What is the Technical Degree Sponsorship Program?

Are you a freshman, sophomore, or junior thinking about or in process of working towards a degree in engineering? If so the Air Force has a great program that may be for you – the Technical Degree Sponsorship Program (TDSP). It is an excellent way to earn money while you finish your education. Upon graduation, you will be commissioned as an engineering officer and get started in an Air Force job that utilizes your technical skills.

Benefits while in college

  • Paid salary as an E-3 (Airman 1st Class) with an included housing stipend and food stipend (BAS). For example, if you live in Seattle then your pay would be $1730 base pay a month plus local BAH of $1000 (single) or $1335 (married) a month (BAH is based on Yakima zip codes) and Basic Allowance for Substance (BAS) of $325 a month Total of over $3000 a month with no military commitment until you graduate!*
  • Be issued an Air Force ID card for you and your dependents which entitle you to discounts at many retail stores, restaurants, and recreation services!
  • FULL medical, dental and vision coverage for free! Lowest rates on life and car insurance!


* There is no contractual commitment until selection. If selected you have 30 days to accept or decline the offer. There are no military training requirements during your studies.

Basic elegibility and responsibilites

  • Must be between ages 18-34 years old at the time of commissioning and be a US Citizen
  • Good academic standing (3.0 GPA) for all college-level studies as well as their academic major
  • A minimum of 25 on the verbal and 25 on the quantitative portions of the Air Force Officer Qualifying Test (AFOQT)
  • After acceptance, maintain a 2.0 GPA and send quarterly/semester grade reports to recruiter
  • Stay within the required weight limits

After graduation and OTS

  • Attend Officer Training School (OTS) at Maxwell AFB, AL for 12 weeks paid as an E-5 of $2091 base pay a month and commissioned as an Air Force Second Lieutenant O-1 at graduation
  • Paid as an O-1 of $2784 base pay a month, increased BAH (amount will vary based on where you are stationed) and BAS
  • Enter with an initial four year active duty commitment with possible opportunities to stay longer and make the Air Force a career
  • Earn 30 days of vacation with pay every year, Thrift Savings Plan and a non-contributory retirement programs
  • Access to world class fitness centers, golf courses and other recreational facilities at little or no cost
  • Tuition assistance and GI bill for higher education while on active duty or after separation/retirement. Transferable to dependents.
  • Travel overseas or within the US and much, much more!