By Staff Sgt. Jarrod Chavana
Air Force Public Affairs Agency
The Air Force Recruiting Service participated in its sixth “office hours” tweet chat, #AsktheAF on @usairforce, Jan. 9 and received more than 110 recruitment questions from Twitter followers. During the hour-long Web event, AFRS officials and the Air Force Social Media Team answered questions about enlistment eligibility requirements, Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test scores and other career field-specific questions. The first 33 questions were answered during the tweet chat, but in case you missed it, here are all the questions and answers from the chat. Stay tuned for our next event!
Q1. Can you change your job while in BMT?
A1: No, but 13 months prior to end of your first enlistment you can apply for to crosstrain.
Q2. Is there a need for still photographers?
A2: Jobs are based on ASVAB scores and physical. That is a small career field and hard to get.
Q3: What are some of the critical career fields right now?
A3: Special tactics, linguist and any job that requires a high ASVAB score are always in demand.
Q4: I want to become a sensor operator — how competitive is that specific job market? Is the USAF still looking for them?
A4: If you qualify for that AFSC and it’s open, then you can book it. It’s not “hard,” but you just have to qualify for it.
Q5: Does the Air Force have lumberjacks?
A5: No, however, our special tactics careers may allow you to interact with similar activities in the outdoors.
Q6: I scored a 54 on my ASVAB; is that good?
A6: Yes. You need a 50 or higher to continue processing, so congrats.
Q7: Where can I find an up-to-date list of the top needed career fields?
A7: Jobs are based on ASVAB and MEPS physicals, so your recruiter can give you a list of qualified jobs.
Q8: Will the Air Force still be recruiting, especially with force cuts happening this year?
A8: Yes. We will continue recruiting highly-qualified applicants year-round to fill open opportunities.
Q9: Can I join the Air Force with a diploma from an online high school?
A9: Each recruiter has a list of acceptable schools. Please contact your local AF recruiter to inquire.
Q10: Can I go to college after tech school?
A10: You can go to college once you get to your first base and finish upgrade training.
Q11: Can a Canadian join the Air Force? If not, what steps should one do to be able to join?
A11: You must live in the US for at least 2 years, have a valid visa and meet all other requirements.
Q12: What are the age requirements for joining the Air Force?
A12: Non-prior service applicants must be at least 17 to apply and in Basic Military Training before their 28th birthday.
Q13: Do I have to attend the Air Force Academy to become an officer?
A13: No. There are many options: AFA, ROTC, TA, GI Bill and other scholarship programs.
Q14: I’m not a U.S. citizen and I would like to enlist, is there any specific time I must stay in the U.S. in order to enlist?
A14: Potentially, but you must meet the reqs: http://bit.ly/12yNTco and legally reside in the US with a “Green Card.”
Q15: Does the Air Force still need broadcast journalists?
A15: It’s a very small career field and one that is rarely open. Talk to your recruiter http://bit.ly/11uA68V .
Q16: What are the qualifications to secure a job as an air traffic controller?
A16: You must score a minimum of 65 General & 65 Mechanical, enlist for 6 yrs, pass color vision test, be 18 yrs old & more.
Q17: What are the jobs pertaining to the medical field in the Air Force?
A17: Medical jobs fall in the General Aptitude Area. Visit http://bit.ly/1evBhIq for more information.
Q18: Can you change your job while in BMT?
A18: No, 13 months prior to your enlistment ending, you can apply to crosstrain.
Q19: Can I directly cross train into TACP from SF before my cross train window is open?
A19: You can ask the MPF if there are exceptions, but it’s typically 13-months prior to the end of your 1st enlistment.
Q20: I’m going in as a crypto linguist, and I want to know how they decide which language I will learn?
A20: Languages are assigned at tech school and are based on DLAB scores.
Q21: How does someone get involved in playing sports in the AF?
A21: You can get involved w/ base intramural sports or try out for the world-class athlete program. http://www.usafsports.com .
Q22: How difficult would it be to get a job in security forces?
