rbussma Posted August 7, 2013 Report Share Posted August 7, 2013 To the Army Aviators in this forum- I am currently a scholarship (federal) cadet at college in South Carolina. My dream is to branch aviation. One of the cadre members at my school is an Aviation officer in the National Guard and has become a bit of a mentor for me and has helped point me in the right direction in order to maximize my chances in branching aviation. One of his suggestions all along has been converting my campus based scholarship to a Guard scholarship and pursuing a commission in the National Guard and attempting to branch aviation that way. He has also said that can be easier, or less hard, to branch aviation through the National Guard than through Active Duty. I am well aware that Warrant Officers are the real pilots and get much more flight time than commissioned officers. However, since I have already accepted the scholarship, that route is out of the question for the time being. My end goal is to make a career out of flying helicopters. My father owns his own helicopter business and I have been around them for the past 15 years or so and have really fallen in love with them. I have some turbine flight time but no certifications. Since my goal really is to fly, the National Guard option has been looking more and more attractive. The aviation officer who has been helping me has even said that it could be possible to take a warrant officer flight school slot if I branched aviation through the National Guard (not sure if this happens often or is possible). However the only thing about the National Guard route that causes any hesitation is how much I would be flying. This brings me to my question: How often do National Guard aviators fly, on average (I guess either a Guard FAC 1 pilot and/or a Warrant just out of flight school)? I understand the commitments for aviators are more than just the one weekend a month/ two weeks a year and have heard of the AFTPs. The National Guard aviation officer has said typically the aviators in his unit may fly 600+ hours/year on a deployment but has not really given me a straight answer as to the number of hours flown when they are stateside. I have read articles online on guard aviators retiring with 10,000+ hours after 40 years of service and some with only 2,500. I know it varies hugely by the state you are in/ aircraft you are flying, so if some sort of ballpark estimate is possible, that would be great. I have also heard that the Guard hires in house WOs to come on full time, but that that route should be a hope and not a plan. Also, for active duty aviation officers, is it safe to assume the minimums are the maximums for flight hours, at least while you are not on deployment? I have heard that can also vary depending on where you are stationed/ what you fly. I am just trying to go down this path with as much information I can. Thanks guys! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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