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Has anyone here recently been through AF COT & NTP?

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by userdc userdc (New) New

I think I'm going to COT (Maxwell) in Jan 2017 and NTP (SAMMC) immediately after, and I have a lot of random questions about COT & NTP. Has anyone here recently gone through these programs? If so, would any of you be willing to answer a lot of probably dumb questions about it. They're not really general big picture questions, but more of small, miscellaneous questions about day-to-day life during those times.

Background: I'm the first NECP student to pass through my detachment, and they don't really know what they're doing with me. It would be awesome to pick the brain of someone who's been through these programs first hand. Thanks in advance.

jfratian, MSN, RN

Specializes in ICU. Has 9 years experience.

COT is basically the diet coke version on AF Basic Training (BMT). It's 4.5 weeks and pretty kush for a prior enlisted person. NTP is similar to your tech school. It's 3 months of 'how to be a nurse.' What questions do you have?

COT was about 5 weeks. My advice is to get your uniform before you go. Get them altered as needed and name tapes, rank etc placed. They should provide you with a list. You don't have to do this because at COT, they will take you to do this. But it's a headache when they lose something or items are not finished on time. And what ever you forgot, get it while you are there. you will only need 2-3 civilian outfits. You hardly wear normal clothes.

I would also start practicing your physical fitness and make sure you can pass the PT test. They will have you do a PT test at COT. And you will run a 5k. This test does not count for the real AF. You will have to take another one for the AF. That's what my experience was. Bring a computer because you will have homework to do. If you are driving and have your own small printer, take it. It helps save time vs waiting for everyone to print their homework from the lobby printers (I think there's 3). You can have snacks in your room too. Since I drove, I brought everything. I was looking for my comfort. COT was a lot of fun and I made great life long friends there. That's more to teach you about the AF and military customs.

NTP is just a refresher of nursing skills. You will go to class, have a little homework and clinicals. I am currently at SAMMC. It's big and can be intimidating but it's a great teaching hospital. I love it there. If you have more questions let me know. have fun and good luck! You can make your experience fun or bad. Have fun with it. None of it has been awful.

I did have a friend who hated COT. But he stressed himself out. He was a big time control freak who wanted everything perfect. He took on a leadership position of flight commander at COT and tried to control his whole flight and micro manage vs gaining the respect of his flight and having them work for and with him. He ended up being in the military for about 4 years and then got out. Too bad because he was a hard worker and had so much potential. So, it's how you make your experience.

Hey tjacobs23, thanks so much for the detailed response. I think at this point, I'm more worried about NTP than COT. COT had a website that had a lot of info on what to expect/bring, but do you know if the NTP at SAMMC has one like that too? I couldn't find anything via google. All my stuff is going into storage during both COT and NTP, and I wanted to make sure I pack adequately to cover both training processes. What kind of living arrangements are done during NTP? How many days/hours are you working for NTP? Is it 3x 12s or is it more M-F for several hours? How much free time do you get in NTP? Is it training/working and your free time is real free time (or is it limited in any way?). What kind of uniform do you wear during NTP? Will it be scrubs or our ABU's? If scrubs, are we required to have a specific color/type of shoe?