So I'm Thinking About Joining The Air Force

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by ajm113, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
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    Hello everyone! So I've been thinking about it for quite some time and I keep seeing more and more reasons on joining. I've graduated high school about a year ago and right now at the moment I'm working two jobs in retail.

    Honestly, I kinda hate it even though I put a mask on when I work that says differently. I've concluded that I hate people with a passion when it comes to not using common sense, I know any job that you take will include people, I just mean dealing with people who'm are worst then me when it comes to math when they have a coupon, but that's besides the point.

    I've been thinking about joining for about 2-3 years, so one person's second point of view isn't going to change my decision right away. I want to hear some Air Force first person experiences or secondary experience that had to do with the Air Force. I plan on shooting my goal for a electronics technician, programmer, or IT.

    I know some of what the air force must do more then likely is ether difficult to translate in businesses of today's world, but I've heard they would help pay for collage. So I was wondering if someone could shine more light.

    Thanks, Ajm.
     
  2. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Personally I believe it to be a good idea. The USA still has VA benifits that will help you for college, but you will need to talk to them. I was 4F, and regret not serving my country deeply.

    When dealing with a recruter, get everything in writing. Their word is worthless, it if is not in writing then you are screwed. As with most people, most are honorable citizens, but you can always find a joker in the deck.

    I think the main thing is it gives you a chance to stand back, take stock, and age a little. Plus an honorable discharge always looks good on a resume, and many companies give peferential treatment to vets.

    The down side is you may find yourself in a war zone. It goes with the territory. My Dad fought in two wars, Korea and Viet Nam, in the Air Force. He served for 20 years, and his retirement package lasted his lifetime (unlike some people who trusted their companies). It is uncertain if Congress will continue to honor their obligations, but I personally feel it is likely.

    Hope it helps.
     
  3. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
    176
    5
    Hey thanks! :)

    Going into a war zone does bother me a little, ether mistakenly killing some innocent, or having to put down a man whos done nothing to me would bother me if I was put in that position. People must find it very difficult to live after they do so.

    On the plus side I would more then likely be sent to another country, which would be very cool in my opinion.

    I'm trying to decide if Spring would be the best time to signup, you know, save up some money on the side with my two jobs go in for training and if I pass then service for a couple of years and the weather would be much nicer out.
     
  4. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    There is a chance they might not want you. Not to be pessimistic, but the military is downsizing.

    I'm not saying they will, but be prepared for the possibility and how you would handle it if they did. Things like quiting jobs before going to the recuiters or if you would be willing to accept service in another branch, for example.
     
  5. strantor

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    I'm prior Navy; not air force, but close enough
    You better get used to it right away. In the military, not only do you have to work with people who have no common sense, you have to work for them, under penalty of treason.
    I couldn't even begin to list all the times I had to perform some task that (obviously, to everyone but the tard who assigned the task) stupid, useless and redundant, but here are a couple of examples that stand out:

    Head cook (E7) - "Take these 100 buckets of icecream up topside, turn off the chill box, and scrub the whole thing. then bring them all back after lunch"
    Me - "you mean, up topside, in the summer sun, for hours?
    Head cook - "excuse me?"
    Me - "nothing :)" - commences ruining the crew's ice cream for the duration of entire deployment.

    Junior officer (trying to make a powerpoint containing mission data screenshots) - "I don't have the software to view .gif files on my computer. I need you convert these 5000 images to .jpg"
    me - "We have another laptop that will view .gif images"
    Junior officer - "...":mad:
    me - "ok sir, I'm on it!"


    Ok, so assuming you can put the lack of common sense issue behind you, I would say "yes, go for it". Try to pick a job that transfers to a job in the civilian sector but remember, it's subject to "the needs of the air force", which they may or may not tell you - you will find out after you join. If you pick a job that is in high demand (by the air force) then you're choise is pretty safe.

    I don't know how it is now, but around the end of '09, I considered going back in; went to the recruiters (army, marines, navy, airforce, and coast guard) and they had all but stopped recruiting. They were not taking any prior-enlistees (long story, basically a beaurocrat's "good idea"). They were not giving sign on bonuses, you had to have near a perfect ASVAB score and a degree just to be considered. Its always like that when a democrat gets into office (not to start a political debate, just stating a historical fact). So, if you haven't been to the recruiter yet, you might want to go and test, just to see if joining is even an option. and wait until after the election to see if a republican gets in office; it could mean a few thousand dollars in bonus money to you.

