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TWilliams
07-19-2013, 06:26 PM
What is the deal with everything having to be recognized at the base level now? When I was younger, promotion ceremonies were done usually in the work center in front of friends, family and people who you actually knew. When people congratulated you, it meant something. Now we are stuck with incredibly long ceremonies that are impersonal, sitting in uncomfortable seats, usually without decent climate control. They feel more like someone's opportunity to get awards package bullets than a genuine effort to recognize folks in a meaningful way. To add to the mess, we force clapping during the AF song at end (although I have noticed that the Creed is mysteriously absent). Then you have the mandatory promotion parties. The selectees are obligated to attend, no one wants to go to them, the food sucks, and you can't really drink most of the time. Are there any bases that don't do Wing ceremonies? I know everyone is different with how they would like to be recognized, but I would bet that most people would enjoy it more with people that matter to them rather than a large crowd that was obligated to go or are there for someone else.

2G071
07-19-2013, 07:18 PM
When I was in England in the late '80s, we had an A1C realize he made SrA when he got his LES at the end of the month and noticed his new rank on it. He had to stop by clothing sales on his way home to get new chevrons before the next day. When we asked why he didn’t wonder why he had more take home pay at mid-month, he thought was just from his annual clothing allowance.

While we're on this subject, who came up with the promotees wear their new rank stickers idea? We had one guy make TSgt and as a joke, also wore them in the next morning. Our superintendent was not amused so apparently those expire at midnight on release day. I've always felt bad for those people who make it out of cycle - shouldn't they get to wear them at least one afternoon? Come to think of it, I've never been to an "out of cycle" promotion party.

ttribe
07-19-2013, 07:41 PM
Never saw one till the mid 90s at McGuire. Looking back, most of these ceremonies seemed to be more about bullet opportunities for top3.

Deploy Me Please
07-19-2013, 09:53 PM
I much prefer the squadron level celebrations. They were more personal and less expensive. The wing should stick to the big stuff like AF Ball, Annual awards, etc.

imported_Shove_your_stupid_meeting
07-19-2013, 10:00 PM
I much prefer the squadron level celebrations. They were more personal and less expensive. The wing should stick to the big stuff like AF Ball, Annual awards, etc.

Same here.

Silverback
07-20-2013, 12:43 AM
I don’t know, but the base I am stationed at has pushed it back to the squadron level. Wing level promotions last too long because there are so many people getting promoted that you don’t even know. The squadron level is a whole lot more personal.

Chief_KO
07-20-2013, 02:16 AM
Wing ceremonies came about because many squadrons were not doing anything. Intent (as usual) was good. Should be simple...National Anthem, read names, grip and grin, exit stage. 30-45 mins tops. Cost zero. Hopefully 50 or more folks stick around to have a beverage at the club.
But....soon it grows and grows and grows....
I helped put together one at Base X. New Wg/CC had a ceremony at the Gp he CC'd before and wanted same thing. Really simple. Once the underling CCs had their tweaks it looked nothing like what he wanted. Rather than interject strongly...I told the TSgt to just sit back and let the Os make their changes. We went in and briefed the Wg/CC on the plan and he redlined every O idea...right in front of them! Classic moment!!!!

TWilliams
07-20-2013, 11:13 PM
meht kcuf

That is a very creative way to get past the filter. I applaud you.

Eastwood
07-21-2013, 12:44 PM
They are lame. I recall them getting popular in the late 1990's. About the same time the "Coin" was coming back. The AF needed an identity and some heritage so this is how it evolved. We did ours at the unit level and was a lot of fun. We would cater BBQ and beer at the local park. the Base ceremony is a downer, they ask for $10 per stripe from each promotee up to MSgt. So if its a new SSgt, that’s $40 and MSgt $70. For the Top-2, its a flat $150 each. Even with the inflated entry fee, it doesn’t go far. Single Keg or beer, with a Shirt manning the Tap. Then basic finger foods that last less than 30 minutes. Ones overseas were different, maybe the clubs subsidized them but more/better food and beer was the standard.

fufu
07-23-2013, 03:52 AM
They are lame. I recall them getting popular in the late 1990's. About the same time the "Coin" was coming back. The AF needed an identity and some heritage so this is how it evolved. We did ours at the unit level and was a lot of fun. We would cater BBQ and beer at the local park. the Base ceremony is a downer, they ask for $10 per stripe from each promotee up to MSgt. So if its a new SSgt, that’s $40 and MSgt $70. For the Top-2, its a flat $150 each. Even with the inflated entry fee, it doesn’t go far. Single Keg or beer, with a Shirt manning the Tap. Then basic finger foods that last less than 30 minutes. Ones overseas were different, maybe the clubs subsidized them but more/better food and beer was the standard.

That's a promotion party, not ceremony. That said, both are equally as lame.

Promotion parties were the promotees pay XX dollars for 4 chicken wings and one beer is ridic. I've been to one and hated every single minute of it. I couldn't wait to get out of there.

