Air force ots pilot slot

Air force ots pilot slot DEFAULT

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The Air Force’s pilot corps is 93.6% male and 87.6% white; those demographics are grossly different from the 21% of women and at least 25% of the other races that make up the active-duty force.

The service recently decided it’s time to focus on diversity and inclusion within the pilot corps, and it’s released a new strategy to increase the number of women and minorities serving as manned and unmanned aircraft pilots, air battle managers and combat systems officers.

“Diversity is a warfighting imperative. Diversity brings us the best talent, the best skill, it gives us the best potential, it gives us the ability to look at the problem from multiple solutions,” Lt. Col. Edemumo Oboho, strategist at Air Education and Training Command told Federal News Network. “It helps us avoid our blind spots. The innovative potential with diversity is huge.”

The strategy focuses on three objectives: Attracting talent from diverse backgrounds, developing and retaining aircrews by harnessing diversity and optimizing diversity through data.

“We call this the holistic approach to solving rated diversity,” Oboho said. “The three goals that we start with are the overarching umbrella for race, diversity and inclusion. We want to make sure we attract and recruit the best talent within that propensity from those diverse backgrounds.”

To attract diverse talent, the Air Force is starting with the youth. It wants to increase awareness of rated occupations through campaigns and community influencers. The goal is to increase the number of underrepresented group youth events and engagements 300% by 2025, and increase the number of Air Force JROTC Flight Academy slots to 500 by 2023.

College recruitment will also be a major aspect. The Air Force wants to increase its engagements at universities serving higher populations of underrepresented groups by 30% annually through 2025.

To develop and retain airmen, the Air Force will focus on mentorship of minority and female candidates in the training pipeline. The Air Force will start a mentorship program targeting, but not restricted to, underrepresented groups, in hopes that applicants will better represent the qualified American population by 2025.

The Air Force also wants to raise and maintain the retention rate of underrepresented rated officers to within 2% of white males by 2030.

The authors of the strategy state that in order to do that the service will “Allow assignment flexibility to help promote programs providing continued service and mentorship for minority and female rated officers. Encourage senior leaders to support rated officer participation in affinity group and professional events to promote career-broadening and networking. Develop and implement strategic coaching and mentoring programs across continuum of service.”

Finally, the Air Force will establish data-driven approaches to provide senior leaders with relevant diversity and inclusion data for the rated corps.

The Air Force will create a consolidated database by 2022 to track demographics of rated candidates across all selection methods.

Since the death of George Floyd, the Air Force has been reexamining its relationship with race and diversity. The service released a report on racial disparity in its ranks last December.

That report showed widespread disparities, especially with Black airmen’s likelihood of facing administrative and criminal punishments compared to white airmen.

The Air Force is now conducting a second review to get more detailed data.

Scott Maucione

Scott Maucione is a defense reporter for Federal News Network and reports on human capital, workforce and the Defense Department at-large.

Follow @smaucioneWFED


OTS pilot slot chances

Good evening everyone,
I am trying to get either OTS slot in USAF or OCS in navy. I want to be a pilot and since getting a slot is extremely competitive, I am trying my luck for both branches
- 23 years old, 5'9 height
- Bachelors in Health Sciences with two minors ( Math, Arabic)
- Top of my class summa cumme laude (3.92 overall GPA, 3.75 science)
- bilingual in Arabic
- 3 years of aviation experience ( Ramp agent, airline dispatcher) no flying I know!!!
- although I don't have a technical degree, I have a lot of science classes under my belt ( calc1,calc 2, calc 3, phy 1, phy 2, gen chem 1, gen chem 2, ochem 1, ochem 2, bio.............)

I can't think of any beside my GPA and language skills.

- Less available slots due to many being reserved for academy (both AF and Navy). In addition, many being taken by ROTC's and I have to compete for whatever is left ( OTS or OCS.)
- Although I have taken a lot of science classes, my degree is still not technical.
- No private license or flight hours.

