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Old 04-21-2014, 12:04 PM   #1
Haasino
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Default Current (MAR 2014) Aircrew Manning Info

Hey, Everyone...

I had the opportunity to attend the recent Maritime Patrol Association Symposium a few weeks back, and the topic of manning, conversions, and job availability for personnel in the AWO, AWF, and AWV community was discussed in detail. BUPERS also posted updated Community Overview sheets for these ratings that are current as of March 2014, so I wanted to post those and give some explanation for those interested in going Aircrew.

First, the info direct from BUPERS: AWO AWF AWV

^ These are direct PowerPoint file links, so clicking them will download the file for viewing on your computer... I've also attached them as .jpeg files if you don't have MS Office on your computer and can't view .pptx files. Opening the files, you're going to see a lot of colors, bar-graphs, numbers, and words that you probably don't understand... all you really need to focus on is the Zone A manning %, and the Notes in the bottom-left... these notes tell you if the rating is currently available for PACT Airmen, if the rating is accepting cross-rating from other rates, and other useful info.

So, what does this mean for you, the prospective Future Sailor?

First, the bad news: If you do not leave for RTC with ATF/AIRC in your contract, you will not be able to cross-rate to Aircrew. Aircrew has never been available to PACT Sailors... at least not since I've been in... but, until recently, it was open to other aviation rates to transfer in. As of this past fiscal year, the door to other rates transferring in has been shut, and the only Aircrew rate accepting transfer-in personnel is AWO, and we're limiting it to AWF and AWV Aircrewmen who wish to convert.

The reason for this policy change is because of the steady conversion from the P-3 Orion, to the P-8 Poseidon patrol aircraft. The P-8 is a more modern aircraft, so big Navy has determined that it doesn't require any AWF or AWV Aircrewmen onboard... because of this, as VP squadrons convert to the Poseidon, all of their AWF's and AWV's are being forced to either transfer to another squadron, or accept a conversion to AWO. Because about 45% of all AWF's and AWV's are P-3 crewmen, this has led BUPERS to block all other ratings from converting to Aircrew in order to allow the F's and V's the availability to convert.

So, bottom line for anyone without an Aircrew contract from MEPS... unfortunately you do not currently have the opportunity to cross-rate to Aircrew once you hit the fleet. There is always a possibility it will open back up to non-AW rates... but with the P-3/P-8 conversion stretching through FY2023 now, I wouldn't rely on it changing soon. So if you are dead-set on being Aircrew... you MUST get ATF/AIRC in your contract at MEPS! Anyone who tells you otherwise is either lying, or... more likely... just isn't aware of the current changes going on within the maritime patrol community.

Now, what does this mean for those of you who do have ATF/AIRC in your contracts? Three letters - AWO. If you're active duty, then you currently have a 99% chance of being assigned to AW "A" School out of NACCS, and will be a Sensor Operator on the P-3 or P-8. The latest AWV and AWF class to start Fleet Replacement training in VP-30 have been told they're the last FE and IFT class... it's all AWO's from here out. There are still limited billets on occasion for MH-53E helo crewmen... however the entire fleet has been grounded since their fatal mishap back in January, so their fleet replacement classes have been backed up. Plus, you're looking at 2 HM squadrons in Virginia for helos, vs. 17 VP squadrons in Florida, Washington, and Hawaii... plus a few other "squadrons" in places you need a clearance just to know about.

Rescue Swimmers? Nothing much has changed for you guys... you'll either be an AWR on MH-60R Sea Hawks, or an AWS on MH-60S Knight Hawks.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg AWO.JPG (202.0 KB, 25 views)
File Type: jpg AWF.JPG (236.4 KB, 18 views)
File Type: jpg AWV.JPG (239.9 KB, 13 views)
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Old 04-21-2014, 12:09 PM   #2
FutureSailor316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Haasino View Post
Hey, Everyone...

I had the opportunity to attend the recent Maritime Patrol Association Symposium a few weeks back, and the topic of manning, conversions, and job availability for personnel in the AWO, AWF, and AWV community was discussed in detail. BUPERS also posted updated Community Overview sheets for these ratings that are current as of March 2014, so I wanted to post those and give some explanation for those interested in going Aircrew.

