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Military Career Options: PhD student interested in becoming an Officer (previously USAF enlisted)?

I have been considering joining the military(/Air Force) again after my graduate work is finished. I am in a PhD program for Industrial-Organizational (I-O) Psychology and I will soon defend my Master's Degree. Briefly, I-O psychologists expertise include: Selection, retention, attitude assessment, and other workplace issues (such as, training, job analysis, stress, leadership, personality, etc). In other words, issues that are becoming increasingly important to the military. I have been trying to find information on whether this advanced degree would 'fast-track' my career (such as, starting higher than O-1). I am particularly interested in what implications my degree would have for career advancement. I know that certain advanced degrees can lead to a Direct Commission, but not sure if mine is applicable. In addition, my understanding is that in order to advance very far as a USAF officer, you (almost) need to have been in the Academy and/or pilot (I'm 31 and too old now). Finally, my last year was in S. Korea on a remote tour. If I would have stayed in, I would have been able to have some choice for my home-base. Could this still be a possibility?

Asked By: Ryan A - 10/2/2008
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
First: Don't limit your choices to just the Air Force. Consider other branches including the U.S. Public Health Service (Naval commission - but work mostly for the Department of Health and Human Services... still can't place them? Think the U.S. Surgeon General). http://www.usphs.gov/ They JUST entered into a huge... More
Answered By: dkw - 10/2/2008
Additional Answers (4)
Visit the ROTC programs on you campus, or at the nearest university with a program. Talk to all 3 service branches. There is an old saying in the military, "Where the is a will, there is a waiver." Your prior service will be to your advantage with regards to your age. The recruiting officer at the ROTC programs... More
Answered By: David C - 10/2/2008
 
As a PHD in that field, you can join the army as a O3E, direct commission. I don't know much about the AF but dont leave army out of your search.
Answered By: erik k - 10/2/2008
 
well from what i last found out air force does NOT accept prior service. sorry but you can do other branches if you want
Source(s):
Answered By: Natasia B - 10/2/2008
 
The only people who get advanced paygrade are Medical Officers and those with years of experience. also the AF isn't taking any PS, not even PS AF and they are getting rid of officers left right and center.
Answered By: mrsjvb - 10/2/2008
 
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