Air Force ROTC Cadet Life
The training program at Detachment 410 is designed to simulate what you would experience on active duty, to include the chain of command modeling an active duty Air Force Wing. Each semester, the cadets in the program are assigned a position in the Cadet Wing with specific tasks they are responsible for accomplishing. The upperclassmen (junior and senior cadets) are primarily responsible for planning, coordinating, and executing assigned tasks. In addition to cadet wing tasks, cadets participate in three mandatory components each academic year; Aerospace Courses, Leadership Laboratory, and Physical Training. With the exception of Field Training, further explained below, cadets do not have any summer commitments while in AFROTC.
Aerospace courses are the first mandatory component of AFROTC. Freshmen and sophomores in the program take a 1 credit course (65 minutes each week) and juniors and seniors take a 4 credit course (3.5 hours each week). Refer to the University of St. Thomas undergraduate Course Catalog for specific class descriptions. All Aerospace courses are taught by active duty Air Force officers, known as the “Detachment Cadre”. University of St. Thomas students earn a minor in Aerospace Studies by completing all academic requirements in AFROTC.
Leadership Laboratory (LLAB) is the second mandatory component of AFROTC. LLAB at Detachment 410 is a zero credit course and is approximately 2 hours each week. LLAB is known as the “Heart and Soul” of AFROTC because it is where the majority of the hands-on military training occurs for the cadets. LLAB is entirely executed by the cadet wing; the upperclassmen plan and coordinate all the training for the underclassmen cadets. Some examples of training include marching/drill, group leadership problems, customs and courtesies, followership skills, and honor guard duties.
Physical Training (PT) is the third mandatory component of AFROTC. PT is also a zero credit course and is approximately 2 hours each week, executed in 1 hour training sessions. Cadets must attend a minimum of 2 physical training sessions per week during the academic semester. In addition, cadets will take an Air Force physical fitness assessment (PFA) once each semester. Lastly, cadets must meet Air Force height and weight standards while they are in AFROTC. The PFA and height and weight standards can be found here.
Cadets in AFROTC have one mandatory component they must complete in the summer, Field Training. Cadets in the program must be selected to attend Field Training through an enrollment allocation process, which takes place during the spring of their sophomore year. It is a competitive process for cadets to earn an enrollment allocation as they compete nationally against sophomore cadets at all 145 Detachments across the United States. Once an enrollment allocation has been awarded, cadets attend Field Training at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, the summer after their sophomore year. More information on Field Training can be found here.
Many cadets in the program fulfill AFROTC mandatory components and want to have more involvement! Detachment 410 has optional club opportunities to include the Black Knights Rifle Drill Team, Saber Drill Team, Arnold Air Society, Silver Wings, and the Detachment Choir. Be sure to check out the following videos which highlight our detachment clubs.