Cadet Programs

CAP's cadet programs are designed to inspire the country's youth to become leaders and good American citizens through their interest in aerospace. Would you like to honor and serve America? Do you want to prepare for your future while making new friends? Then rise to the challenge of cadet membership in the U.S. Air Force Auxiliary, Civil Air Patrol.

Cadets fly, learn to lead, hike, camp, get in shape, and push themselves to new limits. If you’re dreaming about a career in aviation, space, or the military, CAP’s Cadet Program is for you.

To become a cadet, you must be be at least 12 years old and not yet 19 years old.  Cadets meet 2 hours per week and one Saturday per month, on average, and also have opportunities to attend leadership encampments, career academies, and other activities during the summer. Click here for more information on CAP Cadet programs: Florida Wing Cadet Programs

For the CAP Cadet Programs in Naples, FL contact the Naples Cadet Squadron.
360 Aviation Dr., Naples FL 34104 -- 239-784-3601


Flying with CAP

CAP aircrews hone excellent piloting skills through numerous missions. Over the years, CAP aircrews have provided assistance to numerous boaters in need. In addition, the squadron is tasked by the U. S. Air Force and other agencies for special missions. Other emergency services missions can include transporting medical technicians, lifesaving medicines and human organs for transplant. When disaster strikes, such as a hurricane, CAP provides emergency communication systems and gathers vital information for emergency management through aerial and ground reconnaissance.

The Civil Air Patrol offers many opportunities for volunteer service. There are numerous roles which initially require minimal or no prior experience. We provide training to develop skills for important roles of mission base staff, ground team, and aircrew. Some of the critical positions you can fill include:

Mission Radio Operator (MRO) – A ground based position which involves communication with the airplane while in flight or other CAP radio stations. Requires basic ES qualification.

Mission Scanner (MS) – An introductory but important flight crew position, where the Scanner sits in the back seat during missions and scans the ground looking for targets. Requires basic ES qualification.

Mission Observer (MO) – An advanced aircrew position which requires significant aeronautical knowledge and ability to operate the radios and navigational equipment, in order to assist the pilot. Requires Mission Scanner qualification.

Mission Pilot (MP) – The Pilot in Command (PIC) for all missions. Requires Mission Scanner qualification, Form 5 checkride, Form 91 checkride, etc. (see separate document on how to become a CAP pilot)

The squadron provides training for all of the above positions. Cadets are eligible for basic flight training, CAP does not provide basic pilot training for senior members. It is the personal responsibility of all CAP pilots to meet FAA requirements for currency in light planes including bi-annual flight review and medical certificate, and to meet the Private Pilot Practical Test Standards.

CAP Pilots have access to CAP airplanes for use to maintain currency of pilot qualifications. The personal expense incurred for using CAP aircraft is minimal, less than half of the typical hourly rental rate for a similar type of aircraft. The PIC is responsible for paying for the cost of the airplane. These cost may vary depending on Florida Wing charges and gasoline costs. Check with the unit’s Operations Officer for the latest rate. The airplane cost may be waived by the Air Force for actual missions, or by a Flight Release Officer.


Are you a pilot?

Click here for Pilot FAQs

If you’re a pilot, CAP has plenty of opportunities for you.  CAP owns the largest fleet of single-engine piston aircraft in the nation, primarily Cessna 172s and 182s, and CAP pilots are able to fly those planes to perform CAP missions in service to their local communities.  You can find the full list of requirements to fly for CAP under our Pilot FAQs.

CAP pilots fly reconnaissance missions for homeland security, search and rescue, disaster relief, and even counterdrug operations at the request of government or law enforcement agencies.  They sometimes transport medical personnel and supplies and blood and live tissue.  In times of disaster, they assess damage and transport emergency personnel from site to site.  When not flying traditional emergency missions, cadet orientation pilots fly orientation rides for cadets and teachers while also maintaining their own proficiency.

The Civil Air Patrol’s aircraft are located at strategic locations throughout the nation to be readily available when missions arise.  CAP members maintain these aircraft at the highest levels of safety and efficiency and have access to specialists at CAP National headquarters for maintenance, safety and training questions.

As a CAP pilot, you perform some of the organizations’ most important work.  CAP is also a great place for you to meet and work with people who share your interest in flying and want to use their skills in a meaningful way.



History of the CAP

History of Civil Air Patrol

In the late 1930s, more than 150,000 volunteers with a love for aviation argued for an organization to put their planes and flying skills to use in defense of their country. As a result, the Civil Air Patrol was born one week prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Thousands of volunteer members answered America’s call to national service and sacrifice by accepting and performing critical wartime missions. Assigned to the War Department under the jurisdiction of the Army Air Corps, the contributions of Civil Air Patrol, including logging more than 500,000 flying hours, sinking two enemy submarines, and saving hundreds of crash victims during World War II, are well documented. After the war, a thankful nation understood that Civil Air Patrol could continue providing valuable services to both local and national agencies. On July 1, 1946, President Harry Truman signed Public Law 476 incorporating Civil Air Patrol as a benevolent, nonprofit organization. On May 26, 1948, Congress passed Public Law 557 permanently establishing Civil Air Patrol as the auxiliary of the new U.S. Air Force. Three primary mission areas were set forth at that time: aerospace education, cadet programs, and emergency services.



CAP Acronyms

AEO - Aerospace Education Officer
AL1 - Agency Liaison Level 1 
AL2 - Agency Liaison Level 2
AL3 - Agency Liaison Level 3
AOBD - Air Operations Branch Director
ARCH - ARCHER Operator
CISM - CISM Personnel
CUL - Communications Unit Leader
ES - Emergency Services
FASC - Finance/Admin Section Chief
FLM - Flight Line Marshaller
FLS - Flight Line Supervisor
GBD - Ground Branch Director
GES - General Emergency Services
GRM - Ground Radiological Monitoring
GTL - Ground Team Leader
GTM1 - Ground Team Member Level 1
GTM2 - Ground Team Member Level 2
GTM3 - Ground Team Member Level 3
IC - Incident Commander
IC1 - Incident Commander Level 1
IC2 - Incident Commander Level 2
IC3 - Incident Commander Level 3
ICS300 - ICS-300
ICS400 - ICS-400
IO - Information Officer
IS100 - IS-100
IS200 - IS-200
IS700 - IS-700
IS800 - IS-800
LO - Liaison Officer
LSC - Logistics Section Chief
MC - Mission Chaplain
MFC - Mountain Flying Certification
MO - Mission Observer
MP - SAR/DR Mission Pilot
MRO -  Mission Radio Operator
MS - Mission Scanner
MSA - Mission Staff Assistant
MSO - Mission Safety Officer
OSC - Operations Section Chief
PSC - Planning Section Chief
SAREX -  Search and Rescue Exercise
SLS - Squadron Leadership School
SET - Skills Evaluator
SQTR - Specialty Qualification Training Records
TMP - Transport Mission Pilot
UDF - Urban Direction Finding Team.