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Pulsar
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« on: January 26, 2014, 06:24:46 PM »

Combat Control Orientation Course 2011 (Civil Air Patrol)
Combat Control Orientation Course 2012 (Civil Air Patrol)



Quote
When YOU go to Combat Control Orientation Course...

Evan Salisbury
 

USAFCCOC.gif...you'll be in a terrific joint program of the United States Air Force and the Civil Air Patrol. It's an introduction to Combat Control, one of the most essential and risky jobs in the United States Air Force… and in the world. The first CCOC was held in July 2009 at Pope Air Force Base thanks to the Fayetteville Composite Squadron of the North Carolina Wing of Civil Air Patrol. It's a long way from lots of places-- Texas in my case-- to North Carolina. It's an even longer way from first wanting to go to the program to actually completing it.
Just applying in 2009 was tough, either in person at Pope Air Force Base on Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, NC, or by video recording of the mandatory assessments. 2010 applicants only have to solemnly swear they can meet the physical requirements then prove it at arrival (handy cadet survival tip: don't even think about saying you can meet them if, in fact, you cannot meet them). The organizers are among the most competent, mission focused people in Civil Air Patrol. Not only respected leaders in CAP, they're also actual Armed Forces Special Operators and Airborne Troopers. These folks are active duty Combat Controllers and Paratroopers and Search Evasion Resistance Escape (SERE) specialists. They're the ultra-sharp American military can-doers who cause no-goodniks worldwide many sleepless nights.

To get a student slot in CCOC you must run 2 miles in a crazy short time, swim 200 meters in an even shorter time, do a mean flexed arm hang and more perfect pushups and situps in a shorter time yet. They also do a serious attitude check on you in the Board of Review. Those who score a CCOC spot believe in and follow the CAP Core Values. If you're one of them, you'll love being there. Because the commander, planners and staff are so good, and because the students can hack it, the program is run for high intensity. So you've got to perform or be sent home fast. A quickness like "here's the phone, call your folks, get your gear, you're leaving RIGHT NOW" sent home.

After you're accepted you'll have a list of gear to get--along with yourself-- to North Carolina. You can drive, fly, take the train or, as I did, catch a priced-right Greyhound Bus (handy cadet survival tips: sit as far to the front as possible, drink nothing offered in a brown paper bag, and Vick's Vaporub daubed under the nostrils kills odors). After dozing with one eye open for about 36 hours on the bus, you arrive at the Fayetteville, NC bus station where some nice military types arrive in a real military Humvee to take you to Pope AFB. They smile a lot and make you feel right at home. Enjoy the laid back act for the moment but don't be fooled by it: Satan himself trembles when these guys go to work.


CCOC 2: Morning PT is designed to provide a workout, but focus is on teaching good habits in order to improve overall performance.
On Day 0 you go through inprocessing that's very unlike others. It's more like "initial-this-form- WHY-IS-THAT-POCKET-UNBUTTONED!!!?- DROP-AND-GIVE-ME-30-PUSHUPS!" and "Sign-this-form-YOUR-LEFT-SLEEVE-ISROLLED- WRONG!!!-GIVE-ME-25-FLUTTERKICKS!!!!" I can say one thing for the CCOC folks; they have fine manners and perfect diction. They'll thank you for pushups you just did before yelling at you to do them again "CORRECT-LY, THIS TIME, CA-DET!"
Next is the equipment check, in which your pack's contents get dumped out on the pavement and tossed around so that your gear malfeasances can be scorned by the staff. Smuggling contraband, like Texas beef jerky stashed in wrong-colored socks, is a double no-no. Everything wrong they find costs pushups and then more pushups correct-ly.

Those nice guys at supper last night are history. The fire breathers with you now are your intro to the Three Military Teaching Tools: Sarcasm, Ridicule and Fear. Those three will be up close and personal during the week (handy cadet survival tip: sarcasm, ridicule and fear flow one way only at CCOC, always in your direction. Do NOT make the mistake of trying to send it the other direction).

There's a fourth tool that deserves mention. It's the PT you'll do at CCOC. PT is led in the dark early morning by a Master Sergeant. That's "Master Sergeant" as in lots of years of thinking up ways to get you, dear reader, exhausted. Then he has you do some more just because. Morning PT is mere warm up for what you'll be doing the rest of the day as a result of your various screw-ups.

