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Info for prior service *NOT AD anymore*

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I thought I would share my WOFT packet experience thus far. My situation isn't necessarily unique, but less common than Civilian to WOFT or Active Duty to WOFT. Hopefully this will help anyone with similar circumstances.


I started my Essay, gathering LoR's and my resume in January '17. I personally think it a quite a tedious process unless you just throw something together, in which case, good luck with that. I spent a lot of time on my Essay and resume. I must have rewritten/heavily edited the Essay at least 10 times and I started the resume over from scratch twice. LoR's took time as well but basically, it's just reaching out to people.


Here is where it bottlenecks. Around late February, with the Essay, etc. nearing completion, I thought it was a good time to visit the recruiter to have him send my paperwork up-line and get the ball rolling. In retrospect, this should have been the FIRST STEP, especially being prior service. They need to submit a request to receive the sister branch's MEPS records(I can't speak on Army Prior service, I was Navy)This took at least 3-4 weeks. They will need to copy everything related to your service, plus any baggage you originally joined with e.g. tattoos, medical conditions, driving records, DD-214, official or unofficial passports, and my current dilemma, moral waivers. That's on top of the regular paperwork they have you fill out for 10 yrs jobs, residences and references. It doesn't seem like a lot but it's time consuming. If you are motivated this will take a few days max, just like the Essay, LoR's and resume take a month or two if you work at them and use the references on this forum and elsewhere. Also don't forget about the SF-86 or any preliminary security clearance paperwork, fortunately I have clearance through my current job.


I have yet to take the SIFT, go to MEPS, or get a flight physical... bottleneck.




My recommendation for separated prior service guys and gals:

1. Start at the recruiter

2. Once you have their paperwork done, start on your LoR's, Essay, and resume


Somewhere early in there I would start working on PT. I consider myself in excellent health and pretty fit. Then I tested myself on the APFT. The 242 was humbling. I thought I would have done better. It's a bit more difficult than the Navy PT test.


Just my two cents, it may vary from recruiter to recruiter. Let me know if your experience has been vastly different, always trying to keep the recruiters honest, even though I found a good one(I think).

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I am in a similar position but trying to go Guard. I'm "bottle-necked" at the MEPS stage because I need a National Guard Bureau waiver for a VA rating from prior service. There was no request for my MEPS file from my former branch from MEPS when I sent up my pre-screen. I went to MEPS in 2007. I sent up the pre-screen and once I'm cleared to phys I basically am a new applicant in the eyes of MEPS, or so I'm told. I do have letter writers ready, but I want them to be as current as possible so I haven't had them write them yet.

The guard is funky because the State I am working with doesn't do Street to Seat, so I basically have to roll the dice on a 3-year enlistment and hope I get accepted by the board prior to having to go to AIT, which can be completed up to 24 months after entry. I will get to meet with some board members informally prior to this, however.


On the SIFT front, a local ROTC department should be able to administer it. That is how I took it, rather than waiting until I was a guard member. This would be good if you have a limited window in which you are best able to study. I'm in grad school for example, so spring break, before I had all these work and paper deadlines, was ideal.


As far as PT goes, I hadn't run since getting out of the USMC 3 years ago, though I'd been lifting pretty regularly. Lifting/pull-ups doesn't immediately translate to 77 pushups or 81 sit-ups, so I'd recommend actually doing strict sit-ups and push-ups.



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I agree 100% on the PT. Interval sprints to get your cardio up and run time down, along with Long Slow Distance(LSD) runs and sit-up/push-ups very regularly. If any one cares to, look up Pavel Tsatsouline's "Grease the Groove" technique and apply it to push-ups. The Naval Special Warfare training approach has helped my run tremendously. I started the 2 mile run at 16:12 and I'm down to 13:31.


Check it out here: http://navyseals.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/naval-special-warfare-physical-training-guide.pdf


I'm "bottle-necked" at the MEPS stage because I need a National Guard Bureau waiver for a VA rating from prior service.




For what its worth, my local DVS office advised me to use the VA form 21-4138. Essentially it is a memo to the VA to waive or suspend Disability payments.


The reason my recruiter requested to old MEPS paperwork is to make sure everything on that, makes it to the current one and doesn't throw any red flags. I applaud his thoroughness but it is slow going.

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  • 4 months later...

I'm very stoked you posted this as I am in a similar boat. USAF aircrew, 5yrs. I was honorably discharged and went back to college to get an associates degree for the specific purpose of building a more competitive WO packet. With 1yr left of school, come Aug 22nd, I intend to start my packet. I live in Tampa, Fl so I'm hoping to establish a good line of communication with the nearby army aviation squadrons in clearwater. As you already suggested, I'm in contact with a recruiter and looking over Lindsey's phenominal guide. I've also been studying the Helicopter Flying Handbook.


Hi Marty & Mike, how goes the progress?

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I've been updating a thread I started which should be around here somewhere. It has a pretty thorough account of what I'm going through on the Guard side.


Long story short, waiver to enlist was approved and the board advised I apply directly as a civilian. I was able to figure out everything on my own SIFT, flight phys, etc except the security clearance. Board has told me I can sumbit a background check in its place in the packet, and they'll run one if/when they enlist me under the warrant program.


My packet is complete including a stamped flight phys. I am running an APFT with my recruiter tomorrow (gunning for 260+) and then she's submitting my packet to the board. The interviews are September 20th. I think I'm a strong candidate (almost done with my JD, 75 SIFT, strong LORs from my former CO and Plt Sgt, oef vet, etc), I've been told as much, but I don't know how many slots there are and who my competition is. Even though they say it doesn't matter, I can't help but think I'm at a slight disadvantage over any members of the unit who may happen to be applying to fly for the unit.


Good luck. Let me know if you have any questions if you are following the Guard track. I've got applying directly pretty well figured out now.

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