FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Military Positions | Military FAQ | Advanced Degree Sponsorship
USAFA sponsors my degree, am I required to return to teach?
A: We intentionally sponsor members who have a desire to return
to teach. Instructors with a Master’s degree will return for a 3
year controlled tour. Instructors with a USAFA sponsored
doctorate will return for 4 years. In rare instances the needs
of the Air Force will take precedence over the teaching
opportunity, but if you don’t desire to teach we encourage you
to seek out other sponsorship programs.
Q: I have not taught at USAFA but would
like to be sponsored for a PhD. Can I apply?
A: Although anyone can apply, it is extremely unlikely that you
will be selected. Because of the investment of money and time,
as well as the mandatory 4-year payback as an instructor, we
typically select officers who have taught here for at least 2
Q: I am not an Academy graduate, so can I
A: ABSOLUTELY! In fact, most of our current instructors are ROTC
or OTS graduates. We encourage the diversity of faculty and
Academy graduates are given no preference in the decision
Q: Will a teaching assignment affect my ability to be promoted?
A: There is no one path to success in the CE/BSC career fields.
Teaching at the Academy is a career broadening assignment and
instructor duty, usually considered very important steps in the
career progression ladder. However, timing of a career
broadening assignment is critically important. Officers should
definitely work with their assignment management teams to decide
the best point in a career to take on this challenge.
Q: Where can I find out about other opportunities for advanced
academic degrees and teaching?
A: The Palace Blueprint website (http://www.afpc.randolph.af.mil/civ-engr/)
lists much more information about degrees and instructor duties.
When in doubt, give them a call – they are always willing to
Q: Which applicants are more likely to be selected?
A: For both degree sponsorship and direct hiring, there is a
panel of senior members of the department that review the
applications. This panel makes a recommendation for sponsorship
or hire to our department head. Although it is hard to predict
what will catch the panel’s eye, there are some things that
typically are noted: Professional Registration; overseas
experience (especially a short tour); deployment experience;
good performance in academic programs; completion of PME; and
good recommendation letters. Of course, department manning is
always critical. Sometimes we have a great applicant, but no
Q: Do I need a short tour before I come teach?
A: Almost definitely. This makes sense for many reasons. First,
the experience gained is immensely valuable to your mentoring
role. Second, because this is a controlled tour, officers
without a short tour will typically be at the top of the non-vol
list after completion of the assignment. Finally, AFPC is
usually very hesitant to release an officer for this teaching
assignment without a short tour.
USAFA DFCE Personnel Officer
DSN 333-3150, 719-333-3150, FAX 333-2234