Best route for new grad to become commissioned officer RN in military (prefer Air Force)


In need of advice from people with military experience about starting my nursing career in the military. I want to serve and give back to a country I felt gave so much to me.

I graduated from nursing school, acquired my BSN, passed the NCLEX and had submitted my application for the Air Force Nurse Transition Program (the only way for a new grad nursing student to enter the Air Force). I sadly found out this week I wasn't accepted. Not feeling discouraged though!

This has been a recent calling in my life, so I did not do ROTC in high school or college (which I feel may have worked against me in my application).

So my question is: what next with wanting to be an active commissioned officer in the air force? (or time for me to expand my horizon with other branches perhaps?)

I'm so eager to start, and really want to know whats the best step to take that will lead to me fully investing in the military. I view this as a life long career, want to eventually get more into the managing and leadership side of nursing / hospital administration within the air force.

I have started looking into:

-the national guard

-the air force reserves

-applying to the air force as an experienced FQ nurse

Things I am learning:

-With guard/reserves make sure your recruiter applys you properly so you have a change to go to officer training.

-With guard/reserves, I cant apply as a nurse yet, I need to have 6 months experience. and the base has to have a need for nurses

-applying as FQ means I'm competing against people with a lot more experience than me, but I realllyyy want to be in the air force within the next 2 years if possible.

Thoughts / advice / your experiences would be so so appreciated! Thank you :)

Neats, BSN

682 Posts

Specializes in Case Manager/Administrator. Has 14 years experience.

If your heart is set on the air force I would contact the Air National Guard or the Air Force Reserves. The "Guard's" (Army/Air Force/Navy/Marines/Coast Guard) are run by the state in which you live (maybe not the coast guard). The "Reserve's" are run by the Federal Government.

If you live near a military institution I would go talk to the head nurse at the hospital. Ask for a tour of the facility they might let you in.

Look for career fairs they always have military personnel looking for the right people. Lastly go to a recruiter or visit the web site for military branches Army/Marines/Navy and Air Force. Stick to what you what you want, negotiate your contract. Get in shape.

Whishing you the best in taking care of our heroes one day.

nurse2033, MSN, RN

3 Articles; 2,133 Posts

Specializes in ER, ICU.

I'm going to take wild stab and guess you are under 30. If so, that means you have many years to gather nursing experience to make yourself more competitive. Get a nursing job, get professional certifications, volunteer, live your life with honor and integrity. In no time you will be a rock star and when you reapply, you will be a top candidate. Good luck.