Air Force Journey

Sharing my journey through Air Force Officer Training School (OTS) and beyond.

OTS Prep

Preparing for OTS

Preparing for OTS was difficult for me because I had a lot of mental barriers I had to overcome.  In a way, I applied for OTS against my will.  There is a part of me which wanted to separate from the Air Force and pursue a civilian life, but another part of me knew applying was what I was supposed to do.  The part of me which wanted to separate is the same part which resisted the Air Force way of life, and in turn, resisted preparation for OTS.  This will probably not make sense to you unless I explain the spiritual aspect of my life.

My strategy for OTS preparation was to do everything in my power to prepare in advance.  I knew OTS would be extremely busy so I wanted to be as prepared as possible.  The areas I wanted to focus on were memorization of HAWK/OTSMAN knowledge, PT test prep, packing list/uniforms, and support equipment (computers, printers, notebooks, etc.)  When it came to execution of my strategy, I completely failed.  I didn’t seriously study the HAWK or OTSMAN until I was in the car on the way to OTS.  I didn’t prep for my PT test because I didn’t want to accept the reality that I would soon be stuck in the AETC training environment.  I had most of my uniform items but they were not de-stringed or dry cleaned, and I purchased much of my support equipment on my trip to OTS.  This caused me to be extremely stressed prior to arrival and during the initial weeks, which was not ideal.

On a side note, I refused to begin rolling t-shirts or socks prior to arrival.  For this type of preparation I trusted that the OTS program would give me enough time to figure this stuff out.  In the end I was right, but this may not be the right approach for everyone.  For the bare minimum I recommend you have brief familiarization with rolling but you should have plenty of time to figure it out before it really matters.

TFIT was tough for me because I had to first accept the reality that I was actually doing what I didn’t want to do (become an officer), and catch up in the areas I knew I hadn’t prepared for.  Despite my initial shortfalls, I was able to recover quickly.  Here are some of the lessons I learned during the TFIT portion of my training.

Packing List

Airman Battle Uniform

  • The “Uniforms/Clothing/Equipment Requirements or Restrictions” portion of the reporting instructions was about 90% accurate.  I followed the list as closely as possible with a few caveats.  I will run through them below.
  • ABUs:  I brought three uniforms with name tapes and prior service AFSC badges sewn on.  Two uniforms had the buttons like normal, and one had the blouse pockets sewn down.  If I could do it again, all three uniform blouses would have had the pockets sewn down.  Having pockets sewn and AFSC badges displayed were 100% not an issue.  At OTS you are scrutinized on your ability to comply with instructions, not by what version of uniform you have.  As long as it complies with AFI 36-2903, you are good to go.  You can purchase uniforms online with name tapes and AFSC badges sewn on, and customized pockets at Kellac (link here).  They arrive in the mail completely ready to wear.  NOTE:  Normally I wear ABU pants without pleats on the cargo pockets, but for OTS I left them stock.  I used my cargo pockets all the time so I do not recommend doing anything which impedes your ability to store items.
  • I brought one regular pair of ABU boots and one old ratty pair.  Since I was at OTS during the fall, we commonly dealt with rain.  Once my “regular” pair got wet they smelled terrible.  I personally recommend two pairs of boots if you are prior service and you have them.  If not, bring one and decide after you get here.
  • I brought my prior service desert sand shirts and it was not a problem.  As long as they are in fairly good shape you should be able to roll them with no problem.
  • I brought my old ABU hat and had no problems.
  • I brought a Gen II sage green fleece and I had no problems.  Be sure to bring the velcro name tapes as well.  You will not need the enlisted rank.  I ordered my fleece from Kellac.
  • Watch cap and gloves were required for us during the fall months.  We had to have at least one pair of black gloves (for PT), but some people have sage green as well.


