How to Join

Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program

Joining the 11th Composite Squadron cadet program

The following information will help you determine if life in the CAP Cadet Program is right for you.

CAP is a safe, positive environment that uses an age-appropriate, military-style learning model to challenge young people. It will take hard work and discipline to advance and succeed in the Cadet Program. CAP membership is a commitment not to be taken lightly. Along with its many rewards come great responsibility.


Membership in the Civil Air Patrol is rewarding, but sometimes is not a good fit for everyone. Because of this, there are eligibility requirements prospective members must meet. Membership in Civil Air Patrol is a privilege reserved for those individuals who desire to promote the objectives and purposes of CAP.

To apply to the Civil Air Patrol, you must be of good moral character and meet these basic eligibility requirements.

You must be:

  • Twelve years of age through 18 years of age.

  • Enrolled in or graduated from a private, public, home school or college program with a satisfactory record of academic achievement.

  • Single, or married and under age 18.

  • Not a member of the active duty Armed Forces. National Guard and Reserve personnel are not considered active duty Armed Forces unless they are serving on extended active duty. For the purpose of this regulation, CAP does not consider Basic Military Training for Guard and Reserve personnel as extended active duty.

  • Citizenship. Be a citizen of the United States of America or an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence to the United States of America and its territories and possessions or any lawfully admitted non-citizen residing in the United States specifically approved by the National Commander or his/her designee.

    • Those persons in "admitted for permanent residence" status must possess and present a current Alien Registration Receipt Card (Form I-151 or I-551) when making application for CAP membership. If an alien's status changes from "admitted for permanent residence" other than by reason of acquiring citizenship, the alien is no longer eligible for membership.

Read complete eligibility details (see Chapter 2 on page 8 for Cadet Recruits) to confirm that you meet these requirements as defined by Civil Air Patrol. If you do, you may proceed to the next step.


Get your documents in order

For the purpose of providing positive identification of applicants for CAP membership, we must personally examine evidence of identity by reviewing one of the forms of identification listed in column A below or one each from column B and C.

column a

(one of the following documents is acceptable)

1. U.S. Passport or U.S. Passport Card

2. Permanent Resident Card or Alien Registration Receipt Card (Form 1-551)

3. Foreign passport that contains a temporary I-551 stamp or temporary 1-551 printed notation on a machine-readable immigrant visa

4. Employment Authorization Document that contains a photograph (Form I-766)

5. In the case of a nonimmigrant alien authorized to work for a specific employer incident to status, a foreign passport with Form I-94 or Form I04A bearing the same name as the passport and containing an endorsement of the alien’s nonimmigrant status, as long as the period of endorsement has not yet expired and the proposed employment is not in conflict with any restrictions or laminations identified on the form

6. Passport from the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) or the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) with Form I - 94 of Form I -94A indicating nonimmigrant admission under the Compact of Free Association Between the United States and the FSM or RMI.

Column b

(If one of the documents in Column A is not available the applicant may present one of the items from Column B as well as one from Column C)

1. Driver’s license or ID card issued by a State or outlying possession of the United States provided it contains a photograph or information such as name, date of birth, gender, height, eye color and address

2. ID card issued by federal, state or local government agencies or entities, provided it contains a photograph or information such as name, date of birth, gender, height, eye color and address

3. School ID Card with a photograph

4. Voter’s registration card

5. U.S. Military card or draft record

6. Military dependent’s ID card

7. U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Card

8. Native American tribal document

9. Driver’s license issued by a Canadian government authority

10. School record or report card

11. Clinic, doctor or hospital record

12. Day -care or nursery school record

Column c

(If one of the documents in Column A is not available the applicant may present one of the items from Column B as well as one from Column C)

1. Social Security Account Number card other than one that specifies on the face that the issuance of the card does not authorize employment in the United States

2. Certification of Birth Abroad issued by the Department of State (Form FS -545)

3. Certification of Report of Birth issued by the Department of State (Form DS-1350)

4. Original or certified copy of birth certificate issued by a State, county, municipal authority orterritory of the United States bearing an official seal

5. Native American tribal document

6. U.S. Citizen ID Card (Form I197)

7. Identification Card for Use of Resident Citizen in the United States (Form I-179)

8. Employment authorization document issued by the Department of Homeland Security

Trial period

One of the first steps in the actual membership process is the trial period. The trial period is three weeks before official membership processing. This gives you time to see what Civil Air Patrol is and if this is something you actually will want to do! Your first meeting will generally include your first introduction to us at an Open House.

If you're interested, let us know! Fill out our interest form to stay in the loop and be the first to know about upcoming enrollment opportunities!