate is huge for Pararescue and the other high intensity guys. I also know that I would have to have lasik before being able to qualify for those jobs. Although I am interested in them, I acknowledge my physical limitations.

I did finally get a medical waiver!!! The hospital took forever and a day to get the stuff done, and the AF cleared me in just a few days! It's amazing!!! Now I simply have to get a traffic ticket resolved and I'm golden to go to MEPS.

Another job I've considered is EOD. I know it's a big deal to sign up to work with stuff that can literally blow you to pieces, but I'm mechanically inclined and like dealing with electronics and puzzles. I know this doesn't automatically mean I'll be good at it, much less it be a good idea. If anyone has experience in this field I'd really appreciate sharing it.

No experience with EOD, but I know they get one hell of a bonus. :supergrin:

Mwildt
01-18-2011, 23:44
Met several EOD guys going through Tech School, they ate with us at the same cafeteria. Met several that washed out too. The vast majority of the ones that washed out said it was due to the bookwork and not the physical requirements. They all said it's a very technical career field (not surprising of course) and that you have to stay up on the course work going through Tech or you're done.

Always got a laugh out of them having to lug that suit around too. It would go everywhere with them. Saw it more than once at lunch sitting at the table with its own chair, tray and dishes sitting in front of it.

Hats off to them by the way, tough job.

TSAX
01-21-2011, 15:22
Keep in mind that having military police on your resume doesn't necessarily transfer to civilian police jobs. In Texas, most agencies (in this area) don't recognize military police as having experience in the civilian world.

With that said, you still have an edge on someone with no police or military experience. You also get veterans preference points on a police test. Now that we are in a war on terror, every military recruit becomes a veteran of a war, thus getting the bonus points. I am 21 years Security Police / Forces. It's a good job, good money (depending on your rank). If you want to be a civilian police officer, having military police experience is certainly a plus.

___________________
"At the Heart of Freedom, There is Bravery."

In some areas in Texas they might not recognize but every state and agency does not view this the same way. I was recruited by a few departments and a few did not acknowledge my LE experience but did acknowledge that at least a background with top secret clearance, firearms experience, leadership experience and with very good recommendation letters counts for something.

An experienced recruit does have some advantages but the other way to look at it is that a department might want a fresh body since they might have different techniques in doing somethings and don't want to have to retrain or have the recruit unlearn some other training that may conflict with their philosophies in how to deal with a situation.

Either way I'm happy I made the choice to go Security Forces. I learned several non police specific skills like training and development techniques, supervision, management, scheduling, logistics, responsibility, work ethic, adversity and much more that has helped me with professions when I left the Military.

AFshooter
01-23-2011, 22:08
I just got out of the Air Force. I would recommend a flying job. You are enlisting so that would be: A Linguist, Loadmaster, boom operator or gunner. Take it from someone who knows. If you are going to be in the Air Force, you want to be a flyer.

This, but if you are looking for action, 1A3 and 1A4. Right now, 1A4 specifically.

PM me for details.

Markasaurus
01-23-2011, 23:33
I know I'm a little late to the party, but at almost 23 years of age, I've decided to enlist in the AF. Going through some things trying to get a waiver, since I was diagnosed with childhood asthma. I ran track and cross country in high school, so hopefully this will be cleared up.....

I'm very interested in Security Forces, but open to other jobs as well.

Anyways, as a (hopeful) recruit, any advice?

I enlisted in the USAF April 1980. I also had childhood asthma that went away when i was 7. I told my recruiter this and he told me on the sly, the following: "Don't ever tell them this, if you want to join up! If they ask you if you ever had asthma the answer is no!"
I hate to tell you this but you should not have told them if there was any way not to (it showed up on some medical records they searched or did you tell them?)

The Air force is the best service to be in, in most ways - the best food, the best quarters and the most women! Most of the people are great and you will have a lot of friends. Advice? Yes i have some:

- It's worth serving four years to get all the good stuff - the minimum - but DON'T sign up for the six year thing on your first enlistment, not even for an extra stripe (which is all you are going to get out of that deal!) Reason, if you find yourself at some point stuck in a yucky situation - bad post, lousy supervision, assignment you hate - you'll regret doing that!

-Think hard about the job choice you make before you sign. Security Police is fine if you really want it. But there isn't much demand in civilian life for that skill unless you intend to join a police force someday. You are doing the time and signing your body and soul over to Uncle Sam for 4 long years, my advice is pick a skill with a direct civilian application.
I signed up for missile pneumatic/hydraulic systems tech, finished the 3 month training, and thought i'd have it made after i got out. WRONG! There aren't any Titan II's to be serviced in civilian life and the training was too generalized for anyone to pay attention to it on a resume. Like i said, choose your AFSC wisely (you'll find out what that is later if you haven't been told already).

