Air Force BMT graduates perform pass and review during their graduation parade

Best BMT moments

By Senior Airman Michelle Patten
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

Basic military training is the first step for every enlisted Airmen’s career. It transforms you from a civilian into a military member. Many may remember seeing Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland’s “Gateway to the Air Force” sign or the buzzing sound of that first haircut. We asked our Facebook followers to share their top BMT moments and received over 1,000 comments! Do any of these bring back memories?

Bill Thomas- In 1968, giving blood during week 3 for the wounded of the Tet Offensive. Seconnd best memory is the perfect score on rifle range, but that’s expected of an East Tennessee Ridgerunner.
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Everyone must do their part

By Staff Sgt. Antonio Gonzalez
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

One in three women are sexually assaulted over their lifetime, and I have a problem with that statistic. In my world, it’s three out of three: my mother, my sister and my wife.

Earlier in January, I attended the first-ever Sexual Assault Prevention Summit as one of 150 active-duty, reserve, guard and civilian Airmen from all ranks and demographics. The very first thing we were asked was: “How many of you know someone who has been sexually assaulted?” Almost all 150 hands raised in unison. Continue reading

The Celebrities in Uniform exhibit at the National Museum of the Air Force

Before they were famous, Airman edition

By Senior Airman Michelle Patten
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

Before they were famous, celebrities were regular people working jobs just like everyone else. While their jobs prior to being famous may seem less glamorous to some, I like to think of them as everyday superheroes who served in the United States Air Force.

1. Gregg Popovich-

Basketball coach shakes hands with USAF Academy cadets during a Spurs practice
Academy cadets reach out to shake hands with Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich before the start of the team’s practice Oct. 2, 2013 at Clune Arena on the U.S. Air Force Academy campus in Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Master Sgt. Kenneth Bellard/Released)

Before he was leading the San Antonio Spurs to victory on the basketball court, Popovich was molded into the coach he is today by the United States Air Force Academy’s Cadet Honor Code. While attending the Academy, he played basketball all four years, and later also worked as an assistant coach at the Air Force Academy Prep School. The intelligence officer served for five years before hanging up his captain bars.
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Icicles form on a Shaw Air Force Base roadway sign just outside of Shaw’s main gate, Feb. 12, 2014. Though severe winter weather is rare at Shaw, this winter season has presented a fair amount of snow, sleet and ice. More than once this winter season, Shaw AFB has had to reduce its manning to "Mission Essential Personnel" only due to forecasted inclement weather. Team Shaw personnel are urged to stay off the roadways. Also, the 20th Fighter Wing safety team reminds all personnel to refer to winter safety tips when operating in the inclement winter environment. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Kenny Holston/Released)

Base mottos

By Senior Airman Michelle Patten
Air Force Public Affairs Agency

Whether Airmen love their base or would describe their relationship as more of the love-hate type with their locale, they tend to come up with unique nicknames and sayings for bases where they’re stationed. We asked you to share your creative base mottos with us on Facebook. Here are some favorites organized by location!

Alaskan bases in general:
Trent Fry- Alaska: “Fishin’ is the mission!” And, during the summer, it IS true.
711 ACW Cape Lisburne AK. “Where you look south to see the Northern Lights”
Don DeMarte- Alaskan Air Command…Fishin’s the Mission or AAC = Always Away Camping Continue reading

Master Sgt. Johnny Vinson, 94th Maintenance Squadron, instructs Delayed Entry Program recruits on how to execute a correct salute during the 94th Airlift Wing's unit training assembly Nov. 7, 2009. The Air Force Delayed Entry Program is an Air Force program under which a future Airman may enlist in a Reserve unit of the United States Air Force and specify a future reporting date to attend basic training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Nicholas B. Ontiveros/Released)

Jan. 8 recruiting tweetchat

By the Air Force Public Affairs Agency

The Air Force Recruiting Service and the Air Force social media team participated in their monthly tweet chat Jan. 8 and received 86 recruitment questions from Twitter followers. During the hour-long Web event, the teams answered questions about enlistment requirements, the Delayed Enlistment Program and other career field-specific questions. If you weren’t able to join the conversation, here are all the questions and answers from the chat!

Q1: When can I start my recruitment after getting my green card? Is it before or after the two-year conditional period ends?
A1: Potentially, but you must meet these reqs: and legally reside in the U.S. with a “Green Card.”

Q2: If I do Air Force ROTC, do I have to serve in the Air Force afterward, or can I serve in another branch instead?
A2: Generally, if the Air Force gives you an ROTC scholarship, you serve in the AF. But, there can be exceptions.

Q3: How long do you have to be in security forces to train for Raven? What bases have Raven training?
A3: You must be a 5 skill level, complete all upgrade training and be selected. Raven training is conducted at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.

