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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    Default ROTC pros and cons

    I am an 18 year old who just finished his first semester of college. I've been considering doing ROTC for a couple years, my dad do it and he turned out allright. He's not pressuring me to join it and I recently got a scholarship that will cover me for the rest of my schooling process if I dont do ROTC. So money isn't an issue.
    The reason I want to do ROTC is so that I start as an officer and go through boot camp before I graduate school. I'm unclear on what my options are if I graduate first and then enlist. Is there a way I can pick which branch of the army I'm in? I would like to be in Military Intelligence, Military Police or Finance.

    I don't want to make a career out of the army but the jobs I really want (FBI, CIA, etc.) look kindly on 4-5 years in the military.

    So I figured I'd ask the play ground their opinion on this, does anyone have any ROTC/enlistment experience they want to share with me?
    I'm just a frat guy who loves DnD and musical theater

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Acula View Post
    I am an 18 year old who just finished his first semester of college. I've been considering doing ROTC for a couple years, my dad do it and he turned out allright. He's not pressuring me to join it and I recently got a scholarship that will cover me for the rest of my schooling process if I dont do ROTC. So money isn't an issue.
    The reason I want to do ROTC is so that I start as an officer and go through boot camp before I graduate school. I'm unclear on what my options are if I graduate first and then enlist. Is there a way I can pick which branch of the army I'm in? I would like to be in Military Intelligence, Military Police or Finance.

    I don't want to make a career out of the army but the jobs I really want (FBI, CIA, etc.) look kindly on 4-5 years in the military.

    So I figured I'd ask the play ground their opinion on this, does anyone have any ROTC/enlistment experience they want to share with me?

    The first thing you do is read What your recruiter never told you

    In fact, usmilitary.about.com is probably a better forum for your questions than the Playground is.

    I'll defer to the real military people here for more in-depth answers. I wish you the best.

    One observation, however: If you're aiming for the CIA or the FBI, you're going to need a TS/SCI clearance with polygraph. So if you get an opportunity to do drugs or commit a felony in the next couple of years .. don't.

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    I'm no expert, but from what I know of the ROTC program and the U.S. military, but this is what I can comment on:

    It'll be a little difficult to become an officer immediately if you aren't in ROTC unless you get a high-demand degree and through that "direct commission". See, that would be the difference between enlisting afterward and taking ROTC: If you enlist, then you're an enlisted soldier. If you go into ROTC, you'll be an officer. I take it you want to be an officer. There are programs to become an officer from enlisted, but that'll take longer on the whole.

    You get to choose your branch, but you aren't guaranteed to get it, if I'm not mistaken.

    And, well, that's all that I could feel confident saying. Hope it helps.
    Last edited by Zeofar; 2011-01-06 at 04:51 PM.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Reserve officership is NOT a guarantee of officer status after completing ROTC.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    A friend of mine did ROTC his first couple of years in college. He said you can take 3 semesters of it without any strings attached. Its the 4th semester that pretty much sets you up with an army contract. So you can take a couple of semesters, then decide if its really something you want to continue or not. At least, that's how he described it to me.

    I'd suggest talking to the ROTC representatives on campus or something. Surely they can help you out.

    Have you taken the ASVAB test yet? That's quite a determining factor, from what I've been told. I got a 94 when my high school forced me to take it, and I was told I qualified for almost every job in the National Guard. The list they gave me of my position opportunities was huge, and even had one job title that was encrypted. When I asked what it meant, the officer giving us the info told me it was "Prisoner Interrogation." And according to a friend of mine in the Marines, if I take ROTC training, that in conjunction with my ASVAB score give me a great many opportunities to pick from...



    So yeah. Ask questions, and see about taking the ASVAB. See what your options are, and go from there.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    A close friend I met in graduate school is in our ROTC program. He got his bachelors and decided to go back to school for a Masters. The Army is paying for his degree and he will go in as an Officer. From what I understand, though, he was offered the option to either sign up straight away as an Officer, or do ROTC and get a Masters before officially joining up. Either way, his contract was signed prior to starting classes. It's a bit different for undergraduate, but probably not terribly so.


    Test scores (not just ASVAB, at least at our level) determine your job eligibility. He only found out this past semester what he is going to do after we graduate.

    Keep in mind, we are still heavily deploying troops. My friends boyfriend has been deployed three times, I think, and she is looking at her second deployment some time this year. It'll be her second deployment within the same amount of years. Within six months of graduation, my friend/classmate is likely to be deployed. I am not against the military- I have many active duty and veteran friends- but it is a very heavy decision to make. You need to assess whether deployment is something you can cope with and, depending on your job, if you can kill someone. Military is not for everyone, and for others it is their calling. Military life is a bit easier as an officer- but not enough to make the military life attractive if it's not what you are meant for. But once you sign that ROTC contract...you are in the military.



