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ACSC in the Guard


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BLUF: Is it worth completing ACSC before separating AD and going to the Guard?

I'll be leaving AD for an instructor pilot ART position later this year, and I have a line number for Major. Is it worth the effort to try and knock out ACSC before I switch over? I hope to eventually get an AGR position with the unit, so I plan on being in place for a while once I get there. Is it smarter to get it done now, or wait until later? Or is it even worth completing at all at this point? As far as career aspirations, I'm not exactly motivated by obtaining a senior leadership position, and the airlines aren't really an option (RPA).

Thanks for any feedback!

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I wouldn't rush it, especially if you already have an exit lined up.  It'll be a good reason to do mil leave and log reserve periods when you're an ART.

But I would do it once you're settled into your new job.  No reason to close a door.

Edited by nunya
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I opted to do it while still on AD. I figured my last OPR out the door wasn't going to be as good as previous years and I knew a strat was now out of the question. I know a couple of wing #1 strat guys who's last report before separation basically said "Good dude, best of luck" no strat with the same rater/additional rater from the previous year. 

So I completed ACSC on Big Blue's time and I'm glad I did (one less thing to worry about). If you're going to be AGR and working towards an AD retirement then definitely complete it because you'll have about 0.69% chance of making O5 without it. The difference in overall pay and retirement will be significant over a lifetime. My 2 cents. 

Also, the additional points are inactive points which are not counted towards your 7300 if you're looking for a full AD retirement. 

Edited by Ebony zer
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@Ebony zer Not sure you got good gouge on how points work brother.

Points are points when counting toward retirement. Whether it's the 4 points you earn over a drill weekend, the 83 points you earn for ACSC, or 365 points for a year's worth of Title 10 orders, they're all the same. This article is excellent at explaining how the system works.

If you reach 7300 points (i.e. 365 points x 20 years), you collect your retirement right away just like if you were AD. If not, assuming you have 20 good years (good year = > 50 points), then you get a reserve retirement that you don't collect right away and that is calculated based on whatever points total you have when you retire.

On your other advice, you're right that ACSC is necessary to make O-5, but you can be an O-4 for 8 years so it's not like you need to rush and knock it out on AD unless you're bumping up against that window. I would also forward that OPRs have been entirely meaningless in the Guard both in my (limited) experience and in that of much more senior dudes I've tried to learn from. It's a small, insestous family at whatever unit you're in and your reputation for quality work and being a good dude is what carries you forward rather than wordsmithing a "great" OPR.

Also, as @nunya said, most dudes are finding ways to complete that PME while on pay status, so you're still doing the work somewhat on Big Blue's time while you're getting paid to be there, and you also earn the 83 points on top of whatever you earn money and points-wise just for being there at the squadron.

Edit to add: One wrinkle is that there's a limit to the number of inactive duty points you can earn in a single year (130 is the current limit). That would be relevant if you maxed out UTAs (48 points), AFTPs (48 points) and did ACSC (83) in the same year. Even doing ACSC and all your drills, i.e. not working any AFTPs, you're at 131 points so I guess one of those points won't end up counting. All this to say, if you want to maximize your points for effort calculation, try to do ACSC on a year where you're working other types of active orders i.e. you're lighter on inactive duty time anyways so as to not go over the limit and waste those points. However also try not to do it in a year where you're on Title 10 the whole time if you don't have to, since the most points anyone can earn in a year is 365 or 366 for a leap year.

Edit to add more: crossing out stuff that is wrong

Edited by nsplayr
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@nsplayer OPRs do count now. We have had them sent back from JFHQ and told to rewrite them. It all depends who is running JFHQ on what weight they carry. Current group puts A LOT of emphasis on them, so wordsmithing is huge. I hate playing that stupid game, but we don't have a choice now. Luckily our guys are doing great things with no shit numbers that seem to baffle the head shed. Can't argue with facts.


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You absolutely need a cac to do acsc. So being IRR and doing acsc is not possible now. The only way to do acsc without a cac is as a civil air patrol officer, so good luck getting arpc to credit that for your military career.


