Staff Selection

For staff selection there are two parts:

Phone Interviews (Last Resort Only)

In-Person Interviews

There should be a e-mail address for the cadet executive staff so that applicatns can send thier applications in and all members of the executive staff can see it. Then if any quesdtions are sent to the address, any member of the executive staff can respond.

Ideas from C/Col Feinstein:

  • Allow the cadet commander to select the deputy commander, executive officer, and command chief on the day of executive staff selections.
  • Allow the cadet executive staff to help the commandant of cadets and encampment commander select the chief TAC officer and other TAC officers.
  • Turn the staff selection day into a weekend
  • Select the squadron commanders, SET officer, and administrative officer on Friday night. Spend Friday night bringing the command staff up to speed.
  • Spend Saturday selecting the rest of the staff.
  • Spend Sunday doing on-the-job training and RST.
  • Increase pool of applicants by sending out notifications to the entire region.
  • Improve the phone interview system and encourage applicants to be at staff selection day
  • Deadline for phone interviews must be 3 days before staff selection day (there were many phone interviews done at the last minute).
  • Keep practical/written tests first and hold interviews after cuts (if cuts are necessary).
  • The C/XO needs help evaluating support staff applicants during the practical phase (the SET officer can evaluate the SET team and the Admin. officer can grade tests; the C/XO can then focus on Log/Commo, Safety, and PAO practical tests.
  • Divide the staff into parts and have them rotate through each station so there is not a long line at the line staff practical test station.
  • Hold staff selection day in BDUs (it is what we wear most often during encampment)
  • Select TACOs during the weekend and have them work with the flight staff.
  • Allow the TACOs and flight staff to select eachother with final placements determined by Encampment commander, Commadant of Cadets, and cadet executive staff.

A couple comments on above ideas by C/2d Lt Larson:

  • Allow squadron commanders to help choose flight staff.
  • Allow flight staff to choose each other, or ask if they have a preference for a flt/sgt or flt/cc when they are interviewed, to minimize chances of staff not working well together.
  • Have the flight staff drill cadets to see how their ability at commanding drill is, and put the squadron commanders (chosen the night before) in charge of grading the drill.
  • Have a "Welcome to SSD" speech and in it say if there are no-salute zones, and give instructions on where the rooms for the various practical phases are, so no one gets lost.
  • Have someone already chosen for staff (C/DC, a sq/CC, etc) in the room where the applicants are waiting, just to keep an eye on how they are acting, as additional input about who may or may not be qualified to staff an encampment. This person could be sitting in a corner, or talking with applicants, but that way there will be some idea of which people may be responsible/mature, or what they are like when not under supervision. This year our staff had some members who had little or no military bearing, and having someone watching applicants may help eliminate this problem in the future.
  • Definitely like the BDU uniform idea.
  • Perhaps phone interview applicants should have to submit letters of reccomendation from someone who has been in authority over them in a CAP activity.


  1. Duh! That's the point, lol. Im sure if Jay was C/CD at SSD, then he would have been overwhelmed (like me!).
  2. I think we could do that, but if we go with the weekend idea, then we could have flight staff pick each other Saturday night so they have all sunday to work up the successor to the FAIL jody.
  3. Agreed.
  4. Agreed.
  5. Well, we had Coogan doing that this year, but that didnt work out so well. We could have the Command Chief do that. Simultaneously, the Sq/CCs and the C/CD do drilling outside while the SET officer picks his two deputies, the Admin officer grades the tests and the XO can select the Safety, Log/Comm, and PAOs. The CC would inspect uniforms of the staff applicants.
  6. Yay.
  7. I like the theory, but I feel that anyone writing a letter of reccomendation would just be trying to get that person on staff (because what home squadron staff member doesnt want to see thier cadets on staff at the encampment?). We could either have a form with specific questions, or have the letter point out their weaknesses (we can determine strengths from the phone interview). Phone applicants should also submit a picture of themselves in T-shirt and shorts (to make sure they are not "big boned").

And now a question: did anyone think that Coogan, in his position, brought anything positive to the encampment planning process?
-C/Col Feinstein

In response to Col Feinstein:

  • The CC should definitely have a say in his exec. staff.
  • He should also have a say in the selection of the TACOs.
  • I think the SSD can be fit into a day, if done efficiently. That was a really long day and I really wouldn't want that to last an entire weekend.
  • I personally don't think that applications should be sent to the entire region, but that should be up to the CC, the commandant, and the encampment commander to decide.
  • There should be a deadline for requesting a phone interview. And if possible, the phone interviews should coincide with SSD.
  • The XO should select his Admin officer (and maybe SET) early in the day to help out with support staff.
  • I'm actually not a big fan of BDUs but I don't think it really matters either way.
  • The TACOs and flight staff should definitely pick each other.

In response to Lt Larson:

  1. Yes. A very good idea.
  2. Don't like this idea. If the staff "don't work well together" then they need to suck it up and get over it.
  3. This one is good, but I'm not sure if it would work with a one-day SSD.
  4. This one is gay. nobody cares about no-solute zones on SSD. The only officer I saw outside was Evrard. I think it worked fine this year.
  5. Not sure about this one. Part of me says that the military bearing thing should be happening and the other part says that was the freakin longest day of my life. Ya gotta laugh on days like that. Just because someone has little military bearing doesn't necessarily mean they're going to be a bad flight cc or sgt or etc. It may be a good indicator, but I saw several cadets that weren't showing much military bearing but wound up being awesome staff.
  6. Not crazy about the letter of recommendation idea for the reason that Col Feinstein listed.

As for Col Feinstein's question:
I would say no. All he did was make the day last longer, add more confusion to the situation, and create tension within the exec. staff. His entire position was a dumb idea and should not be repeated.

Chiefy Harford

Well the SSD would still only be a day for most people. It would only be "longer" for those who think they have what it takes to be either a squadron commander, the SET officer or Admin officer. They would have to stay overnight, not knowing what they would be.
But in my plan the SSD would end earlier than it did this year. Then Saturday night and Sunday would be used for RST and other training.
I think military bearing is just one determination of the staff selections. On my end, it was all about competency. Did you understand the job or didn't you? And if you didn't, then you probably were cut mid-day. And what else would the command chief do if we already have 3 people doing drill testing and 3 people on support staff evaluations.
C/Col Feinstein

What do you guys think of having pre-determined back-up staff members. This year we lost a lot of people (Thomas, Coogan x2, Carman, Evrard). We could have a officer and NCO pre-determined for the line and then third CAP member for support staff. They would train with thier respective groups and if someone had to leave the staff, someone could easily step in.
C/Col Feinstein

That sounds like a good idea to me.
C/2d Lt Larson

Ok, so I thought today about what to do with staff that aren't selected but can't leave (like they came with staff selectees). Instead of having them sit on their butts for a weekend, we need to have some sort of program that they can participate in. First of all, we would need to organize them into a flight so that we can have accountability. Any ideas for the training? I would like them seperate from the staff, especially if they are NCOs that might come back as a basic to encampment.
C/Col Feinstein

New idea… we divide the forms again into two MS word documents. One is for NCOs at encampment and has only NCO positions (CCF, Sq/CCF, Flt/sgt, plus deputy support staff positions) and the other for officers at encampment that has only officer positions (Sq/CC, Flt/CC, and support staff officers).
C/Col Feinstein

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