Airman

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U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 720th STG jumping out of a C-130J Hercules aircraft during water rescue training in the Florida panhandle 720th Special Tactics Group airmen jump 20071003.jpg
U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 720th STG jumping out of a C-130J Hercules aircraft during water rescue training in the Florida panhandle
NaviesArmiesAir forces
Commissioned officers
Admiral of
the fleet
Field marshal or
General of the Army
Marshal of
the air force
Admiral General Air chief marshal
Vice admiral Lieutenant general Air marshal
Rear admiral Major general Air vice-marshal
Commodore Brigadier or
brigadier general
Air commodore
Captain Colonel Group captain
Commander Lieutenant colonel Wing commander
Lieutenant
commander
Major or
Commandant
Squadron leader
Lieutenant Captain Flight lieutenant
Lieutenant
junior grade
or
sub-lieutenant
Lieutenant or
first lieutenant
Flying officer
Ensign or
midshipman
Second lieutenant Pilot officer
Officer cadet Officer cadet Flight cadet
Enlisted grades
Warrant officer or
chief petty officer
Warrant officer or
sergeant major
Warrant officer
Petty officer Sergeant Sergeant
Leading seaman Corporal or
bombardier
Corporal
Seaman Private or
gunner or
trooper
Aircraftman or
airman
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An Airman is a member of an air force or air arm of a nation's armed forces. In certain air forces, it can also refer to a specific enlisted rank. [1]

Air force military branch of service primarily concerned with aerial warfare

An air force, also known in some countries as an aerospace force or air army, is in the broadest sense, the national military branch that primarily conducts aerial warfare. More specifically, it is the branch of a nation's armed services that is responsible for aerial warfare as distinct from an army or navy. Typically, air forces are responsible for gaining control of the air, carrying out strategic and tactical bombing missions, and providing support to land and naval forces often in the form of aerial reconnaissance and close air support.

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In civilian aviation usage, the term airman is analogous to the term sailor in nautical usage. In the American Federal Aviation Administration usage, an airman is any holder of an airman's certificate, male or female. This certificate is issued to those who qualify for it by the Federal Aviation Administration Airmen Certification Branch.

Sailor person who navigates water-borne vessels or assists in doing so

A sailor, seaman, mariner, or seafarer is a person who works aboard a watercraft as part of its crew, and may work in any one in a number of different fields that are related to the operation and maintenance of a ship.

Federal Aviation Administration United States Government agency dedicated to civil aviation matters

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the United States is a national authority with powers to regulate all aspects of civil aviation. These include the construction and operation of airports, air traffic management, the certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets during the launch or re-entry of commercial space vehicles.

United States Air Force

USAF Airman insignia E2 USAF AM.svg
USAF Airman insignia

In the U.S. Air Force, airman is a general term which can refer to any member of the United States Air Force, regardless of rank, and also a specific enlisted rank. The rank of airman (abbreviated "Amn") is the second enlisted rank from the bottom, just above the rank of Airman Basic, and just below that of Airman First Class. Since the Air Force was established in 1947, all of the various ranks of "airman" have always included women, and in this context, the word "man" means "human being". Former U.S. Air Force ranks included Airman Second Class and Airman Third Class. [Note 1] The current E-2 paygrade rank of Airman was called Airman Third Class from 1952 to 1967.

Airman Basic

Airman Basic (AB) is the lowest enlisted rank in the United States Air Force (USAF), immediately below Airman. The pay grade for airman basic is E-1.

A person with the rank of Airman Basic is typically promoted to the rank of Airman after six months of active duty service in the Air Force, if that member had signed up for an enlistment period of at least four years of active duty. On the other hand, an enlistee could be promoted to the rank of Airman immediately after completing Air Force basic training (and thus paid somewhat more) given one of several additional qualifications:

Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps

The Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) is a federal program sponsored by the United States Armed Forces in high schools and also in some middle schools across the United States and United States military bases across the world. The program was originally created as part of the National Defense Act of 1916 and later expanded under the 1964 ROTC Vitalization Act.

Eagle Scout (Boy Scouts of America) Boy Scoutings highest award

Eagle Scout is the highest achievement or rank attainable in the Scouts BSA program of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). The designation "Eagle Scout" was founded over one hundred years ago. Only four percent of Boy Scouts are granted this rank after a lengthy review process. The requirements necessary to achieve this rank take years to fulfill. Since its founding, the Eagle Scout rank has been earned by almost 2.5 million youth.