There's a reason they love PT at CCOC. It's a terrific teaching tool. Students soon stop screwing things up. Or at least start trying to stop. You'll actually come to understand it as part of the rigor of Combat Control Orientation Course.
 The first official exercise, which students are warned about at acceptance, is a repeat of the physical ability assessment. Anyone not completing the test this time goes home. Just like that, one cadet leaves. No appeals, no do-overs, no crying, no refund.


CCOC 3: More pull-ups, then on to some pullups, followed by some... pull-ups.

Students begin Day 1 at 0430hrs with just minutes to get in formation ready to double time to the PT field. Your first 0500hrs workout-- courtesy of the uberfit Master Sergeant-- you may survive. That's just for openers; each morning gets tougher than the one before in unpredictability and variety. Simple calisthenics one morning and then running flat out with two full jerry cans another. You never do anything the staff won't, a pointed lesson in leading from the front. This bedrock principle is integral to the history and mission of Combat Control. You see it and hear about it in great detail during the instruction and demonstrations of what it's all about.

Combat control is the spear point of the Air Force. It leads the Air Force in and guides their missions. It requires people who are tough, resilient, mentally prepared for all manner of difficult tasks, physically fit with tremendous stamina, able to work in teams, and also able to exercise individual initiative. Combat Controllers must handle the assignment, the unexpected, the accidental, the constant presence of Mr. Murphy (of Murphy's Law fame), the team members, people not on the team, everything imaginable and lots of things unimaginable. The Combat Control team is counted on to get the job done no matter what. Not much of a comfort zone there, come to think about it.

Combat Controllers come across as fairly ordinary guys. True, if you look closely there's none of that fast food flab on them. But other than that, they can pass for just ordinary anybodies in a crowd. You'll see some on duty wearing scruffy civvies, unmilitary beards and casually long hair. Still, there's something about them that warns you to behave yourself, to not mouth off at them, and for sure not to make any sudden moves in their direction. The hair standing up on the back of your neck is what's warning you. They can play real rough in Special Tactics, SERE, Airborne, and Combat Control.

The rest of the week looks at some of the ways and means that Combat Controllers master for their mission. Students get a much shorter yet still intense intro to the training that Combat Controllers go through. You'll be dazzled learning just a fraction of what they must know. You get a good sampling of their job, including of what they eat on the job; that miracle of modern food technology known as the MRE or Meal, Ready to Eat.

USAFCCOC_1.jpg
CCOC 4: Practice rifles casually pointed at the foot of the cadet who got the team PT'd for avoiding Meals, Rotten Eggs. They were eaten and scowled about after all.
Most MREs are good, some are pretty tasty, but a few aren't. Military foodies learn fast which MREs are nearly inedible. We also learn of the one to be avoided at all costs if possible.
The haters in CCOC call Cheese and Veggie Omelets the "Meal, Rotten Eggs," and many other names, none of them nice. The cadet handing out rations "disappears" the veggie cheese omelets as they appear, much to everyone's relief and good cheer. Until one morning the CCOC commander goes to get some himself some breakfast.

He finds the top MRE in the last case is a Cheese and Veggie Omelet. He hates them, too, so he tosses it aside and grabs the next one. It's also a Meal, Rejected by Everyone in CCOC. Vexed, he chucks it away and gets the third one down in the box. Then he looks at the fourth. Then at the fifth, the sixth, the seventh, the eighth and so on: defying the laws of statistics, all the MREs in the last case are the Meal, Readily Expectorated. You'd think a big, tough Combat Controller could stand a little MRE adversity and take his veggie cheese omelet like a man; a Last Pig to the Trough Rule sort of thing. But, no… it becomes a teachable item instead.


CCOC 5: Students get a grip on weapons simulators. Antitank weapon, machine gun, rifle, and pistol simulators (L to R) are just some of the tools Combat Controllers spend lots of time with to hone their combat skills.
Contrary to instructions, the MREs have been nonrandomly distributed leaving nothing for him but the Meal, Royal Excretion that he holds in his hand. Payback begins. Seething with indignation, he orders all the cadets to drop and "beat your faces," CCOCspeak for an ungodly number of pushups.
Then he holds up the second Omelet and orders more "beat your face" for that sin. "Beat Your Face" continues for each one, and there's way more of them than you'd care to know about. After doing that many pushups, you're almost willing to eat one to get your strength back; almost, but still not quite. No matter, CCOC chokes down Cheese and Veggie Omelets at mealtimes until they're all eaten.