I have taken ASTB ( I aced it) and currently studying for the AFOQT. I know my disadvantages but I want a know what are my chances of getting a pilot slot in either branch. I spoke to both recruiters (Navy, AF) an no one is giving me a clear answer or indication about my chances.

Thanks everyone!!!!


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Part-3 is the final part of this series entitled “How to Get an OTS Rated Slot.”  We hope this article series has helped you understand another path to achieving your aviation career goals.  Remember there is no right way or easy solution to finding your path to the cockpit.  If that is your dream, make every attempt to achieve it and make sure you know every possible path in order to achieve your goal.


As you can probably tell from Part 1 and Part 2, there are many very specific requirements that you must meet to become a rated officer. However, it may not necessarily be the end of the road if you don’t meet every single one. Waivers exist for a variety of issues – even medical ones. If you think you’re ineligible, don’t self-eliminate. Contact a recruiter and inquire about the possibility of a waiver. There are many success stories of rated officers who got to where they are today because of waivers. Read more about age waivers here.

Board Changes

Like many aspects of the military, things are subject to change without much warning. OTS selection boards are commonly delayed or even canceled. Even if the board convenes on time, it seems to be the norm right now for the results to be delayed for weeks or even months. The important thing is to focus on what’s in your control and refrain from stressing yourself out.

Board Results

When the selection board meets, the board members do not actually choose which position each applicant is selected for and which applicants are non-selects. They score each applicant according to a wide variety of grading criteria (aptitude scores, education, leadership experience, etc.). These scores are tallied to create an overall composite ranking score. This information is then used by the Air Force Personnel Command (AFPC) to make selections based on projected manning needs. Typically, AFPC attempts to match each applicant to their first choice by sorting applicants by highest composite score and working down the list. If an applicant’s first choice position has already been filled for the board, they will be matched to their second choice, and so on. If none of the applicant’s choices are available, they are non-selected. In short, the better your composite ranking is, the better chance you have of getting selected for your top selection choices.

The following is a hypothetical example of how this ranking method is used to make selections:

  • There are 2 Pilot slots, 2 CSO slots, 2 ABM slots, and 2 RPA Pilot slots allocated for this board.
  • Applicants A and B have the highest composite rankings, so they are ranked #1 and #2, respectively. They both put Pilot as their first choice, so they are both selected with Pilot slots.
  • Applicant C is ranked #3. He put Pilot as his first choice, but the Pilot slots have already been filled. His second choice is CSO, so he is selected with a CSO slot.
  • Applicant D is ranked #4. He put Pilot as his first choice but nothing for his other choices. He is a non-select because both Pilot slots have already been filled.
  • Applicant E is ranked #5. He put CSO as his first choice and is selected for the remaining CSO slot.
  • Applicant F is ranked #6. He put Pilot as his first choice, CSO as his second choice, and ABM as his third choice. He is selected for an ABM slot because there are no remaining Pilot or CSO slots.
  • This process continues until all slots have been filled. At this point, any remaining applicants are non-selects.

Post-Selection Requirements

The work isn’t quite over once you’re notified of your selection. Your recruiter will be working with you closely over the coming months to make sure your post-selection requirements are fulfilled in a timely manner. If you are an age critical selectee, a lot of people behind the scenes will be doing everything in their power to make sure you can get everything squared away quickly so that you can make it to OTS within a reasonable timeframe.  However, if you’re not age critical, the wait can last many months (or even a year or more).

You’ll need to complete your security clearance paperwork so that the Air Force and the federal government can begin the lengthy investigation process required for your Top Secret clearance. Shortly after that paperwork is submitted, you’ll be scheduled to visit MEPS again to swear into the Delayed Entry Program (DEP), sign your enlistment contract, and have the staff verify that you still meet weight standards. You will also need to conduct a comprehensive Initial Flying Class physical examination at the Flight Medicine clinic of a local Air Force base. At the time of this writing, the Total Force Indoctrination Training phase has been eliminated from Officer Training School and has been replaced with a Computer Based Training (CBT) module that must be completed prior to attending OTS. During your wait, you will be provided with instructions for creating an account and accomplishing the training. Eventually, you will receive a class letter which states which OTS class you have been assigned to and its start and end dates. Your recruiter will discuss travel plans with you and coordinate airfare if you choose not to drive to Maxwell AFB.