-Even if there's a wait list for the job you want and you can't join the Air Force right away because of that, wait for your desired training to open up if you can and don't settle for something else! If you choose delayed enlistment, all the time counts toward your 2 years inactive reserve that comes after you get out, so you won't be losing much by waiting.

-Air force training is tougher then it used to be. All we had to do was run a mile and a half and do a lot of marching. We never did a single push-up. those sissy days are over and the physical training is harder now, and so is the combat training aspect of it. Also my basic training was 6 weeks long, yours will be 8.
Do make a serious effort to get in shape before you go in! Run and walk as much as you can. Spend lots of time in a standing position, because you are going to be doing a hell of a lot of that too.

-If you think you may want to make a career out of the Air force, remember you (and everybody else you are with) are going to be observed constantly and everything you say will be significant. Not in a paranoid kind of way but be aware you will be constantly sized up - the Air force has a real interest in knowing what sort of character you have and what you are like. Don't worry too much about this because the air force realizes that none of its members are going to be perfect. But when in doubt, "take the high road" about things. Don't backstab or talk badly about other people, this is often rewarded in the civilian world but more often then not in the military, is seen as a bad reflection on you and not the other person (unless they are a genuine menace and a danger to themselves or others).
Respect your superior NCO's and officers no matter what kind of wimps or idiots they might seem to be (this guy or gal might be writing your next evaluation report, which is all-important if you intend to be a lifer).

-Sign up for new GI bill from the get-go if you can afford it (be aware it is very expensive). Especially If you pick training that has no civilian application. If you opt to do your first enlistment and get out, it's nice to have the option of having school paid for instead of being forced to look for work straight out of the service (i could not find a decent job for 5 YEARS after i got out).

-I thought that serving in the military would give me some kind of special status when applying for a civilian job (i was 19 and had too much television or something when i signed up). That's only true IF you are applying for government jobs - federal, state and many but not all municipalities will give you a few points credit on job tests for being a vet.
The awful truth though is that most civilian employers really could not care less that you served, unless you received some training or skills they need. So get all the training and experience you can especially the stuff with civilian application!

-Never forget, you should get everything you can out of the service, because they are going to get everything they can out of you!

AFshooter
01-24-2011, 00:27
Mostly good advise here. I would however not recommend Security Forces. The level of B.S. you have to endure is not really worth it vs. many other AFSCs.
The only positive side I can see is the fact that you can be stationed at nearly every AF station or base. Talk to Mr. Murphy and other prior USAF SF guys before signing up for that.
I am biased, but like others have said, Aircrew is where it's at if you can qualify.
As for PJ, CCT, SERE, and others, don't even apply if you think you won't make it.

MrMurphy
01-24-2011, 01:03
The GI bill takes $100ish a month for a year. You get back $30k. You're fine.

As to Security Forces. Yes, in many ways it sucked. But you'll be a cop for the rest of your life and it's not something to laugh at. As to civilian jobs, it's all about how you write up stuff and know how to make military skills applicable to a civilian (don't put it in milspeak). My current job i got partially because of my Security Forces time and it has nothing to do with being a cop.

meangreenlx50
01-24-2011, 05:04
I have something else to throw in the mix. Try your Air National Guard. You can get the exact field of training you want (bear in mind that its limited compared to the regular AF) live in your home area and go to school at the same time, and depending on your state they may pay your part of the GI Bill. Something else to think about. Many of the ex-Active duty that have come into my unit say they wish they had know about the Guard.

405dave
01-24-2011, 10:41
I did 20 years myself. First 10 were in Maint. and the second 10 were flying. There is nothing in common, its like the flyers are in a different military. There are only 2% of the enlisted force that fly. Very small group and pretty tight. As a flight Engineer I crewed AWACS for 3 then finished on "Big Sexy" the KC10. My only regret was not cross-training at 4 years instead of 10. You work with officers all day and you are a respected part of the crew, heck, the pilot and co-pilot could not even taxi the plane without me. But the pilot and I could taxi it without the co-pilot. I loved the job and agree with others on this thread, if you go air Force fly. If you don't fly you just support those how do. YMMV Good luck.

Another Miller
01-24-2011, 17:06
Go into fire protection.

