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WeatherLion

Switching from CSO to Pilot

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Looking for anyone that knows of or has been through this process. 
I have a few pilot friends in the Air Force who have all told me they know of at least 3 or 4 individuals that have done this which leads me to believe it’s a more common process than I originally thought. 
I understand that after pinning on your CSO wings, there is a minimum requirement of 2.5 years as a CSO before you’re allowed to request a switch to Pilot. I have also heard that the age limit is 33, but is being raised to 35. Are waivers available for this? 

With Air Force Aviation being what it is with the current pilot shortage, could we see this become a more common thing in the future? What I mean by that is, would the Air Force be more willing to entertain pulling new pilots from already Rated individuals over off the street officers? 
 

I ask because I’ve been trying to fly for almost 10 years and have just been accepted as a CSO but currently also have a Pending Navy pilot package in with a good chance of being selected this April. But the Air Force mission is really the mission I’m more passionate about. 

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I don't personally know what the path is but there most definitely is one.  Back when I taught T-6's we averaged about 1 CSO per class from a variety of air frames.  There is a commitment, 2 years seems right but I'm not sure.  Most of the dudes who came through UPT were mid ish Captains, so about 6 years in if that gives you some perspective.  As for the age limit, dude there is a waiver for everything, no $hit I had a student who was 40 and going through UPT.  Make them tell you no.  And if they do, go find a Guard unit (that's what the one guy did).

Congrats on getting picked up for CSO!  No small accomplishment.  Don't shun the Navy though, I know plenty of great Naval Aviators.  Out of curiosity what mission are you passionate about that the AF does that the Navy doesn't? 

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The Air Force to me seems more space oriented and I’m more interested at air doctrine over than sea power projection. I know that’s more “big AF and big Navy” but I’m less interested in the ocean-focus of the Navy. I’m more of a mountains guy. 
 

Also the deployment schedule of the Navy seems like it’s really not conducive to fostering a new relationship or raising a family as a single guy. That’s really my big worry as I am 28. 

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