  • Lightweight:  Don’t bring one with the embroidered Air Force symbol because it is almost guaranteed you will have to purchase a new one.  You may be able to squeak by with an embroidered one, but it will probably be difficult.
  • Service Coat:  If you can, have this completely tailored and ready to go.  You can purchase and have it tailored when you get here, but it is a PAIN to pick it up.  You do not really have free time to do this kind of stuff the initial few weeks of training.  If you have to do it here, you have to have one day to purchase it and have it marked for altering, then another day to pick it up.
  • Blues Pants:  There is a ton of confusion out there on these items.  There are two types of blues pants, (55% polyester/45% wool) and (100% polyester).  I was issued four pairs of the 55/45 poly/wool blend in basic training in 2004.  In more recent years, trainees were issued the 100% polyester.  Regardless of what you have, in Service Dress (pants and service jacket) you MUST WEAR the wool ones with the jacket.  The polyester ones will not match so you cannot wear them.  Due to this, the requirements list we received on day 1 said we had to have one pair of poly/wool blend and two pairs of polyester.  I was required to purchase two pairs of polyester pants which I was not happy about, and I will tell you soon if both pairs were required.  Again, I recommend having these pants tailored and good to go prior to arrival.
  • Insignia, belt and buckle, flight cap, tie, under shirts, ribbons, and garters.  These are all quick purchase items so you should be good to either bring or purchase at OTS.
  • Standard blue and metallic name tags:  I recommend bringing them if you can, but it isn’t a huge deal.  It will be a while until you have to wear them, but it will be one less thing you have to worry about picking up later from the shoppette.  If you have to order here you will order them on the initial purchase date, and pick them up at a later date after they are ready.
  • Shoes:  Bring low quarters which comply with AFI 36-2903.  Most people wore corfams but some people brought the old school ones you polish.  You can purchase these quickly at the OTS shoppette.
  • Mess Dress:  This can be a huge pain to deal with at OTS because there are a lot of items to purchase, it can be time consuming to ensure you have the right accouterments, and it will have to get tailored.  If you can, have it squared away before you arrive and leave all mess dress related items in your car.  If you can’t, just know you will have to take time to purchase everything, get it tailored and dry cleaned, and be ready to go for dining in/out.  You can rent through a place which comes to the dorms, but the process can involve long lines and take up precious time.  Most officers will end up wearing their mess dress later in their career so if you rent here at OTS you may be throwing $80 down drain.  If you rent, I think you still have to purchase the mini medals yourself.

PT Uniform

  • You can probably purchase this at OTS with no problems.  That way you can try it on because the sizes are all over the place.  The older swishy uniform is completely fine to bring but you will annoy your flight mates.
  • Socks.  I cannot stand crew socks, but I bought three pairs for display.  I figured out a way to roll the ankle socks and can probably do a YouTube video for you if you want.  I have yet to know if they meet the inspection requirements yet.
  • Running shoes.  Bring something that fit and that are comfortable.  I recommend two pairs because if you run in the rain it is great to have a dry pair to fall back on to wear after duty hours.

Female Uniform Items

  • If you have questions, ask me questions and I will do my best to answer.
  • At first the staff said the princess cut shirts were unauthorized to wear, but in the end the rule was basically you had to wear the regular shirts when blues was the Uniform of the Day (UOD), but if blues were optional (when exercising privileges) you could wear whatever you wanted.


  • Bring your old duffle bag if you have it or you may have to buy a new one.  Some people may be able to get away with not buying one at all but it will depend on how much the staff is paying attention.
  • Buy new underwear because it folds easier.  I can probably do an underwear folding YouTube video if you really want one but it is fairly straight forward.
  • A white towel and wash cloth will be pre-positioned for you, and you will purchase it.  I brought another one as an extra which was helpful at first.
  • If you are picky about shampoo or shaving cream, etc., bring what you like.  You can purchase items at the shoppette but they have more limited options, and it will be a few days until you go there.
  • I only used shower shoes the first few days until I was able to clean my shower to my own personal standards.