Seriously, after basic, you'll train to be a fireman and get to learn alot,including everything that is available out in the civilian world and then some.You can go right from your fireman job right into any civie firestation and get a job.

The training is tough,but interesting as hell.You'll get alot of respect too.

kimo
01-24-2011, 17:34
What does a loadmaster do?

JBnTX
01-24-2011, 17:43
What does a loadmaster do?

On cargo aircraft a loadmaster is responsible for the proper loading/
unloading of cargo and passengers.

And other related duties in the cargo bay.

bluelineman
01-26-2011, 22:13
What does a loadmaster do?

On cargo aircraft a loadmaster is responsible for the proper loading/
unloading of cargo and passengers.

And other related duties in the cargo bay.

This might help a bit too.

http://usmilitary.about.com/od/airforceenlistedjobs/a/afjob1a2x1.htm

TSAX
01-29-2011, 14:56
Mostly good advise here. I would however not recommend Security Forces. The level of B.S. you have to endure is not really worth it vs. many other AFSCs.
The only positive side I can see is the fact that you can be stationed at nearly every AF station or base. Talk to Mr. Murphy and other prior USAF SF guys before signing up for that.
I am biased, but like others have said, Aircrew is where it's at if you can qualify.
As for PJ, CCT, SERE, and others, don't even apply if you think you won't make it.

Check my post #29 and #36. I was SF and there is also more positive than you say. It is hard to see when your not in the field. There are those with good and bad experiences like many jobs. Its what you take from it like any job. I have limited knowledge on Aircrew so I can't say too much about that field but there is b-ll s--t in any job.

Having friends in other AFSC's they have all complained/b-t-hed about their job and also said there's was the best except the people who got stuck on latrine duty while in certain threat levels overseas and the TCN's were not allowed on base :supergrin:.

If you are lucky enough to go through a full week of TAPS briefings and learn all the resume writing and how to transfer your military skills into a civilian world that helps a lot. When I got out my SF experience landed me management and HR jobs, because there are other jobs in SF, like admin, training, budgeting, reports and analysis, mobility and more sections that give you skills as well.

The SF can give you several god skills even if you stay on the road on n the field, report writing helps with ms word, squadron email helped me with ms outlook, searching vehicles helped me be more thorough with things, knowing state and military laws help if you go into a legal field, and much more. I'm sure Aircrew has many skills that can be correlated into the civilian world that you may have thought of.

BMH
01-29-2011, 18:09
There's another member of GT going into the Air Force. What I posted was that I was never in the military. But the advice given to be to pass on to a buddy was;

Never volunteer for anything.

Never smile

AFshooter
01-29-2011, 20:12
There's another member of GT going into the Air Force. What I posted was that I was never in the military. But the advice given to be to pass on to a buddy was;

Never volunteer for anything.

Never smile

I'm assuming this was advise for basic training?

meeko
01-30-2011, 09:54
Mostly good advise here. I would however not recommend Security Forces. The level of B.S. you have to endure is not really worth it vs. many other AFSCs.
The only positive side I can see is the fact that you can be stationed at nearly every AF station or base. Talk to Mr. Murphy and other prior USAF SF guys before signing up for that.
I am biased, but like others have said, Aircrew is where it's at if you can qualify.
As for PJ, CCT, SERE, and others, don't even apply if you think you won't make it.

+1000

I spent over 20 years active and ANG Security Forces. There are good people there however as a whole Security Forces is misdirected. Other than the few good folks most are way past self confident into the arrogant catagory. I have worked for local LE and now the FEDS and most SF are not really ready to work civilian LE. It is a big adjustment. And Most way inflate their experence and stories!

TSAX
01-30-2011, 16:12
+1000

I spent over 20 years active and ANG Security Forces. There are good people there however as a whole Security Forces is misdirected. Other than the few good folks most are way past self confident into the arrogant catagory. I have worked for local LE and now the FEDS and most SF are not really ready to work civilian LE. It is a big adjustment. And Most way inflate their experence and stories!

I agree with the big adjustment because on a military installation you don't get nearly the experience in situations or training that a local LE would on a everyday basis. The arrogance and inflating of their experiences is also present and especially those who have back office most of their term.

I had a SMSgt that was the ops superintendent that never saw flight (flight is a term for unit/team/element/ like Alpha flight or day, swings, mids shifts) after his SrA promotion but he acted like he knew more than a reservist SF who was a civilian Lead Detective that was a lower USAF rank but had 10 years of local detective and 5 years of regular patrol experience in a medium sized city. The SMSgt also said that the detectives' police skills needed to be more like his. What a joke.

