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DA-20 Pilot's Guide Minimize




(IFS Diamond DA-20)

IFS (Initial Flight Screening) replaced the Initial Flight Training (IFT) program in October 2006.

  • Designation: 1st Flying Training Squadron (part of the 306th FTG based at USAFA)
  • Location: Pueblo Colorado.  Students are housed, fed, and trained in Doss IFS facilities.
  • Objective: Screen, motivate, and prepare pilot, combat systems officer (CSO), and remote-pilot candidates for entry into Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT).
  • Airfields: Pueblo Memoral Airport, as well as Fremont County Airport and Fowler Airport
  • Aircraft: Diamond DA-20
  • Syllabus: Course includes Academics (14 hours), Officer Development (24 hours), Ground Training (10 hours) and Flying (18 hours - 13 dual flights and 1 pattern solo). (Old syllabus can be seen here)
  • Operated by Doss Aviation, the company that ran flight screening at Hondo, Texas in the 1990s.
  • All active duty UPT students must undergo screening regardless of their PPL status, but AFRES students who hold a PPL do not. The Doss program is still undergoing class changes, but at capacity, the facility will have 14 classes a year.
  • A similar program (called AFS - Academy Flight Screening) was in place for UPT selectees graduating from the Air Force Academy, but has been discontinued, so Academy grads have been added to the Doss contract as well.
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IFS Facility Opened December 2006 Minimize
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IFS Operations Began October 2006 Minimize


KatanasAtPueblo.jpgby Tech. Sgt. Mike Hammond
Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs

10/13/2006 - PUEBLO, Colo. (AETCNS)  -- As the first students report for class, Air Education and Training Command will formally usher in a new era in flying training when Initial Flight Screening operations begin at Pueblo Memorial Airport today. 

The Initial Flight Screening program evaluates candidates hoping to enter Air Force aviation training either as pilots or combat systems officers. Doss Aviation is the contractor responsible for providing the facilities, flight instruction, aircraft, maintenance, emergency services and more for the program. The Air Force oversees IFS from a quality assurance perspective and also provides the students military training and supervision during the course of their instruction.

IFS is intended to standardize flight screening across the Air Force, according to Lt. Col. John Tomjack, commander of Detachment 1, a geographically separated detachment of the 306th Flying Training Group and the unit providing the military supervision and training to students. 

"The IFS program was designed to screen for aviation aptitude but also provide the military rigor and camaraderie missing in some general aviation programs," Colonel Tomjack said. "When we are at full scale operations, approximately 18 months from now, we will be the sole source of flight screening for all Reserve Officer Training Corps and Officer Training School aviation candidates."

Another positive aspect of IFS will be the introduction to military lifestyle provided during training. 

"Detachment 1 will prepare the students for the rigors of military life and aviation," Colonel Tomjack said. "IFS graduates will arrive at their Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training assignments better prepared to successfully complete the program."

The first IFS class begins with 15 students today. Within two years, the contract calls for every pilot and CSO candidate to go through IFS, except for Air Force Academy cadets, who train through a similar program at the Academy.

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