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Old 06-05-2012, 12:03 PM   #1
bostonsc4
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Anybody in the military or military knowledge

Hey guys,

I'm hoping I can have a civilized discussion here about the military from people who've been there and done that to help guide me through this dilemma right now. I will start with my usual cliff notes:

- Going to have a bachelors degree in Psychology in 2 semesters
- FULL interest on pursuing a military career. No interest in civilian jobs.
- 3.025/4.000 GPA
- Looking for a career with aviation (not necessarily pilot but avionics related)


I have had my heart set on the military for about 2 years now once I made the decision that it was for me. Trouble is, I don't know where to channel my efforts and or what branch is best for me. I fell in love with the Coast Guard for a year and a half, but I found out more about it, and myself, and decided it is not what I am looking for. My younger brother is enlisted AF as a crew chief. He loves his job and would never do it a different way but he reports on how the enlisted life is so sub par to officer life in the military. I had my heart set on the AF since September 2011, and as of recently I've become confused as to what I should do. I took the AFOQT test and did not score well enough to qualify. You can only take this exam twice in your life, so I am nervous to take it again without properly studying. I feel the only service I would enlist in is the Air Force, but would be open to commissioning into the Navy, Army, or Marines. I plan to use the military to pay off my school loans, and to make it a career. One thing is clear I do not want a desk job. Enlisted or commissioned. That I simply cannot do. I want to work with my hands. I want to do something laborous, and not just sign my name all day. Special forces are not out of the question, as I am not scared of a combat oriented position.

I guess the biggest dilemma is my brother telling me I have an opportunity to commission somewhere and that I shouldn't waste this opportunity by enlisting in the AF. My AF recruiter tells me the same thing. That he is welcome to recruit me, but wants me to be absolutely certain I've searched around all other branches before deciding on something.

So with that, I'm simply asking for some rounded opinions from people who have been there and done that. Your experiences, just general guidance on this matter. Please no anti military, anti war, or other troll comments I just want some unbiased advice. Thanks guys.
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:08 PM   #2
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If you have a degree, you would be an idiot NOT to commision.

If you want a "laborous" job then lean towards the Marine Corps. Officers still typically do less dirty work than enlisted, but I've seen some hard working officers(also seen a fair share of dirtbags).

I always tell people to enlist in the AF unless they want to be miserable for 4-5 years, then go MC. Those are the only two branches I would even consider. Not to offend as we are all one big family.
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:11 PM   #3
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Thank you Rubenk. Exactly the kind of answers I'm looking for. Let just ask then, why would you not consider Army commissioning or Navy commissioning?
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:17 PM   #4
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There are several commissioning programs available to enlisted airmen (USAF), and your oppurtunity to go from enlisted to commission is great. Ask your recruiter about some of these programs. I enlisted in the Air Force 20 years ago and it was by far the best decision I've ever made. If you want some info on programs, or life of a career airman (making it a career), shot me a PM and I'll reply with my phone number. Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:18 PM   #5
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When I joined(enlisted) it was either Air Force or Marine Corps, as they are portrayed as the smartest and the toughest(respectively). Each branch has nearly every job as every other branch, except for Marines not having medical, and of course a handful of little things for each branch.
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:28 PM   #6
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Thanks guys. Swish I'll PM you
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Old 06-05-2012, 12:28 PM   #7
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Commissioning in the AF is hard if you are not an Academy or ROTC bubba. OTS is hyper selective.

Most non-Academy/ROTC USMC officer programs are moving super slow or frozen right now. There are little to no slots for USMC OCS, and the ones that are open are open to Reservists and Females.

I went to USMC OCS with an Air contract, and changed my mind on career paths after graduating OCS. I decided to pursue a civilian career in NYC while commissioning into the Reserves. My TBS date isn't until 2014 which means that things are SUPER SUPER slow right now.

Army, however, is very happy to get bodies into OCS.
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:33 PM   #8
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No desk job?

11B /thread
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:37 PM   #9
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as a commissioned officer (even as an 11B) you will eventually be sitting behind a desk no matter what you do. Nature of the beast.
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:39 PM   #10
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idk about the slowness of USMC OCS, but I do know that it's not ridiculously difficult to get into their PLC program, which you may still have time for... it's a 10 week summer program, for you since you're a senior, at Quantico. It's like a crash course in OCS and you get paid as an E-5 so that's kinda cool. I'm leaning towards doing this. Then again, you could go army and slap down your degree. They're in the need for more officers.
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:40 PM   #11
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An 0302 is a maestro at paperwork!
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:45 PM   #12
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idk about the slowness of USMC OCS, but I do know that it's not ridiculously difficult to get into their PLC program, which you may still have time for... it's a 10 week summer program, for you since you're a senior, at Quantico. It's like a crash course in OCS and you get paid as an E-5 so that's kinda cool. I'm leaning towards doing this. Then again, you could go army and slap down your degree. They're in the need for more officers.
I do know about the slowness of USMC OCS. I also do know a thing about PLC and OCC (having done them both). He doesn't have time for PLC-12 or even 13. The selection criterion has gone up a lot (a first class PFT doesn't cut it, you gotta be at or as close to 300 as possible, with excellent grades and no waivers). Its not a crash course in OCS, it is OCS.


