Earning a commission in the Air National Guard (ANG) can be the perfect opportunity for those with the desire to serve in the Air Force in a leadership capacity while maintaining a civilian career. Earning the chance to do so, however, requires that all candidates navigate the Academy of Military Science (AMS) training program designed to teach potential officers the tools they need to be successful in a military environment. Upon finishing AMS, all graduates will earn a commission in the Air National Guard.
Although both active duty Air Force and Air Force Reserve officer candidates attend Officer Training School, a 12-week course held at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Ala., trainees vying for a commission in the Air National Guard attend AMS. A six-week program also held at Maxwell AFB, AMS is designed to introduce civilian candidates to the military environment while fostering leadership skills that graduates can take back to their home unit.
Arriving at AMS
After receiving their class dates, candidates report to Maxwell AFB on the Sunday before their training begins. During this time, candidates will receive a welcome packet and must report for duty in person. Training officially begins the following day.
Although candidates preparing to attend AMS are not expected to be seasoned military professionals before attendance, they are expected to be in good physical condition. All candidates must report to AMS within the Air Forces' outlined height and weight requirements.
Candidates also are expected to pass a Physical Fitness Assessment (PFA) consisting of a 1 1/2-mile run, crunches and push-ups on the first day of training. Trainees who show up to training overweight or fail to pass the first PFA will be sent home from training.
During the six-week program, candidates will be subjected to a flood of activities ranging from academic classes on military history to physical fitness training. Candidates will be expected to adhere to a strict set of behavioral guidelines and will be under intense supervision for the initial stages of training. As the weeks go on, candidates gain a greater degree of freedom, including the ability to drink caffeine and alcohol and leave base during non-duty hours.
Upon completion of the course, all graduates are commissioned as second lieutenants in the Air National Guard. The graduates are honored in a graduation ceremony in which they receive their commissions and new rank insignia. Family and friends are encouraged to attend the graduation. Upon graduations, the newly commissioned officers are sent back to their unit and then on to further training in their specialty.
- Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions & Citizen: Information for Inbound Academy of Military Science Officer Candidates
- Maxwell Air Force Base: Academy of Military Science moving to Maxwell's OTS
- Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions & Citizen: AMS Reporting Instructions
- Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accessions & Citizen: AMS Physical Fitness Program
- Wantscheck.com: Academy of Military Science Information for the Air National Guard and Reserves
- Photo Credit flight of the Royal Air Force Aerobatics team the Red Arrows image by Tamara Kulikova from Fotolia.com
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