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110 selected for OTS; more than half enlisted

May. 29, 2013 - 06:00AM   |  
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Young enlisted airmen interested in making the leap to officer status should consider competing for a rated officer position rather than a non-rated slot at Officer Training School.

Not because the selection process is any easier for airmen who want to be pilots, combat system officers, air battle managers, or unmanned aircraft pilots — it isn’t. But because the selection opportunity is better.

Active-duty enlisted airmen who are interested in flying and becoming an officer through OTS still have time to make the next rated selection board, but they have to act quickly. The rated selection board for OTS is accepting applications through June 27 and selection should take place some time in August, according to Master Sgt. Jose Figueroa, program manager for line officer accessions with Air Force recruiting services.

The Air Force Recruiting Service typically holds two non-rated and two rated OTS boards a year. The next non-rated selection board isn’t likely to happen until sometime in the fall.

As the Air Force continues to shrink the force, the need for non-rated officers continues to get smaller, particularly for people looking to become officers through the OTS pipeline, Figueroa said.

“The opportunity to become a non-rated officer is slim because that’s where the majority of people apply [for OTS],” he said. “But the rated opportunity is increasing every year, especially for active-duty airmen.”

The Air Force’s recruiting service announced May 29 that 110 men and women were selected for a non-rated officer’s commission. More than 660 applications were considered as part of the first non-rated OTS selection board of the year. Of the 110 non-rated selectees, 54 are active-duty enlisted airmen who will exchange their stripes for second lieutenant gold bars.

The number of non-rated OTS applications considered and the number of people selected has fallen since this time last year when 960 non-rated applicants were considered and 28.4 percent were selected. But the number of enlisted airmen who are on their way to OTS grew, with more than half of the selectees getting the nod this year. In 2012, about 45 percent of the non-rated OTS selectees were enlisted airmen.

The overall selection rate for both active-duty airmen and civilians applying for rated officer slots at OTS is still significantly higher than their non-rated counterparts. The selection rate for the first rated OTS board of this year was 59.23 percent, where 417 applications were considered and 247 selected. Of the 247 people selected, 40 of the selectees were enlisted airmen.

The selection rate for this first board dropped from last year, which accepted 68.7 percent and 78.7 percent of applicants for the two boards held last year.

It is unknown how many of this first board’s considered applicants were active-duty airmen, but at least once last year 100 percent of the enlisted applications considered for a rated slot at OTS were selected.

Though the selection rate for rated OTS slots this year is down, it still outpaced the selection rate for non-rated OTS slots, which is only 16.47 percent for the first board of the year. The highest selection rate in the last three years for non-rated OTS slots was 34.1 percent for those chosen for the second 2012 board. That board considered 717 applications and selected 245 people for non-rated OTS slots. During that board 100 enlisted members were selected for non-rated slots.

The Air Force gets the majority of its officers from the Air Force Academy and ROTC. The number of future officers expected from those programs and the service’s officer requirements determine how many people get to go to OTS each year, said Angelo Haygood, deputy chief for Air Force Recruiting Service operations.

Haygood said the number of applicants and selectees for non-rated officer commissions ebbs and flows, but a lot depends on the quality of applications received and the number accessions available.

As part of the selection process, board members review factors such as each applicant’s academic discipline, grade point average and Air Force Officer Qualifying Test scores.

Board members also evaluate work experience, accomplishments, adaptability, character, leadership ability, potential for future growth and other recommendations. Performance reports and commanders’ recommendations are also considered for enlisted airmen applications.

OTS-selectees will attend Basic Officer Training at Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala., between 2013 and 2014. Whether selectees attend OTS this year or next is determined by several factors, including when the person was selected, the Air Force’s need for officers and a selectee’s age. Non-rated selectees must be commissioned before they turn 35 and rated selectees before they turn 30. There have been years were certain selectees have had to wait as long as a year after selection before attending OTS, Haygood said, but for the airman interested in being an officer, it’s worth the wait.

“I think a lot [of why an enlisted airman applies to OTS] is the opportunity to lead,” he said. “They become experts in their career field and they’re looking for a challenge, or they have their degrees and they want an opportunity to use it.

“And if they want to fly in the Air Force, they have to be an officer,” he said.

Active Duty Selections

Tech. Sgt. William Adams

Master Sgt. Parker Alford

Staff Sgt. Lara Ashley

Tech. Sgt. Sarah Atkins

Tech. Sgt. Jospeh Banaszek

Tech. Sgt. Bryan Banfill

Staff Sgt. Jeffery Banner

Staff Sgt. Matthew Barnett

Tech. Sgt. Steven Bayne

Tech. Sgt. Melody Beidler

Tech. Sgt. Travis Benne

Tech. Sgt. Michael Best

Tech. Sgt. Timothy Bishop

Senior Airman Jaymi Black

Master Sgt. Dustin Bohall

Tech. Sgt. Andrew Brown

Tech. Sgt. Carrie Cain

Staff Sgt. Raun Carnley

Staff Sgt. Jeremy Casinger

Senior Airman Johnathan Cobb

Senior Master Sgt. Angela Davis

Master Sgt. Rebecca Delisio

Master Sgt. Briana Edson

Tech. Sgt. Yazmin Garcia-Smith

Tech. Sgt. Luke Gregor

Tech. Sgt. James Gumbs

Senior Airman Shawn Hansen

Tech. Sgt. James Harper

Tech. Sgt. Terry Hebert

Staff Sgt. Aran Hook

Staff Sgt. Ashton Jones

Airman 1st Class Steven Joseph

Tech. Sgt. David Leininger

Tech. Sgt. Brett Martz

Tech. Sgt. Christopher Mavron

Tech. Sgt. Ralph Nehring

Staff Sgt. Jordan Nichols

Tech. Sgt. Brooke O’Brien-Meza

Staff Sgt. Aaron Pilkington

Tech. Sgt. John Poole

Tech. Sgt. Daniel Reed

Staff Sgt. Derek Rose

Master Sgt. Joseph Round

Tech. Sgt. Christopher Sargent

Tech. Sgt. Michael Selfridge

Tech. Sgt. Rigoberto Serventi

Senior Airman Gregory Seymour

Technical Sgt. Nathan Spradley

Tech. Sgt. Antwane Thomas

Master Sgt. Joseph Thomas

Tech. Sgt. Angel Torres

Tech. Sgt. Lauren Williams

Senior Airman Bryan Winston

Staff Sgt. Ryan Yeager

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