Handy cadet survival tip: do what they say, when they say, exactly as they say or suffer for it. Combat Controllers carefully follow instructions that keep them alive. It's about surviving the parachute jumps and other death defying deeds their job calls for. That's serious business for them, and should be for us, too.

USAFCCOC_1.jpg
CCOC 6: Combat Controllers also certify as Air Traffic Controllers, and, like these students, practice on this very simulator.
With the exception of an actual jump, you'll parachute train in the same ways Combat Controllers and Airborne troopers train (we tried begging and pleading for actual High Altitude High Opening parachute jumps but all we got was more pushups). At CCOC you'll learn a lot about parachutes, practicing in simulators and jump stands to learn how they work, including jumping from a tall tower in chute harness (handy cadet survival tip: be sure to put the harness on and adjust it exactly like they say or you'll be writing your CCOC memoirs in soprano). Incredibly, you'll experience freefalling. It's the most exhilarating thing you have ever done in your life.
Combat Controllers have ways of making folks eager to do things they don't want to do. Some of their personal charm lies in the incredible firepower they can bring to bear. They train with a staggering array of weapons and munitions. Some of their training is done with ultra-realistic weapons simulators (we're not talking simple video games, here). You train on them, too, at CCOC! Want to blow up a tank? No problem, the anti-tank weapon simulator is so realistic you'll swear you actually did. Want to lay down some suppressive fire for a maneuvering fire team? You do it. Want to call in an air strike on an enemy position? You're on.

Combat Controllers are also FAA-certified Air Traffic Controllers. They can parachute in and establish landing zones and runways, then manage air traffic in and out of it, deep inside enemy territory if necessary. They train continually for those missions both outdoors and indoors. How about some military air traffic control experience while you're at CCOC? You get it, on their fully elaborated Air Traffic Control Simulator.

Then it's out to the live firing range for weapons training. A lot of actual use, too, not just a few rounds with a little .22 rifle like at CAP Wing Encampments. We're talking here about actual battlefield weapons. Even with safety provisions, there's no doubt you're doing some of the same weapons training that makes actual Combat Controllers the owners of any ground they may happen to drop in on. The small unit tactics they show you is part of weapons use readiness and is likely to be one of the coolest things you'll ever do in your entire CAP cadet career.

You value your fellow students at CCOC because they're with you, and you're all a team. It's a closeness that develops by the way the program is run. There'll be great North Carolina students-- male and female-- from one of the best run Wings in CAP, judging by the CCOC program. The Texan contributes amusing vernacular, with "varmint" in particular striking everybody as especially hilarious (it's an actual word; you can look it up in the dictionary for yourself). The cadet from New York City begins calling MREs "varmints," which some of them may have been at one time, for all we know. Indeed, "ya'll are fixin' to eat a nasty ol' varmint for breakfast" delivered newyawk-style is as good improv comedy as you can get for free.

USAFCCOC_1.jpg
CCOC 7: Students preparing to load magazines for the Air Force Qualification Course. The real M-16's are fed live ammo from the red boxes. Students get to shoot a lot of it.
Cadet Big Apple may or may not be at the center of the black-market for M&Ms, Skittles and Starburst that springs up by the second day. Swaps of an entire MRE pound cake are made for contraband candy that somehow got through inprocessing, unlike the beef jerky that didn't. But crime doesn't pay in CCOC. The sharp-eyed staffers toss the tents in a sudden shock and awe search-and-destroy for contraband and spot a Starburst wrapper. Yep, PT beyond description again, even more than for the Cheese and Veggie Omelet episode.
Way before you'd like, the course nears the end. But there's one more thing to do: you can take the Air Force Physical Ability and Stamina Test (PAST). This is the tough test of physical fitness that must be taken as a qualifier for Air Force Special Tactics. Completing the PAST at CCOC makes you eligible for the Combat Control training pipeline, if you enlist in the Air Force within 3 months. Cadets from the New York, North Carolina, and Texas CAP Wings pass, a great feeling of accomplishment that you should aim for, too. At the end of the Course you're not a Combat Controller by any means, but you can taste what it would be like to be one. It's that great of a program.

So, here's how to get into CCOC next year. Live up to the CAP Cadet Oath in all things you do so that it becomes a habit. Get yourself squared away in uniform, bearing, drill, knowledge and ambition. Train hard for the PAST to get to that level of physical conditioning. Join a track team, a swim team, and a gym so you can train and condition at all three daily. Work out hard beginning many months in advance and increase the level and tempo as CCOC nears. Work at being a good follower, work at being a good leader and especially learn to work really well in a team environment. Combat Control Orientation Course is well worth the big effort it takes. A last handy cadet survival tip: get fit and squared away, turn in your contraband, and enjoy those Cheese and Veggie Omelets. Go for it, and good luck!

