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Any Army Aviators Near Pennsylvania?


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You may know me from several recent forum topics but if you don't, my name is David, I'm 21 and currently building my WOFT packet. I was under the impression that needing a Letter of Recommendation from a CW3 or higher was only "recommended" but I've contacted the USAREC recruiting team and they've told it was a "requirement" even though I have no prior service. They told me to contact the "proponent officer of aviation" in regards to getting a waiver since I don't personally know any aviators. But instead of ducking the requirement and getting a waiver, I want to use this as a chance to actually meet an Army Aviator.

 

So, I was wondering what is the best way to go about that? I live in Pittsburgh and to the best of my knowledge, the nearest aviation unit is 5 hours away at Fort Indiantown Gap, PA. Is anyone on this forum currently stationed there? I have no problem driving there if I was going to meet someone specifically. I just don't know if I should drive 5 hours, show up, and try to stop a random CW3 walking around and ask him to interview me and then ask for a LOR. Or maybe that's what I SHOULD do just to show how BAD I really want this. I have no military background so pardon me for asking, but am I "allowed" to just walk on to a base and try to talk to someone?

 

Lastly, I've been a member of VertRef for around 3 years, so I've done my fair share of reading around the forums. I've seen that some folks have used the forum to meet Aviators specifically for LOR's. It seems sort of sleazy to me because I don't want to "use" anyone just to get a LOR out of them; but if anyone on here is interested in endorsing me, send me a PM. Or give me 5 minutes on the phone with you to convince you that I won't let you down. I don't want to come across as desperate, but rather: determined. I told my recruiter, SFC David Pulliam, that I could try to meet an Aviator online, and he liked the idea and suggested that I leave his e-mail and phone number so that you could hear from someone else in the military that I'm not a complete scum bag. ;) Let me know if you need it.

 

Thanks guys, I'm looking forward to hearing your feedback, especially regarding my second paragraph.

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To my knowledge, and it might have changed in the last couple of years, but as a civilian building a WOFT packet, your LORs should come from persons who know you well. My grandfather wrote me one years ago. He is a retired American Airlines pilot. Granted, I ended up not going for the WOFT program but rather as a blackhawk mechanic. If you happen to know of any airport personnel that are related to flying or perhaps a pilot, they would be able to write a great LOR for you. But you really need to look towards the people who really know you, so they will be able to write out a great LOR for you to use in your packet. Best of luck with your ventures!

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RagMan: I completely understand, my first two Letters are from people who know me well. My fixed wing flight instructor and my English teacher/counselor from high school, who both know me very well as a person. It seems contradictory to me to ask for people who know you, AND require an aviator. But I'm not here to argue with the army's rules lol You army people know best that you'll never make it anywhere if you do that! :P It is what it is, and I'm just trying to do what they ask.

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RagMan: I completely understand, my first two Letters are from people who know me well. My fixed wing flight instructor and my English teacher/counselor from high school, who both know me very well as a person. It seems contradictory to me to ask for people who know you, AND require an aviator. But I'm not here to argue with the army's rules lol You army people know best that you'll never make it anywhere if you do that! :P It is what it is, and I'm just trying to do what they ask.

 

Wait, how many LORs will you have total? As a civilian, I am 99% sure that we need a minimum of five but no more than 6. Read that on the Warrant Officer Recruiting website somewhere. You seem to be indicating you will have only 3?

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Wait, how many LORs will you have total? As a civilian, I am 99% sure that we need a minimum of five but no more than 6. Read that on the Warrant Officer Recruiting website somewhere. You seem to be indicating you will have only 3?

 

For civilians, the minimum is 3 LORs, the maximum is 6 LORs... or at least that's what it was when I went through the application process last year.

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For civilians, the minimum is 3 LORs, the maximum is 6 LORs... or at least that's what it was when I went through the application process last year.

 

Hmm, I will look into it again.

 

EDIT: Just asked the Warrant Officer Recruiting Team on facebook, since that seems the only way we can get a direct and official answer from them. Awaiting a reply.

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Hm, well of course now I can't find where I read 5-6 LoRs, and Warrant Officer Recruiting said this:

 

The WO team recruits In-Service Applicants only. I wish I could be of more help to you. Thank you for your post and continue to visit us!

 

Regardless, I will have 6, but if others like sbuzzkill only put in 3, you should be fine.

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I'm 100% positive its a max of six, min of 3. I currently have two strong ones, I could probably get a third or fouth weak one but I don't want to resort to that unless I have to, yal know how it is. I don't want to waste the board's time with "fluffy" filler. They frown on that. I think tuesday or wednesday (depending on my schedule) I will just have to make a 5 hour road trip out to Fort Indiantown Gap and try to impress somebody. I'll let you know how that goes. I was attempting to shoot for the March 15 deadline board, but if I don't get this soon, I'll have to shoot for the May 15 deadline. Oh well, I WILL get accepted at some point.

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I'm 100% positive its a max of six, min of 3. I currently have two strong ones, I could probably get a third or fouth weak one but I don't want to resort to that unless I have to, yal know how it is. I don't want to waste the board's time with "fluffy" filler. They frown on that. I think tuesday or wednesday (depending on my schedule) I will just have to make a 5 hour road trip out to Fort Indiantown Gap and try to impress somebody. I'll let you know how that goes. I was attempting to shoot for the March 15 deadline board, but if I don't get this soon, I'll have to shoot for the May 15 deadline. Oh well, I WILL get accepted at some point.

