The United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado is at once one of the best educational opportunities and one of the most challenging college commitments any student can make. While the Air Force Academy will provide you with a state of the art education, it will also demand a full time mental and physical effort on your part. The reason for the creation of the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado is to prepare officers to serve in the United States Air Force. This is serious business and those who approach the United States Air Force Academy as potential students should really do so only after a very thorough review and lots of discussions.
Not So Very Long Ago. The United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado has the shortest history of the United States service academies. It was not until after World War II and the Korean War had pretty much gone into the history books that President Eisenhower signed off on the creation of the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado.
President Eisenhower, a man of considerable military experience, had learned first hand of the growing importance of trained and skilled pilots and leadership in the air branch of the nation’s national defense. Under the Eisenhower administration, in 1954 the Air Force Academy became operational and finally moved into its brand new facility near Colorado Springs several years later. The first class consisted of only about 300 cadets but today the school is open to a set enrollment of 4,000 undergraduate cadets.
While the United States Air Force Academy cannot trace its roots back as far as the other service academies, its late arrival to the collection of armed services academies has allowed it to start out without the baggage of old buildings and old equipment . As a result the grounds and facilities offered at the U.S. Air Force Academy as for the most part state of the art.
Academic Achievement. Certainly a large part of the training given to prospective Air Force officers is in the area of academics. When undergraduates come to the Air Force Academy they are also in effect attending an undergraduate college. They have a choice from among 30 majors. While there are plenty of avenues open, the majority of students determine to select majors in the area of science or engineering.
The training received here is not all in the classroom. Physical development is also part of the training program at the Air Force Academy. Cadets are required to participate in varsity or intramural sports throughout their four year stay at the academy. They are also required to take a Physical Education course amounting to 6 credit hours . Fitness is encouraged as part of the overall readiness of a young man or woman for military service and leadership
Because of the academic and physical demands of coming to the U. S. Air Force Academy, students who are interested must work hard during their high school to qualify. In terms of academic performance, academy statistics indicate that half of all the students who enter the Air Force Academy were among the top 10% of their high school graduating class. This is not a school to apply to if your academic approach in high school has been to simply get by.
What You Get at the USAFA Being accepted into the U. S. Air Force Academy is a great accomplishment as it is a highly competitive institution. Those who get in can count on several thing. First of all you will be the recipient, regardless of your choice of major, of a first class education with small classes, outstanding faculty and state of the art equipment.
As a cadet you will have the opportunity to learn how to fly. There are two airstrips right on campus. You will have the chance to live in community with other highly motivated and intelligent young men and women. Best of all you will have all of this pretty much given to you by the U. S. government. There will be no tuition bills arriving at your parents’ mail box and no stacks of college loans after graduation. Instead, following graduation what you will have is a ready made career and your first assignment mapped out for you. For someone who likes to go first class and who loves all that goes with flying, the U. S. Air Force Academy has lots to offer. But wait, what about the other side of the coin.
What the Air Force Wants in Return. Usually if something seems too good to be true, you need to take a second look. Yes the package offered by the United States Air Force Academy is outstanding. The Air Force makes a tremendous investment of time and money in each of its cadets. The thing is, even while no tuition or room and board is charged, the Air Force wants plenty in return. During your four years nothing but your best effort in every aspect of training will be acceptable. You will put in lots of hours in both physical and mental preparation before you finally graduate. When you do, you don’t just get to walk off the campus.
In return for your quality education you are committed to serve in the U. S. Air Force for five years. For many cadets this is of course why they came to the academy in the first place, they want to make a career out of service in the Air Force. Others are happy to have job that allows them to continue to get excellent flight experience and see the commitment as an entry level job with a really good employer. Some will undoubtedly find the five year commitment difficult, demanding and disruptive.
The Air Force Academy offers a great quality education and leadership training that will be of value where ever you decide to go. It is just essential for potential students to really give serious consideration to the commitment they are being asked to make.