Brief Assessment of UPT


Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) is the United States Air Force (USAF) program which trains Commissioned Officers in the intricacies of flight leading to receiving an Aeronautical rating of Pilot. This was a major milestone and achievement in my life, earning the coveted silver wings. The rigors of 52 weeks of intense training were like nothing I ever experienced in life. The physical demands were brutal. You were successful just maintaining consciousness while performing the required aerobatic maneuvers. Although there are techniques and equipment to assist with the frailties of the human body, this training requires a high level of physical fitness and perfect technique to overcome the rapid onset of G-loads experienced. If the physical demands were not taxing enough, you must simultaneously perform mentally upon a flight profile. The physical demands can hamper your ability to think ahead of the jet. That’s the common term most often uttered throughout training. Stay ahead of the jet, you have to think ahead of the aircraft! I was so tired of hearing that over, over, and over again. Take it from me, Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) was not a cakewalk, and if you know anyone having gone through the program successfully, they are deserving of your accolades.