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About FDNYOldGuy

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  1. AFRES unsponsored slots

    Thanks for the input, @va121mir. It does seem to vary WILDLY by unit, so it's probably worth reaching out everywhere. I just wasn't sure if I should be firing applications to EVERY one, or if I should just be ensuring there's even a possibility before sending them. I'm happy to fly anything and just want to get a seat, but it's just a bit too much to be going for everything and I certainly won't be able to rush everywhere. It's just hard to know where is worth the shot. Good luck with the hunt!
  2. AFRES unsponsored slots

    Thank you @va121mir and @FlyArmy for the info. That's what the recruiter had said, but a few folks I'd spoken with that had gone that route were saying it was possible, so I wasn't sure. It makes sense due to requiring sponsorship, but I wasn't sure if there was a snowball's chance that AFRC would actually have a route for a waiver. I need to get a MEPS date and I should be all spun up and ready to go to rush units. @va121mir, do you think I'll have too much of an issue getting a waiver through NGB? I've definitely noticed they seem to have the age caps listed in their job listings. I had planned on applying as many places as I could and letting them tell me "No" to be positive the option isn't available, but most of the current openings seem to be NG and I'm wondering if the effort is worth it if they don't seem keen on doing waivers. I just hadn't heard that it's harder to make them fly (well, I guess that pun's intended) through NGB before.
  3. AFRES unsponsored slots

    Jumping in on this post, but I was curious if unsponsored UPT slots were possible that required an age waiver. Would AFRC grant an age waiver, or is it a lost cause? I am 36, so certainly need a waiver, but I think I can be a reasonably strong candidate with a PPL and approximately 69 hours in my logbook, 89 Pilot, 82 PCSM (will increase to 86 with 12 more flight hours), respectable LoRs, and a Master's degree (3.41 GPA). I feel confident in being a strong "whole person candidate," as well, if I can just get the chance to sit down for an interview. To top it off, I'm pretty happy to fly anything, so I would be happy with whomever is offering a slot. With this age and time being my issue, I'm just trying to look at all options. I'm awaiting a MEPS date as my final hurdle and I'm applying to units, but openings and time are going to take their toll and I figured unsponsored would be a great opportunity, if it's possible. Thanks for the info.
  4. Yes. I have my PPL (passed 11/30/2017, 67 hours total, and working on IR, too) and Class 3 medical that comes with that; done less than a year ago. I also get pretty in-depth annual work ups through the fire department, so I have a pretty solid idea that I’m physically fine for MEPS; no weird EKGs, within height/weight parameters (74” and ~203lbs), and no issues with vision or color/depth perception. I have a lot of the recruiter paperwork done already (app, history, 2807, and other misc info/forms) and I’m working on getting my MEPS appointment locked in. I’ll lean on him this coming week to lock that in I guess now it’s getting in touch with the right people at units to start finding out about boards. I know you said to just start putting in the legwork to reach out to contacts, but what title should I be searching for when reaching out to about applying? Not being “in” already, I’m not sure of the structure and what position/rank I need to be aiming to get in touch with to apply.
  5. I'd love to see those averages to help get a better idea. I think I'll certainly be able to get to the 86 PCSM score with more flight hours by mid-May, which will help. Again, I'm not set on one airframe and willing to look into most locations that aren't overly restrictive on residency requirements, so I'm hoping my "whole person concept" and flexibility will help get over the age hump. I will certainly look into the unsponsored route when I call the recruiter on Monday and be a little more assertive on my push to get to boards. I have most of the application paperwork completed, so I think MEPS and maybe a few forms that fell through the cracks are all I have left to be completely "spun up" and ready to go. You're 100% right. I need to kick up my game. It's just been a little tough because I'm not clear on which direction I should be focusing on next and which boxes need to be checked in which order/done before approaching squadrons. I figured it would be best to be able to present being complete as possible over going to units and having them say, "Well, you need to do this first before we can consider you." Chicken or the egg, I guess. But, it seems like I should just be going at it from all angles to just get the ball moving. Thanks again!