Promotion ceremonies are simply Squares being Filled by the Top 3 and wannabe E8/E9s. They are ZERO value to the mission and morale IMO. I've never participated in my own, never wanted or felt the need to go. I ALWAYS scheduled leave to make sure I didn't have to go. I've been to many, usually just to keep the gung ho folks from pestering me to fucking death.

Bottom line: They are a waste of time and energy. Move it back to the Squadron level and be done with it.

FLAPS, USAF (ret)
07-23-2013, 11:14 AM
I was at a base where they turned the promotion parties into promotion ceremonies. That's right, for just getting your line number they had the national anthem, called everyone on stage to get a certificate, then after the wing/CC spoke they finally served finger food, AFTER having a receiving line where you shook over 100 hands before spreading all the germs you just picked up all over the food. By that point it was over 45 mins into the event, so most people split without eating or drinking. So much for having a simple party ruined by a ceremony that shouldn't happen until stripes are actually worn!

Shaken1976
07-23-2013, 01:48 PM
Here the promotees get in to the party 30 minutes before everyone else. Then all of the beer and food is gone by the time they let anyone else in. Glad the promotees got their moneys worth...but it seems it could be planned better to have more food at least.

TWilliams
07-23-2013, 02:05 PM
Has anyone ever pushed back against these base-wide functions? Any success getting the Top-3 or Chief's Group to pressure leadership to change the way we do this?

20+Years
07-23-2013, 04:49 PM
Well, sadly, there was a time before this. There was a push to start this crap, one event at a time. The same can be said for TOP III in a deployed location, individual units having a 5/6, TOP III. Anyone searching for a huge bullet will just create a new committee or wg function. Oh wow... look what I did (promotion incoming).

I have seen push back on many events, it hasn't panned out. It comes down to; its a way to mold our Airmen, its taking care of Airmen, or...the Chiefs boss likes the event so we will darn well throw our best triple threats at it. If you want a wg strat, get on board. Period.

TWilliams
07-23-2013, 06:58 PM
The closest I've seen it come to stopping the base promotion ceremony is when we got a new Wing Commander who put a stop to the punching of the arms because some people get out of control with it. After the first ceremony where we had no punching, the group Sr enlisted brought up to the chief that if we can't do the tacking on, then we don't want to do it at all. I PCS'd before the next ceremony so I don't know what the result was though but my new base allows it.

Juggs
07-23-2013, 07:18 PM
The dumbest thing is the SNCO ones where the promotees are "encouraged" to pay a fee. Screw that, why would I l ay for some other assholes I don't even like to drink beer I paid for. Go buy your own shitty beer.

fufu
07-23-2013, 09:05 PM
The closest I've seen it come to stopping the base promotion ceremony is when we got a new Wing Commander who put a stop to the punching of the arms because some people get out of control with it. After the first ceremony where we had no punching, the group Sr enlisted brought up to the chief that if we can't do the tacking on, then we don't want to do it at all. I PCS'd before the next ceremony so I don't know what the result was though but my new base allows it.

We are a no-tacking base b/c someone *cough female cough* cried after being tacked on.

Stalwart
07-23-2013, 09:16 PM
After the first ceremony where we had no punching, the group Sr enlisted brought up to the chief that if we can't do the tacking on, then we don't want to do it at all.


We are a no-tacking base b/c someone *cough female cough* cried after being tacked on.

Does not punching someone to tack on their stripes make the promotion any less valid to the service, the NCO/SNCO corps or the individual?

fufu
07-23-2013, 09:26 PM
Does not punching someone to tack on their stripes make the promotion any less valid to the service, the NCO/SNCO corps or the individual?


That's a promotion party, not ceremony. That said, both are equally as lame.

Promotion parties were the promotees pay XX dollars for 4 chicken wings and one beer is ridic. I've been to one and hated every single minute of it. I couldn't wait to get out of there.

Promotion ceremonies are simply Squares being Filled by the Top 3 and wannabe E8/E9s. They are ZERO value to the mission and morale IMO. I've never participated in my own, never wanted or felt the need to go. I ALWAYS scheduled leave to make sure I didn't have to go. I've been to many, usually just to keep the gung ho folks from pestering me to fucking death.

Bottom line: They are a waste of time and energy. Move it back to the Squadron level and be done with it.

From page 1.

Sprad
07-24-2013, 03:32 AM
I have been fortunate to always be gone or on leave during the promotion ceremonies. Everyone gets notified via e-mail who was selected and those that matter congratulated me upon learning and when sewed on.

