When do I know what job I will be doing for the Air Force and what factors determine my job selection?
You will know your specific Air Force job category approximately six months before you're commissioned. Typically you find out fall semester of your senior year. However, for rated categories such as pilot you find out spring semester of your junior year. The way your job is determined is much like the selection process you compete in for an enrollment allocation as an officer candidate. The factors to be used will include your Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT) scores, your Field Training performance rating, your Grade Point Average (GPA), your academic major, your Physical Fitness Test (PFT) score, and the Detachment Commander's rating. Additionally, for rated positions your Pilot Candidate Selection Model (RCSM) score will be factored into your rating.

Do I have to become a pilot or navigator?
No. The vast majority of Air Force jobs do not involve flying at all. In the civilian world there are thousands of jobs and careers - doctors, lawyers, law enforcement, engineers, financial careers, food-service management - the list is endless. For almost every civilian out in the work force, there is an Air Force officer counterpart performing a similar job. For more information about the many careers available, check out our Careers section.

Can I fly?
Possibly - you must qualify by passing a physical exam, passing a Physical Fitness Test and earning certain scores on the Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT).

When do I actually receive my commission as an Air Force officer?
Cadets normally get commissioned in a special ceremony the next day after they graduate. You can typically expect to enter active duty anywhere from a few days to a couple of months after graduation.

Must a student go on active duty in the Air Force immediately following graduation and commissioning?
Not necessarily. You may request an educational delay if you desire to attend graduate school at your own expense before going on active duty. If approved, the Air Force will postpone your active-duty tour. Delays are routinely provided if you select to attend dental or medical school. Scholarships also exist for students accepted to medical school.

Can I continue my education beyond the baccalaureate level?
Yes. The Air Force offers several opportunities to do so. In many cases you can request an educational delay. This delay between the time of commissioning and reporting for active duty will be of sufficient length to allow you to fulfill the requirements for a professional or master's degree. You will assume all financial obligations. There are also Air Force Institute of Technology programs where the Air Force pays for your graduate school education. These programs are explained in detail in Air Force ROTC.

I don't have 20/20 vision. Can I still fly?
It depends. Check out the Flying Requirements for more information.

Do I have to major in Aeronautical Science to become a pilot or navigator?
No. You can major in any degree program and compete to receive a pilot or navigator slot in Air Force ROTC.

What are the age limits for a cadet to compete for a pilot or navigator position?
To compete for the pilot or navigator categories, you must be able to complete your bachelor's degree and be commissioned through Air Force ROTC before you are 29 years old.

How much do I get paid?
Upon commissioning, you will earn approximately $40,000 per year. This figure includes your base pay as a new second lieutenant (military pay grade of O-1) as well as several other non-taxable allowances including more than $200 per month for food/subsistence and a generous housing allowance that adjusts to your duty location and even increases when you get married or start caring for dependents! For more information about housing rates and allowances across the US for officers with and without dependents, check out the Department of Defense’s Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) Calculator.

You may also earn an even higher annual salary if you live and work in select overseas locations or geographic areas throughout the US that qualify for additional Cost of Living Allowances, or if you qualify for any special pay or career incentives such as flight pay or foreign language proficiency pay. And by the time you finish a typical 4-year active duty commitment, you will be earning more than $60,000 per year.

Will I be behind my fellow nonmilitary graduates after I complete my service obligation and decide to get out?
No. In fact, many companies prefer to hire former officers over new college graduates (even those with master's degrees). Your Air Force experience, the management skills you've gained on active duty and your active-duty educational benefits can give you the competitive edge you need.

And starting in 2012, we have partnered with the Kelley School of Business to provide graduating AFROTC cadets a chance to secure delayed entry into a Kelley MBA program with a class slot reserved for up to 5 (and in some cases even 6) years after graduation! This exciting new program allows cadets to complete their undergraduate studies, earn their commission, and serve out their first active duty service commitment as any other newly minted Air Force officer. During that time, you'll gain operational, management, and leadership experience in our nation's Air Force, but then have the option to return to a guaranteed slot in one of Kelley's world renowned MBA programs to begin a new advanced academic degree program and open up a whole new world of professional possibilities that build upon the experience gained during your time in the Air Force!


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