SF in general will give you some prep not all for civilian academies as my old unit has had several people go through the SF academy then later get hired on to a local LE. And if I didn't decide to change career paths I'd be a local LE. Sometimes SF gets a bad rap and its warranted and sometimes its not. Like all jobs taking the good with the bad.

Being in HR now, I hear all kinds of things about former military jobs that don't quite transition over. Like a USAF dental tech that couldn't get a job cleaning teeth at a local dentist office unless they got their civilian certification despite having 8 years of cleaning experience. Say what you will about military medical and understanding state requirements but they didn't even offer any form internship or apprentice or anything aside from get the cert and "maybe" we'll consider you. I remember a refueler/ARS who the airlines wouldn't hire for that same position but got a TSA job with the airport. How does a well qualified and experienced Air Refueling Squadron TSgt only get a TSA job and all this was before the economy crashed.

bonjorno2
01-30-2011, 20:03
I would not go the SF route, but you do what you want to do. Every E-4 and below and some E-5's all tell me that want to reclass and finish thier 20 years elsewhere.... A lot will depend on your squadron, but i would say find another job.

meeko
01-30-2011, 21:19
The other thing on the Security Forces side is weekends off are few and far between. And when the whole base has a down day for a base family day/cookout or hoiliday off. . You are stuck working a gateshack standing in the rain, snow etc etc etc. And don't count on getting relieved for a sit down if you are lucky you will get an ice cold styrofoam box with leftovers hours after it's over. If you are on a nuclear base you will be stuck working more when some gump(it's the same 10-20% of the people and they keep them around for some reason) goes off PRP and can't post.

As the saying goes work smarter not harder.

dereklord
02-02-2011, 21:19
Congrats and you picked well. 3 years Army here.

I would pick a technical job so when it comes time to get out of the military I could have a skill that transfers to the civilian world and hopefully one that pays well.


:agree: :perfect10:

dereklord
02-02-2011, 21:26
You can't enlist straight into CATM.

:thumbsup:

dereklord
02-02-2011, 21:31
i turned 23 my first week at lackland basic training back in 1982. Did four years refueling planes. No regrets, met pres. Reagan had plenty of good times mainly because i stayed single !!!! Don't get hung up on this bit of "i have to have a job that relates to the civilian world when i get out stuff" that's years away and who knows what you'll be interested in doing for a living then. Stay away from the dope guys, keep alcohol to a min, and keep a positive attitude and you'll enjoy your time. Remember that 100 years from now there will be records of your military service for your great-grandkids to read so behave yourself.


pol?!?!?

dereklord
02-02-2011, 21:39
Go into fire protection.

Seriously, after basic, you'll train to be a fireman and get to learn alot,including everything that is available out in the civilian world and then some.You can go right from your fireman job right into any civie firestation and get a job.

The training is tough,but interesting as hell.You'll get alot of respect too.

??? FD??? I know alot of Fire Fighters. Some cool, some not. Like all jobs. But get alot of respect? :supergrin: I actually just deployed with a bunch of Fire Fighters. Got back a week ago. You guys are kinda like a cult! It was fun though.

ssgt_acft_mech
02-11-2011, 19:56
Isn't Security Forces guarding a missal silo in South Dakota at -35 degrees?


We dont have silos up here anymore and its only gotten to -25 so far this yr! After the temp hits zero you don't feel any colder....on the bright side you'll end up wearing shorts when it hit +32, 3 days later!:rofl:

USAF 94535
02-13-2011, 15:30
make for damn sure you read all the paper work and that your job is guaranteed. never go in open general! also know if you wash out or get tossed out of you career field they will throw you where ever they need you. i wish you the best.

TSAX
02-27-2011, 02:53
make for damn sure you read all the paper work and that your job is guaranteed. never go in open general! also know if you wash out or get tossed out of you career field they will throw you where ever they need you. i wish you the best.


I asked for Security Police/Forces but later I was tricked into open general and could have ended up doing a services job like work at the gym handing out towels like on of our LT's did when he washed out of SF or any other job I didn't like. Read you paperwork. If they can't guarantee you a job that is usually incorrect as I learned from the superintendent at MEPS. In my case I met with a personal specialist at Lackland AFB during basic and got my SF job. He understood that I got "hood winked" and I got my SF gig.

I'm sure there are many people who can share a "hood winked" by the recruiter story. For me in the end it worked out, many thanks to my Lord in Heaven.