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I keep seeing people advise others on here to not go Army for the street to seat program because of the long contract, lower pay, low rate of promotion, and not many great job options in the civilian world after you get out. My question is, is there another branch where I can apply and if I do not get accepted into a flight program I do not have to join at all, similar to the army street to seat program? Also, is there another branch that I would have as good of a chance getting selected? I'm a 29 year old teacher/football coach with a masters degree. I know I want to fly, but I'm not stuck on rotary or fixed wing. I initially thought army because of the street to seat thing, but after reading everything on here I'm having second thoughts. 

Thanks for any advice.

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You have a degree, might as well try for one of the other service flight programs also. If you're not set on rotary wing then there isn't a compelling reason to choose the Army.

Promotion rates as a warrant officer are pretty much 100% though, not sure where you got that from. 

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  • jwalter56 changed the title to Which branch should I try to fly in?
3 hours ago, Thedude said:

You have a degree, might as well try for one of the other service flight programs also. If you're not set on rotary wing then there isn't a compelling reason to choose the Army.

Promotion rates as a warrant officer are pretty much 100% though, not sure where you got that from. 

Is it as straight forward getting in with the other branches? I’ve heard with some that won’t guarantee a flight spot. I just don’t wanna have to go through the whole process and then be stuck in a different job. 

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If you like your job why not just go Guard aviation? I would think being a teacher would work pretty well with it.

I’m just a lowly flight student, but I have zero regrets about Army Guard aviation thus far. Grass is always greener, I suppose.     I also have done 10 years in the military so I have seen what bad can be and what good can be. 

Whatever you choose, I’d try to figure out if you want rotary or fixed wing. I took a couple intro lessons in both, and it wasn’t even a question. If you do want rotary, army is the “sure thing.” 

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Nobody has a crystal ball.  The next decade may see Army Aviation as the place to be.  Or it might be a turd.  Every service is going to have a level of unpredictability with it.  Look at the 174th Fighter Wing in New York, who traded their F16s for UAVs.  That had to be a tough pill to swallow.

Why do you want to do this?  What is attracting you to it?  How do you picture yourself in the job?  These questions may help narrow down where you’ll fit in.

 

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20 hours ago, mike0331 said:

If you like your job why not just go Guard aviation? I would think being a teacher would work pretty well with it.

I’m just a lowly flight student, but I have zero regrets about Army Guard aviation thus far. Grass is always greener, I suppose.     I also have done 10 years in the military so I have seen what bad can be and what good can be. 

Whatever you choose, I’d try to figure out if you want rotary or fixed wing. I took a couple intro lessons in both, and it wasn’t even a question. If you do want rotary, army is the “sure thing.” 

I like the coaching part of my job but hate being a teacher and unfortunately that’s the bulk of it. I actually was only considering the guard forever but the recruiters told me they only select 3 for my state per year and that my chances would be super low. That’s what made me decide to go active. Plus, I can’t retire until 63 in my current plan, where I could retire at 50 in the army if I joined by next year. Also, by my calculations I’d bring home about $1k/month more than I do as a teacher. 

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You answered your own questions regarding Army aviation and its pit falls. In the pecking order of military aviation, Army aviation comes in last. At one time, the Army aviation commitment was 4yrs less, not any more. The Army has the longest commitment now.

All services have a guaranteed Street to Seat program before enlisting but the Army only requires highly qualified HS/GEDs graduates vs a college degree. Even though Army aviation comes in last, you are STILL in the Pilot Seat.  And that's what counts.

Max age for AF/Navy pilot training is 32. You don't have much time. Not much time for the Army either at 33.

Pick your poison and enjoy the ride in serving your country. You can always go back to teaching once retiring off active duty.

 

 

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On 4/13/2021 at 6:39 PM, jwalter56 said:

.. Plus, I can’t retire until 63 in my current plan, where I could retire at 50 in the army if I joined by next year...

Better recheck.  The military chgd and got rid of their 20 yr and out pension plan except for then current members and now it's all different.

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1 hour ago, klas said:

Better recheck.  The military chgd and got rid of their 20 yr and out pension plan except for then current members and now it's all different.

That is entirely incorrect. The new retirement system is different but still a guaranteed pension after serving 20 years. 

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On 4/19/2021 at 3:57 PM, Thedude said:

That is entirely incorrect. The new retirement system is different but still a guaranteed pension after serving 20 years. 

Maybe, but not really.  The "pension" part will be smaller and part of a blended system.  Not a stand alone 20-yr and out pension anymore like the old days.

 

"The new retirement system is known as the "Blended Retirement System" or BRS. The “blending” in BRS comes from the blending of two major sources of retirement income: the existing annuity provision for those who retire after 20 or more years of service, PLUS the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP)."

 

https://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/blended-retirement-system.html

 

"Since 83% of servicemembers do not stay in the military for the full 20 years required to get the normal retirement benefit, the Commission proposed a new system which includes a defined benefit, a defined contribution to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), and Continuation Pay for members who have more than 12 years active ..."

 

There was an option to stay in the old system for some prior to a certain date:

https://www.militarytimes.com/pay-benefits/2018/10/22/not-many-troops-are-opting-into-the-new-retirement-system/

 

Like I said, they got rid of old (stand alone) 20 yr and out (strictly) straight pension system and chgd it a lot.  Now the blended system is made up of several parts.

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It's still a guaranteed pension after 20 years. The percentage dropped (2.5% per year to 2% per year) but you now have the opportunity to received 5% base pay matching investments into what is essentially a 401k. 

You can choose to put nothing into the TSP/401k and retire at 20 years with a 40% pension and decent medical care for the rest of your life. 

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