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Air Force expands program allowing Guard, Reserve pilots to fly on active duty

An additional 20 pilots from the Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve are eligible to switch to active duty to help with the service’s pilot shortage.

The Total Force Aircrew Management – Assignment Augmentation Process increased from 10 positions to 30 on Oct. 1, according to an Air Force news release.

The program aims to combat the fighter pilot shortage by allowing those in the Guard and Reserve to enter the active-duty force for two to three years using Military Personnel Appropriation days, according to the release.

Fighter pilots who are interested can find more information from the Volunteer Reserve System, Air Guard Human Resources or their ARC/ANG Fighter Operations Groups.

At the end of fiscal 2016, the active, Guard and Reserve components of the Air Force were looking at a combined shortfall of 1,555 pilots in all, including 1,211 fighter pilots.

The Air Force’s pilot shortage largely stems from the commercial airline industry poaching pilots who serve in the military.

In an attempt to counter that, the Air Force recently upped its monthly flight pay and offered retention bonuses of up to $455,000. The service is also trying to improve the quality of life and job satisfaction for its pilots.

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