COLORADO SPRINGS — When the cadets first entered the Air Force Academy in 2018, there were 1,434 of them, now 973 of them have made it to graduation.
It's a really hard four years, both physically and emotionally, as these young cadets get prepared to enter our military while balancing their academics.
Basic Cadet Training is a six-week program to guide Basic Cadets from being civilians to military academy cadets. They have their physical, emotional, and mental limits pushed.
During field day, their teamwork is put to the test through relays, distance races and tug of war.
During the second round of basic training, cadets go to Jack’s Valley.
Jack's Valley is a 3,000-acre rural training area on the Academy where they have their physical limits pushed and are introduced to small unit tactics and guns.
Here are some facts about the class of 2022:
- There are 713 men and 260 women
- There are 91 African Americans cadets and 99 Hispanic cadets
- Four cadets are third-generation Academy cadets
- 41 cadets are second-generation Academy cadets
- Some of these cadets already have their assignments after graduation
- 417 cadets are going to pilot training and 94 cadets are joining the Space Force
It isn't just the physical work that's really hard for these cadets. They also must keep up with a tough academic schedule.
The average grade point average is 3.8.
Wednesday, May 25 - USAFA Graduation Ceremony Schedule:
- 7:00 a.m.: Gates at Falcon Stadium Open
- 7:45 a.m. - 8:25 a.m.: Performances by some of the U.S. Air Force Academy’s elite clubs.
- Honor Guard begins at 7:45 a.m.
- The Cadet Chorale begins at 8:00 a.m.
- The Sabre Drill Team begins at 8:20 a.m.
- The a cappella group, “In The Stairwell,” at 8:25 a.m.
- 9:30 a.m.: Ceremony begins, tickets will be required. Entry will not be allowed once the ceremony begins.
- Following the Graduation Ceremony, there will be a flyover by the Air Force’s aerial demonstration team, the Thunderbirds! (see below for notes on road closures)
Prohibited Items and Dress Code:
For the graduation ceremony, both men and women are expected to wear business casual or casual dress. Members of the military who are in the stands are expected to dress in their Service Dress with their flight cap.
Items allowed at Stillman Parade Field and Falcon Stadium
- Food is allowed, but must be displayed in a transparent 1-gallon Ziploc bag. Each ticket-holder may have only one 1-gallon Ziploc.
- Sunscreen is permitted but restricted to a 6-ounce or-less tube. Bottles and aerosol spray are not allowed into the stadium.
- Factory-sealed transparent soft plastic water bottles are restricted to 24 ounces in size. Water is the only beverage permitted to be carried into the parade field or stadium. Exceptions may be made for visitors with medical conditions and for infants.
- Infant diaper bags and carrier packs are permitted when an infant is present.
- Illegal substances, including Marijuana, which is illegal on federal property.
- Firearms, knives, box cutters, scissors, or any weapon.
- Alcohol, glass containers, bottles, cans, aerosol sprays, hard-sided (or Nalgene) plastic bottles.
- Handbags larger than 12 by 12 by 12 inches.
- Backpacks, including bota bags, wine skins and camelbacks.
- Laser pointers, fireworks, or any item deemed unsafe by security personnel.
- Unapproved banners or signs larger than 18 by 24 inches.
- Pets. Americans with Disabilities Act compliant service animals are allowed.
- Sticks, bats, poles, umbrellas, footballs, Frisbees, or inflatable balls.
- Any artificial noisemaker.
- Baby seats or large strollers. Collapsible strollers are allowed.
- Any item that cannot be readily inspected.
- Any type of smoking or tobacco, including E-Cigarettes.
- Seatbacks wider than 19 inches. No armrests.
Learn more about what to expect at the US Air Force Academy 2022 graduation in our recent story.
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