 

I'm shooting for the May 15th deadline (for the July board).

Though it will be tight because I don't go in for my LASIK 3-month post-op until April 23rd, and I'll have to do the MEPS Physical and Flight Physical between then and March 15th.

 

Good luck! Is everything else done? Besides the board of course...

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Ouch. Yeah, that's gonna be tough for you squeezing that all in there in that short period of time. That's kinda what my situation is like right now. We reached a point where we couldn't go any farther without my medical records and it took 3 weeks for them to show up after I requested them (its supposed to take 7-10 days, but I think the blizzard messed everything up). Now I can finally do the MEPS physical because they needed my records to do a "pre-screen". Then its the AFAST. Then the Flight Physical. I would do that all right now today to get it out of the way, if I could. But it takes a day or two to get paperwork approved and to get things scheduled, etc. We'll see how it goes.

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Do us civilian applicants need to do the physical fitness test?

 

I just finished my flight physical, and everything is completed. My recruiter wants to submit my packet asap but I could swear I need a PFT.

 

 

.....also, to the original poster, I too am in the same position as you where I want to get a LOR from a CWO. I'm going to call up the nearest base that has aviation, in my case its a national guard base. This way I can talk to someone to possibly set something up. When I was up at Wheeler Sack AAF for my flight physical, the CWOs said a lot of the higher ranking personnel liked writing LORs and even had templates drawn up that they would just change the name on so I'm sure its not a very unusual request.

Edited by Flying Bison
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Do us civilian applicants need to do the physical fitness test?

 

I just finished my flight physical, and everything is completed. My recruiter wants to submit my packet asap but I could swear I need a PFT.

 

I talked to sbuzzkill earlier today (he went street-to-seat and is currently in JOPD), and he confirmed that YES we do need to submit a PFT before the board.

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wow flying bison, congrats on passing the flight physical and everything. you're pretty close. I'm sure you're aware but, the deadline for the May board is March 15. Personally I'd try to get that PFT done asap unless you're not confident that you'll do fairly well on it, then you could wait til the May 15 deadline and spend the next two months working out for the test. Just a thought. Btw I finally got approved to take the MEPS physical. Did you have to wait until after the MEPS physical to take the AFAST? My recruiter says we HAVE to do it, "MEPS, then AFAST, then Flight Physical, then PFT."

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wow flying bison, congrats on passing the flight physical and everything. you're pretty close. I'm sure you're aware but, the deadline for the May board is March 15. Personally I'd try to get that PFT done asap unless you're not confident that you'll do fairly well on it, then you could wait til the May 15 deadline and spend the next two months working out for the test. Just a thought. Btw I finally got approved to take the MEPS physical. Did you have to wait until after the MEPS physical to take the AFAST? My recruiter says we HAVE to do it, "MEPS, then AFAST, then Flight Physical, then PFT."

 

Thanks, I'll probably wait on submitting until may because I want to keep working at the gym to get my 2 mile run shortened.

 

As far as the order in which I took the tests, same as you. I went to MEPS for the physical, the day after that I did my AFAST which was also held at MEPS. Finally I did my flight physical, and my next thing is the PFT. I'm not sure if its required to go in that order, but it worked out fine for me.

 

I know I am not finished putting my packet together, but if you have any further questions I will be glad to help you out based on my experience.

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Thanks, I'll probably wait on submitting until may because I want to keep working at the gym to get my 2 mile run shortened.

 

Smart move, we need our packets as strong as we can get them. I can do a 13:00 minute 2 mile, but for me, my weak area is push ups. So I'm gonna do what you're doing and work out like crazy for the next month or so. I love this forum, I'm glad we can all help each other out. :D

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Yea, you need a PT card. Doesn't make much sense, but alas, I did it because I was told.

 

Believe it or not PT has become a huge deal during flight school. It has gone so far that they just recently started requiring everyone to do organized PT.

 

That means even when you're out flying and in class all day long, you have to change into PTs and meet with your PT group and do an hour of PT. Every day. It sucks but PT has become such a huge issue that they decided to resort to that.

 

So yes, it makes plenty of sense that they would require you to take a PT test as part of your packet. Don't underestimate any of the requirements. They are all there for a reason.

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Believe it or not PT has become a huge deal during flight school. It has gone so far that they just recently started requiring everyone to do organized PT.

 

That means even when you're out flying and in class all day long, you have to change into PTs and meet with your PT group and do an hour of PT. Every day. It sucks but PT has become such a huge issue that they decided to resort to that.

 

So yes, it makes plenty of sense that they would require you to take a PT test as part of your packet. Don't underestimate any of the requirements. They are all there for a reason.

 

I was recently talking to a commissioned officer UH-60 pilot in the National Guard who said when he was at Rucker, his particular class had its academic records lost (sounds sketchy), so those competing for airframes received their order of merit list ranking by a physical fitness test. Sounds totally unfair for those who dedicated the vast majority of their time to academics. Lesson learned: expect the unexpected.

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I was recently talking to a commissioned officer UH-60 pilot in the National Guard who said when he was at Rucker, his particular class had its academic records lost (sounds sketchy), so those competing for airframes received their order of merit list ranking by a physical fitness test. Sounds totally unfair for those who dedicated the vast majority of their time to academics. Lesson learned: expect the unexpected.

 

Good advice, methinks.

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