Miscellaneous (optional)

  • Shoe polishing supplies:  you only need this if you have polish-able low quarters.
  • Soap dish & cover:  If you use bar soap bring a cover, otherwise the bottle body wash should be fine.
  • Sewing kit:  Knowing how to sew buttons back on is extremely useful, so have the supplies to do so if necessary.  I messed up because I bought a small sewing kit but it didn’t have white thread, so I had to purchase a new one at OTS to sew on a blues shirt button which fell off.
  • Bug spray, sunscreen, pens, laundry soap, stain remover (oxyclean or tide pens), shoe inserts, hair pins:  Bring what you need.  I highly recommend bringing stain remover or purchasing when you get here.  I bought bug spray and sunscreen but never used it, but I don’t burn easy and was at OTS during the fall months.
  • Wrist watch:  absolutely bring a watch.  Your schedule will be dictated down to the minute.  Synchronize it to the USNO master clock PRIOR TO ARRIVAL.  Link here.
  • Pajamas:  You have to be in an authorized uniform in the dorms.  After hours you can wear whatever, but once you wake up you won’t have much time to change so you might as well PT gear to bed.
Random Stuff I’m Glad I Brought
  • A small package of pledge wipes.  After I cleaned my floor in my closet I would run over it with a pledge wipe and it smelled lemony fresh and it made it kind of slippery.  It yelled “clean!” to me.  These are also useful for the chrome fixtures and the desk/drawers.
  • A squeegee.  Your shower is supposed to be dry so using the squeegee made life so much easier and almost eliminated the need for a separate towel.
  • Travel scissors you can store in your pocket to cut strings.
  • A lighter to burn off the short strings.  Don’t use a lighter on your blues.
  • Microfiber rags for cleaning.  It made dusting and cleaning the mirrors much easier.
  • Lysol disinfectant wipes.  Perfect for the bathroom.
  • Cheap laser black/white printer.  I brought a Brother HL-2270DW and it made life much easier.
Things I Wish I Knew Prior to Arrival
  • Do your best to relax on the morning of arrival.  Eat a good meal and make sure you have everything ready to go.  I was a nervous wreck on this day and I was scrambling around all over town running last minute errands.  I do not recommend this.  I showed up around 2pm and it seemed about right.  I was able to eat at the DFAC around 5-6pm.
  • I brought around $400 cash which seemed about right.  I used cash to order food in the dorms when you have the privilege, buying squadron coins (ours was around $25), buying a gift for my Flight Commander, paying for the dining out ($40 per person), and whatever else came up.  You may have extra but it is always good to have cash on hand because at first it is very difficult to get to an ATM.  BRING SMALL BILLS.  When you get privileges you will want dollar bills for the soda/snack machines.
  • When you show up, wear something professional which shows the staff you look the part as an officer or a gentleman/lady.  I do not recommend wearing t-shirts, but I also do not recommend you wear a button up shirt and tie with dress shoes.  IMO they key is to find the balance between comfort and professionalism.  I wore khaki cargo shorts and a polo, and IMO it was the right choice.  I was able to stay cool in the warm weather, and the cargo pockets were extremely useful.  As for shoes, I highly recommend wearing your PT shoes for comfort sake.  You will be on your feet quite a bit so you will want something that keeps your feet comfortable.  Have your shirt tucked in prior to arrival, wear a belt, and have your shoe laces tucked into your shoes.  Otherwise this will probably be the first thing they tell you to do and you will probably have to scramble to make it happen (especially if you have to dig for a belt).
  • You will be marching on day 1.  Even if you are a prior service I recommend reviewing the D&C (AFMAN 36-2203).  You will want to review how to do column left/column right, right, left, about face, and column of files from the left/right.  Be sure you know how to execute these movements both as a flight/squadron member and as a element leader or guidon bearer.  I really struggled with this at first because I hadn’t marched in around 11 years.  The AFMAN is available to the public here.  If the link doesn’t work go to “Air Force epubs” and search for “36-2203”.  Also be sure you know and understand the definitions and how to employ proper  Dress, Cover, Interval, and Distance (DCID).
  • Bring enough civilian clothes to last three or four days.  The bare minimum I recommend is an extra pair of cargo shorts and two extra shirts.  We showed up Tuesday, went to AAFES on Thursday, and wore ABUs on Friday.   It was a relief for me when we put our ABUs on because I ran out of civilian clothes.
  • Show up with a pen and small notebook in your pocket ready to go.  It will be useful.
  • There are two types of staff:  commissioned staff (Flight/Student Squadron Commanders/squadron leadership) and Military Training Instructors (MTIs).  During TFIT, they will all be very direct with you (yell) at you.  Once you reach Phase 2, the commissioned staff will transition to a mentor-ship role.  MTIs are MTIs.
  • I recommend having a few of the basics memorized such as the Airman’s Creed, Air Force Mission, and Core Values, but it isn’t a huge deal.  The Squadron Commander asked many people these three things and it you can either make a good or bad initial impression.
  • There is no dry cleaning on base.  This blew my mind.  There was one company which did service directly at the dorms but you commonly had to wait in lines.  Once you get off base privileges this will get a lot easier.
  • When I arrived I thought I had to bring in ALL of my stuff.  I recommend doing it, but if you can’t, you will have to prioritize.  Here are my thoughts on the priority:
    • Bring in all of your required items.
    • Leave your mess dress in the car.
    • I recommend bringing in your blues, but leave it in the car if you can’t carry it all.  We had the ability to go to our cars in the evening for the first week or so.
    • Bringing your printer in will be helpful, but like I said you may have car access for the first few days.
  • Be sure you know the reporting procedures before you arrive, because it is different than basic training.  Also be sure you know how to stand at attention.  When someone asks you a question you have stand at attention and say “Sir/Ma’am” then respond.  The only time you need to use the reporting statement is if you want to ask a question.  The proper statement is “Sir/Ma’am, Cadet [Name] reports,” then you ask your question.  This is all in the OTSMAN.
  • I recommend memorizing the following knowledge prior to arrival.
    • HAWK
      • Airman’s Creed, Honor Code, Air Force Core Values, Air Force Mission, OTS Mission, Chain of Command by position and corresponding name for POTUS, SECDEF, SECAF, CSAF, CMSAF, AETC Commander, AU Commander, Holm Center Commander, and OTS Commandant (can be found on the OTS web site), military phonetic alphabet, oath of office, Air Force song, code of conduct).