    If you don't listen to anything else, listen to this: go to college while you are still in the military; don't wait until you get out.
     
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  6. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
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    I see what you mean, I'll sign up and do all the testing before I say goodbye to my jobs, thing that sucks is they want me working everyday... -___- I'll just have to submit something like doctors appointment or something each time I need time I do a test. I should also start working out after I pass the two main tests. The intelligence test and physical.

    What surprises me these days you saying that is that when I was in high school these recruiter would hunt you down like dogs on the phone when they get your name and number, they seem a little more mellower where I live now then where I used to be.

    @strantor
    haha, I think I can handle that I as long as I dont have to correct anyone or teach someone the basics of life, I think I should be good, plus all the loud talking and being slightly hard of hearing I should be fine. :)

    I defiantly plan on going into collage the second I get a chance, so that will not be a issue. About the BMT from I heard I believe I shouldn't agree to any volunteering or tell anyone what time it is. ;) It does have me nervous though, I'm healthy and everything, but what worries me is if I get to the point of getting discharged because of my clumsiness from getting nervous.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2011
  7. strantor

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    if going into battle is to be avoided, then air force is your best bet, followed by navy. You can pick a desk job but remember the caveat of "in the military's best interest.
     
  8. justtrying

    Active Member

    Mar 9, 2011
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    be very careful of the beaurocracy and what you are signing. And I would say that you better have strong reasons for doing this (stronger than money or serving your country)

    p.s. before anyone comments that I am being insensitive etc, I come from a country with conscription, many damaged people walking around.
     
  9. JoeJester

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 26, 2005
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    Don't forget that while your in the military, they will pay Tuition Assistance. Those payments do not subtract from your VA benefits for education.

    Also, check with your education services officer and see what you can CLEP. That's a good way to earn credits without attending. Also, don't forget your military education may earn you credits. The leadership schools you may attend as well as the technical schools.

    Good luck on your endeavor.

    Military retiree sends.
     
  10. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
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    Thank you justtrying, but my reasons are a little bit more then that, for one it's challenge, I want a true challenge in life then going day by day doing the same thing that I hate doing. Not to say I may do the same thing in the air force, but it's worth it in the long run.

    JoeJester I didn't know some of those programs, I'll have to keep them in mind defiantly when I start going into collage for a education. :)

    Thank you!

    I tried calling the reciter, no pick up or even a answering machine, I'll have to hunt this guy down. I'll start off with a email, if that fails I'll have to find another guy. I defiantly will have to do some studying for the written test, any links or anything to practice so I know what I would have to study for?
     
  11. SgtWookie

    Expert

    Jul 17, 2007
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    I spent six years on active duty in the Marine Corps, in the 2nd Marine Air Wing. I was an airborne radar systems/missile fire control technician on McDonnell-Douglas F-4J and F-4S Phantom II's. They were quite the airplane in their day.

    My tour of duty was so long ago that the experience today would be a good bit different; there is much more of an emphasis on "political correctness" for one thing.

    Being in aviation, most of the people I worked with were really pretty sharp, with a few exceptions. However, your chances of working with a good group of people seems to be a lot better in the service. At least in the Marines, they used to wash out about 3/8 to 1/2 of the recruits in boot camp.

    You may get to work on some really advanced hardware. In the civilian world, you'd have to have an engineering degree and several years experience to get that kind of an opportunity.

    You'll make friends that will last many years. I'm still in touch with some of the guys I worked with over 30 years ago.

    Ditto what Strantor said about getting a degree while you're on active duty. That's for your future; it'll be a lot brighter if you get that sheepskin. The job marketplace is very competitive nowadays; if you don't have a degree, you're not even in the running.

    Don't be in a hurry to get out after 2-3 years. I understand that the minimum obligated service is now 8 years combined active/reserve/inactive reserve instead of 6 years like it was in years gone by. I'd signed up for a 4-year hitch with 2 inactive on the back end, but wound up extending to take an advanced avionics course. And after having served the extra two on active, I realized that I really was not ready at all to get out at 4 years.

    Have a plan; short-term, intermediate-term, and long-term. You can revise them periodically, as times and situations change. But, if you don't have a plan to follow, you won't have any idea where you're going.

