NEW CADET GUIDE
Civil Air Patrol National Headquarters has a New Cadet Guide available to help you navigate your initial training. You are highly encouraged to print it or save a copy to your phone or tablet to study at your leisure. You can find that Guide available here.
When to Wear a CAP Uniform
- CAP personnel are generally authorized to wear CAP uniforms to participate in
CAP-sponsored activities such as unit meetings, training events, conferences, etc. The appropriate
uniform for a given activity is determined by the applicable commander or activity director using
information found in CAPM 39-1 Table 1.1 and considering the minimum basic uniform requirements.
- Members are normally required to wear a CAP uniform (either USAF- or
Corporate-style) when working with cadets, when flying in a CAP aircraft (Corporate or member owned
aircraft used in a CAP flight activity), or when conducting business under a CAP mission number (A, B,
or C). Region commanders, wing commanders, and activity directors may stipulate appropriate civilian
clothes while traveling to and from events by ground, or during events not involving flight where it is
appropriate to wear civilian clothes.
- CAP members attending a military or civilian event representing CAP must
determine whether wear of the uniform is appropriate, must obtain their commander’s permission to
attend the event in uniform, and must wear the uniform most appropriate to the situation based on
formality and the commander’s direction. Members will make every effort to comply with local
installation uniform policy, or ask the CAP-Liaison Region, the CAP Wing Coordinator, or the
installation’s public affairs office for guidance.
- All CAP personnel touring Washington DC, as part of a CAP activity or conducting
CAP business in the National Capital Area, will wear the service uniform (Class B), Aviator Shirt
Uniform or civilian attire, and will be properly groomed. Officers and NCO visiting the White House,
Capitol Building, State Department, or comparable buildings in uniform will wear the Service Dress
Uniform (Class A) or Corporate Service Uniform. Cadets may wear Class A or Class B with tie. In no
case will BDUs, flight suits, or utility uniforms be worn.
Optional Wear of the CAP Uniform
- During Commercial Travel. When traveling in an official capacity on commercial
air, in the continental United States (to include Alaska and Hawaii), the Service Dress uniform (Class A), Blue uniform (Class
B), Corporate Service Dress or Aviator Shirt Uniform may be worn when approved by the individual’s
commander. Wear of working, field, or flight uniforms is not authorized.
- Those choosing to wear civilian clothing in lieu of a uniform when traveling on
behalf of CAP (when not otherwise required by paragraph 220.127.116.11) will ensure it is neat, clean, warm
enough for in-flight operations, and appropriate for the mode of travel and destination. Examples of
inappropriate clothing include: ripped, torn, frayed or patched clothing, tank tops, extremely short
shorts/skirts, undergarments worn as outergarments, bathing suits, and any garments which are revealing
or contain obscene, profane, or lewd words or drawings.
- Overseas. Most foreign governments prohibit the wear of military uniforms by visitors.
Members will not wear a CAP uniform in a foreign country except for members on orders to participate in
the International Air Cadet Exchange or other international events for which National Headquarters
(NHQ) has expressly authorized the wearing of the uniform. Members of CAP cadet squadrons overseas
wear the CAP uniform on the host military installation only upon approval of the installation commander
in accordance with CAPR 35-4, Overseas Cadet Squadrons.
When NOT to wear the CAP Uniform
- If you do not have all the required insignia attached to the uniform in the correct locations.
- At a meeting of, or sponsored by an organization, association, movement, or group
the Attorney General of the United States has named as totalitarian, fascist, communist or subversive; advocates or approves acts of force or violence to deny others their rights under the Constitution of the
United States; seeks to change the United States Government by unconstitutional means; while
participating in public speeches, interviews, picket lines, marches or rallies or in any public demonstration
when participation may imply USAF sanction of the cause.
- At any public meeting, demonstration, march, rally or interview if the purpose may
be to advocate, express or approve opposition to the Armed Forces of the United States.
- Under any circumstance that would tend to bring discredit or reproach upon the
- While furthering political activities, private employment or commercial interest.
- More than 1 hour following the close of the activity except for travel time to and
from such activities for which the uniform is specified (unit meetings, seminars, conferences, training
activities, CAP Command Council meetings, etc.).
- When off base eating at restaurants where most diners wear business attire or at
establishments that operate primarily to serve alcohol, do not wear utility type uniforms or the flight duty
- CAP personnel may not wear USAF-style uniforms when flying in first class. This
is to avoid the perception of the misuse of government travel resources.
Civil Air Patrol Grade Insignia
For the most part, the grade worn by CAP members is the same as that in the Air Force. The only differences are the Cadet Officer Grades, Flight Officer Grades, the center and inclusion of CAP on the senior member NCO chevrons, and the shield on the Cadet Enlisted Chevrons. The following is a chart of CAP grades from lowest to highest. Following the picture is the name of the grade, its term of address, and its proper abbreviation. These abbreviations must be strictly adhered to.