Q4: Do you go to SERE school for Raven?
A4: Yes, you need to go to SERE training.

Q5: If I finish college with a 3.0 GPA and a bachelor’s degree in business, could I still be a pilot?
A5: Yes, if you meet the general requirements & obtain a degree, you can apply for commission. Learn more:

Q6: What are the minimum requirements to be an Air Force pararescueman?
A6: Min scores of AFQT-36, Gen-41. Must also pass the PAST test. Check out PJ page on:

Q7: Where are some cool places to be stationed?
A7: See what’s available here: . You’ll select preferred locations that will be taken into consideration.

Q8: How long does it usually take to receive your leave date for BMT?
A8: It takes about two to three months to process, then another three to nine months to ship to BMT.

Q9: What ASVAB score do I need to join the Reserves? Can I enlist after grad school?
A9: This is an active-duty chat. Please contact the AF Reserves: . Yes, you can enlist after grad school.

Q10: If I want to join the Air Force, can I take something to see what jobs I could possibly have before I join?
A10: No, only applicants who are 100% ready to join active duty complete all processing.

Q11: Approximately how long would an Airman be in tech school after BMT?
A11: Tech School varies depending on your career field. On average, it lasts 3 months.

Q12: Can a non-American work as an engineer for the Air Force?
A12: Potentially, but you must meet the reqs:, and legally reside in the US with a “Green Card.”

Q13: I’m a mother of 3 children going through a divorce. Am I eligible in any way to join the AF whether it’s active or reserve?
A13: Dependency requirements have changed. Please see your Air Force recruiter for information and guidance.

Q14: Any suggestions for students planning to attend the Air Force Academy?
A14: USAF Academy is one of the most selective colleges in the country. Click here to learn more:

Q15: Is there a guarantee that I will get to work with the audiology program after I get my bachelor’s degree in speech pathology?
A15: It depends on the needs of the AF and your qualifications. Contact a health professions recruiter.

Q16: What are the manning levels for the Air Force load master career field?
A16: That info changes often. Your ASVAB test, physical exam, citizenship and moral standards determine your job qualifications.

Q17: I booked a job as a sensor operator. How long is tech school?
A17: Fourteen days at JBSA Lackland & 22 days at JBSA Randolph in San Antonio, Texas.

Q18: What’s the requirement process like to get into the Air Force?
A18: Check out basic requirements here: and here:

Q19: Can you have any bachelor’s degree to become any officer or do you have to have certain degrees for certain jobs?
A19: You may apply for OTS with most any college degree, but your job depends on the needs of the AF and your qualifications.

Q20: How often does airborne ISR or special missions aviation open up?
A20: That info changes often. Your ASVAB test, physical exam, citizenship and moral standards determine your job qualifications.

Q21: Can a prior-service honorably discharged U.S. Army re-enlist in the Air Force?
A21: There are very few jobs for prior service. Contact an Air Force recruiter to determine your qualifications.

Q22: If I join the reserves in one branch, but do ROTC for a different branch, which branch would I serve in after grad?
A22: Whichever branch paid for your college (ROTC).

Q23: Are there jobs in the AF that could be beneficial to a business career? And is it in the reserves or active?
A23: Nearly all active duty AF careers can transition into civilian jobs.

Q24: Are there snipers in the Air Force?
A24: Yes, they are a part of the security forces career field.

Q25: What is the minimum score to receive on the AFOQT to be eligible for the Air Force?
A25: We suggest aiming for 70s/80s and a composite of 210 minimum, but a 240 or higher is more competitive.

Q26: What officer jobs would be available to a person with a degree in exercise sports science?
A26: It will depend on all of your qualifications. Please contact a recruiter for more info.

Q27: Is there a good chance I’ll get a lot of deployments when I commission through ROTC if I have an accounting major?
A27: Every member of USAF can be called upon to deploy anywhere worldwide to protect people, resources and interests of the U.S.

Q28: Where is OCS? Can I go through the program following college?
A28: The AF has OTS in Montgomery, AL; applicants must be U.S. citizens, age 18-35 and have a bachelors degree.

Q29: What uniform is given to you during ROTC?
A29: This site is for active duty. Please contact ROTC for their info.

Q30: What is the most important quality a sophomore in AFROTC trying to get an EA should have?
A30: This site is for active duty. Please contact ROTC for their info.

Q31: What are the requirements to be a military working dog handler? And can I continue that for the rest of my security forces career?
A31: You must already be in AF, have 5-skill level, meet requirements and then apply.

Q32: Does the Air Force offer a career in oncology?
A32: Learn what AF Healthcare Careers are available here:

Q33: I switched branches & already did MEPS. How long will it take before I can swear in? They already did a 680 for my info.
A33: Recommend contacting your recruiter for updates on your situation.