A22: Not too difficult as it’s a large career field. General score of 33, meet all physical and background requirements.
Q23: If I want to be a pilot, what is the minimum scored required on the AFOQT?
A23: Minimum score is 25 with a min of a 2.5 GPA. Keep in mind those are min scores & selects are averaging much higher.
Q24: How difficult is it to get into EOD?
A24: Mech 60, Gen 64, pass color & depth perception test. See more here: http://bit.ly/1gudwFP.
Q25: After ROTC, can you go enlisted for special ops and then if you wash out fall back as a lieutenant?
A25: Special Ops has enlisted and officer versions. If you are commissioned you do not wash out to an enlisted position.
Q26: Can a spouse of an active duty member (with kids) join?
A26: No, not at this time.
Q28: I had 3 years of AFJROTC, how does that help me after basic training?
A28: With a 3-year completion certificate, you can graduate from Basic Military Training as an E-3.
Q29: I want career in diagnostic imaging. Is that a competitive field to get into?
A29: There are fewer medical jobs, and they fill fast. If you qualify for it and it’s open, you can book it.
Q30: What are the requirements for an aeromedical evacuation technician job?
A30: You have to join as a medic, then cross train into aero medevac. Min ASVAB score of 50 and can’t have a fear of blood.
Q31: What are the steps and requirements for becoming a pilot?
A31: To become an Air Force pilot you must have or be within 365 days of receiving a baccalaureate degree in any major, and a GPA of at least 2.5. There are other strict vision and physical requirements. For more info, click here: http://bit.ly/12KwCAu.
Q32: How would you recommend one spend the year before going in for recruitment? Physical training I assume?
A32: You should train to exceed BMT physical standards. Also learn the Air Force song and Airman’s Creed, Reporting Statement and Air Force Ranks. Check out this link for BMT workout prep: http://1.usa.gov/14ARYDs.
Q33: Is there a way to enter as an officer & still receive funds to get a secondary education? I have a college degree now.
A33: You can use Tuition Assistance, GI Bill or apply for numerous higher educational scholarships.
Q34: My son and daughter are planning on enlisting at the same time. Is that allowed?
A34: Yes, however, they may not go to BMT at the same time.
Q35: I scheduled to meet with the recruiter in my area, but he never showed up, what should I do?
A35: Call to reschedule and if you do not have any success, call us at 1-800-423-USAF and we can further assist.
Q36: Is special mission’s aviation a difficult career to get in?
A36: It’s one we are looking to fill and has many opportunities if you qualify.
Q37: What is the process to becoming a K-9 handler?
A37: You must already be on active duty, meet requirements and then apply. You must be 5-skill level, submit an application and be selected.
Q38: What law type jobs can I get with a 77 on the ASVAB? Which are in higher demand?
A38: Jobs are based on several factors and if you are looking to get into Law Enforcement type work, then Security Forces would be the route to look into.
Q39: What does it take to go in as officer?
A39: You may apply for OTS with most any college degree (minimum 3.0 GPA required), go through AF ROTC or attend AF Academy. Click here for more information: http://bit.ly/15P53GT.
Q40: How many intel officers slots will be given to ROTC in 2015?
A40: Each college runs their own ROTC program and you would need to inquire with the college you want to attend that offers ROTC and discuss this with the Det Commander.
Q41: What are the requirements to be an officer in security forces?
A41: SF officers can apply with any bachelor degree with a minimum of 3.0 GPA to apply, plus meet all other requirements. Keep in mind that OTS boards for officer selectees are suspended until FY2015. Please contact a local Line Officer Recruiter, Sept/Oct 2014 to inquire about future boards.
Q42: To become security forces, what are the requirements and how long is the training?
A42: AFQT: 50, General: 33, have a valid driver’s license, pass color vision test, be US citizen and meet all other requirements as well. SF tech school is 65 training days
long (13 weeks long) at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, TX.
Q44: I am not a US citizen yet, but if i become one can i join the U.S. Air Force and hopefully become a fighter pilot?
A44: Pilots are officers, and officers must be a US citizen.
