Career Options for High-Demand Officer Jobs in the Air Force
Officer jobs in the Air Force are available in a variety of departments and generally require a four-year degree. Individuals who already posses a four-year degree may enter at an officer level, while enlisted airmen can become officers after earning a degree and/or completing officer training. Positions in the Air Force provide competitive pay along with housing, insurance, and other incentives. Some of the current officer positions that are in-demand are those in areas of aircraft maintenance, special ops, security, medical, ordnance disposal, and education. Examples of these careers include:
|Job Title||Average Salary*|
|Air Traffic Control Managers||$96,800|
|Field Physicians and Surgeons||$121,483|
|Fleet Maintenance Managers||$91,985|
|Law Enforcement Officers||$104,086|
|Professors and Instructors||$96,608|
|Tactical Professors and Instructors||$95,656|
Source: *U.S. Department of Defense
Career Information for Officer Jobs in the Air Force
Air Traffic Control Managers
The U.S. Air Force has a need for air traffic controllers. Air traffic control managers are the officers who manage and work with air traffic controllers. These managers direct the operations of control centers and airfields, prepare flight plans, monitor aircrafts, and train and evaluate personnel. Air traffic control managers typically need a four-year degree in subjects such as business or science.
Field Physicians and Surgeons
Field physicians and surgeons work in clinics and hospitals where they are needed, included combat zones. The Air Force has a need for medical service providers in combat, who are responsible for treating soldiers in a variety of environments. Officers need a four-year degree at minimum, though field physicians and surgeons need medical training and will undergo extensive training and may qualify for medical scholarships.
Fleet Maintenance Managers
The U.S. Air Force has a demand for tactical aircraft maintenance workers. They are responsible for maintaining aircrafts such as strike-fighters, to ensure the aircraft will be ready when needed. Fleet maintenance managers are officers who coordinate and supervise these and other maintenance workers. They may also develop maintenance schedules, operations procedures, and performing maintenance on aircraft and other equipment.
Intelligence offers are experts in planning and executing intelligence operations, and they may specialize in certain types of intelligence such as imagery, human intelligence, all-source intelligence, or signals. Intelligence officers create and implement policies and plans to facilitate intelligence operations. These officers need to have a four-year degree and complete applicable on-the-job training. The Air Force has a demand for intelligence and surveillance airmen in special reconnaissance.
Law Enforcement Officers
Law enforcement officers typically work in office settings managing and directing other law enforcement personnel. The Air Force has a demand for law enforcement in their security forces. These officers help to ensure law and order on their assigned bases. Officers need a four-year degree and an interest in crime prevention and law enforcement, and they receive extensive training on the job.
Explosive ordnance disposal positions are in high demand in the Air Force. Ordnance officers are responsible for overseeing and directing Air Force weapons, ammunition, and ordnance disposals. These officers need a four-year degree, and are trained on the job to make critical decisions relating to handling, transporting, and disposing of ordnances.
Ordnance specialists are responsible for a variety of tasks including receiving, storing, transporting, and disposing of ordnances. Explosive ordnance disposal airmen are in high demand, and ordnance specialists are the officers who perform these duties. While ordnance specialists need to have a four-year degree, they also receive extensive training on how to properly assess and prepare weapons and ordnances.
Professors and Instructors
Another one of the positions that is in-demand in the Air Force is instructors in survival, evasion, resistance, and escape (SERE). Officer positions require a four-year degree and an expertise in the subject matter that they teach, and they may have additional civilian certification or licensure. SERE instructors provide instruction primarily within classrooms, and they educate airmen on how to survive in some of the most hostile and remote environments, preparing them for a variety of situations.
Security forces specialists are also in-demand in the U.S. Air Force; they are responsible for protecting some of the most-valued assets in the military. Security specialists are officers who conduct assessments for risks and vulnerability, evaluate crime, and make recommendations for courses of action. Officers typically need a four-year degree and are provided with training on the job.
Tactical Professors and Instructors
Tactical professors and instructors are officers who provide military-specific instruction in lecture halls and classrooms. The Air Force currently has a demand for special tactics airmen in the following categories: tactical air control party (TACP), special reconnaissance (SR), pararescue (PJ), and combat controller (CCT). Tactical instructors will need a four-year degree and extensive experience or knowledge in their subject area in order to effectively teach other members of the Air Force techniques and operations related to their specialties.