Brothers 282nd Aero Composite Squadron - Civil Air Patrol


Many times people that are interested in our organization have some common questions. We have compiled and presented these here for review.


Is Civil Air Patrol part the United States Air Force or the military?
The Civil Air Patrol is an auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force (U.S.A.F). What that means is that CAP receives support, oversight, training, and funding from the U.S. Air Force. Members of CAP are not considered to be in the military, nor are they obligated to any kind of service to the armed forces. Members of the CAP will never be called upon for any type of wartime service.


Why do Civil Air Patrol members wear the Air Force style uniform?
As an auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, cadets and senior members both are able to wear both dress and field uniforms that closely resemble the Air Force style uniforms. For the cadets that do plan on entering the armed forces, their experience with the expectations and responsibilities of a military style uniform will be invaluable. For those members that do not wish to wear this style uniform or do not meet the applicable physical standards may choose from a variety of CAP distinctive uniforms.


What type of screening process is in place for adult members that work with cadets?
All adult officer members of Civil Air Patrol must submit to an FBI background check before being accepted as a member of the program. This background check includes the submission of a fingerprint card. All new officer members must also complete training on the Cadet Protection Policy and abuse prevention before being allowed to interact with the cadet members.


Do members of Civil Air Patrol have access to or experience with any military weapons?
Members of the CAP are generally not trained in the care or use of any type of dangerous weapon. Many Civil Air Patrol activities utilize military installations for housing, CAP training, and tours. During these activities members may have the opportunity to observe military operations. At no time will any CAP member be allowed to handle any weapon or dangerous ordinance.


What is the cost to join the Civil Air Patrol?
The cost of an annual membership is approximately $35-$75 per member, depending on the type of membership. Due to the fact that membership dues are distributed among the different command levels within CAP, actual costs tend to fluctuate periodically. This cost provides the member with their membership card, program study books, CAP binder, membership guide CD, dress uniform, uniform insignia, and a squadron uniform hat. Compared with other youth programs, Civil Air Patrol provides an excellent value for each dollar spent on membership dues!


What missions can I perform as a pilot?
There are several missions that CAP pilots can fulfill including offering cadet orientation flights; Air Force assigned Search and Rescue (SAR) missions; even working with counter drug interdiction flights. Your ability to contribute will depend upon your level of experience as a pilot, amount of time served in the Civil Air Patrol, availability of missions in your area, and time and resources you have allocated for service.


How long will it take before I can fly as a pilot?
This again depends upon your experience as a pilot and the length of time you have served in the Civil Air Patrol. Some missions flown by CAP pilots require a minimum of two years service in CAP prior to beginning training, other missions may be flown after you complete the Senior Member Level One Training and have completed and passed a flight evaluation with a CAP check pilot.


Can non-pilots get involved with flight missions?
Absolutely! On all CAP missions, the responsibility of the pilot is to FLY THE AIRPLANE! This creates an opportunity for non-pilots or pilots training for mission specialties to participate in a variety of missions as part of the crew. While these positions do require special CAP training, there is no requirement that pilots fill those roles.

Does my previous military grade or civilian experience transfer to senior membership in CAP?
NCO and Officer grades may be directly transferable to CAP officer grades. In addition, certain professional qualifications that are applicable to CAP's missions may qualify you for advanced grade in the officer program. Discuss your previous experience with the squadron personnel officer to determine eligibility.


How much time should I plan to participate in the Civil Air Patrol programs?
You get out of the program what you put into the program! Our regular squadron meetings are where the majority of our training and routine squadron business occurs. Almost every weekend there are specialized training classes for different aspects of the Civil Air Patrol program. In the summertime, week long CAP special activities occur across the nation. Again, these opportunities are voluntary, and designed to allow you to explore your interests as a member of Civil Air Patrol.


What sets the Wright Brothers 282nd Aero Composite Squadron apart from other squadron?
Civil Air Patrol is a vast organization with many different ways for members to make a difference. The leadership of our squadron is dedicated to providing each and every member with detailed personal support and mentoring. Our individual focus allows members to progress through the program at their own pace and focus on the aspects of the program that interest them the most. We offer each aspect of the program with equal emphasis, and we have a very experienced staff on hand to assist you. Stop by a squadron meeting and allow us to introduce you to the Squadron 282 experience!


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