Department of Aerospace Studies

Professor Lt. Col. Vance P. Zider, Chairperson.

Assistant Professors Capt. McCoy and Capt. Frankenberger.

The Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps curriculum is designed to educate university men and women for careers as Air Force officers and to develop quality graduates with a sense of professionalism and dedication. The ability to think and communicate effectively in their preparation for and acceptance of officer responsibilities is of utmost importance in the Department of Aerospace Studies.

The purposes and specific objectives of the Air Force ROTC program are (a) to select and motivate cadets to serve as career officers in specialty areas required by the U.S. Air Force; (b) to develop in cadets by example, discussion, and participation the character, personality, and attitudes essential for leadership; (c) to develop in cadets an interest in and understanding of the Air Force mission, organization, operations, and techniques; and (d) to provide military education which will give cadets a general background and sound foundation on which to build an officer career.

All courses in the program are taught by Air Force officers possessing graduate degrees.

General Military Course. This course, consisting of the first two years of Air Force ROTC, examines the role of the U.S. military forces in the contemporary world with particular attention to the U.S. Air Force its organization and mission. The organizational structure of the Air Force, missions of selected military organizations, professionalism and officership are covered in AERS 1105 and AERS 1106­­the first year. In the second year, the historic development of air power is studied.

Supplemental Course Requirements. All GMC contract cadets (scholarship students) must successfully complete at least one 3-hour course in English composition. All cadets must demonstrate proficiency or successfully complete a course in mathematical reasoning before commissioning.

Professional Officer Course. Application for the POC normally starts one year prior to entry into the program. A student must be accepted into the POC to enroll in AERS 3305, 3306, 4303, and 4304. This course introduces the cadet in the first year to the study of Air Force leadership in the junior officer level including its theoretical and professional aspects, and a study of military management functions, principles, and techniques. The second year is a study of national security policy and strategy. Additional subjects cover the military profession and its relationship to American society. Within this program, attention is devoted to developing communicative skills and providing leadership experiences in officer-type activities.

Entrance to the professional officer course is limited to those who are regularly enrolled in the University as full-time students, who have completed the necessary screening, testing, physical examination, and who have completed the general military course or the preenrollment six-week field training for two-year applicants, or who receive credit for prior military service and are selected by HQ AFROTC through a competitive screening process.

Cadets who complete the Air Force ROTC professional officer course are commissioned upon graduation and enter active duty as Air Force second lieutenants.

Awards and Recognition. A number of awards, trophies, and decorations are presented each year to outstanding Air Force ROTC cadets during a suitable military ceremony by military and civilian leaders. The awards, presented to recognize achievement and to encourage competition, are given to recipients chosen by the Professor of Aerospace Studies, his staff, and the Cadet Staff. The President's Award is presented annually by the President of the University to the outstanding professional officer course cadet who has achieved a high academic standing and materially contributed to student life during his or her university career. The Bernard F. Fisher Leadership Awards go each regular semester to the freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior cadets who have demonstrated outstanding leadership within the Cadet Corps.

Sabre Flight Precision Drill Team. The Sabre Flight is an organization of AFROTC students composed primarily of freshmen and sophomores. It is an integral part of the program and its basic mission is to promote interest in the Air Force ROTC. Members of the flight participate regularly in color and honor guard formations and precision drill activities.

Arnold Air Society. This professional honorary service organization of selected Air Force ROTC cadets participates in a variety of service functions for the University and the community. Its objective is to create a closer and more efficient relationship within the Air Force ROTC and to promote interest in the Air Force.

Angel Flight-Silver Wings. The Angel Flight-Silver Wings is a university organization. Its mission is to promote interest in the Air Force ROTC and Air Force programs and participate in various university and community service projects. Open to all undergraduate students, membership selection is based on personality and scholastic standing.

Field Training. Air Force ROTC field training is offered during the summer months at selected Air Force bases throughout the United States. Students in the four-year program participate in four weeks of field training during the summer, usually between the sophomore and junior year. Students applying for entry into the two-year program must successfully complete six weeks of field training prior to enrolling in Air Force ROTC. The major areas of study in the field training program include junior officer training, aircraft and aircrew orientation, career orientation, survival training, base functions and Air Force environment, and physical conditioning. There are numerous program opportunities available for cadet participation on a voluntary basis within the Professional Development Training (PDT) Program. PDT may consist of two weeks of training by "shadowing" an active duty officer in a career field related to the cadet's category. Other programs include basic freefall parachute training, soaring, Army airborne, British exchange, research and development experience, combat survival training, and Pentagon internship.

Courses in Aerospace Studies. (AERS)

First Year

1105. The Air Force Today (1:1:1-1/2). A survey course that deals with the mission, organization, and function of the American military, especially as it applies to the United States Air Force.

1106. The Air Force Today (1:1:1-1/2). A survey course that deals with the Air Force in the contemporary world through a study of the total force structure, strategic offensive and defensive forces, general purpose forces and aerospace support forces.

Second Year

2103, 2104. (1:1:1-1/2 each). A survey course designed to facilitate the transition from Air Force ROTC cadet to Air Force ROTC candidate. Featured topics include: Air Force heritage, Air Force leaders, Quality Air Force, and introduction to ethics and values, introduction to leadership, group leadership problems, and continuing application of communication skills.

Third Year

3305. Air Force Leadership and Management (3:3:1-1/2). Prerequisite: acceptance into the Professional Officer Course. An introductory management course emphasizing the individual as a manager in the Air Force. Individual motivation and behavioral processes, leadership, communication, and group dynamics are covered to provide a foundation for the development of the junior officer's professional skills as an Air Force leader.

3306. Air Force Leadership and Management (3:3:1-1/2). Prerequisite: acceptance into the Professional Officer Course. Leadership theory and management practice are amplified through study of management of forces in change, organizational power, managerial strategy and tactics, and leadership ethics.

Fourth Year

4303, 4304. (3:3:1-1/2 each). Prerequisite: Acceptance into the Professional Officer Course. AS 400 examines the national security process, regional studies, advanced leadership ethics, and Air Force doctrine. Special topics of interest focus on the military as a profession, officership, military justice, civilian control of the military, preparation for active duty, and current issues affecting military professionalism. Within this structure, continued emphasis is given to the refinement of communication skills.

Leadership Laboratory. Instruction is conducted within the framework of an organized cadet corps with a progression of experiences designed to develop each student's leadership potential. Leadership Laboratory involves a study of Air Force customs and courtesies; drill and ceremonies; career opportunities in the Air Force; and the life and work of an Air Force junior officer. Students develop their leadership potential in a practical, supervised laboratory which typically includes field trips to Air Force installations and visits by Air Force officers in various job specialties. Students who enroll in aerospace studies courses must also enroll in a corresponding Leadership Laboratory section. Contact the Aerospace Studies Department for details.


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