VFFTSGT
07-24-2013, 03:38 AM
What is the deal with everything having to be recognized at the base level now? When I was younger, promotion ceremonies were done usually in the work center in front of friends, family and people who you actually knew. When people congratulated you, it meant something. Now we are stuck with incredibly long ceremonies that are impersonal, sitting in uncomfortable seats, usually without decent climate control. They feel more like someone's opportunity to get awards package bullets than a genuine effort to recognize folks in a meaningful way. To add to the mess, we force clapping during the AF song at end (although I have noticed that the Creed is mysteriously absent). Then you have the mandatory promotion parties. The selectees are obligated to attend, no one wants to go to them, the food sucks, and you can't really drink most of the time. Are there any bases that don't do Wing ceremonies? I know everyone is different with how they would like to be recognized, but I would bet that most people would enjoy it more with people that matter to them rather than a large crowd that was obligated to go or are there for someone else.

When I was a young Airman, Amn were promoted at the work center/flight.

Promotion ceremonies were for NCO's. And nothing else was in them.

Now, as you mentioned 'every one gets a trophy' there. Airman and NCO promotions, then PME graduates recognition, then PT score recognition, then CDC 90+ recognition, and a few other things I ignore...

They also use to be professional events...now they are more reminiscent of high school pep rallies. They played rap music at the beginning of the most recent one at my base.



I was at a base where they turned the promotion parties into promotion ceremonies. That's right, for just getting your line number they had the national anthem, called everyone on stage to get a certificate, then after the wing/CC spoke they finally served finger food, AFTER having a receiving line where you shook over 100 hands before spreading all the germs you just picked up all over the food. By that point it was over 45 mins into the event, so most people split without eating or drinking. So much for having a simple party ruined by a ceremony that shouldn't happen until stripes are actually worn!

They do this at my base too.


We are a no-tacking base b/c someone *cough female cough* cried after being tacked on.

We use to be because our last wing commander didn't like it. He left, we started tacking on again.

loggie94
07-24-2013, 05:11 AM
As mentioned by a few above this...simple answer: Good idea gone bad.

Starts simple, then someone gets the idea to make it better...then the unit in charge the next month has to make it more better, then more better, and more better still... what a vicious cycle. And then, someone came up with the "Spirt stick" or some other lame version of a travelling trophy for who could show the 'most spirit' at wing events... and the cycle continues until you wonder what the event was really about in the first place...

Sergeant eNYgma
07-24-2013, 12:52 PM
As mentioned by a few above this...simple answer: Good idea gone bad.

Starts simple, then someone gets the idea to make it better...then the unit in charge the next month has to make it more better, then more better, and more better still... what a vicious cycle. And then, someone came up with the "Spirt stick" or some other lame version of a travelling trophy for who could show the 'most spirit' at wing events... and the cycle continues until you wonder what the event was really about in the first place...

Lmao we recently started doing this for squadron PT, whoever is the "Most motivated" or w/e during PT gets a sledgehammer...

BOSS302
07-24-2013, 01:02 PM
They played rap music at the beginning of the most recent one at my base.

Was it a base in the southeast? A friend of mine was in a promotion ceremony in which, before they called the SSgt ranks up, they played a rap "song" by Drake that says "Started from the bottom now we're here. Started from the bottom now my whole team f*cking here..." etc etc. I'm sure YouTube might be of more help.

Awful.

Calmo70
07-24-2013, 05:07 PM
Again - I'm an old timer (active 1970 - 1998). During that time never had one promotion ceremony ever (except Chief induction ceremony - but was internal to the base Chief's Group). Never had a SNCO induction ceremony, Never had a CCAF Graduation ceremony, etc, etc. I did have graduation ceremonies at NCO Leadership School (yea - before the ALS stuff of today), NCO and SNCO Academy.

Before I retired, I was guest speaker at a SNCO Induction Ceremony. Opened my speech with if you need or feel you deserve this recognition of making SNCO - then you're probably not ready to be a SNCO. Got a lot of applause from some of my peers - but the inductees didn't like it too much.

fufu
07-24-2013, 05:16 PM
Starts simple, then someone gets the idea to make it better...then the unit in charge the next month has to make it more better, then more better, and more better still... what a vicious cycle. And then, someone came up with the "Spirt stick" or some other lame version of a travelling trophy for who could show the 'most spirit' at wing events... and the cycle continues until you wonder what the event was really about in the first place...
Lmao we recently started doing this for squadron PT, whoever is the "Most motivated" or w/e during PT gets a sledgehammer...



How long do they keep it? Do they have to carry it around?

20+Years
07-24-2013, 05:54 PM
(except Chief induction ceremony - but was internal to the base Chief's Group).

Unless I just don't know about it, I believe Chief ceremonies are all now frowned upon too.

Don't know how a bad stigma got attached to a Chief promotion, what an achievement!

VFFTSGT
07-24-2013, 06:00 PM
Was it a base in the southeast? A friend of mine was in a promotion ceremony in which, before they called the SSgt ranks up, they played a rap "song" by Drake that says "Started from the bottom now we're here. Started from the bottom now my whole team f*cking here..." etc etc. I'm sure YouTube might be of more help.

Awful.

No, not southeast....