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Discussion in 'Permanent Threads' started by Diablo, Oct 19, 2009.
I deploy to AFG tomorrow for a little while. It's expected to be a bit rough...
It's... a bit warm here lately.
One of the twins is meeting with an Army recruiter this morning. I am going along. Can anyone clue me in as to what questions I might ask or what I need to look out for in protecting my son's interest? Right now, he is not sure what field he might want to go into, but he is thinking he wants to get into the reserves, so he can go to school while serving. I know this has been discussed in this thread before, I will make him read the thread later, but there really is not time right now.
Recruiters are the fucking worst. When they don't feed you intentionally incorrect info to get you to join, they also sometimes feed you incorrect answers because they don't actually know the answer. Also, it doesn't really matter what he "wants" to go into. Once you sign, they can put you where ever they need you. So he can very easily get bumped into another field. Recruiters typically sign on to be a recruiter after their first or second contract. And typically they only maintain that role as recruiter for one, MAYBE two contract lengths. So you aren't necessarily dealing with an expert in the field.
If he wants to go to school, reserves are a decent option. Plus I know depending on the branch, your experience will vary, but in the USMC getting approval to take classes while in was like pulling teeth. El husband had only 1 or 2 friends who were able to get approval for a couple classes while they were in. The army might be better about this, someone else would have to speak up in regards to that.
This is a very misleading statement. To avoid this, don't ship to boot camp with an open contract.
In the Marines recruiters are more often than not essentially forced into recruiting duty. Aside from becoming a career recruiter it is a 3 year billet. Some quick research on Army recruiters shows that it is also a 3 year assignment. Where are you getting this 1+ contract length info?
This is very true. Tuition assistance is a nice benefit to have but using it, especially in the Marines, is often a complete disaster (at least in an infantry battalion, can't quite speak otherwise).
I believe bewildered served in some branch other than the Marines (I'm not positive either way), but, if all of the information she provided regarding recruiters and their practices is specifically related to the process of enlisting in the Marines, it's pretty much wrong.
Overall I'd recommend he seriously consider going the active duty route. Guaranteed full GI Bill benefits, more deployment opportunities, etc, etc,. The majority of reservist I know or served with in some capacity were very jaded on the reserve life style. You're going to run into issues with both routes, but from what I've seen, the juggling of civilian and military life ends up being more stress than it's worth.
I'm not talking about open contracts. I am talking about specific jobs vs job fields (which the way I stated it was actually wrong, so sorry about that).
As far as I could see, the option of becoming a recruiter in the usmc was not even on the table until you had your first contract under your belt. Then it was a possibility.
I did not serve. El husband was enlisted in the Marines. So while the rules on the book may say x,y, and z, our experiences were what I wrote.
If you are going in for the sole purpose of paying for school (which was not explicitly states in Puffman's post), he is probably better off going the reservist route. There are a shitton of issues in the military right now that far outweigh the "unfulfillment" you may feel by only putting the tip of your dick in the shebeast known as The Military.
This is true in the Marines. From my experience when visiting the Army recruiter, they have the option of picking specific jobs. Considering the Army is nearly 10x the size of the Marines, and having lower entrance requirements they have the luxury of offering guaranteed jobs.
They were his experiences, not your's. I don't care what the bumper sticker says, spouses aren't a part of the military. It's irresponsible to pass off information to someone who is considering dedicating a significant portion of their future to the military when you haven't actually served.
No he's not. If he wants to pay for school his best bet is to go active duty, serve for a total exceeding 36 months, and cash in that sweet, sweet, Post 9/11 GI Bill. To qualify for this you need to serve at least 90 consecutive days of active duty service, not including basic pipe line training. Considering the complete lack of deployments that are being allotted to the reserves as a result of the drawdown in Afghanistan, he's not going to get that, let alone the 36 months he needs in order to get the full 100% of the Post 9/11 GI Bill.
TL;DR - if he wants 100 percent of his GI Bill, the opportunity to deploy, and legitimately learn a skill, go active. If he wants to do military things a couple of times per year, stay in his comfort zone, and rely on tuition assistance and school programs, go reserves.
I'm happy to answer any specific questions he has if he ever considers the Marines, and I'll gladly answer anything specific VA/GI Bill benefits related.
Also a former Marine here.
This is true, but there are some guys who find it to be a really easy way to get promoted through the ranks. Guys who can make quota are seen as gods and get hooked up. That being said, a recruiter who likes it will typically do his first term, re-up, do a term as a recruiter, go back to his MOS, and then go back as a staff NCO to recruit again. He might even go back a third time as a really senior SNCO. This happens with DIs as well - they'll do a stint as a sergeant / staff sergeant, and then they'll go back as a gunny and then might end up doing yet another term as a first sergeant / sergeant major.
This is true to an extent in the Marines - for example, I signed up under a Bravo Alpha contract. This covers every aspect of avionics and aviation logistics. They could've put me into Life Support, O-strand, I-strand, and I didn't have any input as to where I was going to go.
In contrast, the Army is a little more accommodating, as you sign up for a specific MOS. However, I think that the MOSes are more general than the Marines. So, to the guy who wants some questions to ask the recruiter - how are jobs given? Do you get a specific MOS to sign up for? Are there subdivisions within the MOS for different jobs? For example, 11B is infantry, but that doesn't cover the machinegunner, mortarman, TOW gunner, etc. Does that apply to other jobs?
