What Is Officer Training School?

Officer Training SchoolThose interested in becoming officers in the United States Air Force should be familiar with what Officer Training School is. According to the US Air Force, Officer Training School is the United States’ Air Force training school for officers, and it is analogous to the Officer Candidate School programs seen in other branches of the United States Military such as the Navy and the Army. The Officer Training School of the United States Air Force is located at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama, and it makes up a part of the Jeanne M. Holm Center for Officer Accession and Citizen Development.

Structure ofSstudies at Officer Training School

There are two different subset programs in operation at the Officer Training School: the Basic Officer Training (BOT) program and the Commissioned Officer Training (COT) program. While the BOT program is the traditional route to becoming an Air Force officer for those who have no previous military service, but have completed a bachelor’s degree, the COT program is a shorter program that is tailored to professionals such as doctors and lawyers. While basic officer training lasts between nine and ten weeks, the Commissioned Officer Training program is shorter and lasts only five weeks.

Training at Officer Training School for those who are in both the BOT program and the COT program consists of academic training, physical training, and military bearing standards training. BOT training includes extensive education in subjects such as military customers, leadership, drill and ceremonies, small arms training, and field military exercises. Officers who complete the COT program will be eligible for a higher rank than those who complete the BOT program. While BOT program graduates will be commissioned as Second Lieutenants, graduates of the COT program can start their military service with ranks as high as First Lieutenant and Captain.

The History of Officer Training School

Officer Training School was originally established in 1942 at Miami Beach in Florida to further the training offerings of the Aviation Cadet Program that had previously train commissioned officers in the Air Force. After being located at Miami Beach until 1944, when it was transferred to the San Antonio Aviation Cadet Center in Texas. It was not until 1993 that Officer Training School finally relocated to its current location in Alabama. The Air Force’s Officer Training School is traditionally headed by an Air Force colonel. The Air Force Officer Training School is aligned with the Air Force ROTC program under the larger Air Force organization known as Air Force Officer Accession and Training Schools.

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Training at the Officer Training School of the United States Air Force and the Officer Candidate Schools of all of the other branches of the military is rigorous and difficult. However, those who complete Officer Training School are eligible for rewarding and professional positions as Air Force Officers. Those who manage to complete Officer Training School enjoy a satisfaction and pride at having made a real accomplishment and entered into an action packed and interesting career that allows them to contribute to protecting their nation. To learn more about what Officer Training School is and how one can qualify for Officer Training School, those who are interested can visit the Air Force website.