    At this point in time, I would suggest waiting on enlisting unless military is something you actually WANT to do- not just for the leg up for FBI/CIA. If you find you can't find a job with your undergraduate degree and other experience (re: internships, which I know the CIA offers, etc), then consider getting an advanced degree and doing ROTC for that. Particularly since your undergraduate career is already financed.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Husband did ROTC.

    No way of knowing before you sign the dotted line what career field you will be assigned to. Is there a specific reason you are thinking army, or are you open to other branches? If so, you might be able to pick the one with the best odds. Total hearsay, but I've heard that the army is very... random... about assigning career fields.

    I don't know about army, but right now the airforce is generally not commissioning outside of the academy or ROTC.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Man, gone are the days, when all you needed was some university education to go to some distant colony, apply for a commission and spend the rest of the war sipping cocktails in a dashing uniform.

    I hear modern warfare is nothing like this, which would be enough to deter me from ever joining the armed forces, but I guess if you don't mind actually being deployed to a war zone, go for it. At the least it'll make for a unique experience.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    In the Air Force, your job that you pick is guaranteed. Provided you don't wash out in whatever training that job requires of you. If you do, you'll prolly end up being Security Forces/MP. I was regular enlisted though, and have no idea how ROTC works.

    Don't know about the other branches.
    Last edited by Crow; 2011-01-07 at 05:24 PM.
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Air warriors has some faq threads on questions about becoming a navy officer , paths to a commission and a specific forum on NROTC . I hope it is useful!

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    I took ROTC in High School and in College. I didn't finish it, though, or sign the contract, so I didn't have to enter active duty. I still wound up a Navy Dolphin Trainer for awhile, though, so it helped, I guess. You should really ask the other guys directly first, though.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Crow View Post
    In the Air Force, your job that you pick is guaranteed. Provided you don't wash out in whatever training that job requires of you. If you do, you'll prolly end up being Security Forces/MP.

    Don't know about the other branches.
    Not in my experience. Husband was given a dream sheet to fill out with his top ten choices. Not everyone got their first choice, for sure.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by THAC0 View Post
    Not in my experience. Husband was given a dream sheet to fill out with his top ten choices. Not everyone got their first choice, for sure.
    I got a dream sheet for where I wanted to be deployed...that was a farce! But my job going in was locked in from the point I walked out of MEPS.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    I can't help at all, except I suppose to generally say find the person or people in your college who can give you good advice (if you have a tutor, whoever runs the program for your college, people who are currently doing it, etc). I actually just came in here because I wanted to know what ROTC stood for since I'd never heard of it, but:

    Quote Originally Posted by Kislath View Post
    I took ROTC in High School and in College. I didn't finish it, though, or sign the contract, so I didn't have to enter active duty. I still wound up a Navy Dolphin Trainer for awhile, though, so it helped, I guess. You should really ask the other guys directly first, though.
    What does the Navy need trained dolphins for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by KenderWizard View Post
    What does the Navy need trained dolphins for?
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    More seriously, the answer is

    -- mine hunting (dolphins use sonar to find things that go KA-BOOM!)
    -- force protection (dolphins can act as sentries in the water)
    -- object recovery (useful for finding those car keys tossed in the water)

    I suspect dolphins are also first-rate when it comes to waterboarding.
    :RIMSHOT:

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ClericGirl

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crow View Post
    I got a dream sheet for where I wanted to be deployed...that was a farce! But my job going in was locked in from the point I walked out of MEPS.
    Heh... Not sure about MEPS. I know end of Junior year of ROTC, husband did the dream sheet for career field. Didn't get the results till halfway through senior year.

    He did get to do another dreamsheet after his initial training for his first station, but never a dreamsheet for a deployment - that was always "Hi, you're going here for 6-9 months. Enjoy."

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    I was regular enlisted, so it must (obviously) be different for ROTC. Like I said, my job was locked in until I decided to try out for another one just after boot camp. Then it was do or die- er, Security Forces...
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Crow View Post
    I was regular enlisted, so it must (obviously) be different for ROTC. Like I said, my job was locked in until I decided to try out for another one just after boot camp. Then it was do or die- er, Security Forces...
    Ah yeah, that would explain it.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    RogueGuy

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by pendell View Post
    More seriously, the answer is

    -- mine hunting (dolphins use sonar to find things that go KA-BOOM!)
    -- force protection (dolphins can act as sentries in the water)
    -- object recovery (useful for finding those car keys tossed in the water)

    I suspect dolphins are also first-rate when it comes to waterboarding.
    :RIMSHOT:

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by pendell View Post
    I suspect dolphins are also first-rate when it comes to waterboarding.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mando Knight View Post
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    LOL! Actually, you have it right. Dolphins ( and sea lions ) are amazingly useful critters. Dolphins never sleep, darkness/murk doesn't impede them, and they can learn to do things that would blow your mind. They can even talk. More on this later.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Pros: Pays for college. Teaches discipline and all that fun stuff.

