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Women of USAFA

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why are you writing this book?
    History demands listening to unheard voices and recognizing unheralded figures. The women alum of the Air Force Academy – grads and non-grads – have a voice that has gone unheard and a story that has gone untold. We, USAFA Women Writers, are going to change that. This is not a book just for Academy grads, nor is it a book about being a cadet at the Academy. Our mission is to illuminate the 50 years of untold narratives of historical and contemporary Air Force Academy women, grads and non-grads, who defied conventional wisdom and societal norms, showcasing their pivotal roles in creating history and shaping society, culture, and thought. This is a book for the world. In writing this book, we commit to empowering voices and forging connections through the art of storytelling, honoring the resilience and transformation of women past and present. By amplifying these stories of empowerment, achievement, trauma, and self-discovery, we seek to inspire our readers to embark on their own journeys of transformation, challenging conventional perspectives and biases, and embracing a deeper understanding of resilience and personal agency. Through this collaborative effort, we aim to foster a community of shared experiences, a legacy mindset, and collective healing, recognizing the import, impact, and beauty each story has on history. We seek to inspire the next generation of transformative leaders to give voice to their stories and navigate their life’s journeys with newfound courage and conviction.
  • Is this book being funded and produced by the US Air Force, or the US Air Force Academy, or the Association of Graduates?
    No. The entire Writing Team is an all-women, all-volunteer group who have come together as USAFA Women Writers to create and publish this book. USAFA Women Writers, and every aspect of this project, are private and independent. The realization of this vision requires more than just words; it requires action, support, and resources. Writing and publishing a book, especially one of this import, is expensive. We need your help to bring this historic project to life and to publication. Your generous gift ensures you and your legacy are memorialized in history. Our gratitude overflows with your click of the DONATE button!
  • What style of book are you writing?
    The book’s genre is envisioned as a historical, non-fiction narrative. By that we mean the book is being written as a single narrative telling the collective story of the 50 years of the women of the Air Force Academy. It is being told through and with the voices of Academy women alum. The beauty of the book, and what makes it so profound, is that we are creating this singular, collective, narrative by incorporating and drawing upon narratives submitted by Academy women themselves – the book’s Contributors. See the Submissions page for more on how, what, and when to submit, and what to do if you need help creating your contribution to the book.
  • Can only women *graduates* of the Air Force Academy contribute their stories?
    No. We seek submissions from all women who are alumnae of the Air Force Academy, both grads and non-grads. Anyone who “walked up the Ramp” and experienced the Air Force Academy as a woman is eligible to contribute.
  • I want to send you my contribution to the book. Is there a deadline for me to get my submission in?
    The submission window is open! The submission window will remain open into 2026. Due to publisher timeline requirements, only Contributors whose submissions are received by 15 Aug 2024 will be considered for inclusion in the book. Submissions will still be welcome even after the window for the book closes (due to publisher deadlines). All submissions, regardless of when received, will be worked by the USAFA Women HERitage Committee for transfer, if the Contributor wishes to do so, to a recognized, accredited institution for archiving within a historical collection. This transfer will only occur with the written permission of the Contributor and will be done in accordance with the recipient institutions’ submission requirements.
  • What is considered a “submission” and what are the requirements?
    Please see the Submissions page for info and guidance on what, how, and when to submit to this historic project, as well as what to do if you need help with crafting your submission.
  • I’m a terrible writer/not a writer at all, but I’d like to tell you my story. What should I do?
    If you are an Academy woman alum who would like help getting your story told, see the Submissions page where you’ll find info on the ways we can assist you, including working with a Writing Team member, free writing workshops, and oral interviews.
  • What happens if my submission is not selected for inclusion in the book?
    Every single submission is a precious piece of history. Each is a historical artifact. In partnership with the USAFA Women HERitage Committee, we are preserving every submission for historical archiving. The HERitage Committee will work directly with every Contributor who wishes to have her legacy preserved to transfer her submission to a recognized, accredited institution for archiving within a historical collection. This transfer will only occur with the written permission of the Contributor and done in accordance with recipient institutions’ submission requirements. Currently, due to resource and space constraints, we are only able to accept digital submissions (no hardcopies). Please contact us if you need help converting hardcopy material, such as journals or diaries, into digital format.
  • What information will be made public?
    Your submission is yours. No submission, in whole or in part, will be made public – ever – without the written consent and release of the Contributor. We will work with you throughout the literary editing process to ensure that your voice and your story reflect you, the Contributor, while ensuring accuracy of publicly verifiable facts, appropriateness, and compliance with publishing standards and laws. For submissions authorized by Contributors for transfer to a recognized, accredited institution for archiving, which elements of the submission are made public is detailed in the submission requirements by each respective institution. Each Contributor will be directed to these details as part of the process for her releasing her submission for transfer.
  • Do you verify the stories/submissions you receive?
    Each Contributor’s submission is her own. Women alum stories are told from their personal perspective and may not exactly mirror the memories of others who may have similar lived experiences. We encourage all alumnae to submit their contributions based on their unique experiences and truths. It is important that we have multiple voices that capture the spectrum of women alum and their lives, both during the years we walked on the same terrazzo stones and elsewhere throughout our lives and our careers. The Writing Team will work with each Contributor during the literary editing process to assist in verifying public facts, and ensuring appropriateness and compliance with publishing standards and laws.
  • If a woman alum has passed/died or is unable to contribute herself, can her family (or someone else) submit for her?
    We welcome stories from all Academy women alum. In this circumstance, please contact the Writing Team directly. We can only take submissions from immediate family members with first-hand knowledge of the USAFA alumnae’s experience preferably through her own words, recorded stories, or journals.
  • What is “USAFA”?
    The U.S. Air Force Academy, or USAFA, is a public university and military service academy located in Colorado Springs, Colorado that provides four years of rigorous academic, physical, and military education to train and prepare cadets to be commissioned officers in the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force.
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