Q45: I have a clean record and an ASVAB score of 96. I will be going in for Security Forces. How does one cross-train into OSI?
A45: You can directly apply to OSI after applying to and being acceptance to OTS. The application procedures are unique to OSI and need to be done before the applicant’s selection by the OTS selection board. Historically, accepted applications were limited to current enlisted agents who are selected for OTS. But now applications are being accepted from initial OTS applicants and there are no specific job specialty requirements. Visit http://1.usa.gov/1cqMdp5 for application procedures and board deadline information.
Q46: What are the physical fitness requirements to do fire protection?
A46: There are none prior to tech school. You will train for that once at tech school.
Q47: I leave for basic in 20 days as a Mech 44, where will I most likely be stationed?
A47: You will list your assignment preferences during BMT and then get orders to your first duty station a few weeks before graduating tech school. It’s impossible to predict where you’ll be stationed, as they fill slots that are empty at whatever base that needs your career field, and needs are ever changing.
Q48: If I am selected for pilot training in ROTC but don’t pass, is there a way to cross train?
A48: If you do not successfully pass ROTC, then you will enter as an E-3 for an enlisted commitment.
Q49: What score on the ASVAB does the Air Force want most?
A49: I highly recommend you score a 50 or higher to be competitive for enlistment and have more jobs offered to you.
Q50: What is the lowest score the Air Force will accept?
A50: Min AFQT score req is 36, but majority of those waiting for BMT scored 50. Contact your recruiter to discuss your scores.
Q51: Does having an Eagle Scout rank have benefits for getting a higher rank?
A51: Boy or Girl Scouts: Eagle Scout or Gold Award = E-2
Q52: What are the qualifications to secure a job as an aircraft mechanic?
A52: There are several aircraft mechanic jobs. You’ll be given the chance to see a list of jobs you qualify for once you process, then you can list them. The better you score on the ASVAB, the more jobs you will see.
Q53: Does the Air Force need ground vehicle operators? What are the requirements?
A53: We are looking for highly qualified applicants to fill most of our career fields. Jobs are based on ASVAB scores, physical, background and credit check. Your recruiter will be able to discuss job options with you once you process and know what you qualify for.
Q54: I have my Bachelor’s and Master’s degree already. What are some options in joining? Will my training be different?
A54: OTS boards are suspended until FY2015. Please contact a local Line Officer Recruiter near Sept/Oct 2014 to inquire about future boards. We look at undergrad degree and GPA (min 3.0 GPA to apply) and the higher your GPA, the better your chances. Boards are very competitive.
Q55: Does the Air National Guard offer tuition payback?
A55: We are an active duty site. Please contact the Air Guard for their benefits: http://bit.ly/15P3wjP.
Q56: Is there an enlistment bonus for EOD if i sign a six-year contract?
A56: At this time, it’s $18,000 for a 6-year enlistment for EOD.
Q57: I’m going to get my degree in engineering, and then looking to go into the Air Force to be a pilot. Is that a good plan?
A57: Yes. General requirements to be a pilot: US citizen, 4 year college degree, at least a 2.5 GPA, must meet the selection board prior to age 28, between 5’4″ and 6’5″ in height, distance vision no worse than 20/70, correctable to 20/20, near vision 20/20, uncorrected.There are several paths you can take in pursuit of earning your wings. You could choose to get your degree on your own and apply for your commission following graduation. Or, you could choose to come on to active duty and let the Air Force pay up to 100% of your college tuition (effective 1 Oct 2002). You could gain valuable Air Force experience while getting your degree. Once you have obtained your degree, apply for your commission and select to become a pilot.
Q58: Can you go directly into pilot training after becoming an officer?
A58: As long as you meet the minimum requirements, are selected, then yes you will go to UPT for approximately 12-18 months. After completion of SUPT, you will complete survival training and follow on training.
Q59: I’m going in AD as Power Production. Where am I most likely to be stationed?
A59: That’s impossible to predict as openings AF wide are ever changing. You will be notified of your first duty station towards the end of your tech school.