In any case, if you are set on a specific job, get it in writing.
As for active duty tuition assistance, it won't happen unless he's a complete fucking POG, and even then it's doubtful because shit just keeps coming up. Not to mention that college is often seen by higher-ups in the Army and Marines as being, "Oh, you have time to take college, huh? Well, obviously you aren't doing enough here!" In contrast, the Navy and Air Force effectively mandate that you take college classes if you want to get promoted.
GI Bill is far nicer to active duty than it is for reservists. If you want the military to pay for your degree, that's the way to go. Do your term, GTFO, and then go to school.
Hate to bump an old thread but fuck it.
Now that my son is getting older, I find myself increasingly gravitating toward the Reserves in one branch or another. It's not just protecting him, it's protecting his future way of life.
Regarding my job, I have the ability to leave it for training as needed and with their support, and if called upon for active duty I also know I will have a job to come back to.
Anyone have any experience with the Reserves? I'm thinking Army.
I'm currently trying to go through the recruiting process for the US Army. Goal is 18D. I'm being told that having had depression in the past makes me a no-go for the 18X option, but I might be able to get in under a different MOS (currently I'm thinking 11- or 35- series, assuming 18X is a no-go). Is there anyone here who can vouch for that information? Any 18-series guys who can tell me what MOSes succeed best at selection, or have command that's most likely to support* their soldiers in applying?
Finally, if I'm DQed from enlistment, period, anyone know of who to write to in order to appeal that, aside from POTUS or the commander of USAREC? I feel like I could be a very useful asset.
*or not get in the way of.
If you don't tell them you've been diagnosed with depression, they won't know you've been diagnosed with depression. Pretty simple. Unless you have scars or some identifying marks that would reveal a condition or a past surgery or something, there's no need to inform your recruiter.
Too late for that, potentially interested in a career in this, (probably foolishly) figured honesty is the best policy, submitted packet and was either initially denied or had my waiver request denied. Will hear more from recruiter on Monday.
Since you say you were diagnosed, so I'm assuming it's in your medical records. If you're trying to get 18x or any other MOS that requires a security clearance you have a less than 1% chance of them not finding out about it if you omit it.
Bingo. So, can anyone suggest to me a starting MOS that is of great appeal to the SF community, and/or let me know who to contact if my appeal for enlistment is denied?
This just is not true. The military does not have access to your personal medical records unless you hand them over. Something like a depression diagnosis is only going to be available to MEPS and what not if you volunteer it to them.
They're also not going to know what drugs you did, and how many times you did them unless there is an arrest record, or again, you volunteer it to them. Silence and omission is your friend.
You're right. To enlist, the military does not access personal medical records, however I'm referring to his security clearance background investigation. The military does not conduct investigations for security clearances. Enlistment and security clearance background investigations are two distinct separate events.
The Office of Personnel Management, Federal Investigative Services conducts these investigations. These investigations determine suitability and mental fitness. They can and do research medical records. MOS's such as 18x series require a security clearance. There are different levels of clearances however those required to work as or with SOF require some of the most in-depth background investigations. Diagnosed for depression may not automatically disqualify a person, but omitting it from a security clearance background investigation will.
I know if instances where folks omitted information that would not have inhibited gaining a security clearance, but years later during a periodic review the information's discovered and they lose their clearance. The reasoning, since you tell the government, how can the government know someone didn't use the information to black mail you into disclosing classified information.
My background's as an analyst, but what I do know is I've worked with folks in the SF community who come from all walks of life. The one thing they all have in common; they all consistently have great attitudes, do their best, don't quit, view every event as a chance to learn, and typically excel in whatever job they currently hold.
Enlisting as an 11B will give you advantages in some aspects, but most any other MOS will give you advantages in areas that an 11B MOS would not.
Don't tell your recruiter shit. Tell the security clearance people every fucking thing.
The whole thing with security clearance investigations isn't that they're trying to dig up shit you may have done to judge you and kick you out (at least as far as drugs, depression and whatnot; domestic abuse and assault and such are different). They're trying to dig up shit you've done so that they already know about it, which means no one can blackmail you with it. They're also very strict on debt to income, and history of responsibility with money.
Already told recruiter/MEPS about it. Also mentioning it on SF-86, assuming that form applies to my future employment.
Still waiting to hear if I'm no-go for Army, or no-go for 18X. If anyone can give me information on getting waivers post-enlistment for airborne/Ranger/SF/etc., I'd appreciate it. The recruiters say once you're in, it's easier to get approved for that, but they also advised I commit a felony (and violation of trust/disclosure) right off the bat, which leaves me somewhat skeptical of their advice.
Also, anyone know whether the commander, JFK school, hears appeals for 18X, or if they only look at appeals for folks who are already in and looking at SF? Don't know if I write to them, or to Commander, USAREC, for my case.
So I might be going sailing with a U.S. Navy hospital ship later this year. I've never been on ship before, let alone worked with the U.S. Navy. Are there any navy folks here who can share some general advice on ship life and things to bring / not bring with me?