  1. This information is really helpful. Thank you!

    I am also a prior service selectee and was wondering if there would be a problem bringing an ABU set that has the pant legs with sewed in elastic?

  2. Congrats on your selection. I don't think elastic would be a problem. Be careful of the shadow stripes. You will probably not get chewed out but they may be considered unserviceable depending on how visible. One thing I forgot to mention is field uniforms. It wouldn't work for me but having a set of old uniforms for the field may save you from killing a brand new pair. If I could do it again I would bring such items and keep them in my car. I left a lot of stuff at home I probably could have used. You're welcome, and thanks for the comment!

  3. This is awesome info! Looking forward to hearing about the rest of your journey!

  4. It is truly my pleasure.

  5. Thanks! I had a couple questions after going through your blog, a couple more times.

    – Do you have any updates on the whole “1 pair wool/2 pairs poly” blues pants?
    – You said that we won't be wearing our blues name tapes for a while. Does this mean we should NOT get our service dress or blues shirts ready at all? I was going to get my blues shirts squared away (name tapes/AFSC badge, etc) beforehand, but is there a point if we are to take them off?
    – Should we stick with purchasing 2 short sleeve and 1 long sleeve blues shirts?

  6. – I would start with one wool and one wool/poly. I don't think anyone will notice you not having the second wool/poly and they don't stay “cuff to waist” on the hanger very well. Don't ask anyone if you are good at your initial AAFES purchase, just roll with it and see what happens.
    – Absolutely get your blues tailored with name tags and applicable accouterments in advance if you can. The same goes for ABU function badges and ABU name tapes. Thats not something I would want to be waiting on; but it isn't a huge deal if you don't get it in advance. It is just one more thing you have to worry about.
    – I used all three blues shirts (1 long, 2 short). Our wing standard was long sleeve in service dress, short sleeve in service days such as the museums. Your results may vary.
    DISCLAIMER: I was 24 TRS and I heard Det 12 does things differently, but the above three points should apply to both. Just know your experience may vary.