Q60: What are the vision requirements to become a pilot?
A60: A pilot’s distance vision can be no worse than 20/70, correctable to 20/20. Near vision must be 20/20, uncorrected.
Q61: If I join the Air Force, can I be stationed with one of my close friends, if so, what are the steps to do so?
A61: We do not match people on assignments with buddies. You are matched based on your career field, skill level, and where we have openings to fill.
Q62: Can you enlist if you are on the diversion program?
A62: There are two types of diversion programs. If you are referring to the program due to law violations, then you need to contact a recruiter to ask if the charges are disqualifying, and provide you an eligibility determination.
Q63: Can you enlist if you are on the diversion program?
A63: There are two types of diversion programs. If you are referring to the program due to law violations, then you need to contact a recruiter to inquire if the charges are disqualifying, and provide you an eligibility determination.
Q64: Is there a need for optometrists?
A64: There are zero for this fiscal year but you are more than welcome to contact a local Health Professions recruiter to inquire if any slots happen to be opened.
Q65: What career fields are most females placed into?
A65: Females are eligible for all career fields except for PJ, CCT, TACP, SOWT.
Q66: Can I get my driving license for security forces during my time at technical school and use my European one in the mean time?
A66: No, you must already possess a valid US driver’s license to even list SF as a career choice. You won’t have time in tech school to earn a driver’s license which is why it’s required beforehand.
Q67: When will ROTC cadets find out their EADs and base assignments?
A67: ROTC cadets need to inquire with their DET Commanders for specific information pertaining to them.
Q68: What are the requirements for PJ training?
A68: AFQT 50, General 44. You must also pass the PAST test. Check out the PJ page at http://bit.ly/1m81vV9 for more info.
Q69: What ASVAB score is expected for special tactics recruits?
A69: Minimum scores by Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC): http://mil-com.me/1b8GvIi
Q70: Would the AF try to help and get someone citizenship in the US if they are not a citizen of the United States?
A70: Potentially, but you must meet the reqs http://bit.ly/12yNTco and legally reside in the US with a “Green Card.”
Q71: When will BMT begin in July?
A71: BMT starts each Tuesday year round. After you process, you will get your date for BMT and your job contract.
Q72: Would I need to be cct before becoming a STO?
A72: STO is an officer position and if you meet the requirements to apply for it, and are selected, then you don’t “have” to be CCT prior.
Q73: What are the Air Force’s three main missions?
A73: Fly, Fight, Win.
Q74: Can you enlist with scars?
A74: Depends on what the scars are from. You would need to inquire with a local AF recruiter to give you specific answers to your particular situation.
Q75: How does getting into flight school work?
A75: You must meet the following general requirements http://bit.ly/12KwCAu, obtain a degree on your own or earn one after enlisting, then apply for commission.
Q76: Is there a minimum weight required to enlist?
A76: The minimum weight requirement to enlist will depend on your height. Find out more at http://bit.ly/13I6Tq4.
Q77: My husband was wondering if he could transfer over from Army to Air Force?
A77: At the moment we are only taking CAT I Direct Duty applicants which are prior AF members who were previously certified in 9 specific career fields we are looking to fill. We are not cross training anyone at this time.
Q78: What officer jobs are in high demand? If I attend AFROTC and major in meteorology, what do I need to do to get into SOWT?
A78: SOWT is an enlisted career field only, so you can enlist in SOWT and then earn your degree and apply for OTS to be a meteorologist.
Q79: How do i become an officer in the AF?
A79: You may apply for OTS with most any college degree (minimum 3.0 GPA required), go through AF ROTC or attend AF Academy. Click here for more information: http://bit.ly/15P53GT.
Q80: Where is geospatial intelligence tech school located? Is it a hard career to get into?
A80: It’s at Goodfellow AFB, TX: SHRED A-Analyst – 100 training days (20 weeks).SHRED B-Targeteer-110 days(22 weeks).
Q81: What are the requirements to become a TACP?
