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Old 07-21-2018, 03:18 PM
 
6 posts, read 1,615 times
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I am auditioning as a musician for one of the Air Force's premier bands and am curious if an eyeglasses prescription of -8.25 and -8.75 would have any chance of being waived, since the job would never require any typical militaristic duties such as engaging in combat/flying/using weapons. As far as I know, my vision is corrected to to 20/20 or whatever "perfect" vision might be with eye glasses.

I have read in some other posts that they are very strict with Eye RX - I'm just looking for some insight into musician recruitment and if they've shown any lenience. I also read that LASIK might not improve chances of enlisting if your old prescription was over +/-8. Does this still ring true?

Last thing, I'd like to know if they are reluctant to give more than one waiver per individual. I also have a 9 year old reduced DUI offense.

Thanks
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Old 07-23-2018, 08:55 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,184 posts, read 9,227,803 times
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Short answer, probably not.

A lot of it depends on the overall health of your eye. Do you have keratoconus causing your bad vision? If so, you have 0 chance at a waiver. Do you have a large astigmatism over 3.5? If so, you have basically no chance. Is there any kind of optic nerve or other pathology causing your vision to be so bad?

In my experience (a decade in AF recruiting), almost every applicant with vision as bad as yours has something else going on with their eyes. That type of vision is just not normal.

Vision correction surgery does NOT increase your chances of getting approved.

Getting accepted into the band is extremely and ridiculously hard. We have Julliard trained musicians turned away regularly because it is CUT THROAT on an insane level. So, between your eyes, DUI, and the fact that you're trying to get a band position, I'd definetley have a back-up career plan.

Do you have a degree in music? That's one of the things they look for.

Talk with your eye doctor and find out WHY your vision is so bad, and that will give us a clue of waiver chances.
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Old 07-23-2018, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Houston, TX
13,148 posts, read 7,393,567 times
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If it's just nearsightedness and not an eye disease, LASIK should fix it, even if you have astigmatism. I'm an ophthalmic tech, and my docs have done successful procedures on people as high as -15.00 D. I have no experience as an AF recruiter, but LASIK has come a long way.
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:28 AM
 
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As far as I know I don't have any eye diseases, but I will check to make sure.

I've just completed a doctoral degree in music performance and have passed the entrance audition phase for the band.

Thanks for the responses!

Last edited by hopefulmusician; 07-25-2018 at 11:45 AM..
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:45 AM
 
6 posts, read 1,615 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
Short answer, probably not.

A lot of it depends on the overall health of your eye. Do you have keratoconus causing your bad vision? If so, you have 0 chance at a waiver. Do you have a large astigmatism over 3.5? If so, you have basically no chance. Is there any kind of optic nerve or other pathology causing your vision to be so bad?

In my experience (a decade in AF recruiting), almost every applicant with vision as bad as yours has something else going on with their eyes. That type of vision is just not normal.

Vision correction surgery does NOT increase your chances of getting approved.

Getting accepted into the band is extremely and ridiculously hard. We have Julliard trained musicians turned away regularly because it is CUT THROAT on an insane level. So, between your eyes, DUI, and the fact that you're trying to get a band position, I'd definetley have a back-up career plan.

Do you have a degree in music? That's one of the things they look for.

Talk with your eye doctor and find out WHY your vision is so bad, and that will give us a clue of waiver chances.



I just spoke with my current eye doctor. They told me that my astigmatism is -1.5 and -1.25 and that I have no eye disease, just myopia/near sightedness.

I'm wondering if my last eye exam with this new doctor resulted in an overprescription, they jumped my prescription up about -1.25. 2 years ago it was -7.25 and -7.5.
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Old 07-25-2018, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Houston, TX
13,148 posts, read 7,393,567 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulmusician View Post
I just spoke with my current eye doctor. They told me that my astigmatism is -1.5 and -1.25 and that I have no eye disease, just myopia/near sightedness.

I'm wondering if my last eye exam with this new doctor resulted in an overprescription, they jumped my prescription up about -1.25. 2 years ago it was -7.25 and -7.5.
Possibly. When you go in for a LASIK consultation they will do a rerefract, usually multiple times. They want to make sure they will get your prescription correct.
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Old 07-26-2018, 08:04 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,184 posts, read 9,227,803 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulmusician View Post
I just spoke with my current eye doctor. They told me that my astigmatism is -1.5 and -1.25 and that I have no eye disease, just myopia/near sightedness.

I'm wondering if my last eye exam with this new doctor resulted in an overprescription, they jumped my prescription up about -1.25. 2 years ago it was -7.25 and -7.5.
Well, between this and actually passing the band audition and your education, I would say MAYBE. It's still a long shot, but maybe. The SG is not supposed to consider your position (accepted to the band), but I suspect that the humans that work there might. I wouldn't get your hopes up, but good luck!
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Old 07-26-2018, 08:10 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,184 posts, read 9,227,803 times
Reputation: 4721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooby Snacks View Post
If it's just nearsightedness and not an eye disease, LASIK should fix it, even if you have astigmatism. I'm an ophthalmic tech, and my docs have done successful procedures on people as high as -15.00 D. I have no experience as an AF recruiter, but LASIK has come a long way.
Yes, but according to service entrance standards and DOD 6130.03, medical standards for enlistment with regards to eyes are based on PRE-SURGICAL refraction. LASIK could fix his vision, but will NOT make him qualified.

From the regulation, an applicant is disqualified if "(3) Corneal refractive surgery performed with an excimer or femtosecond laser,
including but not limited to photorefractive keratectomy, laser epithelial keratomileusis, laserassisted
in situ keratomileusis, and small incision lenticule extraction, if any of the following
conditions are met:
(a) Pre-surgical refractive error in either eye exceeded a spherical equivalent of +8.00
or -8.00 diopters. [the original poster meets this condition, meaning he will ALWAYS be disqualified, even with surgery]
(b) Pre-surgical astigmatism exceeded 3.00 diopters.
(c) Within 180 days of accession medical examination.
(d) Complications, ongoing medications, ophthalmic solutions, or any other
therapeutic interventions required beyond 180 days of procedure.
(e) Post-surgical refraction in each eye is not stable as demonstrated by at least two
separate refractions at least 1 month apart, with initial refraction at least 90 days post-procedure,
and the most recent of which demonstrates either more than +/- 0.50 diopters difference for
spherical vision or more than +/- 0.50 diopters for cylinder vision. "

Here is the link, see page 14: http://www.esd.whs.mil/Portals/54/Do...-04-113917-883
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Old 08-23-2018, 09:59 AM
 
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Well I went back to the eye doctor and I was over prescribed. -8.0 is my new Rx.

Unfortunately, I made it through to the last round, just 3 of us, and ended up having to leave the island. Wild ride
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Old 09-04-2018, 11:12 AM
 
128 posts, read 50,237 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
Short answer, probably not.

Getting accepted into the band is extremely and ridiculously hard. We have Julliard trained musicians turned away regularly because it is CUT THROAT on an insane level.
I'm not a musician but I find this interesting. Is there actual backstabbing and dirty tricks among people trying to get spots in the band?
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