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Old 12-10-2016, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Log "cabin" west of Bangor
5,036 posts, read 5,474,125 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SluggoF16 View Post
In 1991 the split E-4 rank became one rank, Senior Airman (SrA). Prior to that there were two E-4 ranks, Sergeant (Sgt) and SrA. It's like the Army's E-4 Specialist and Corporal, the Sgt was laterally promoted to NCO status while not yet ready to assume E-5 Staff Sergeant (SSgt) rank and responsibilities.

I work with a guy who was enlisted Air Force and was a SSgt while undergoing training at an Army base. His rank as an E-5 "Staff Sergeant" was confusing to the Army who thought he was an E-6.

I do empathize with the OP... he worked hard to achieve NCO status and now it's forgotten.
I know this is an old thread that has been re-opened, but I'm going to correct this bit of incorrect information.

Up until around 1985 the Army E-4 'Specialist' (Spec4) was exactly the same as the E-4 'Corporal' and both were (junior) NCOs, and both were admitted to the NCO Club. It had exactly zero to do with any Sgt. "lateral promotion".

Spec4 = E-4 = Corporal
Spec5 = E-5 = Sgt.
Spec6 = E-6 = SSgt
Spec7 = E-7 = SFC
Etc.

The Spec grades were exactly the same rank as the regular grades, with exactly the same command authority and responsibility. The difference was that the 'Specialist' indicated a technical specialty above and beyond the training of regular 'grunts'. This apparently changed somewhat after '85 and the higher grades were eliminated. The Army web site still lists the Spec4 grade as being equal pay grade to Corporal, though some other web sites seem to think that it is some sort of mid-grade between PFC and Corporal. I don't know how the Army currently treats it as far as command authority.
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Old 12-10-2016, 03:10 PM
 
Location: Richmond, VA
2,302 posts, read 3,615,015 times
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Currently, Specialist has *no* authority. It is one more pay grade.

Corporal does have authority and is considered an NCO. In any group of Specialists and Corporals, all E-4s, the senior Corporal will be in charge no matter how many years of service or time in grade the Specialist has on the Corporal.

Paywise they make the same basic pay.
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Old 12-10-2016, 04:47 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
2,434 posts, read 1,160,058 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgiaTransplant View Post
Currently, Specialist has *no* authority. It is one more pay grade.

Corporal does have authority and is considered an NCO. In any group of Specialists and Corporals, all E-4s, the senior Corporal will be in charge no matter how many years of service or time in grade the Specialist has on the Corporal.

Paywise they make the same basic pay.

That's the way it was explained to me.
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Old 12-10-2016, 07:25 PM
 
Location: SW OK (AZ Native)
10,643 posts, read 4,693,049 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgiaTransplant View Post
Currently, Specialist has *no* authority. It is one more pay grade.

Corporal does have authority and is considered an NCO. In any group of Specialists and Corporals, all E-4s, the senior Corporal will be in charge no matter how many years of service or time in grade the Specialist has on the Corporal.

Paywise they make the same basic pay.
That's the way the E-4 Sgt and SrA were delineated. One had some authority and one did not. Same pay grade.

The E-4 Specialist in the Army wears rank often referred to as a "sham shield".

In the Air Force the E-4 Sgt was issued a yellow base identification sticker in addition to the DoD vehicle sticker. This replaced the red sticker.
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Old 12-10-2016, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Wyoming
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They switched Airman First Class (E-4) to Sergeant, aka Buck Sergeant shortly after I enlisted -- 1967 or 1968 I believe. I think it did allow E-4s to join the NCO Club, but it was mostly a "feel good" change. I thought it was silly, but I did use the NCO Club a few times.

I made E-5 early in my 4th year of enlistment... and it was work. My OIC instructed my NCOIC to write up my performance report just bad enough that I wouldn't get a promotion, and I didn't really care, since it was my last year and wouldn't make much difference either way. But then my squadron commander stepped in and wanted to know why my performance report was so poor. So I told him, as it was told to me by my NCOIC, "because I was getting out after my first enlistment."

Apparently that's a no-no, and my SQ informed me that "someone" was going to be in a heap of trouble, either me for lying to him or my OIC for falsifying the performance report. At that point, things got real tense in my office. I knew and worked with all the department heads in our Wing on a professional level through my job as historian/information specialist, and got letters from every one of them supporting me. I was promoted a month or two later, something that may have never happened to my OIC again. (She was in deep too-doo.)
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Old 03-14-2017, 02:58 AM
 
1 posts, read 169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SluggoF16 View Post
In 1991 the split E-4 rank became one rank, Senior Airman (SrA). Prior to that there were two E-4 ranks, Sergeant (Sgt) and SrA. It's like the Army's E-4 Specialist and Corporal, the Sgt was laterally promoted to NCO status while not yet ready to assume E-5 Staff Sergeant (SSgt) rank and responsibilities.

I work with a guy who was enlisted Air Force and was a SSgt while undergoing training at an Army base. His rank as an E-5 "Staff Sergeant" was confusing to the Army who thought he was an E-6.

I do empathize with the OP... he worked hard to achieve NCO status and now it's forgotten.
hello yes i feel cheated i was a E-4 Sgt. also attend NCO school not air
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Old 03-15-2017, 12:13 PM
 
Location: So. of Rosarito, Baja, Mexico
6,365 posts, read 15,898,549 times
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With this hassle re the E4 issue reflect back to my early Korea days when at age 19 turned down a chance for OCS ,(90 day wonder,)....
They needed officers...what more can I say.
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Old 03-15-2017, 06:28 PM
 
10,229 posts, read 13,560,463 times
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As another relic I don't know what the Air Force has done with its enlisted ranks and grades but from 1968 to 1972 I know the ranks were:

No stripe (E1) = Airman basic
One stripe (E2) = Airman
Two stripes (E3) = Airman 1st Class
Three stripes (E4) = Buck Sergeant (able to use NCO clubs)
Four stripes (E5) = Staff Sergeant
Five Stripes (E6) = Technical Sergeant
Six Stripes (E7) = Master Sergeant
Six down, one up (E8) = Senior Master Sergeant
Six Down, Two up (E9) = Chief Master Sergeant

The AF must have changed a lot since I was there. I left the Service with only a hand full of college hours I had picked while in but separated after four years as an E5 with almost enough time and grade for an E6 (then). I've never missed being called "Sarge."
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