A81: Please view this link http://1.usa.gov/1j83V93
Q82: I want to be in either pavements, construction or HVAC. Which one is more likely I’ll be able to get in to?
A82: There are five scores that the Air Force utilizes from the ASVAB test. The first one is the Armed Forces Qualifying Test score, or the overall score. Then there are four different “line” scores (Mechanical, Administrative, General, and Electronics). These are the scores that are used to determine the jobs for which you are qualified. In addition to the required score, there are physical and moral standards that must be met for each of the different careers in the Air Force. As long as you are fully qualified for a specific career, and, if there is an opening in that career field, then you will get that career guaranteed to you in your contract.
Q83: How can I guarantee a position to go through the training of a STO?
A83: OTS boards for officer selectees are suspended until FY2015. Please contact a local Line Officer Recruiter in Sept/Oct 2014 to inquire what slots are open and when to apply.
Q84: How high is the demand for mental health specialists?
A84: We do not announce open positions as they are ever changing. Once you process, you will see a list of jobs you qualify for and can apply for.
Q85: Are there any training courses overseas which allow you to work as a civilian for non US citizens?
A85: We are an active duty Air Force site, and can only provide you information pertaining to individuals who qualify to serve in the U.S. Air Force. You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply.
Q86: Can you become a Paramedic and still be able to join the Fire Program?
A86: If you meet the requirements to train and serve in a particular job, after serving 36 months of a 4- month term of enlistment, or 60 months of a 72-month term of enlistment, you may apply to retrain.
Q87: Are there any cyber security or intelligence positions for enlisted:
A87: Yes, provided you meet the requirements, and the job is available, Cyber Systems Operations Apprentice, and Cyber Surety Apprentice.
Q88: Is the AF opening up commissioning boards anytime soon?
A88: FY2015…please contact a local OTS recruiter Sept/Oct 2014 to see if the boards are open for selectees and if you qualify.
Q89: How many recruits do you guys take in a year?
A89: Congress dictates our annual manning. This past fiscal year we enlisted 26,835 active duty, and about 10,000 more came from the Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserves.
Q90: What happens after AFROTC?
A90: You can be considered for commissioning as an officer in the Air Force.
Q91: Is asthma a disqualifying factor for enlisting?
A91: Asthma is a potentially medically disqualifying condition, but the doctor at MEPS will make that determination. Ask your recruiter to have the MEPS doctor prescreen your asthma medical records for a preliminary ruling.
Q92: What is the air guard to active duty process before a six year enlistment is up?
A92: We are taking CAT I Direct Duty applicants only. Prior AF members who were previously certified in the follow career fields: Airborne linguist, linguist, Fusion Analyst Apprentice, Cyberspace Defense Ops, EOD, PJ, TACP, CCT, SOWT. We are not re-training at this time.
Q93: How do I change a Two Charlie re-enlistment code?
A93: If you served in other than the U.S. Air Force, you will need to contact your service to appeal the re-entry code. If you served in the U.S. Air Force, you will contact the Air Force Board of Corrections, for Military Service, at the Air Force Personnel Center (AFPC), Randolph AFB, TX for consideration.
Q94: I want the AF to become a doctor. Can I join with my bachelor’s and then continue school to become a doctor?
A94. Air Force Medical HPSP scholarships are for three or four-year periods, that pays full tuition and all required fees. This includes reimbursement for textbooks, small equipment items and supplies needed for study. You’ll also receive a monthly allowance of approximately $2,122 for living expenses. You must be a U.S. citizen enrolled or accepted for enrollment in an accredited medical school. Your payback is a minimum commitment of three years and begins after you have completed medical school and your residency training.
Q95: I booked Cyber Transport Systems, going in as an A1C, can I make staff before reenlisting after six years?
A95: The average time to make Staff Sergeant (SSgt) is anywhere between 5-6 years. If you dedicate yourself to studying and doing great at work, then yes it is possible to be promoted to SSgt in six years.
Q96: I want to study abroad for two-years in Australia or England. Can I still join the military while there?