Q34: If I join the Air Force enlisted, but with a bachelors degree, with what rank do I join?
A34: If you have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college, you would enlist with advanced rank of E-3.

Q35: Is the position of loadmaster in high demand?
A35: Requirements in a specific job are ever changing, and are based on the needs of the AF. Please see your AF Recruiter for more information.

Q36: What is the age limit to join the Air Force as a nurse with a BSN? Are there any waivers for the age limit?
A36: The age limit for a nurse is 42. However, with experience and education, you may qualify up to age 48.

Q37: Can you quick ship if you already have a contract?
A37: It may not be possible to quick ship if you have a job, however, please speak to your recruiter for information.

Q38: What are the requirements for careers in the special operations field?
A38: Go to for more info.

Q39: Can I obtain a security clearance as a commissioning officer if I have both U.S. and Canadian passports? Dual citizenship?
A39: You must give up your dual citizenship to be qualified.

Q40: Would scoliosis prevent me from enlisting?
A40: You may need a chief medical officer (CMO) review your case at MEPS and provide you an eligibility determination or waiver.

Q41: If I took a job as an Air Force photojournalist, would combat camera be volunteer or is it assigned?
A41: As a still photography apprentice, you will perform a variety of photographic assignments, including deployments.

Q42: Will mild color blindness effect joining the Air Force and working in intelligence?
A42: Provided you meet vision requirements, your recruiter has a list of jobs which you may qualify for.

Q43: I’ve been unsure about my recruiter’s answer regarding a height limit to be considered for pararescueman training. Is there a height limit?
A43: Check out basic requirements here: and here:

Q44: Do CRO and pararescuemen go through the same training besides the 22 weeks of medical training?
A44: Yes, both go through the same, and/or similar training. Please see your recruiter for more info. You may also want to review:

Q45: When I joined in ’85 I went under general and ended up in supply. My son is interested in joining can he go in with specific job?
A45: Your son must qualify to train and serve in a specific job; If your son meets all the requirements and the job he is interested in is available, he may have that job.

Q46: How old is the average recruit at BMT and how do they decide what flight your in?
A46: Individuals enlist between ages 17 and 39. The flight you are assigned to is based on random selection and needs of the AF.

Q47: How long is tech school for flight engineer on C-130?
A47: You’ll attend Aircrew Fundamentals (9-day course), Basic Flight Engineer Course (24 training days). Depending on the type of C-130, approx 57 – 97 training days. This does not include any other type of specialty training, i.e, SERE, etc.

Q48: Where are developmental engineers usually stationed?
A48: We can’t predict as needs are ever changing, but you’ll be notified of your first duty station toward the end of tech school.

Q49: If I have a degree in civil engineering, but I want to become an ALO, are there careers that allow me to combine both? What are they?
A49: To better optimize Air Force personnel, you will serve in one specific area. Retraining may be an option you can pursue.

Q50: Do you have any workout recommendations for someone who wants to be a PJ?
A50: Please contact an AF recruiter nearest you to discuss qualifying on the Physical Ability Stamina Test (PAST).

Q51: Do you currently have any info/links about the track of certain careers opening to women?
A51: Females are eligible for all career fields except for PJ, CCT, TACP, SOWT.

Q52: Can I be a PJ/CRO if I go to ROTC?
A52 You can be a combat rescue officer or special tactics officer. Learn more here:

Q53: For combat rescue officers, how big of a role does your specific college degree have in the selection process?
A53: You can apply with most any degree. The more technical the degree you earn, the better your chances are of being selected. Talk with a recruiter for more info.

Q54: I have a bachelor’s degree and am interested in OTS. How long are the contracts one has to work upon graduation?
A54: If you are selected, and accept a commission, you will incur a 4-year active duty service commitment.

Q55: How long must you serve on a 6 year enlistment contract before you are eligible to become Reserve or Guard?
A55: This is an active duty site. You would need to contact the Reserve or Guard to inquire.

Q56: How difficult is basic training and what activities do you do?
A56: Each individual has different experiences at basic military training, but it’s not considered easy.

Q57: I’m trying to join the Air Force, but I’m currently serving in the Navy, is that possible?
A57: Please contact an Air Force recruiter nearest to you to inquire about our prior service program.

Q58: How important are high school grades if you are going in straight from high school?
A58: If you have a high school diploma, you will meet the educational requirements to enlist. Having earned 20 college credits or more may qualify you for advanced rank.

Q59: What is the tattoo policy for Air Force officers?
A59: It varies based on the imagery, message, size, as well as location. Check out for more info.

Q60: Is the Air Force really in need of drone pilots?
A60: The Air Force is always looking for the best qualified, to include drone pilots.

