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About Keydet

  • Birthday 12/19/1988

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    Middle of a Haboob

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  1. Cannon squadrons are seeing a constant stream of both pipeline and dudes coming from manned aircraft.
  2. RIQ/RFC is at Randolph, but I digress, semantics. I don't know your personal situation, if you're coming from another AFSC or if you're brand new, so: Brand new accession: You will PCS to Randolph, and be expected to find an apartment or house off base. You will receive BAH for the San Antonio area, so yes family is welcome. Cross-training: You will be TDY to Randolph, so it is better to leave your family at your home station. You will be living in on-base lodging. At Holloman, you are TDY en route, so your family is kind of in limbo. You can either leave them in San Antonio (or your previous home station), or take them with you, but they will have to live in a hotel-size room with you on base unless you have a cat or dog and can secure a pet-friendly TLF. This is not much better, but it has a full kitchen and a separate living room from the bedroom. It's a pretty terrible situation for possibly four to five months if you get MQ-9's. I've seen some people forgo lodging on base and find a fully-furnished apartment off base, but I'm not too knowledgeable about that stuff in Alamogordo. There were plenty of people that sent their families ahead to their gaining base, but you run the risk of washing out of training at Holloman, and then being stuck with a home at a location you are no longer going to and having to go through the pains of convincing the military to repack your things after you've unloaded already. I strongly advise against sending family ahead. Though failing out seems like a remote chance, it's happened and can cause even more heartache and headache on top of having to get reclassed again.
  3. 2 I've not been to UPT, but from looking at the drops on this board and having completed the 18X pipeline, the supply of RPA pilots seems to stem from a few different sources: - 18X trainees selected straight out of ROTC/USAFA that applied for the job. - Guys tired of flying manned aircraft for one reason or another and volunteering for an RPA assignment. - Previously mentioned guard/Reserve guys. I wouldn't get too worried about UPT drops. The 18X pipeline is expanding, albeit slowly, and that should take away the manning problems in a few years once more people get through their training and onto their first assignments. FTU's currently seem to be the bottleneck for the process.
  4. +1...I've had a AmEx green card for a while, but heard about the fee waiver in the squadron bar a in January and I immediately inquired when I got home. I upgraded my Green card to Platinum and got all the fees waived ($450/yr) until I get out of the military. I merely asked about the fees being waived for active duty military under the Servicemember's Civil Relief Act and the dude crosschecked it with his supervisor and sent me on my way in five minutes. I just got a letter in the mail about three weeks after I got my new card stating all the fee waivers and such they credited to me. Awesome stuff. Now when I call AmEx about anything I go straight to English speaking, America-based agents, 24/7 service. When I had the Green card they were still nice and helpful, but the language barrier sometimes annoyed me.
  5. Fantastic series. No, it's not Restrepo-esque, but I feel Nat Geo has represented the rescue squadrons well. About to watch the second episode from On Demand, and I love every minute of it.
  6. It's baffling that the USMC is sending you to San Antonio with little to no idea what happens after IFS. Alas... From the cockpit at Pueblo, the next stop is the RPA Instrument Qualification Course (RIQ) at Randolph. You will fly a watered down T-6 simulator for about forty hours of in-cockpit training, learning how to fly basic contact and instrument missions. You'll learn how to fly ILS, VOR, and GPS approaches to real-world airfields around the San Antonio area. This is on top of roughly 140 hours of academics. The final stage, developed uniquely for RPA pilots, is known as the RPA Fundamentals Course, also at Randolph. During this final stage of undergraduate training, you will gain insight into the basic operation of "sensors, tactics, air tasking orders," and the multitude of skills needed to ensure success transitioning to an RPA airframe. There will be more death-by-powerpoint, but a little more interesting.
  7. Go spend some cash and get some flight experience now. Maybe this will cut down on some of the SIEs from people that just put in for a pilot slot because everyone else is doing it.
  8. Prepare to work long shift-work hours and not get holidays off. YMMV depending on what base you end up at, but that is the general theme. I personally enjoy the career field, there are some great people that I work with on a daily basis and I enjoy the close teamwork with the enlisted sensors. Everyone's opinion is different on their situation, but I chose this line of work and I do not regret it at all. By the time you are getting close to your first promotion, you will already be conducting the mission and supporting ground operations.
  9. Drop night is at the end of RIQ and may be before RFC or around the first week into it.
  10. Yes, I corrected myself prior to you doing so. I'm not sure how much more of this post is directed at me, or if it is more directed at the news article, but you are shacked on exactly what my thought processes are regarding this career field. I find it hard to believe that a good amount of Americans make a big deal out of a technology that saves lives, manpower, and money (for the most part). By all means, oppose putting our ground forces in harm's way, but also harshly criticize technology that actually allows the government to continue taking the fight to the enemy without unnecessary human risk.
  11. BLUF: A fairly legitimate reason for a specific base can fly. The folks that ultimately decide what your drop is are very keen on family matters. If they are aware of the situation, then in all likelihood, you will be assigned to Creech. You can help yourself by studying your ass off and helping others in your class to the best of your ability. Unlike UPT, there is currently only one training squadron, collocated with AFPC. It is fairly easy for certain people to help you out if you're not a d-bag. Additionally, there have been instances of people switching assignments before proceeding to FTU (ie: I'll take your Cannon assignment and you take my Creech assignment).
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