CCOC 8: Students deploy in one of the small unit formations that are expertly used by Combat Controllers.

   
 

C/Major Evan Salisbury, C/CC Amarillo Tigershark Composite Squadron, TXWG



http://archive.cadetstuff.org/archives/000584.html




Soooo, any other experiences? Any CAP CCOC alumni here?
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C/LtCol Neutron Star
PAWG ENC 2013/ AMMA 2014/ NER W RCLS 2014-5 [Salutatorian] / NER Powered Flight Academy 2015

A fiery strength inspires their lives, An essence that from heaven
derives,..." - Vergil, The Aeneid

(C) Copyright 2013: Readers who choose to hardcopy my comments are entitled to specific rights, namely: you may print them off and read them repeatedly until you have memorized them and then rattle them off as if you had thought them up yourself; However if asked, you must say they were signaled to you from a neutron star.
RogueLeader
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« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2014, 10:06:23 AM »

I help start CCOC in 2009.  I was XO.
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Pulsar
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« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2014, 10:15:30 AM »

So
CCOC 2014 has still not released its dates. :(  The contact email on the website doesn't exists, and I'm not on facebook so I can't view their stuff on there either. I have two cadets who dumped all ncsas for this!
Any information would be appreciated...
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C/LtCol Neutron Star
PAWG ENC 2013/ AMMA 2014/ NER W RCLS 2014-5 [Salutatorian] / NER Powered Flight Academy 2015

A fiery strength inspires their lives, An essence that from heaven
derives,..." - Vergil, The Aeneid

(C) Copyright 2013: Readers who choose to hardcopy my comments are entitled to specific rights, namely: you may print them off and read them repeatedly until you have memorized them and then rattle them off as if you had thought them up yourself; However if asked, you must say they were signaled to you from a neutron star.
Pulsar
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Posts: 196
Unit: NER-PA----

« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2014, 12:53:13 PM »

please someone see this who knows something about it /\  /\  /\   :'(
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C/LtCol Neutron Star
PAWG ENC 2013/ AMMA 2014/ NER W RCLS 2014-5 [Salutatorian] / NER Powered Flight Academy 2015

A fiery strength inspires their lives, An essence that from heaven
derives,..." - Vergil, The Aeneid

(C) Copyright 2013: Readers who choose to hardcopy my comments are entitled to specific rights, namely: you may print them off and read them repeatedly until you have memorized them and then rattle them off as if you had thought them up yourself; However if asked, you must say they were signaled to you from a neutron star.
SarDragon
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« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2014, 07:27:42 PM »

Patience, Padawan, patience. The info will be posted when it is available. Constantly whining on here will not speed things up, nor will it endear you to anyone associated with the event who might be making slotting determinations.
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Dave Bowles
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RogueLeader
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« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2014, 07:11:37 PM »

As a side note, When I was there at Bragg, I wanted to leave and never return.

However, after 4 years gone, I wanna go back to Bragg. . . .
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PHall
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« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2014, 07:55:46 PM »

As a side note, When I was there at Bragg, I wanted to leave and never return.

However, after 4 years gone, I wanna go back to Bragg. . . .

Wyoming will do that to you! >:D
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RogueLeader
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« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2014, 09:45:52 PM »

Those people really do become family, and I miss that family.
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SilentPhantom
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« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2014, 07:37:54 PM »

Is there a reason there were no girls in either of the videos?
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C/2dLt
Eclipse
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« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2014, 07:48:26 PM »

Is there a reason there were no girls in either of the videos?

Either none applied, or those that did were less qualified then those that were accepted.
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"Effort" does not equal "results".
The contents of this post are Copyright 2017 by eclipse. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.

SilentPhantom
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« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2014, 08:02:37 PM »

I'm assuming cadets have to be in PT Catagory I to attend?
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C/2dLt
RogueLeader
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« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2014, 10:31:26 PM »

I'm assuming cadets have to be in PT Catagory I to attend?

Yes.  CCOC is VERY physically demanding.

Is there a reason there were no girls in either of the videos?
As I recall, Cadet Christina North is in the first (2009) video.
She is (I think) the only female to make it into CCOC.  I can unequivocally state that gender is not a determining factor in selection.  Everything else is: PT scores, attention to detail, professionalism are the keys.
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