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  1. #21
    atcNinja's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    For all of you guys that think "VRA's should go quickly", think again.

    LawnGnome and PCFunk both know me personally, as we all go back a stretch. I've been applying longer than LawnGnome (comparison's sake only, no bad blood... I'd still take a bullet for both of these guys), quite naturally since I separated prior to him, and I am just now getting into the processing stages, yet he had a contract tower job and is now with the FAA. We have comparable (nearly identical) professional backgrounds, 4-year college degrees, and years of experience prior to initial ATC jobs on the civvie-side.

    My journey includes:

    I got hosed by 3 contractors (RVA, MidWest, and --at the time-- SERCO), graduated summa cum laude (4.0 / 4.0), have a previous CTO and existing pink card, and rate 5 VRA (non-competitive placement) preference points for life (2 campaign medals).

    I didn't start getting feelers at all until PUBNAT4 of this year. I got to sit for the AT-SAT, nearly aced it (view my siggie), and only then did I get placed on the VRA Terminal referral list for Illinois (after my scores post from the test), although nothing else changed in my file except for the test results.

    Illinois was my 4th choice on the geo-preferences list, but they won out due to their "fresh souls needed" count statewide being greater than that of my top 3 choices, so they got vacancy-filling dibs, and 'gambled' on me (probably did a 'start at the top of the referral list and go downward', much like an NFL draft). If not for that, I'd still be sitting here rotting.

    Cheer up, especially if your past isn't quite so fun filled or long, as I have been playing this game since August 22, 2003 (pre-dating the ASAP system)!

    If you are contact as an "OTS Applicant", DO NOT WAVE OFF!!! The market is so tough right now (filled with willing VRA folks, it might be 3-4 years before you get another approach for career landing as a general public announcement candidate.
    • 10-29-09: OKC Class Start
    • 12-21-09: Local Control PV - Passed
    • 12-22-09: Ground Control PV - Passed

    On the Road to ORD

  2. #22
    The Heatles's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    If you are VRA eligable then why did you apply under a PUBNAT listing and take the AT-SAT?? Thats why its taking you forever

  3. #23
    atcNinja's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    BZ,

    Until I was able to take the AT-SAT, nothing at all had happened up to that point. Once I had taken it, the VRA announcements I had always been applying for finally started to do their job. I have applied for all hiring announcements, PUBNAT, VRA-CT, and VRA-TR (and a couple of those for retired military only ones, too... just for good measure) since March 2003 (120 days out from original EAS) .

    Yes, I know... that was a crap load of paper copy SF-171s back in those early days prior to the ASAP system being online and functional. I can probably still find a form-fillable pdf version on my lappy somewhere.

    The PUBNAT 4 announcement finally woke those bats in the belfry up to the idea that my applications are not fraudulent or something, because the AT-SAT proved something (as best I can figure).

    To all other the VRA eligibles: Just because PUBNAT is for OTS, do not skip it.... you get non-competitive priority in this group... all acceptable VRAs would (going by the letter of the order here) get processed one way or another prior to any non-VRA eligibles even being considered. The only real difference between the VRA announcements and the PUBNATS: VRA is exclusively VRA candidates, whereas PUBNAT is open to anybody and everybody (who is a US Citizen), VRA or otherwise qualified.
    Last edited by atcNinja; 11-13-2008 at 08:03 AM. Reason: Added last paragraph
    • 10-29-09: OKC Class Start
    • 12-21-09: Local Control PV - Passed
    • 12-22-09: Ground Control PV - Passed

    On the Road to ORD

  4. #24
    ATCs1222's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    Is out for Terminals only, just like i expected nothing for NY or NJ. sighh...

  5. #25
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    Quote Originally Posted by atcNinja View Post
    BZ,

    Until I was able to take the AT-SAT, nothing at all had happened up to that point. Once I had taken it, the VRA announcements I had always been applying for finally started to do their job. I have applied for all hiring announcements, PUBNAT, VRA-CT, and VRA-TR (and a couple of those for retired military only ones, too... just for good measure) since March 2003 (120 days out from original EAS) .

    Yes, I know... that was a crap load of paper copy SF-171s back in those early days prior to the ASAP system being online and functional. I can probably still find a form-fillable pdf version on my lappy somewhere.

    The PUBNAT 4 announcement finally woke those bats in the belfry up to the idea that my applications are not fraudulent or something, because the AT-SAT proved something (as best I can figure).

    To all other the VRA eligibles: Just because PUBNAT is for OTS, do not skip it.... you get non-competitive priority in this group... all acceptable VRAs would (going by the letter of the order here) get processed one way or another prior to any non-VRA eligibles even being considered. The only real difference between the VRA announcements and the PUBNATS: VRA is exclusively VRA candidates, whereas PUBNAT is open to anybody and everybody (who is a US Citizen), VRA or otherwise qualified.
    dude, im VRA/CTO and I started applying in April, hit a few bumps with my security clearance and I start the academy on Nov 25th. You def screwed up somewhere, If you have all those quals then it should have been a 6-month process tops!!! I know when I was applying to ASAP, I wasnt checking that I would accept a term appt and that was a automatic disqualifier, also if you dont send in ur CTO prior to the announcement closing, it disqualifies u. I dont know man, seems like that is alot of nonsense you had to do, have u been in contact with Avaiation Careers??

  6. #26
    atcNinja's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    VBeachR32 and all (as this contains clarifications to some very popular misconceptions):

    I had contacted Aviation Careers (6 or 7 times) and most of the regional offices (4 or 5 times each), and kept getting the "we are not currently filling vacancies", to which I always asked "Then why are you posting announcements?" or "Why are you requesting that announcements be posted?" No responses were ever received for that question.