A96: No. Once you are ready to join, then contact the AF and we can further assist you.
Q97: How old do you have to be for the soft book program? And when should I talk to my recruiter about it?
A97: Mid way through your Jr year in high school, 17 years old with parental consent.
Q98: Where is someone I can talk to about joining in Cypress,Tx?
A98: Click here http://bit.ly/11uA68V to find a recruiter in your area. After providing your contact info, allow 5 workdays for a return call. If it exceeds 5 workdays, call the Air Force National Call Center at 1-800-423-USAF. You can also chat with an Air Force advisor here: http://bit.ly/14epz4G.
Q99: How long does it take for someone to enlist from beginning to end?
A99: It takes about two to three months to process, then another three to nine months to ship to BMT.
Q100: What are some career pathways in psychology for the Air Force?
A100: It depends on the needs of the Air Force. You should talk to a recruiter if you’re interested.
Q101: How can I get stationed overseas?
A101: You will be able to select preferred locations, which will be taken into assignment consideration. Click here for more information: http://bit.ly/15KYpPs.
Q102: I want to fly with the Blue Angels. What are the requirements?
A102: Blue Angles are the U.S. Navy. Please contact the U.S. Navy for information.
Q103: What are some qualifications in order to secure a job as a paralegal?
A103: There are five scores that the Air Force utilizes from the ASVAB test. The first one is the Armed Forces Qualifying Test score, or the overall score. Then there are four different “line” scores (Mechanical, Administrative, General, and Electronics). These are the scores that are used to determine the jobs for which you are qualified. In addition to the required score, there are physical and moral standards that must be met for each of the different careers in the Air Force. As long as you are fully qualified for a specific career, and, if there is an opening in that career field, then you will get that career guaranteed to you in your contract.
Q104: What steps need to be completed to become a combat rescue officer?
A104: Please visit this link http://1.usa.gov/Kk1qBs
Q105: What are the requirements to become a flight engineer?
A105: Flight Engineer is now Special Missions Aviation Apprentice. You must meet the requirements to enlist in the U.S. Air Force, to include qualifying on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB): Mech-60 or Gen-57. Min height: 64 inches (5’4). Pass color and depth perception test. US citizen, Pass Class III Flight Physical.
Q106: What is the recommended BMI for new recruits? Say for a 5’10-5’11 male, who is 140, should I put on more weight, healthily?
A106: BMI is not considered, but you must meet height and weight requirements. Learn more here http://bit.ly/13I6Tq4.
Q107: Can you be a meteorologist in the Air Force?
A107: Yes, it is an officer position and you must have a degree in meteorology.
Q108: Does the Air Force guarantee you a job? I’m currently in DEP waiting to get a job and ship date!
A108: Yes. If you will contact your recruiter they will explain the process to you, and when your anticipated ship date is.
Q109: Is the Air Force taking prior service?
A109: We are taking CAT I Direct Duty applicants only. Prior AF members who were previously certified in the follow career fields: Airborne linguist, linguist, Fusion Analyst Apprentice, Cyberspace Defense Ops, EOD, PJ, TACP, CCT, SOWT. We are not cross training at this time.
Q110: Isn’t SF critically manned? I thought the USAF was good on TACP’s?
A110: SF is a very large career field and there are a lot of people that desire that job, but it’s not considered critically manned…in fact, bonuses were removed from that career field because it fills up fast. TACP’s are always in need, since the elimination rate is so high.
Q111: I am applying to the Academy in Colorado. What would be a good major if I’m interested in combat control?
A111: Combat Control is an enlisted job only. Your career advisor at the Academy will discuss degree plans with you.
Q112: What else does the AF have to offer that is similar to the Army Rangers? Para rescue is one. How do I enlist into these jobs?
A112: Different duties and bases expose you to different aspects of SF. Missions and deployments will depend on where you’re stationed.
Q113: I recently tried to cross train to become a PJ. I was told I can’t because I’m an E-6. Is there any truth to this?
A113: You would have to inquire through your MPF as we only handle initial enlistments.