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Nsplayr, 

Maybe I'm reading that article wrong or have bad info but I wouldn't bank my retirement on having inactive points count towards an AD retirement. To get an AD retirement you must have 20 years of service and 7300 Active duty points, you can't have 7000 active and 300 inactive and draw an immediate pension. Otherwise why do we differentiate between active and inactive retirement points?

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On ‎3‎/‎9‎/‎2017 at 5:43 PM, nsplayr said:

You also earn 83 points for completing the ACSC course in the ARC, so if you're not a full-time guy that's another way to get a few months of gimmie points toward that check of the month club. 

I'm punching out of AD next year and have all my ACSC done minus the last applied class.  I have a reserve job lined up so there isn't any rush to finish it, but I figured I'd just get it done so I didn't have to deal with it later.  Now I'm thinking about pumping the brakes to score the free points.  Would I still get the 83 points even if I only had one class to knock out as long as I still checked the box while in the reserves?  Thanks for the great intel

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From my understanding it's 1 point for every three hours and each class has a number of hours that it's worth. There's a spot on the ACSC website hat details this, can't get to the link from my phone right now. 

So in your case you would just get credit for the last course which is something like 21 hours, so maybe 7 points? It's not entirely clear...the site says you get points only after the entire corse is clear. I would call them and ask specifically.

Glad to help although I'm no expert...just researching ahead since I'll hopefully be doing his myself soonish. 

Edit to add: here's the appropriate link for how many hours each class is worth. Divide hours by 3 to get points.

http://www.aueducationsupport.com/link/portal/8027/8405/Article/6242/ACSC-IDE-How-many-retirement-points-will-I-receive-for-completing-the-ACSC-DL-program

Edited by nsplayr
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On 3/11/2017 at 9:05 AM, Ebony zer said:

Nsplayr, 

Maybe I'm reading that article wrong or have bad info but I wouldn't bank my retirement on having inactive points count towards an AD retirement. To get an AD retirement you must have 20 years of service and 7300 Active duty points, you can't have 7000 active and 300 inactive and draw an immediate pension. Otherwise why do we differentiate between active and inactive retirement points?

Can you explain further? There are different types of duties you can earn retirement points for while in the ARC, and indeed there's a limit to inactive duty points in one year (130). But points are points, once they're earned they all count the same.

To get an active retirement, you need 7300 points and at least 20 good years, whether on AD or in the ARC 20 years of active service, whether on AD or in the ARC or a combination. To earn a reserve retirement you need at least 20 good years and once you decide to hang up your spurs your check depends on how many points you earned.

http://militarypay.defense.gov/Pay/Retirement/

http://militarypay.defense.gov/Pay/Retirement/ActiveDuty.aspx

http://militarypay.defense.gov/Pay/Retirement/Reserve.aspx

Edit to add: fixing stuff that is wrong

Edited by nsplayr
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NS Player: The links you provided mention a distinction between active and reserve points. Such that if you have 20 years' worth of "active duty" points then you qualify for an "active duty" retirement. If you also have "inactive points" AKA IDTs, then those are added onto the regular retirement. You can't retire on a regular retirement with 7300 points of IDTs, besides being impossible to accumulate (130 points of IDT per year max).

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5 hours ago, Guardian said:

Inactive duty doesn't count towards your 20 year AD retirement. They will count towards your good year for a guard retirement however.


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Ya know what, after much googling and reading the all the regs and FAQs I could find from ARPC you are correct. 

I had this explained to me incorrectly by multiple people over the course of several years.

So for my own knowledge, to earn an active duty retirement as a guard guy, you would need 20 years worth of time spent in one of the following categories: prior active duty, AGR, AT, or Title 10 orders.

IDT (i.e. Drill, AFTPs, ACSC, funeral duty, etc.) does not count toward the goal of an active duty retirement, although it does earn points toward a reserve retirement if that is your goal instead.

Is that all correct?

Thanks for the clarification...I'll also shut up now and let the crustier ARC guys do the advice-giving. 

Edited by nsplayr
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