15 Q in the Army


Oct 28, 2015
I have many questions that I hope can be answered.
im 18 and in the process of enlisting into the army for 15q I have wanted to be an ATC since my freshman year of high school. I have talked to a few controllers and they all said go military. My ASVAB score didnt qualify me for ATC in the air force but it did in the army. the army is the only branch that guarantees the enlistment position. I dont want to go into the airfoce and be stuck in a mos that i hate. my cousin went into the air force and listed his five jobs he wanted and didnt get any of them. Ive read recently that ATC in the Army is all tactical ACT and mostly just GAC with only fixed wing aircraft and that the FFA wont recognize that for a CTO certificate. Is all of this true? Is the military the best route? or would the CTI school in valdosta Georgia a better route for getting a CTO?

Any help is much appreciated


Junior Member
Nov 26, 2013
I'm not military, but CTI won't do you any good anymore since they phased it out. Best bet is to ride it out and hope for some kind of transfer option to fixed wing down the road if they don't accept the Army's program.

SSgt Young

StuckMic Marine Corps Liaison
Jan 21, 2010
Talk to the Marine Corps or Navy. The Marine Corps won't guarantee you ATC but the Navy sometimes does. Any branch is better than the Army for ATC. It is true that the Army only allows its controllers to do tactical type training. There is a plan in the works to send soldiers to ATC facilities to allow them to get a CTO or some radar training. This is still in the infant stages and nothing has really been worked out yet. If you continue with the army, you may or may not be allowed to actually learn how to control aircraft. Any other branch is a crap shoot whether you get the job. If you manage to get your asvab high enough, you will have no issues getting the job you want.


Senior Member
Jun 14, 2012
The Navy most definitely will guarentee you ATC school, its just up to you to pass it, other wise its 5 yrs of another job. Just have to make sure its in the contract. You normally sign a base of 4 yrs Navy, and add a year for ATC school for a five year commitment.


Trusted Member
Apr 23, 2011
If your heart is set on ATC do not join the Army. It's not impossible to get a cto but it is impossible to get an approach ticket. Radar will consist of a PAR or tactical equivalent. In 12 years as a dod controller at Ft. Campbell, we trained maybe 5 people successfully in the tower. Most of those happened in early 2000 when they actually gave us a few to train and use for staffing. They stopped that around 03-04. Seriously, if you want to be a controller and the af won't take you, join the navy or marines. Or pay someone to tudor you for the asvab.


Senior Member
Sep 10, 2008

I've worked for the Army at 2 locations. At the first, a couple kids at a time would come over to train (when not deployed). I mean that literally when I say a couple. I don't know how large their company was, but I imagine 30-40 soldiers stayed behind to do preventive maintenance on HUMVEEs and such while 2 kids entered the CTO program, another 2 entered the GCA.

In 4 years where I am now, 2 kids on once occasion came to pick up a GCA qual. That's it.

Here is my two cents as a former recruiter. Don't join anything for the job. Are you kidding me? If you want to join the Army, join the :p:p:p:p:p:p:p Army, if you want to join the Marines, join the :p:p:p:p:p:p:p Marines, etc....etc...etc.

I get it, the whole outlook is a tangible relationship, "what can I get out of it, what are you {respective service} going to give me?" (Army is terrible at this with marketing their "please join me campaigns"). But you are talking about the military. The US military is an organization that exists to kill people. I don't mean that in any derogatory way, I'm a proud child of Veterans, a Veterans of the US Marines, and an employee of the DOD.

Stop joining for the freebies, join for greater purposes. It is this mentality of joining merely for enlistment 'option A', or' 'freebie B' that gets you a group of suck-a-weenies that have a bad attitude their entire time in and are just counting the days until their contract is up. Not to mention, there will be that time you have to man a .50 cal. on a perimeter in some shithole.
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