  6. @Kiloalpha, thank you for that info! I guess just going from zero to figuring out where to go and how to set up the meet is the next step. Is there someone in particular whose number I should be hounding out to touch base with at a unit about drop-ins, or will most usually point you in the right direction calling the switchboard? It seems that most of the units advertising for open slots will give dates for visits, but I wasn't sure how to go about the cold call. @EvilEagle, I appreciate you chiming in about that. I've seen quite a few of your posts and had figured I should ask your thoughts (one of the other squadrons I saw with an age cap was also F-15s), but I'd obviously yet to do so and appreciate your input on this post. Your view makes 100% sense with focusing on places that won't mind me bringing my cane and eating dinner at 4:30, over the ones that aren't interested in and oldie. Thank you for posting. @Brudog13, awesome! You inspired some confidence in me saying you think I've got a decent shot with my scores! Honestly, I'd not heard (or more likely, not understood) about going unsponsored UPT. I've been going through most of this myself and kinda piecing it together as I'm going along. I've spoken with a recruiter, but we were waiting for me to get all my scores back (I guess to make sure that there was a snowball's chance in hell someone would pick me up) and he seems super swamped, so some stuff has taken awhile or fallen through the cracks. I have a decent idea of the speed of bureaucracy with the FD, but military is new territory for me, so I'm not really sure what to expect. I do know that time is of the essence, so I am getting a little hotter under the seat to get the ball rolling, but I am still not totally sure the order I should be going after this stuff with and what takes priority. That said, I'm definitely highly motivated to just get my ass in a seat. I have no qualms flying a heavy and would be more than delighted to get a seat in one. How do I get started with applying for the upcoming unsponsored spot? Thank you so much for the help!
  7. @JustHangingOut, I appreciate the support, bro! Sounds like you’re deeper in the process and it’s going well, which is awesome! Hope it keeps doing well! I fired off my first foray to a heavy unit and need to buckle down. There are a couple more open application periods, but all have brakes (no age waivers and distance from base requirements, mainly) applied. I need to beat the bushes on some close units and hit them up, regardless of open application periods or not, to make inroads. Actually, that’s another question: how does rushing a squadron work? I know some that are open now give dates, but what do you do if no dates? And, more importantly, what does an applicant do at the squadron when rushing? I know letting the guys get to know you is key, but what are you doing at the rush? Bringing cakes/cigars/refreshments, mopping floors, approaching everyone you see? How the hell do you get let on base or know where to go? I guess there have probably been posts about it and I’ll certainly search, but I just haven’t run across much info about it in my travels here yet, but I’ll search more, too. Thanks again!
  8. @Stoker, thanks for the info. I kinda figured the same and I don't have any particular bug to chase only fighters. That level of competition does seem like an added elevation to climb and heavies seem like they could be a lot of fun, so I'm content just about anywhere and flying anything. @JustHangingOut, thank you for the input, as well. I wasn't sure if I should be applying to units that are not openly hiring or not, but it is great to hear that it might still be worth a shot. Hell, could be nice to run out to squadrons now that I've got my PPL; could be a way to build more hours and up my PCSM score.
  9. Thanks for the info, Stoker. I definitely wouldn't say, nor do I expect, to leave UPT and think I'll be at the one weekend/two weeks level. Asking for time off and not wanting to prove yourself/learn more when just starting is never a good move. How the "seasoning" time works once finished with UPT and training in unit is one of the things I'm very unclear about. I've seen posts that talk of a couple years on orders training in unit and others that talked about doing partial years on orders, so I'm not sure what to expect. How does it usually pan out, or does it vary wildly unit to unit? Is it a show up 5 days a week 8-5 kinda thing, or more flexible than that? I guess I'm pretty unsure how the training works in the unit and would certainly appreciate any input or points in the right direction to learn more. Either way, I definitely figured there would be time devoted to the unit after UPT, planned on having to devote that time, and would do what needed to be done. We have the same in the FD; you come out of academy, but you're still on probation while being company trained with extra training, testing, and limitations. Thanks for the point in the direction to the Guard at Westhampton. I actually have a few contacts out there through the FD and work nearby to one of the guys lost in the accident in Iraq a couple weeks ago. I was looking mostly at fixed-wing options since I have my ASEL PPL and not a Rotary license, but I guess it's just as open. Anyway, thank you again for the input. EDIT TO ADD: When you mention applying to everywhere I would consider working, do you think it's worth applying to places that mention not entertaining age waivers or giving a waiver age below my own age? For example, looking at open/upcoming interviews the 144th FW is accepting UPT slots, but their info on the website mentions (and bolds/underlines) candidates over 29 cannot be considered. Are these hard and fast "NO" options, or is it always worth applying? I know persistence is key and they can always just decline after sending the packet, but I also feel like there's a "not following instructions" aspect by sending an application when they specifically state I'd be too old.