Q61: How do you become an Air Force pilot?
A61: Meet the general requirements:, obtain a degree on your own or earn one after enlisting, then apply for commission.

Q62: If my local recruiter’s office is closed, how do I start my recruitment process?
A62: Click here: for more information.

Q63: What top three jobs do most Airmen tend to choose?
A63: It depends on the needs of the Air Force and qualifications. Speak to a recruiter for opportunities.

Q64: Can one only get a bachelor’s degree at the USAF Academy?
A64: Yes, only bachelor’s degrees are granted at the USAF Academy.

Q65: Can a U.S. citizen born in Colombia apply to the USAF Academy or must he be born in U.S.?
A65: The U.S. Air Force Academy is one of the most selective colleges in the country. Admission requirements are high and the competition is intense. To be eligible, you must be an U.S. citizen.

Q66: What’s the score that’s required to pass the ASVAB?
A66: Minimum AFQT score requirement is 36, but majority of those waiting for BMT scored 50 or higher. Contact your recruiter to discuss your scores.

Q67: How hard is it to play a sport at the USAF Academy?
A67: You may contact the Academy on their website to apply. The Academy is one of the most selective colleges in the country. Admission requirements are high and competition is intense.

Q68: Are there programs to help pay for college prior to signing up? Or, as Reserve status until graduation?
A68: Yes, through the Air Force Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC).

Q69: What do you have to do to become a sniper in the Air Force?
A69: You must be in a security forces career field, try out and be accepted. You can inquire at your active duty station.

Q70: What could I do to gain weight and get in shape for the USAF? I’m 6’0″ and only 130lbs.
A70: Please contact your doctor for information and advice.

Q71: Will the AF commission licensed professional counselors as approved mental health providers in the future?
A71: The Air Force is accepting those who have earned a PhD in Clinical Psychology.

Q72: Will a Baker Act as a minor disqualify me from the Air Force?
A72: You will be asked to document all medical conditions when processing for enlistment. A chief medical officer will review and evaluate your history, and provide you an eligibility determination.

Q73: How long is the schooling for health care management? What should I expect to do in that job?
A73: Health services management apprentice training is approximately 36 training days at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas. Please contact an AF recruiter for more information.

Q74: Can you be in the Air National Guard or Reserve and ROTC at the same time?
A74: You can only serve in one military component at the same time. Please contact the Air National Guard or Air Force Reserve for more information.

Q75: What are the requirements to get onto a security forces fly away team?
A75: You must meet the requirements to enlist, train and serve as a security forces apprentice for starters.

Q76: Can you still be a pilot with a business major?
A76: Yes, along with meeting requirements to apply for OTS and pilot training, a technical degree and private pilot’s license will increase your chances.

Q77: If I want to join ROTC but my campus doesn’t offer it, how does going to another campus that does work?
A77: Contact Air Force ROTC, and inquire about our “Crosstown” program.

Q78: Once out of BMT, can a person wear contact lenses, and if so is it based on your job?
A78: Yes, you can wear contacts while on duty, though it may depend on the job you are trained to serve in. They may not be worn while at Basic Military Training.

Q79: What are the requirements to become a SP?
A79: You must meet the requirements to enlist, pass the ASVAB and a medical examination. If you meet all the requirements & the security forces job is available, you can have that job.

Q80: I want to become a cardio thoracic surgeon. Are there any positions in the Air Force? What are the benefits?
A80: You must meet the requirements to be an officer; educational requirements & credentials. Please contact an AF Health Professions Recruiter nearest to you, or call 1-800-423-USAF and speak to an AF advisor for more information.

Q81: What is the best thing to major in during college to become a pilot?
A81: Meeting requirements to apply for OTS and pilot training, a technical degree and private pilot’s license will increase your chances.

Q82: Can you go to any college to become an officer or do you have to go to the Air Force Academy?
A82: Must have bachelors from an accredited university and qualifying GPA to apply for OTS.

Q83: Should I do AFROTC while in college or should I wait until I have my bachelor’s first?
A83: The path to becoming an officer in the Air Force is yours to choose. ROTC or college on your own, followed by applying to Officer Training School, are sources of commissioning.

Q84: How good are my chances of retraining as a first term Airman into a critically manned job such as TACP?
A84: You must have served 3 years of a 4 year term of enlistment, or 5 years of a 6 year term of enlistment to apply for retraining, as well as meeting the ASVAB and physical requirements.

Q85: Does LASIK surgery count as “corrected vision” for a pilot?
A85: Yes it does, and you may be considered one year from the date of the operation.

Q86: I want to join as an officer after I graduate college, but I’ve had ACL reconstructive surgery twice. Is this disqualifying?
A86: This is a potentially medically disqualifying condition. The doctor at MEPS will make this determination.

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