Week 7 – Wargames, Commandant Inspection, SPT #2, Final Briefings!
Wargames is essentially a computer game which simulates all of the different Air Force capabilities in a computerized environment. I thought it was similar to the game Command and Conquer but with realistic weapon systems (fancy AF word for aircraft). There may be other versions out there but the one we trained on just had all of the main aircraft (B-1, B-52, F-16, F-15, F-22, KC-135, etc). The idea is to familiarize us all with the Air Force weapon system capabilities in a simulated war environment.
The simulator is located off of the OTS campus but within marching distance. During the week each flight had a designated time to use the simulator to play the wargame. Each flight had our own room and we played against a computer. My flight divided the different missions (counter air, offensive air, refueling, bombing, etc) by flight member. The simulation took several hours and it was very laid back. We were able to bring snacks (and even encouraged to do so by the staff!) The main motivation with doing well was the honor flight competition. I don’t know the specifics, but I know the wargames contributed to part of the score.
The commandant inspection was basically a giant open ranks on the bomb run/parade grounds. The commandant had a few words to speak (it was fairly informal but he was still at a podium) and then the entire cadet wing followed the appropriate protocol to conduct a wing-wide open ranks inspection. Cadet leadership conducted the open ranks inspection and the commandant randomly walked through the formations to ask random cadets questions. I will not spoil the fun by telling you what he asked. Afterward we marched back to the dorm and continued our day. The actual inspection was actually the weekend prior to graduation week but I have already typed this so oh well.
This one was basically the same as SPT #1! Know your stuff and you’ll do fine. At this point in training there wasn’t much else to do than study for the SPT so I didn’t feel very pressured by this test.
Final Briefings (TMO, Peer Evaluation #2, Random Classes)
The rest of our time was filled by miscellaneous classes and mandatory briefings. The briefings of note were TMO and another peer evaluation. TMO is the organization which helps you move your stuff from wherever it is to wherever you are going, so this is one you will actually want to pay attention to. Basically every time the military moves you the government will pay to move your stuff as well. There are three basic ways to do this.
- The government does it all and contractors show up at your house to pack up your stuff and move it from point A-B. They will actually take your furniture apart, pack it up in boxes, and put it back together. The entire process takes a few months to get from almost any base to any base in the world. They are fairly efficient.
- You can hire your own contractor to the same as above. Honestly it is all ensured so I typically just have the government do it all.
- You can move yourself. You may save some money this way but it is a lot of work.
My main tip for moving is to record all of the serial numbers of your valuables and take video of everything you own before they show up. Once they move you if anything is broken or missing you have to file a claim and they pay you replacement value! Do your claims ASAP because there is a time limit. My other main advice for moving is be sure you think about it early. It is a complicated process and everyone’s situation is different.
Be sure you plan everything out and ask every question so you don’t put yourself in a difficult situation. An example of a difficult situation would be your mom having to tell the movers what you want to take with you as they pack your bedroom because you are in training and aren’t there. This involves you telling your mom what you want, a power of attorney, just one more thing to deal with, etc.