  10. Hey, all. Thanks for the great community to help spin up on info about a career in military aviation! I've spent a lot of hours on here reading and lurking, but this is my first post. Might as well make it a big one, right? First, pardon me for any ignorance in information. Although I have spoken with a recruiter (just spoke while typing this, actually, and working on scheduling MEPS), I did a lot of the work thus far myself outside of filling out the application docs. An awful lot of the stuff is foreign to me coming from the civilian world and not having someone guiding me through the process, so I'm sure a lot of it is simple or I've done it out of order. I'm looking for some input and opinions on my chances. I'm a 36 year old FDNY fireman that just obtained my PPL a few months ago. Talking with a fireman buddy that's also in the Reserves about having recently gotten my license, he pointed me back toward military aviation due to the pilot shortage. I had been very interested in it back when I finished my undergrad back in 2004, but the AF AD recruiter I spoke with then told me there was about zero chance for me to get a pilot slot without a STEM degree. So, I thought I was finished until he let me know they were hurting. Here's where I'm at: AFOQT: 89 Pilot; 90 Navigator PCSM: 82, with ability to bump it to 86 with 14 more hours of flying (easily obtainable; in a club and could get it in a few weeks, if necessary). I also think I can bring that TBAS up with the second round now that I know what to expect. Degree: Undergrad in Entrepreneurship from Florida State (3.01) and a Master's in Real Estate Investment from Baruch (3.41) LoRs: Have some decent ones: a retired Colonel that was an A-10 pilot, a Battalion Chief in the FDNY, my direct supervisor (a Captain), my flight instructor (former military and FDNY), and another AD Army Captain I work with. Medical: I haven't gone to MEPS yet, but I just spoke with a recruiter that said he is going to work on schedule me. I've got no current or past health issues/surgeries, I'm within height/weight, excellent vision (no LASIK or glasses) with no depth/color issues, good hearing, etc. I get extensive annuals with the FDNY that cover this stuff, so I'm not just hoping all is okay. Career Goals: I plan on staying the full 20 (or more, honestly) to fly as long as I can. I have no interest in going to the airlines or quitting the FDNY, which I plan on doing another 20 years with, as well. The FDNY is also VERY good with military leave and would, in no way, cause any issues with UPT, seasoning, or drills/deployments. Of course, being a reasonable distance from NYC is preferred, but I'm willing to try units all across the US. I've been told that once you're in, you can transfer, but I don't plan on going in with that as a goal, by any means, and I've got no issues being loyal to a unit and commuting from NYC, as long as they're okay with it. Especially if it's somewhere warm. Haha. And I know that during UPT and seasoning I'll be away from NYC for awhile training, which is also not a big deal. The wife is pretty flexible and understanding, as is the FDNY with paid and unpaid military leave, so there shouldn't be any issues there. Again, warm helps with my wife and I'd love to get a unit somewhere in the South/West, but I/we wouldn't exclude an opportunity just because it's a colder climate. Flying Goals: I'll honestly fly anything I'll actually be flying (not interested in UAVs, ABM, or other non-pilot options) and I'm willing to apply just about anywhere that will give me a shot with my age. That's probably a longer-than-wanted gist of where I stand. I think I can check a lot of the "whole person concept" boxes and will interview well, but I know I'm up there in age and time is working heavily against me, so it's more about having the opportunity at all over worrying about too many of the details. I'm completely willing to get put through the ringer and get told "No," so I'll apply wherever and however many places I can that I have a chance at getting. Flying military has always been a dream; one that I didn't think was possible after getting told no without a STEM degree. I know time is running out, so I want to give it my all and, at the end of the day, if it doesn't happen, know I gave it a solid effort and it just wasn't meant to be. Thanks for reading. I really appreciate your input and time. Stay safe out there.