  7. Thank you very much for the intel, and congratulations on your commission!

  8. I'm a civilian female (CSO Select) and I was wondering if there was any other basic info that you'd recommend me learning. Are there things that it would look bad if I didn't know, or would affect my ability to perform in OTS if I didn't know? I'm talking anything common knowledge (ie military phonetics alphabet) to something more intensely Air Force (chain of command, how to salute, etc).

    Essentially, I want to be able to transition as best I can. If it helps me look like less of an idiot, the better.

  9. Congrats on your selection. The thing about OTS is everyone is bad at something. The more comfortable you are in yourself and your abilities (i.e., confidence in yourself), the better off you will be. As a non-prior I recommend working on the knowledge I listed in this post because it will help you phase up. The knowledge is a huge stressor the first few weeks of training. The other thing would be marching or the individual drill such as facing movements and saluting. Again if you don't know something just know you are not holding your flight back or anything, it is just something you have to work on. Identify such things, ask for help ASAP, and learn it as quickly as possible. As long as you go into OTS with this attitude you will be good to go regardless of what your weaknesses are. Let me know if that doesn't answer your question.

  10. How long did the application process take

  11. The application process takes as long as it needs to prior to the deadline, but usually a few months to get everything together. From beginning to end it took me about a year from applying to commissioning but I consider that short for most. My specific timelines are in my other posts.

  12. Ben

    Do you remember how people stored their personal pillows for inspection? Our dorm manual doesn't allow a snack drawer anymore, but says that the drawer needs to be clean and empty, which is where I planned to keep mine. There is no mention of what you would do with a personal item like that.

  13. We weren't allowed to store anything extra anywhere until we hit Phase 4, then we could keep Civis in the other bed drawer. Is it a crazy pillow? I would say just keep it on your bed and ditch the military pillow. As long as it has a white pillowcase and is displayed in inspection order you should be good? What type of pillow is it?

  14. Ben

    It's a normal memory foam pillow. I just don't think the white pillow case will cover it all of the way.

  15. Re-read the dorm manual but when I was there I don't think anyone would have said anything about the pillow. I also don't think anyone would have taken a demerit for having one. Even if you do as long as it is displayed properly it would only be one demerit for “standardization” or something, and I'm not even 100% sure that is on the inspection checklist. Buy a pillowcase on Amazon. Until then I would stash it away in your (or roommates) car or in the extra supply room. If you want to be sure just do an MFR to request authorization from your Flt/CC to have a non-standard pillow. Lots of options.

  16. Question, would this printer be too big? Canon PIXMA MX420 (18.1 x 16.4 x 7.8 in)

    Dimensions are a tad bigger than the one you referenced (14.5 x 14.2 x 7.2 in)

  17. If you can carry it, it isn't too big… provided it fits on your desk. I had plenty of room on my desk so that one should be fine.

  18. Did you ever do the video on how to roll ankle socks?? It would definitely help me out! Thanks.

  19. Sorry for the delay, I know three days is an eternity at OTS. Honestly the other part of my strategy that I didn't really talk about at the time was to minimize the ankle socks I had in the drawer at any given time. I would try to keep one maybe two in the drawer but of course I would use them after work or for PT. If I sensed an inspection was coming I would purposefully wear them to make them dirty for the inspection while keeping the crew in the drawer.

    My trick for rolling them was instead of heels up I would do heels down. Like everything else I would pinch them in a drawer with my feet while rolling them to keep them tight, then at the end I would just fold the entire heel all the way around to make the smile and the circle. Both would be in different relative positions as compared to a crew sock but I figured that would be expected because the sock was different. Send me your email and I'll send you a few photos.

