Q1: How do I enroll?
A1: As a freshman, you simply register for the AS 101 (fall) or AS 102 (spring) course listed in your class schedule. Remember, there is no military commitment at this time unless on scholarship. Prospective students must contact Detachment 155 Cadre to review enrollment eligibility criteria and for assistance in determing semester start dates.
Q2: What is the course content of my U.S. Air Force ROTC classes?
A2: As a freshman, you will take Aerospace Studies (AS) 101 and AS 102. These courses are devoted to an examination of the U.S. Air Force mission, structure, and equipment. For sophomores, the AS 201 and 202 classes are mini history courses examining the growth and development of air power from the use of free flight balloons to the role of air power in Southeast Asia. Each course is worth one semester hour. AS 301 and 302 (junior year) are management and leadership courses which emphasizes communication skills. Rounding out your U.S. Air Force ROTC education are AS 401 and 402, political science courses that examine American defense policy. During your final two years, each ROTC course is worth three semester hours. In addition, you will be prompted to register for Leadership Laboratory (LLAB) when you register for any of the above courses.
Q3: What is Leadership Laboratory (LLAB)?
A3: LLAB is a cadet organized lab taken each semester with your AFROTC classes. You will spend three hours each week using the leadership skills and management theory acquired in class. You also have the opportunity to take orientation flights, listen to military speakers, visit U.S. Air Force bases, view films and take part in social functions.
Q4: Can I attend U.S. Air Force ROTC without a scholarship?
A4: Yes. Many of our students do not start with a scholarship, but earn one eventually.
Q5: How am I reimbursed as a scholarship student for textbook expenses?
A5: You should be prepared to pay cash for your book purchases from the campus bookstore. You will be paid by direct deposit within the first couple of months of the semester.
Q6: Is it possible for me to change my academic major if on scholarship?
A6: Yes, but this is a complex process and should be attempted only after you have given it much thought. Depending on your current major and your proposed major, you may lose your scholarship benefits. If you want to change your major before arriving at UM or any of our cross town schools, call us immediately and we will give you detailed instructions on the procedure.
Q7: What is the feeling of other students on campus about AFROTC cadets?
A7: AFROTC cadets are looked upon with respect as persons who have elected to serve in an honorable profession. Detachment 155 graduates have served honorably and with distinction. We are truly considered part of the university community.
Q8: How are new cadets treated?
A8: Very well. We assign cadet "mentors" to new students. They can help students find classes, get textbooks, learn to wear the uniform correctly, meet other cadets, and learn basic customs and courtesies. It is the cadet's flight commander's responsibility to help new cadets fit into the program. We also have tutoring programs and other forms of assistance available. Hazing is not permitted! The focus at the unit is on teaching as well as discipline. The unit staff is concerned about cadets' well being and progress and will treat every cadet as adult officer candidates.
Q9: How much marching and drilling will I have to do?
A9: Not as much as you think. Marching/drill is sometimes practiced during your squadron time at Leadership Laboratory. There are no mandatory drill sessions outside of LLAB.
Q10: When will I receive my U.S. Air Force ROTC uniform?
A10: Air Force Physical Training Uniforms (2 Sets) are issued at no cost on day 1 of program entry. After successfully completing one semester of AFROTC and provided you meet height/weight standards and have passed the Air Force Physical Fitness Assessment, cadets are issued the service uniform (Blues) at no cost. Once uniforms are issued cadets are responsible for maintaining a clean and professional uniform.
Q11: When do I wear my U.S. Air Force Uniform?
A11: Cadets are required to wear a the proper uniform to all AFROTC events, including physical fitness training, class, LLAB, and when in our building. Additionally, cadets wear the appropriate uniform all day on LLAB days. Finally, certain social events and other AFROTC sponsored activities require the wear of the uniform.
Q12: What is a Dining-Out?
A12: A Dining-Out is a formal military banquet steeped in custom and tradition. The Dining-Out enables you to bring a date or guest(s) to enjoy many time honored festivities. It is one of the highlights of being a cadet at our detachment!
Q13: Does the U.S. Air Force ROTC program include any other extracurricular activities?
