Saturday, August 1, 2009
David Enlisted In The Navy
This will be probably the last year I will be able to celebrate my son, David's B-day. He joined the navy last month. Many young men and women have to wait aout a year to be sent to boot camp. David, has signed up to work on the Submarines. That was not his first choice. The classifier, pressured him to make a choice now.
I am writing this to help othe recruitees and their parents have some knowledge about the recruiting process in the military. The do's and don'ts.
I am focusing on the navy because that is what I have experience in. The Navy is about education. The army is career oriented.
Decide which of the armed forces would be the best choice. There is the Army, Navy, Marines, Air force. There are many jobs but they vary by which branch of the armed forces you pick.
The Army has the most numerous jobs. The Navy enforces education. The Air Force I am told is the most cushioniest jobs out there. Marines is one of the hardest. You have to be cut out for real pressure. You don't rationalize, you just do what you are told without question.
Be careful about the recruiter. He pretends to be your best friend. But remember he gets extra's for recruiting you. He may promise you the moon. But don't believe everything he tells you. They told me son it is nothing like the movies(boot camp). It is easy, I found out later he was exaggerating. I got the information from a ex-army retiree. I will have to see what the real truth is when David enters boot camp.
The one thing, I remember is cathesthenic. Walking the wall the recruiter told me it is not that hard. David will be not outside but inside in a high tech. building not outside with the elements. I found out he was mistaken.
Once you decide which service you want to join. Each recruitee takes the ASVAB. It is a test to see where your strengths are in ability. The Army doesn't expect high scores from their recruits. The Navy does.
David then had to take another test for the Navy again.
After this the recruiter and you discuss the MEPS, in SC it is in Columbia. This is where the processing takes place. You take the physical and find out if you are physically fit for the military.
One thing I will warn parents
YOU CAN ATTEND.. David, may have not felt so pressured if I was there.
Realize some careers will not be open right now. But would possibly be open 3 months later. If you feel pressured by the classifier you have a right to change your mind about your career choice. You can change your mind and wait. You can go home and think about it without signing papers. They are not going to tell you.
Once you sign the papers you are stuck in for 8 years. This depends on your career choice as well. After the four years you will then be in reserves.
At first when David told me about it. He was all excited and caught up in the moment. But when all the excitement wore off. He realized this was not the first career choice he wanted. He chose to do something on the subs. But then decided that is not what he wanted.
I, as a parent searched for bloggers that would tell me if he can change careers. I did find out he can until he literally enters boot camp.
There are bonuses that come with your job too if you are qualified. Are you married, when you are deployed, and other bonus's. Ask the recruiter before you sign the doted line.
Right now David is attempting to get in nuclear engineering. This is one of the highest paying jobs in the military. He will be classified. He took the test and did very well. He has to get a waiver which he did. The only thing he has to take a college alegebra.
He loves science and math. Even when he was a toddler he loved to watch not cartoons but the educational channels like TLC, Discovery Channel, and National Geographic.
He was always fascinated and loved to tell me about the earth, stars. How a hurricane and tornado, volcano, tsunami and earth quake would happen.
Everyone cross your fingers and pray that he gets in nuclear engineering. I have a a motive he will be stationed in Charleston, SC at least for the next two years after boot camp. That is two hours away, instead of Hawaii that will be worlds away if he can't get in.
Through all this I do see great changes in him. He finally has he's head on straight. He has a real focus, and knows what he wants.
This may sound crazy from a mother. I support David what ever career choice he makes. I wanted him to go in the Armed Forces because it is the best thing for him.
It will make him grow up and become independent. I am not going to like it that he is leaving. But he has to spread his wings sometime.
I love you son, and Good Luck what ever you do.