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Changing unit type codes: Volunteering to deploy under AEF model

F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. -- Some Airmen find it difficult to be tasked for an overseas deployment.

If an Airman is assigned to a unit type code that is assigned to their unit as an in-place tasking to support their base, they may be able to deploy as a volunteer under a different UTC.

The Air Force shifted from an individual augmentee tasking process to a UTC-centric process about seven years ago with the advent of the aerospace expeditionary force model. The intent of this system was to deploy units as cohesive fighting teams as they train and to lower the personnel tempo for much of the Air Force. To accomplish this, Air Force planners now match and source UTCs to their aircraft packages based on a published schedule.

Due to the UTCs tasked to their base, Airmen may not be tasked to deploy as often as they would like. Airmen who want to deploy but are assigned to an in-place UTC can volunteer to deploy on another UTC.

Under the AEF construct, there are two methods for members to volunteer for contingency taskings. The first allows members to volunteer for any individual augmentee requirement. These positions may be different from the normal four-month tour length or have unique requirements that a standard UTC cannot support them.

The second method allows members to volunteer for steady-state AEF UTC positions. Commanders, with assistance from their unit deployment managers, will manage the volunteer process.

Airmen can determine what exists in an individual augmentee requirement by contacting their UDM for a four-month deployment. The Air Force Personnel Center web site offers information for longer deployments like a 365-day deployment.

Volunteers remain allocated to their original AEF on-call period and cannot disrupt a unit or wing's ability to support UTC taskings. This means Airmen can volunteer for another tasking, but will still be required to deploy on their original UTC if it is tasked to deploy later in the AEF cycle.