A13: Yes, Arnold Air Society, the Honor Guard, Air Ops, and Civil Air Patrol give cadets a chance to become involved with community and civic action projects and understand the tradition of the military environment while having fun. There are also numerous athletic events where you can compete with others.
Q14: Am I expected to participate in any extracurricular activities?
A14: Your FIRST and FOREMOST concern is attending classes and maintaining good grades. After this, you will certainly want to examine some of the various activities sponsored by both the university and U.S. Air Force ROTC. We feel there is something in our program of interest to everyone.
Q15: What are the requirements to be a pilot?
A15:Three main factors are evaluated in selecting a pilot candidate: medical evaluation, test scores, and the number of pilot positions available. A physical exam is usually given for free during your freshman year to determine if you are medically qualified. You must also pass the U.S. Air Force Officer Qualifying Test.
Q16: Can I participate in intercollegiate athletics while a member of the U.S. Air Force ROTC program?
A16: Yes. Generally, extracurricular campus activities and U.S. Air Force ROTC are perfectly compatible - as long as you do not overload yourself with the former. A serious physical injury while participating in intercollegiate or intramural athletic activities may cause you to be disenrolled from U.S. Air Force ROTC because of a change in your physical profile.
Q17: When do I actually receive my commission as an Air Force officer?
A17: Cadets normally get commissioned the same day they graduate. At Det 155, we currently commission our graduating seniors in special ceremonies on the day after the university's commencement exercises.
Q18: How long is my active duty commitment after graduation?
A18: There is no military obligation while you are enrolled as a freshman. If you are on scholarship, you incur an active duty commitment when you enter your sophomore year; otherwise your commitment begins when you enter your junior year. After being commissioned a second lieutenant, non flying officers will serve four years of active duty, while pilots serve ten years and Combat Systems Officers (formerly known as Navigators) serve six years after completing their training.
Q19: What are the qualifications of my U.S. Air Force ROTC instructors?
A19: All Det 155 AFROTC instructors possess a master's degree and all have considerable world-wide operational and deployed experience. ROTC duty is a demanding job; therefore, each instructor has been handpicked by the Air Force. In addition, since the instructor is part of the academic faculty, the university has a voice in the selection.
Q20: If I encounter academic or personal problems, where can I turn for help?
A20: First, try your U.S. Air Force ROTC instructor. While the instructor may not have a psychology degree, he or she does have experience in counseling and can direct you to the proper sources. Our instructors try to develop a strong rapport with each cadet, and this personal relationship tends to minimize problems. In addition, each university offers various resource offices for their students and many services are free as part of your student fees.
Q21: Will I travel to different U.S. Air Force bases while in Air Force ROTC?
A21: Yes. We realize the vast scope of the U.S. Air Force is difficult to visualize in the classroom. Therefore, we give you the opportunity to visit an U.S. Air Force base for a firsthand look at how it operates. You'll be accompanied by an experienced, active duty USAF officer.
Q22: What is Field Training?
A22: Field Training (FT) is a 22-day summer encampment between your sophomore and junior year. It is conducted at Maxwell AFB, located in Montgomery Alabama. This is an intensified training period where you receive additional leadership training, attend numerous career orientations, and learn firsthand about U.S. Air Force life. We pay all your transportation expenses and provide you with all necessary uniform items. You will also be paid a salary equal to about half the monthly pay of a second lieutenant while you are there. You only attend FT once while you are in the AFROTC program.
Q23: Can I continue my education beyond the baccalaureate level?
A23: Yes. The Air Force offers several opportunities to do so. In many cases you can request an educational delay. This delay between the time of commissioning and reporting for active duty will be of sufficient length to allow you to fulfill the requirements for a professional or master's degree. You will assume all financial obligations. There are also Air Force Institute of Technology programs where the Air Force pays for your graduate school education.
Q24: How do U.S. Air Force ROTC graduates compare with Air Force Academy and Officer Training School graduates?
A24: There is no difference. All three programs produce qualified officers. The Air Force achieves better diversity and talent by getting officers from more than one commissioning source. On active duty, the most important factor in promotions is duty performance.