The Army needs officers, the Corps doesn't. Half of my buddies from OCS back in 2009 didn't get selected by career designation boards and will be leaving active duty before even pick up Captain. Nobody who I went to OCS with this past summer (2011) will be going to TBS until 2013 at the earliest.
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Old 06-05-2012, 01:50 PM   #13
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I do know about the slowness of USMC OCS. I also do know a thing about PLC and OCC (having done them both). He doesn't have time for PLC-12 or even 13. The selection criterion has gone up a lot (a first class PFT doesn't cut it, you gotta be at or as close to 300 as possible, with excellent grades and no waivers). Its not a crash course in OCS, it is OCS.

The Army needs officers, the Corps doesn't. Half of my buddies from OCS back in 2009 didn't get selected by career designation boards and will be leaving active duty before even pick up Captain. Nobody who I went to OCS with this past summer (2011) will be going to TBS until 2013 at the earliest.
Alright. I'll take your word for it. I have 3 friends in PLC right now, and 5 or 6 that just commissioned from ROTC(all decided Navy instead of usmc), and I hadn't heard that anyone was having a bunch of trouble getting into PLC at the time. You have the experience, I don't, so go with what skeeter said

You know Skeeter, to your friends from 2011, they need to hit up XO's from some company/battalion to see if they can squeeze in some pencil pushing work for the time being. I know a few who have done this because they aren't going to Pensacola until October and want some work.

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Old 06-05-2012, 01:51 PM   #14
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The Army needs officers, the Corps doesn't. Half of my buddies from OCS back in 2009 didn't get selected by career designation boards and will be leaving active duty before even pick up Captain. Nobody who I went to OCS with this past summer (2011) will be going to TBS until 2013 at the earliest.
ouch... glad I'm still somewhere that I'm needed
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:20 PM   #15
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Navy EOD. Officers side you still get down and dirty. Its extremely challenging, close knit community..i could go on and on about it. Look it up. Civilian world after you get out your making 5-6 figure job the benifits are endless. And the pipeline is fun Dive school is a blast especially if you get there during spring break (panama city, fl) then you goto Eglin AFB for 11 months for the actuall explosives training and its fast paced high intensity dirty work, PT is tough and fun. Everyone there is of all ranks and are pretty down to earth guys. from 1st classes to the CO.

Just a suggestion, I took this route on the enlisted side of it, and i loved every moment of it. The pipelines just about 1 1/2 years from start to finish, you goto jump school, tac training..etc look it up. its an amazing career path. Very very very rewarding
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:22 PM   #16
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Navy EOD. Officers side you still get down and dirty. Its extremely challenging, close knit community..i could go on and on about it. Look it up. Civilian world after you get out your making 5-6 figure job the benifits are endless. And the pipeline is fun Dive school is a blast especially if you get there during spring break (panama city, fl) then you goto Eglin AFB for 11 months for the actuall explosives training and its fast paced high intensity dirty work, PT is tough and fun. Everyone there is of all ranks and are pretty down to earth guys. from 1st classes to the CO.

Just a suggestion, I took this route on the enlisted side of it, and i loved every moment of it. The pipelines just about 1 1/2 years from start to finish, you goto jump school, tac training..etc look it up. its an amazing career path. Very very very rewarding
Just remember that while you're at dive school in the river and the pool getting your ass smoked, you're not getting to go play with the co-eds on the beach.
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:27 PM   #17
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Good luck ever getting into EOD. I think they only took 3 guys from the Academy this year.
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:42 PM   #18
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if youre an officer, you will have to do some paperwork at some point, will you have a desk, probably.
Granted, its more real work as enlisted, so if youre flight crew, yeah, youre earning your pay check, but its all up to the tempo.
If youre an officer and you fly, well thats your main job and everything else is secondary.

The fact that you have a degree almost, why wouldnt you want to take advantage of that and be commissioned, fuk pride dude, at the end of the day you have to put food on that table, and its hard to do when youre like an E1-E4

for aviation, id stay away from the Army, as all they have is rotary wings, and there program is being flooded, so it is actually slowing down too.
Naval aviation, and Marine Corp aviation has rotary and fixed wing, and of course the AF.
So choose wisely.

If youre a great swimmer, look into AF PJs, and Combat Controllers, if youre a fish in water, explore the Navy SEAL officer program.
besides that, you could always become a Marine infantry officer and then try to go Recon or MARSOC from there.

Besides being a pilot and the above mentioned, i think there is no way to escape a desk as an officer. lol

The fact that you want to serve so much is admirable tho, :salute: hurry and come join us.
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:43 PM   #19
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Good luck ever getting into EOD. I think they only took 3 guys from the Academy this year.
dunno what thats about but i resubmitted my package ths past winter and i start school in august.
Theyre always looking for EOD people.
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Old 06-05-2012, 04:45 PM   #20
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Navy EOD. Officers side you still get down and dirty. Its extremely challenging, close knit community..i could go on and on about it. Look it up. Civilian world after you get out your making 5-6 figure job the benifits are endless. And the pipeline is fun Dive school is a blast especially if you get there during spring break (panama city, fl) then you goto Eglin AFB for 11 months for the actuall explosives training and its fast paced high intensity dirty work, PT is tough and fun. Everyone there is of all ranks and are pretty down to earth guys. from 1st classes to the CO.

Just a suggestion, I took this route on the enlisted side of it, and i loved every moment of it. The pipelines just about 1 1/2 years from start to finish, you goto jump school, tac training..etc look it up. its an amazing career path. Very very very rewarding
I sure wish i could swim well, as i admire the fuk outa NAVYEOD but alas, i sink instantly, or damn near instantly, so i had to go the chair force route. So all the little shooting skills i acquired from the Marine corps will go to waste.
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