Boy Scouts of America Scouting organization in the United States

The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is one of the largest Scouting organizations and youth organizations in the United States, with about 2.4 million youth participants and about one million adult volunteers. The BSA was founded in 1910, and since then, about 110 million Americans have been participants in BSA programs at some time. The BSA is part of the international Scout Movement and became a founding member organization of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1922.

Those enlistees who have qualified for these early promotions to the rank of Airman are allowed to wear their single airman insignia stripe during the Air Force basic training graduation ceremony at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. They also receive a retroactive pay increment that brings them up to the pay grade for an Airman upon their completion of basic training. (Thus, it is as if they have enlisted as Airmen on the first day, as far as their pay is concerned. However, if they do not complete basic training and are discharged, they do not receive the extra pay.)

Lackland Air Force Base US Air Force base near San Antonio, Texas, part of Air Education and Training Command

Lackland Air Force Base is a United States Air Force base located in Bexar County, Texas. The base is under the jurisdiction of the 802d Mission Support Group, Air Education and Training Command (AETC) and an enclave of the city of San Antonio. It is the only entry processing station for Air Force enlisted Basic Military Training (BMT).

While at the rank of Airman, the duties of enlisted personnel include adjusting to the Air Force way of military life and becoming proficient in their Air Force duty specialties. Note that upon leaving basic training, all Airmen enter a period of many weeks or many months of training at Air Force schools in their duty specialties that they and the Air Force have selected for them depending on their aptitudes and interests, and the needs of the Air Force. For Airmen with high aptitudes, some of these training programs include more than one school and take a year or more to complete.

Airmen are often nicknamed “mosquito wings" due to the insignia's resemblance to a mosquito’s small wings.

Mosquito family of insects

Mosquitoes are a group of about 3500 species of small insects that are a type of fly. Within that order they constitute the family Culicidae. The word "mosquito" is Spanish for "little fly". Mosquitoes have a slender segmented body, a pair of wings, three pairs of long hair-like legs, feathery antennae, and elongated mouthparts.

United States Navy

USN Seaman (E-3) insignia (Airman) E3 AM USN.png
USN Seaman (E-3) insignia (Airman)
USN Seaman Apprentice (E-2) insignia (Airman) E2 AM USN.png
USN Seaman Apprentice (E-2) insignia (Airman)

In the U.S. Navy, Airman is the enlisted rank that corresponds to the pay grade of E-3 in the Navy's aviation field, but it is just below the rank of Petty Officer Third Class, pay grade E-4. [Note 2]

United States Coast Guard

In the U.S. Coast Guard, the ranks are very similar or identical to the ones in the U.S. Navy, and a Coast Guard airman is identical in rank and pay to an Airman in the Navy. Coast Guard Airman is the enlisted rank that corresponds to the pay grade of E-3 in the Coast Guard's aviation field. (Note that Airman includes females; here "man" means "human being".) Airman is just above the Coast Guard rank of airman apprentice, Seaman Apprentice, fireman apprentice which is the E-2 pay grade, but it is just below the rank of Petty Officer Third Class, E-4 pay grade.

See also

Notes

  1. In 1967, there was significant reorganization of the enlisted ranks, and the former rank of "Airman First Class" became an "Air Force Sergeant"; the former "Airman" became the new "Airman First Class"; the former "Airman Second Class" became an "Airman"; and the former "Airman Third Class" became an "Airman Basic". All of the pay and fringe benefit grades remained as they were, just associated with new and less cumbersome rank names.
  2. The following Navy rates (actual job names and functions) fall within the category of "Airman" and are all at the E-3 pay grade:
    • AD: aviation machinist's mate
    • AE: aviation electrician's mate
    • AG: aviation aerographer's mate
    • AM: aviation structural mechanic
    • AME: aviation structural mechanic (egress)
    • AO: aviation ordnanceman
    • AS: aviation support equipment technician
    • AT: aviation electronics technician
    • AW: aviation warfare systems operator
    • AZ: aviation maintenance administrationman

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Senior airman

Senior Airman (SrA) is the fourth enlisted rank in the United States Air Force, just above Airman First Class and below Staff Sergeant. It has a pay grade of E-4. Between its approval on 30 December 1975 and 19 March 1991, Senior Airmen wore sleeve chevrons with blue center stars instead of silver to distinguish them from the non-commissioned officer rank of "Sergeant", also a pay grade of E-4. The latter was abolished in 1991 and the blue center star was changed to white to conform to all enlisted rank chevrons.

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