    Use your best judgement with any advice I give you. If the MTIs suspect you rolled your socks differently and unroll them to check, they could count a demerit for each pair of socks. Like I said in many blog posts I would make everything I did 'look right from a distance' so as not to stand out. In this case I rolled them different to get a similar end product and I would minimize the times they were inspected. Risk vs. reward.

  20. Anonymous

    I am getting ready for OTS and I don't see anything regarding binders, note pads, planner, etc for the classroom. Should I bring this type of school supplies with me?

  21. For the academic classes we were allowed to use laptops so I took all of those notes electronically. Some people used spiral notebooks but I did not, regardless, I think one would be enough. A few pens, a few pencils, nothing out of control. As for keeping track of all of the random other stuff I had a little memo pad from the shoppette I used. It was the flip-up kind so it was more durable, and the pages were removable. I organized my pages by topic such as my leadership position, demerits, to-do list, etc. I kept notes on the schedule on my actual printed schedule which I kept folded up in my HAWK. Pro tip (one of the ladies taught this to me) put a hair band around the binding of your HAWK to hold your papers in place while folded on the inside. Planner wasn't necessary for me (I kept the weekly printed schedule in my pocket) and I didn't use anything else.

  22. You mentioned keeping your Mess Dress in your car. I'll be coming from overseas if I get selected and won't have a car to store all my goodies. I'm assuming you are allowed to store it in your room but then it is just subject to inspection?

  23. Yes, of course you can. I never had any problems with dorm inspections so displaying all of my stuff wasn't hard at all. Especially mess dress because once it is good you are good until you use it. Since you dont need it until grad week by then you don't need to worry about inspections anyway.

  24. Good day airforceotsguy,

    Civilian select here, leaving the 21st of Aug. Could you perhaps explain how cadets who did not show up with all of the items on the Uniform Packing List went about getting the required items?

    You say you all went to the AAFES and bought all those items. Did you guys march there, get measured, get handed the correct items, get your name tags / AF insignia sewn on your uniforms, then head out? Were you guys there long, were you rushed to buy the items?

    Or was it more, 'alright, you're required to have these items by the time we leave, good luck.'

    Was the process the same for your Blues?

    The reason I'm asking is because I've read through your blog (its great btw) and in multiple places you've said you want to show up with your uniforms clipped and ready to go so you don't have to deal with the extra added stress. I live near an Army base so most places that sell military gear don't have much selection for Air Force. The nearest Air Force base is a 2hr drive away.

    I've bought 1 of everything (not including Blues or Mess Dress related items) so far such as, 1 ABU top/bottom with name/airforce sewn on, pair of boots, few sage green / black socks, 6 desert sand shirts, 1 PT shirt/pants, and various other small supporting items. As the time draws near I feel that I should make the 2hr trek back to get the other 2 uniforms. I suppose another option is to order online.

    Thanks for reading.

  25. Good day airforceotsguy,

    Not sure if the previous post went through. If so I'm terribly sorry for a double post but I just wanted to make sure it didn't get eaten.

    I am a civilian select getting ready to leave the 21st. Your blog is great!

    I would like to ask if you know how the process was for getting the items on the Packing List you didn't come with, specifically the ABUs/Blues/Mess Dress. I'm sure some people showed up with no items at all because it wasn't possible for them.

    How did that go? Did you all march to the AAFES, get measured, get handed the correct items, get your name tags / airforce sewn onto your uniforms? Were you there for a long time, were you all rushed?

    Or was it more 'Alright, you cadets have to get everything on the list before we leave at this time, good luck'?

    Was this the same for the Blues and Mess Dress?

    I'm asking because I live near an Army base and the stores that sell gear don't have much for Air Force. The nearest base for me is about a 2hr drive away. I did go down there with some family and bought a few items such as 1 ABU top/bottom with name/airforce sewn on, pair of boots, 6 desert shirts, 1 PT top/bottom, few green / black socks and some other smaller items.

    I figured I would at least come with some of the items and get the rest at OTS. But as time nears and constant reading of your blog (arrive with your items clipped and ready to go so you don't have to deal with the added stress, etc) I feel I should just make the 2hr trek back and buy the other 2 ABUs. I suppose I could order online too.