    Cons: Have to join the military afterwards. [/sarcasm]

    In seriousness, though, I grew up a military brat, and it wasn't fun. So if you plan on having kids or even getting married (something else the military slightly, and unofficially, frowns on), think twice. It's doable, just rough on everyone involved.

    Unless you're Air Force. Then it's just a nice cruise through fun times.
    I kid, I kid.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Sholos View Post
    Pros: Pays for college. Teaches discipline and all that fun stuff.

    Cons: Have to join the military afterwards. [/sarcasm]

    In seriousness, though, I grew up a military brat, and it wasn't fun. So if you plan on having kids or even getting married (something else the military slightly, and unofficially, frowns on), think twice. It's doable, just rough on everyone involved.

    Unless you're Air Force. Then it's just a nice cruise through fun times.
    I kid, I kid.
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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by Sholos View Post

    In seriousness, though, I grew up a military brat, and it wasn't fun. So if you plan on having kids or even getting married (something else the military slightly, and unofficially, frowns on), think twice. It's doable, just rough on everyone involved.

    Unless you're Air Force. Then it's just a nice cruise through fun times.
    I kid, I kid.
    Really? In my experience, marriage seemed almost expected of higher ranking officers (or long serving NCOs), in a way of proving their "manliness" in that they can attract and hold a mate.
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    I'll put in my 2 cents. The Air Force isn't that easy. I've been in for 16 years and I've been on deployments, moved around 7 times (including one remote tour) and I'm still going.

    The difference between officers and enlisted in the Air Force is that enlisted start off at the bottom and work their way up into management and they can initially choose their job or cross train into another one after 3 yrs or so. The officers get their job chosen for them and they start off in management. Officers are also not guaranteed 20 yrs and they can be separated out for various things before they get to 20 yrs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pendell View Post
    More seriously, the answer is

    -- mine hunting (dolphins use sonar to find things that go KA-BOOM!)
    -- force protection (dolphins can act as sentries in the water)
    -- object recovery (useful for finding those car keys tossed in the water)

    I suspect dolphins are also first-rate when it comes to waterboarding.
    :RIMSHOT:

    Respectfully,

    Brian P.
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    LOL
    That's funny. Even funnier is the fact that this is only an exaggeration of the truth. Yes, that's right; we fit dolphins with.. appliances.. which make them more capable.
    My facility got hit hard during Hurrican Katrina, and it caused a big panic. My dolphins escaped, you see, and they were not very nice dolphins at all, so more than a few folks were worried about the danger they posed to people they might have met. We eventually rounded them up, though.
    Anyway, my dolphins were sentries, trained to patrol assigned areas and attack intruders. Believe it or not, their job is to STAB unauthorized divers with tranquilizer spears and haul them back for questioning.
    ( NEVER go diving in a navy shipyard. You have been warned )
    Yes, I'm serious. Like I said, they can be taught truly amazing things. Mine were the "kinder, gentler," version, too. One tail-smack from a dolphin can very easily kill a person, and that is easily exploited.

    Okay, talking:
    Yes, dolphins really do talk with an actual spoken language. ( I tellya, if they had thumbs they'd be dangerous ) This language can be recorded and decoded, and their words can be played back in sequence to allow us to talk to them. Really. I am NOT making this up, I promise. It makes training them infinitely easier, although figuring out their vocabulary is a very long and difficult process. The main problem, you see, is that each "tribe" of dolphins has it's own language. We can spend a couple of years learning to communicate with one batch, and then find that only 30 miles down the beach the dolphins speak complete gibberish to us. That kinda makes the system a bit impractical. Still pretty cool, though.
    Most training is done completely NON-verbally, by the way. Verbal training is still very new and absolutely nonconventional. When it is used, though, the results are phenomenal. Dolphins who understand why they are doing the things they're doing are much more effective. Don't let their grins fool you, either; they're not so nice once you get to know them, and that includes the ones you see at Seaworld.

    By the way, if animal training is something that sounds good to you, don't take Biolgy coursework, take Psychology. Psi majors are the ones who wind up working at Seaworld.

    Okay, ROTC--- overall good. It alone can help you with your main goal of a career with CIA/FBI. Again, though, you should just ask those guys what they want before joining the military.

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    Default Re: ROTC pros and cons

    Quote Originally Posted by LCR View Post
    Really? In my experience, marriage seemed almost expected of higher ranking officers (or long serving NCOs), in a way of proving their "manliness" in that they can attract and hold a mate.
    Expected by other individuals, maybe, but not the military as an organization. They'd be much happier, I think, if they didn't have any spouses and/or children to worry about.
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