Aerospace Education in the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) is one of the three missions that are mandated by the law that created CAP. The Aerospace Education programs provide an understanding and an appreciation of aviation and of space exploration. A knowledge of Aerospace Education provides an understanding of the total impact of air and space technology upon our society.
What are the membership programs in Aerospace?
There are two special Aerospace Education programs for teachers and educators in the Civil Air Patrol. There is the Aerospace Education Member program (AEM) and the Aerospace Education Officer program (AEO).
The Aerospace Education Member program is for teachers and educators who want to have access to the Aerospace Education materials and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) materials. There is a one time membership fee of $35. This membership does not allow the member to wear the uniform or participate in Emergency Services activities and events. The Aerospace Education Member may participate in the Aerospace Education Excellence awards program and the Teacher Orientation Program (TOP) flights.
The Aerospace Education Officer is for teachers and educators who want to be a full participating member of the Civil Air Patrol. This membership has access to the Aerospace Education materials and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) materials. In addition, the Aerospace Education Officer wears the uniform and may participate in Emergency Services activities and events.
The Aerospace Education officer joins as a regular Senior Member of the Civil Air Patrol. After completion of Level 1 training, the unit commander submits the member for immediate promotion based on their education level and teaching experience, as detailed in the regulations. Their promotions are then based on their time in grade, per the regulations.
Why participate in the AEX program?
The Aerospace Education Excellence award program is not just fun for cadets, but it is fun for the Senior Members (Adults) as well. There are amazing projects and opportunities to learn. There is also recognition for completion. But, most of all, it is fun.
What is the Yeager award?
The Yeager award is the ribbon and certificate received after successful completion of the Aerospace Education Program Senior Member (AEPSM) test. There are actually two tests (Open Book). Either test can be taken at the choice of the member. The tests cover the information in the CAP book Aerospace: The Journey of Discovery. This can be downloaded from the e-services AE Downloads area. The test questions cover the basics of flight, history, aircraft, rockets, people, places, and dates. For example: Where did the Wright Brothers first fly their airplane? (Kitty Hawk, NC)
Completion of the Yeager Award is necessary to complete the requirements of the Senior Member Level III training. It is also a goal of the Texas Wing Commander that ALL Texas members successfully complete the Yeager Award.
How hard is it to get a Technician Rating in Aerospace Education?
It is not very hard at all. You have to get your commander to enroll you in the Aerospace Education Specialty track. There is a short (less than one page) checklist of things in the Civil Air Patrol Pamphlet 215. It has 12 items to accomplish. There is an online (open book) exam to pass. You have to have been enrolled in the specialty track and working toward the technician rating for six months. Your mentor or Professional Development Officer signs off on each accomplishment on the checklist. Your commander signs the checklist showing his approval and then the commander enters your specialty track technician rating into e-Services.
Annual Group/Squadron Aerospace Education Reports
All squadrons need to submit the annual report with required documentation of Aerospace Education Activities to the Group AEO by October 15. The online form is located on CAP e-Services.
Per CAP Regulation 280-2 all units and groups are now required to submit an AE Plan of Action (POA) for the next calendar year. The due date for Squadrons is October 15. This online form is also located on CAP e-Services.
Each Group Aerospace Education Officer will consolidate the Activity Reports and the Plan Of Action Reports from the Squadrons in that Group, and submit the consolidated reports using the online forms on CAP e-Services by November 15.