There are great opportunities for youth in the Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program.
- Flying & Flight Academy
- Civil Air Patrol Honor Guard & Color Guard
- A Challenging Physical Program
- Cadet Leadership School
- Cadet Officers’ School
- Ranger & Pararescue Schools
- Command Experience
- Wing Encampments
- Squadron Command Positions
- Added bonuses if you wish to join the military
Civil Air Patrol’s cadet program is a traditional military cadet program. CAP cadets wear modified versions of Air Force uniforms, hold rank and grade, and practice military customs and courtesies. They are also required to maintain physical fitness standards and are tested on their fitness and their knowledge of leadership and aerospace subjects for each promotion. This program is not unlike that of the Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC); the reason for this is primarily that the Air Force JROTC program was originally ‘cloned’ from the CAP Cadet Program in the 1960s. It should be noted that there are several key distinctions between the two programs.
The cadet program is composed of four phases (learning; leadership; command; executive), each of which is divided into several achievements. Achievements generally correspond to a grade promotion while phases are tied to a level of responsibility. The Cadet Program is executed at the local unit (squadron) level with weekly meetings and weekend activities, along with national and wing sponsored week- and multi-week long summer activities, of which encampments are an example.
Cadets have a rank structure similar to the United States Air Force enlisted and officer ranks. A cadet starts as a Cadet Airman and is promoted as he or she completes each achievement. To complete an achievement, a cadet must pass a physical fitness test as well as two written tests; one for leadership and one for aerospace education. Some exceptions apply to the cadet promotion process.
View Cadet Grade/Rank and Ribbons/Awards.