U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Military Life and Issues
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-08-2014, 11:20 AM
 
36 posts, read 255,444 times
Reputation: 28

Advertisements

Hi folks,

I'm interested in joining the Air Force Reserve as an Officer, and had a few questions to that end.

To give some background, I am 32 years old and live in Cambridge, MA. I have undergraduate and master's degrees in engineering and computer science from Georgia Tech and a master's degree in government from Harvard. I currently work as a technology & management consultant at a top tier consulting firm, just one step shy of making partner. Most of my work is in the telecommunications industry and I have a pretty sophisticated understanding of technology architectures and design, as well as the economic impact of networking infrastructure on a global scale.

Given this, here are my questions:

1. When you join the reserve, would your role be dependent on where you live? That is, I am interested in a few areas (Cyberspace Operations, Scientific Research, and Intelligence) and is my acceptance as a reserve officer contingent on similar opportunities being available near Boston?

2. Do all new reserve officers come in as Second Lieutenants? This is more of a point of curiosity than anything else. I remember reading that in some professions with terminal degrees (e.g. medical, legal), you can be brought in at a higher level (e.g. Captain). While I do not have a terminal degree (i.e. PhD), I was wondering if my education and experience could translate into a higher rank?

3. What's the selection process for officer reserve candidates? In other words, would my background and experience play a role in my being accepted?

4. I hear that there is a testing component to the officer candidacy. How easy/hard is this? I have decent (but not outstanding) GPA: 3.45, 3.55, 3.78. I am fairly good at taking standardized tests (when I took the GRE a while ago, I did pretty well) but I'm just curious as to what the testing involves.

Any pointers would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all for your help in advance.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:01 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake Bay
6,047 posts, read 4,380,697 times
Reputation: 3527
Interesting. What is your motivation for wanting to join the AF. Ten years ago, sure. But now?
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:13 PM
 
36 posts, read 255,444 times
Reputation: 28
Several, in fact.

For one, my wife is ex. Navy, and I've always felt that I ought to serve. For another, my master's thesis is on network-centric warfare, and on the value of assessing information (for the military). Given my background, the Air Force's cyberspace and intelligence operations are right up my alley.

I also have political aspirations, and I cannot help feel that serving in the military would hold me in good stead.

The reason behind waiting this long however is because I wasn't originally born here - I am a naturalized citizen, and didn't become one until recently. At the end of the day, I feel that I ought to give back to this country. While my current responsibilities prevent me from going into the military full-time, I think being in the reserves would be a good compromise.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:23 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
38,398 posts, read 49,977,727 times
Reputation: 50656
You're at the upper age range and will be looked at very closely due to that. Also, for most cases, your commission will be as a Reserve officer but you will have to spend a period of time on active duty (for the Navy, 30 years ago, it was 5 years for aviators).

During training you will likely be the oldest in your class and the physical requirements test 25 year olds.

With your background it might be better, if you wish to be a government employee, to work for NSA or other agency.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:26 PM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
26,531 posts, read 46,880,106 times
Reputation: 31112
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voxmusculus View Post
Any pointers would be greatly appreciated. Thank you all for your help in advance.
Your role and duties will be based on availability, and your capabilities, and what you are trained as, not really where where you live.

Generally all new reserve officers are commissioned as Second Lieutenants. There are some programs for medical doctors.

There appears to be no shortage for Air Force Officers, so it has become very competitive. The Air Force Reserve site has an abundance of information. Home - Air Force Reserve

Good Luck to you!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:30 PM
 
36 posts, read 255,444 times
Reputation: 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
You're at the upper age range and will be looked at very closely due to that. Also, for most cases, your commission will be as a Reserve officer but you will have to spend a period of time on active duty (for the Navy, 30 years ago, it was 5 years for aviators).
Thank you for your response. I had not realized there was a mandatory active duty service requirement for reserves? ROTC, yes, but not for the reserves.

The AF Reserve website seems to indicate that it is an eight year service commitment, with six years in active reserves and two in inactive. During the active reserve period, the expectation is drills one weekend a month and an additional participation of two weeks a year. Obviously, you can get be activated at any time, but outside of that, there was no specific service requirement.