    We aren't issued anything and have to buy everything, correct? Are we reimbursed any of it? What about individuals that get injured/don't make it?

    Thanks for reading!

  26. Hey sorry, I moderate my comments to filter out some of the spam. If you don't have all of your uniforms you will be able to go to the clothing sales to buy them. I can't remember for sure but I think we were marched there by the MTI's during TFIT and given time to shop without getting yelled at. After that there were still many who had missing items and they actually put an appointment on the schedule during the weekend for us to take care of anything we needed. I can't remember if clothing sales was open on weekends but I think the school house can make arrangements if needed.

    When we bought our uniforms they were marked for tailoring the day of, but immediately after we dropped them off right next door at alterations. The alterations took about a week to be finished which is why it is easier to be able to bypass the entire process. To reiterate, it was more get what you need, not rush rush rush. Yes the process was the same for blues and ABUs.

    So once you buy your uniforms you will be expected to wear them either the next day or the day after. This is why I recommend doing all the strings in advance because you probably won't have time during the week to get them done. Granted, some staff was more lenient on demerits for strings for the initial week or so but it was a big pain because as you know they always keep popping out at the worst time.

    If you know your uniform size I buy all of my ABUs from When you order you put in your size and name tapes and they will sew them on for you before they ship them. You can even customize your uniforms like having pockets sewn down or velcro or elastic installed.

    Don't buy boots at Maxwell so you can break them in prior to going. Shirts, socks, and PT are all easy items to buy at clothing sales at Maxwell because there isn't very much preparation to get them inspection ready. Email me if you have more questions.

  27. BTW congrats on your selection! Yes you will have to buy everything. Look in the supply closet when you first get there, check the third floor one as well, because there was tons of extra soap, cups, and sometimes uniforms up there. It may not matter though because some stuff will be pre-positioned in your room and you will pay for it in advance when you first show up at AAFES.

    You will have to buy everything. Once you are commissioned (or perhaps before) you can file for “Clothing Allowance” and it will cover some of the costs. If you don't make it AAFES will not take back laundered items but you could try filing a claim through base legal. I have never heard of anyone doing this but it is worth asking.

  28. Thanks again for your response.

    I remember reading above that you were allowed laptops to take notes? Was that allowed in all classes? Was it the government issued computer or was it your personal laptop? If it was a personal laptop I was thinking of using my Surface to write notes in OneNote. Did you carry it inside the 'Attache' you get while there?

    Where do you store your civilian cloths if you don't bring a suitcase, in your drawers? I'm bringing one of the new green duffel bags thats issued, a backpack and a small carry bag for my papers / Surface. Where would you put those items in your room?

  29. I brought my surface, it worked perfect for me. I found it was easier for me to type in OneNote vs. writing but either worked well. I pasted our curriculum into OneNote and took notes at the bottom or in the margins. Yes I carried it in my attache but I had a leather folder case for it to keep it from taking bumps no the border which would break the glass. The surface was great because it had a long battery life if needed and it was light. I think you can check out a government laptop but yeah, use your Surface. All classes allowed notes on laptop but some times were more practical than others.

    Civilian clothes are stored in a room on the first floor, civilian luggage storage (aka civ-lug). You have to have special permission to access it during training but all you do is write up a letter and have it approved by someone. The only items which go in your room are those you are to use/display for training. In your case, probably just your green duffle. Everything else will go in civ-lug.

  30. Cody

    Regarding the knowledge, are cadets required to memorize everything in the Hawk in its entirety? For example, do we need to memorize each paragraph of the 7 tenets of Air Power or just the bold text? Another example – all verses of the Air Force Song? From BMT I only recall learning the first verse.


    • airforceotsguy

      That’s part of the mystery! I looked it at from a “reasonableness” perspective. Have you ever heard someone sing the entire Air Force song? A lot of it also depends on what the staff decides to do because it can vary.

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