    [BEGIN-RANT]
    I bet Congress knows why, though. Budget Padding: acting like you need money to get more money. Example: "See guys, we are hiring, now can we get the money we need to pay these new hires?" In reality, no referral lists were ever created for many of those old announcements, meaning nobody could be hired, since a list of potentials wasn't forwarded to a hiring office. But Congress didn't know that, because they didn't apply (a key step which is necessary to be updated as to the status of the hiring lists from a given announcement).
    [/END-RANT]

    I have always selected all of the road warrior options:
    • travel 35+ days per month....I know, it's a joke
    • temp, term, part-time, and full-time - all announcements state "temporary excepted appointments not to exceed (13) months while attending training"
    • I have a scan of fronts and backs of pink card and cto that I always fax through (to the fax number provided). It is no longer provided, though, and they simply state to provide proofs upon request.


    CTOs & VRA Announcements
    Lack of a CTO does NOT disqualify you from a VRA posting, just the possibility of getting a $20,000 sign-on bonus (if you actively pushed traffic around within the previous 2 years). The VRA Announcement and having a CTO and not mutually exclusive.

    They just require you to have: 52 consecutive weeks of ATC experience demonstrating the applicant has knowledge of (not necessarily application of) the KSAOs to be an ATCer.

    It only ever refers to "having a knowledge of", not "having a history of exceptional application of", so true experience isn't even required by the posting either.

    Thus, a CTI grad or other aviation major (gaining a knowledge of many things ATC) who is a VRA eligible (but has no experience yet) can - and should - apply via this avenue, too, regardless of their specialty while in the service, as they meet the requirements. It is just on them to prove this within the limited text areas of the ASAP system.

    On to the VRA
    VRA is for prior service military, regardless of experience. The FAA simply requires their VRAs to also have active experience, although VRA is also applicable in their PUBNAT announcements (VRA has the most weight there, as it gives you preference over others in competitive external hiring... which is what all of their announcements not labeled solely as FAA-WIDE or INTERNAL ONLY are.

    Do not misinterpret their application of the VRA system as the way it actually works, as most VRAs would get hired much quicker via a PUBNAT than they ever would using just the VRA announcements. This is because VRA against OTS results in VRA being placed at the top of the stack from the start, not as a result of primary qualification determinations (the 'first cut' is what HR calls this). So, you automagically make it to 'stage 2', and receive an additional 5 or 10 points to your 'hiring score', depending on VRA status.

    When you only apply to VRA postings, your points are cancelled out by their points, and those people getting 10-points (service connected disabilities mostly) become the top of that stack. You are essentially voluntarily placing yourself back on the bottom of the stack by only applying for VRA postings.

    Just some things for the rest of you VRA folks to think about.
    • 10-29-09: OKC Class Start
    • 12-21-09: Local Control PV - Passed
    • 12-22-09: Ground Control PV - Passed

    On the Road to ORD

  7. #27
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    nah ur wrong about that VRA thing. My 6 month hiring process was atypical in that it took longer than most other VRA's. I was a controller for 8 years and in the last 2 years of my military career I personally know of 4 people that I used to work with that were hired under VRA and were cleared through in under 3 months. I guarantee there is not one OTS hired under PUBNAT that can say they were hired in under 3 months. Guarantee that. Get off ur soapbox dude, its not a guarantee that your hired cause ur qualified, maybe they just dont want u

  8. #28
    Roddy_Piper's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    Quote Originally Posted by atcNinja View Post
    Do not misinterpret their application of the VRA system as the way it actually works, as most VRAs would get hired much quicker via a PUBNAT than they ever would using just the VRA announcements.
    Dude, i think you are way off here. I read your reasoning and it makes sense on paper. 5 or 10 point veteran preference over OTS. But, I've already been in the FAA once before, resigned, and now rehired...by ONLY using VRA announcements. I'd have to say you were doing something wrong. If you were doing paper applications then you've been applying since 2005 or so. For you not to be hired even once yet means something is not adding up.

    The pubnat way is much much longer. For one, you'll have to take the AT-SAT (as u had to). That alone will chew up half a year. So, Yes, if you get selected through pubnat and get selected to take the AT-SAT, chances are you will get in before all of the OTS guys. But, you will still take longer to get in than the VRAs in a VRA announcement.

    I hope u get hired soon cuz I have the feeling either you are getting the run around or those idiots at HR had lost your paperwork years ago.

  9. #29
    tlacourse's Avatar
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    I don't know why it wold take that long applying. I am still on active duty and don't get out til 28 Feb 08, and I have already gotten my email and conducted my interview. I am suppose to get my TOL with in the next week or so, but I don't know what to expect after that. If anyone has any info on what happens after that let me know

  10. #30
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    Re: How long after an FAA announcment closes can I expect to hear from them?

    Quote Originally Posted by tlacourse View Post
    I don't know why it wold take that long applying. I am still on active duty and don't get out til 28 Feb 08, and I have already gotten my email and conducted my interview. I am suppose to get my TOL with in the next week or so, but I don't know what to expect after that. If anyone has any info on what happens after that let me know
    Once you get your TOL you will have to either accept the position with the facility they offer you. Then you will have to complete and sign like 50 pieces of documentation, do the SF-86 security clearance, and then your medical exam and your psych exam (which is the oddest group of questions your likely to ever see) As long as your truthful on ur SF-86 you should clear after a couple months. With u not having ur DD-214 yet though, you wont be able to accept an FOL until u get it and send it to them. Good luck man

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