However, there may be requirements for "Rated" specialities, such as pilots -- I believe it is not applicable to "Non-Rated" specialities. At least that's my understanding -- please correct me if I'm wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
During training you will likely be the oldest in your class and the physical requirements test 25 year olds.
To be honest, I'm less concerned about the physical fitness portion of it. I'm an avid rock and ice climber, and a member of the Harvard Mountaineering Club. While I don't quite have a six pack, I'm in fairly good shape. Good enough to spend a week ice climbing 10+ hours a day in Ouray, CO over Christmas anyway. But if I do decide to go ahead, I'll be sure to be in the best shape of my life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by North Beach Person View Post
With your background it might be better, if you wish to be a government employee, to work for NSA or other agency.
I'm less interested in a government or the NSA because that would be at the expense of my civilian career. I see the reserves as a good way to do both. Plus, I would be lying if I said there wasn't a certain je ne sais quoi to being in the military.

Last edited by Voxmusculus; 02-08-2014 at 06:08 PM..
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 05:43 PM
 
36 posts, read 255,444 times
Reputation: 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poncho_NM View Post
Your role and duties will be based on availability, and your capabilities, and what you are trained as, not really where where you live.
I see, that makes sense. Then would I need to travel to the unit to which I am assigned for the monthly drills? For instance, the cyberspace ops bases are mostly in Texas and Atlanta -- is the idea that I travel monthly to these bases for my drills?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poncho_NM View Post
There appears to be no shortage for Air Force Officers, so it has become very competitive. The Air Force Reserve site has an abundance of information. Home - Air Force Reserve

Good Luck to you!
Thank you. I perused the website quite a bit, but couldn't find answers to these particular questions.

I realize it's competitive, but I figured if I get in, it would be great. If I don't, at least I'd know I tried.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 06:39 PM
 
Location: Chesapeake Bay
6,047 posts, read 4,380,697 times
Reputation: 3527
I'm not so sure that you'll find what you are looking for in the reserves.

But, if you really are interested, you might have a good chance of acceptance in the regular AF OTS program.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 07:06 PM
 
36 posts, read 255,444 times
Reputation: 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Weichert View Post
I'm not so sure that you'll find what you are looking for in the reserves.
Any particular reason why you think this would be the case? I'm genuinely curious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Weichert View Post
But, if you really are interested, you might have a good chance of acceptance in the regular AF OTS program.
To be honest, if I didn't have any family obligations I might have considered. Plus, I'm quite successful in my civilian gig -- not wealthy by any means, but I bring home well over $200k. It's hard justifying leaving that to my pregnant wife.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2014, 07:14 PM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
26,531 posts, read 46,880,106 times
Reputation: 31112
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voxmusculus View Post
I see, that makes sense. Then would I need to travel to the unit to which I am assigned for the monthly drills? For instance, the cyberspace ops bases are mostly in Texas and Atlanta -- is the idea that I travel monthly to these bases for my drills?
Let me put it this way. You will travel to whatever duty station they assign you to. If you plan to retire in the reserves over the years you might be asked to move.

I am retired Army, was assigned to two Air Force Bases in different countries, and then worked as a contractor for 10+ years. I had a 100 mile one way commute to work for several years, I just stayed on a local military base 4 to 5 days per week...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Voxmusculus View Post
The AF Reserve website seems to indicate that it is an eight year service commitment, with six years in active reserves and two in inactive.
There is a total eight year service commitment for all U.S. Military personnel. It may be split up as the service wants and has varied over time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Voxmusculus View Post
I'm less interested in a government or the NSA because that would be at the expense of my civilian career. I see the reserves as a good way to do both. Plus, I would be lying if I said there wasn't a certain je ne sais quoi to being in the military.
Todavía no ha visto... NSA is run by the Department of Defense, they have military personnel stationed there. My civilian career was as a result of my military experience. I retired from the Army and then basically retired again at age 51... I could have done better, I could have done worse. Learning the system and taking advantages of opportunities which may be presented to you can be a key factor.


Rich
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Military Life and Issues
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

¬© 2005-2021, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top