    Best of luck to you.

    [eta]
    Study up on the ASVAB. The better your ASVAB battery of tests score is, the more jobs you'll qualify for. You can find ASVAB study guides, flash cards, even sample tests to take online - some of them free.
     
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  12. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
    176
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    Thank you for the very informal information, it really had me thinking. :) From what you said so far, it sounds like a very rewarding field.

    If I had a position that I love in the air focrce, I don't think I would mind too much having to stay with them for 8 years or so and going for a computer science degree. :)

    Can you tell me a little more about the position you had? Like what was everyday like? What would you say would be a good or bad day for example.

    I'll be studying up while I wait for a return call, so I'll defiantly try my best to ace it even though I come from a background of not being thought enough to my expectations when I was in high school, I wont let that stop me. ;)
     
  13. strantor

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 3, 2010
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    talking to everyone or someone specific?
     
  14. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
    176
    5
    Woops sorry I was talking to SgtWookie.
     
  15. jimkeith

    Active Member

    Oct 26, 2011
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    My opinion: Avoid all military--we are about to get into a regional war in the Middle East and things are going to go crazy--you may not be released when promised--you may end up wounded not in combat, but by all the toxic vaccines e.g. anthrax etc. http://www.mvrd.org/AVN/heroes/JasonNietupski.htm His experience is not uncommon...

    The next false flag attack (perhaps tomorrow) will likely be blamed on Iran--the news has been alive with the problem with their nukes--why? That would instantly catapult us into war with Iran--who knows how China, India, Pakistan and Russia will respond.

    Check out this short primer on False Flag Terrorism: http://www.wanttoknow.info/falseflag

    And this one by Capt. May: http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=8165
     
  16. justtrying

    Active Member

    Mar 9, 2011
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    http://www.veteransforpeace.org/

    The thing is, the path that the US is taking right now is uncertain now, but is not peaceful. They have a huge presence in Middle East (as stated above), at the moment mostly contractors, there seems to be a breakdown in communications with Russia with the push of missile defence system and no nuclear disarmament in any forceable future. And of course they even started to dabble in N. Africa. Chances are that once signed up you will be in a war zone, and once they have you they have you. With Iraq many people had to serve two tours of duty or more without the minimum required break.

    Look for scholarships and go to school. You'd be surprized what is available (especially in the states).

    I do realize that joining the military is very appealing, but most people I know come back depressed, break up with their girlfriends and cannot find a job. It really only seems to work out if you are in it for the long run i.e. at least 8-10 years.
     
  17. PatM

    Active Member

    Dec 31, 2010
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    Don't know if the same rules apply now, but when I was drafted, there was a law that your employer had to give you your job back after your service.
    That wouldn't apply if you had quit before entering the service.
     
  18. DumboFixer

    Active Member

    Feb 10, 2009
    219
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    I served in the Royal Air Force so my experiences, though similar, are slightly different.

    I wouldn't look at doing "only 2-3 years" - my training as an Avionics Engineer (everything from basic compasses through to fly by wire control systems, TFR and RHWR/ECM/ECCM) took 2 years before I was allowed to work on Tornado aircraft on an operational squadron (under supervision initially). The skills I learned whilst serving put in a very good position for when I left.

    Make use of any/all training they offer you but especially those that giving you "transferable" skills. Some trades will be more relevant in civvy street than others - I think you are more likely to use an electronics background than a Weapons one (that's not to say the Weapons training isn't any good).

    Did I enjoy it - I certainly did. I got to see parts of the World I would not have seen otherwise (Europe, Middle East, USA, Canada, South Atlantic)
    Would I recommend joining the Armed Forces (of which ever branch/service) - Yes

    Was it all a bed of roses ? No - Getting injured in the Middle East wasn't fun, doing plane crash search and recovery operations is not recommended (but fortunatley pretty rare)
     
  19. ajm113

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 19, 2011
    176
    5
    @PatM

    I will have to search that up, cause that could be my safety net encase things don't go my way, but I do plan on staying with them for a long time. :)

    Thank you for the post!

    @DumboFixer

    See the part of seeing the world is also what interests me very much, and I really don't have much to loose encase something bad happens.

    How hard was the training for your position if I may ask? I'm just wondering what the training is like. Like what would happen if you fail? Would they resign you to another position instead?
     
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