First, the info direct from BUPERS: AWO AWF AWV

^ These are direct PowerPoint file links, so clicking them will download the file for viewing on your computer... I've also attached them as .jpeg files if you don't have MS Office on your computer and can't view .pptx files. Opening the files, you're going to see a lot of colors, bar-graphs, numbers, and words that you probably don't understand... all you really need to focus on is the Zone A manning %, and the Notes in the bottom-left... these notes tell you if the rating is currently available for PACT Airmen, if the rating is accepting cross-rating from other rates, and other useful info.

So, what does this mean for you, the prospective Future Sailor?

First, the bad news: If you do not leave for RTC with ATF/AIRC in your contract, you will not be able to cross-rate to Aircrew. Aircrew has never been available to PACT Sailors... at least not since I've been in... but, until recently, it was open to other aviation rates to transfer in. As of this past fiscal year, the door to other rates transferring in has been shut, and the only Aircrew rate accepting transfer-in personnel is AWO, and we're limiting it to AWF and AWV Aircrewmen who wish to convert.

The reason for this policy change is because of the steady conversion from the P-3 Orion, to the P-8 Poseidon patrol aircraft. The P-8 is a more modern aircraft, so big Navy has determined that it doesn't require any AWF or AWV Aircrewmen onboard... because of this, as VP squadrons convert to the Poseidon, all of their AWF's and AWV's are being forced to either transfer to another squadron, or accept a conversion to AWO. Because about 45% of all AWF's and AWV's are P-3 crewmen, this has led BUPERS to block all other ratings from converting to Aircrew in order to allow the F's and V's the availability to convert.

So, bottom line for anyone without an Aircrew contract from MEPS... unfortunately you do not currently have the opportunity to cross-rate to Aircrew once you hit the fleet. There is always a possibility it will open back up to non-AW rates... but with the P-3/P-8 conversion stretching through FY2023 now, I wouldn't rely on it changing soon. So if you are dead-set on being Aircrew... you MUST get ATF/AIRC in your contract at MEPS! Anyone who tells you otherwise is either lying, or... more likely... just isn't aware of the current changes going on within the maritime patrol community.

Now, what does this mean for those of you who do have ATF/AIRC in your contracts? Three letters - AWO. If you're active duty, then you currently have a 99% chance of being assigned to AW "A" School out of NACCS, and will be a Sensor Operator on the P-3 or P-8. The latest AWV and AWF class to start Fleet Replacement training in VP-30 have been told they're the last FE and IFT class... it's all AWO's from here out. There are still limited billets on occasion for MH-53E helo crewmen... however the entire fleet has been grounded since their fatal mishap back in January, so their fleet replacement classes have been backed up. Plus, you're looking at 2 HM squadrons in Virginia for helos, vs. 17 VP squadrons in Florida, Washington, and Hawaii... plus a few other "squadrons" in places you need a clearance just to know about.

Rescue Swimmers? Nothing much has changed for you guys... you'll either be an AWR on MH-60R Sea Hawks, or an AWS on MH-60S Knight Hawks.
I signed my contract for PACT AIR and the air crew jobs were listed as rates I could strike for. My recruiter was surprised because he said that must be new because he had never heard of that before.
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Old 04-21-2014, 12:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FutureSailor316 View Post
I signed my contract for PACT AIR and the air crew jobs were listed as rates I could strike for. My recruiter was surprised because he said that must be new because he had never heard of that before.
Yeah, sadly the MEPS paperwork hasn't been updated in a looong time... last I checked, the fact sheets still lists AO, AE, AM, and a few other ratings as eligible to volunteer for Aircrew duties... that program was discontinued 6 years ago!
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Old 04-21-2014, 04:08 PM   #4
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Yeah, sadly the MEPS paperwork hasn't been updated in a looong time... last I checked, the fact sheets still lists AO, AE, AM, and a few other ratings as eligible to volunteer for Aircrew duties... that program was discontinued 6 years ago!
That is weird...the classifier actually told me that Aircrew being available to PACT AIR was a new thing. I just read so many bad things about PACT AIR but I am convinced that it is all in your attitude, work ethic and how you conduct yourself. I am not above doing the dirty work because I know that this is a huge opportunity to really do something with my life. Hopefully being 3 credits from a Bachelors Degree and just working hard will ensure I can get an awesome rate (hopefully AZ) fairly quickly. Either way the Navy is a huge opportunity for my family and myself.
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