Additional Information

There are countless unique backgrounds among all potential OTS applicants and it’s obviously impossible to account for every possible variable in a single article. For more information, contact a line officer recruiter. If you’re the type of person who enjoys digging through pages and pages of regulations, you may be able to find information that is of interest to you in the primary recruiting procedures document, AFRSI 36-2001. For information related to medical standards, AFI 48-123 and its 2016 addendum may be helpful.


We hope you found this 3 part article helpful and it assists you in accomplishing your goal. Keep in mind that this is not the only avenue to obtaining a rated position in the Air Force. If you’re set on Active Duty and aren’t in college yet or you’ve only taken a few semesters, consider the perks of the Air Force Academy or Air Force ROTC. Enlisting in the Air Force, completing your bachelor’s degree, and applying for OTS as an Active Duty applicant is also a feasible option. And widely considered by many to be the most lucrative option is applying with an Air National Guard or Air Force Reserve unit, a topic which we write about a lot here at BogiDope. Put your heart and soul into your efforts and don’t give up if you’re not successful at first. Good luck!

A Pilot's Journey in 4K

To earn your Air Force Commission, you must:

  1. Be a United States Citizen*
  2. Pass an Air Force medical examination at a military medical facility
  3. Receive a Baccalaureate degree
  4. Be of good moral character (as determined by a favorable record with law enforcement authorities)
  5. Obtain a favorable evaluation on an Armed Forces personal history security investigation

There are 4 different roads that lead to Air Force Wings:


  1. Attend the Air Force Academy or complete AFROTC at a University
  2. Attend OTS and serve on Active Duty
  3. Join the Air Force Reserves
  4. Join the Air National Guard
  • Attend Academy or AFROTC
  • Active Duty Commission
  • Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT)
  • Pick your aircraft based on merit
  • Assignments based on career / AF needs
  • Eligible to full retirement after 20 yrs
  • 4-Year College Degree
  • Officer Training School (OTS)
  • Active Duty Commission
  • Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT)
  • Pick your aircraft based on merit
  • Assignments based on career / AF needs
  • Eligible to full retirement after 20 yrs
  • 4-Year College Degree
  • Selected by AFRES Unit
  • Officer Training School (OTS)
  • Commissioned in the Reserves
  • Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT)
  • You will fly your Unit’s Aircraft
  • Permanently based at your unit’s location
  • Eligible to retirement benefits at age 60
  • 4-Year College Degree
  • Selected by ANG Unit
  • Academy of Military Science (AMS)
  • Commissioned in the National Guard
  • Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT)
  • You will fly your Unit’s Aircraft
  • Permanently based at your unit’s location
  • Eligible to retirement benefits at age 60

Ots slot pilot force air

If you want to be an Active Duty Pilot or other rated position in the US Air Force, this article is for you. We’ll be going over the process of applying to Officer Training School (OTS) and obtaining a rated slot. This is the most direct method of becoming an Active Duty flyer since ROTC and the Air Force Academy both require you to participate as a cadet during college and neither of those methods allow you to secure a slot for a specific position before committing to serve. This article is written for those who are applying as civilians (including those who have prior service). The process is slightly different for those who are currently enlisted – those in that category should consult the official BOT Application Guide (available on MyPers) for detailed instructions on applying.

What Are Rated Positions?

“Rated” refers to an aeronautical Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC) with job duties which entail the piloting of aircraft and/or the operation or aircraft systems/sensors. Other AFSCs are simply categorized as “non-rated” and are generally applied to via separate selection boards, although recently the Air Force has begun to hold OTS selection boards which select for rated and non-rated positions simultaneously. There are currently 4 rated AFSC types: Pilot, Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) Pilot, Combat Systems Officer (CSO), and Air Battle Manager (ABM). Descriptions of each type are below.