Placing Grade Insignia on the Collar
When placing your grade insignia on the collar, the top of the insignia (the upper portion on each insignia as shown in the chart above) always points towards the neck. The side edge of the insignia closest to the leading edge of the collar is placed so that it is exactly 1" away from and parallel to the leading edge of the collar.
- Address a C/Amn, a C/A1C, and a C/SrA as “Airman.”
- Address a C/SSgt, a C/TSgt, C/MSgt, and a C/SMSgt as “Sergeant.”
- Address a C/CMSgt as “Chief.”
- Address cadet officers of a higher grade and senior officers as “Sir”/“Ma’am” or their grade. If trying to gain the attention of another cadet or senior member, say their grade followed by their last name.
- When addressing a non-CAP or non-military person, use “Sir” or “Ma’am”.
- All military personnel, both active and retired, will be addressed with a title appropriate to their rank.
- What may be on the Table: Only a binder or a notebook may be placed on the table. All other items will be placed in a book bag to be stored underneath each cadet’s respective seat.
- Raising the Hand: When raising their hand, the cadet’s right forearm will be raised vertically making a 90 degree angle with the upper arm. The upper arm will also be perpendicular to the torso. The hand will be cupped as if at the position of attention.
- Sitting at Attention: When sitting at attention, the cadet will sit looking straight forward and maintain an erect posture. The right and left forearms will rest upon the tops of the right and left thighs respectively. The hands will be cupped as if at the position of attention and be positioned above the knees.
- Sitting at Ease: When sitting at ease the cadet may maintain a relaxed but alert posture. Talking is not authorized
- Sitting at Rest: When sitting at rest the cadet may maintain a relaxed but alert posture. However, talking at a low volume is authorized.
- Answering Questions: When answering a question the cadet will stand at attention, address the asking individual with their respective title, and clearly communicate the answer. There will be no “Sir sandwiches.” All spoken words will be loud and articulate enough for the entire class to understand.
When a cadet is walking through the hall and a senior member or superior cadet officer approaches them from another direction they will move out of that person’s path and provide an appropriate greeting. When walking with an officer, walk in step one pace behind and to the left of the officer. When passing through doorways, the junior grade member will hold the door for the senior grade member. The junior grade member will also render a greeting to the senior grade member. When carrying an object, the object should always be carried in the left hand. This allows the cadet to salute passing officers as necessary. If it is not possible to carry the object in only one hand, the cadet should acknowledge the officer with “Good Afternoon, Sir/Ma’am,” or something similar.
DRILL AND CEREMONIES 3
The following commands are typically covered in Week Three. These may differ depending upon the speed in which the class learns the information. All of the images are from AFMAN 36-2203 Air Force Drill and Ceremonies.
Forward March and Halt
To march forward in quick time from a halt, the command is Forward, MARCH. On the command MARCH, the airman smartly steps off straight ahead with the left foot, taking a 24-inch step (measured from heel to heel), and places the heel on the ground first. When stepping off and while marching, the airman will use coordinated arm swing; that is, right arm forward with the left leg and left arm forward with the right leg. The hands will be cupped with the thumbs pointed down, and the arms will hang straight, but not stiff, and will swing naturally. The swing of the arms will measure 6 inches to the front (measured from the rear of the hand to the front of the thigh) and 3 inches to the rear (measured from the front of the hand to the back of the thigh) (figure 3.9). If applicable, proper dress, cover, interval, and distance will be maintained; and cadence will be adhered to. Count cadence as follows: counts one and three are given as the heel of the left foot strikes the ground, and counts two and four are given as the heel of the right foot strikes the ground.
The command is Mark Time, MARCH. When marching, the command MARCH is given as either foot strikes the ground. The airman takes one more 24-inch step with the right (left) foot. He or she then brings the trailing foot to a position so both heels are on line. The cadence is continued by alternately raising and lowering each foot. The balls of the feet are raised 4 inches above the ground. Normal arm swing is maintained. To resume marching, the command Forward, MARCH is given as the heel of the left foot strikes the ground. The airman takes one more step in place and then steps off in a full 24-inch step with the left foot.
Route Step March
The command is Route Step, MARCH. On the command MARCH, the airman takes one more 24-inch step and assumes route step. Neither silence nor cadence is required, and movement is permitted as long as dress, cover, interval, and distance are maintained.
The command is Right (Left) Flank, MARCH, given as the heel of the right (left) foot strikes the ground. On the command MARCH, the airman takes one more 24-inch step, pivots 90 degrees to the right (left) on the ball of the left (right) foot, keeping the upper portion of the body at the position of attention. Then step off with the right (left) foot in the new direction of march with a full 24-inch step and coordinated arm swing. Arm swing is suspended to the sides as the weight of the body comes forward on the pivot foot. The pivot and step off are executed in one count. This movement is used for a quick movement to the right or left for short distances only. Throughout the movement, maintain proper dress, cover, interval, and distance.