The job description of Pilot is practically self-explanatory. Pilots fly aircraft, operate aircraft systems, and plan and execute missions.

RPA Pilot

As the name implies, RPA Pilots fly remotely piloted aircraft (also known as “drones”). These missions may involve combat or reconnaissance.


The CSO AFSC type was previously just called “Navigator”, but the training program has now been restructured to keep a wider variety of specialization options available to candidates. CSOs can be Navigators, Weapon Systems Officers (WSOs), or Electronic Warfare Officers (EWOs). CSOs participate in mission planning and operate navigational, radar, weapon, and electronic warfare equipment on aircraft.


Air Battle Managers control and monitor airspace from onboard aircraft like the E-3 AWACS and E-8 JSTARS. In real and simulated combat operations, ABMs are often responsible for monitoring radars, relaying target and threat information to numerous aircraft, and directing missions in real-time.

Service Commitments

Rated positions require highly specialized training (which means a large monetary investment on behalf of the Air Force) and manning requirements are usually high. Because of this, they have longer service commitments than most non-rated positions. The following table lists the Active Duty Service Commitments (ADSC) for each rated position. These service commitments begin the day that you graduate from the undergraduate training program for your respective position, so the reality is that you will have to serve for 1-2 years longer than these figures due to the time spent training (and awaiting training) before the commitment begins.

Position Active Duty Service Commitment

Pilot                                                                                 10 years

RPA Pilot                                                                          6 years

CSO                                                                                   6 years

ABM                                                                                  6 years

Eligibility Requirements

There are a variety of requirements that you must meet in order to become a commissioned officer in the US Air Force, and even more requirements must be met to become a rated officer specifically. The following lists of eligibility requirements only cover the basics and are subject to change. Some requirements may be waivable. Contact a recruiter for more information.

Commissioned Officer Eligibility

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Must be a citizen of the US only
  • Must have received a 4-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited university with at least a 2.5 GPA
  • Must meet USAF weight standards – Click here for more info
  • Must not be in violation of USAF tattoo policy – Click here for more info
  • Must not have a significant criminal history

The following requirements must be met for each rated position in addition to the commissioned officer requirements listed above.

Pilot Eligibility

  • Must be able to enter Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) by age 30
  • Must meet minimum Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT) standards for Pilot – BogiDope Article
  • Must meet Flying Class I physical standards
  • Must be able to obtain a Top Secret security clearance

RPA Pilot Eligibility

  • Must be able to enter Undergraduate Remotely Piloted Aircraft Training (URT) by age 35
    • The normal RPA age limit is 30 but a blanket Exception To Policy (ETP) raising the limit to 35 was issued in 2015 – this change may not be permanent
  • Must meet minimum AFOQT standards for RPA Pilot – BogiDope Article
  • Must meet Flying Class IIU physical standards
  • Must be able to obtain a Top Secret security clearance

CSO Eligibility

  • Must be able to enter Undergraduate Combat Systems Officer Training (UCT) by age 30
  • Must meet minimum AFOQT standards for CSO – BogiDope Article
  • Must meet Flying Class IA physical standards
  • Must be able to obtain a Top Secret security clearance

ABM Eligibility

  • Must be able to enter Undergraduate Air Battle Manager Training (UABMT) by age 30
  • Must meet minimum AFOQT standards for ABM – BogiDope Article
  • Must meet Flying Class III physical standards
  • Must be able to obtain a Top Secret security clearance


We hope you have enjoyed Part 1 of “How to get an OTS Slot.”  Earning a rated OTS slot can be a life changing event that can dramatically alter your career and future.  At BogiDope we are dedicated to helping you make that change and are standing by to assist.  Don’t forget to check out Part 2, where BogiDope will explain the OTS and UPT application requirements you will need to meet in order to compete for one of these slots.

OTS - The Experience - Air Force Training


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