2nd Thoughts

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by Positivity, May 29, 2014.

  1. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    I already know i'm opening up a can of whup@$$ on myself for this one. West Point has(had) been my dreams for years. I was so set on this path for my life. In the past few months I have begun to have really bad second thoughts about going. Here are my thoughts; if you have anything to chime in, please do as I am worried that I may be making a mistake:

    Why I want to attend:
    It is an extremely prestigious school
    I believe that it will allow me to grow very much as a person
    It will give me hands-on management and leadership experience
    It will give me creditability so that building my brand afterwards is easier.

    Why I am having second thoughts:
    although it will be a great "resume-booster," I do not plan to work for anyone after college & 5-yr. commitment so I feel that it is unneeded in regards to landing me a "sweet job."

    Although I feel that serving as an officer will be a great experience for me as a person, and that I will be able to positively impact my subordinates, I do not have a desire to serve for the reasons of "promoting liberty and freedom" (here comes the whup@$$)

    I feel like i'm giving the military the years of my prime. I am a re-applicant and will be done with my commitment at 28

    The time I am in I could be building my brand and working for myself


    If anyone wants to chime in, muchas gracias. However, I would prefer the opinions of grads/current cadets. I foresee a valiant knight coming to strike me down with patriotism and orthodox ideologies- please try to refrain from an ego boost as I am genuine and concerned with a decision that will shape my future dramatically. Thanks!
     
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,755
    Likes Received:
    1,004
    Not everyone serves to "promote liberty and freedom" although it's often a biproduct of their activities.

    Even for some of the people who go in for patriotic reasons, than often change. So no worries there.

    You may be overstating the "working for myself" before you're 28, but commiting five straight years to something you might not be "in to" is a concern (not just for you, but often for cadets or midshipmen).

    Your reasons for being attracted to West Point are all legit, but remember, beyond being a learning lab, others lives and futures will be dependent (or at least influenced) by you, so it's a learning lab with very real consequences.

    Second thoughts are normal. I had a million second thoughs, especially after I became a cadet. At some point you'll have to figure out if it's jitters or if you really have no desire to be an officer in the Army. If it's the second.... well, no problem, everything else is still open to you.

    If you haven't been accepted yet, at this point you don't really need to worry about it, but this is something you'll want to take some time to think about.
     
  3. Sledge

    Sledge Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2014
    Messages:
    614
    Likes Received:
    323
    If you don't want to be an officer in the Army, you should not go to West Point.

    IMO, West Point (or any service academy or ROTC program) should be a scholarship route to being an officer in the military...not a military officer route to obtaining a scholarship.
     
  4. Freda'sMom

    Freda'sMom Parent

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    Messages:
    271
    Likes Received:
    143
    You are receiving a very valuable education and very valuable military training in exchange for 5 years of active duty service as an officer in the military.

    What you do after those 5 years is your business and no one elses. You don't owe anyone any more than that, regardless of what you may hear.

    People serve for different reasons. There is no dishonor in leaving after your obligated service time in order to reach a different personal goal.
     
  5. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have been offered an appointment and have accepted the offer. R Day is in 4 weeks and I feel that I need to be 100% at that point with no second thoughts. I have no desire to be an officer for the aspect of "serving." My desire to be an officer stems from my idea that it will be a great opportunity to get great leadership and management training. Thanks for the input!
     
  6. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,755
    Likes Received:
    1,004
    Well..... technically, I think there's a three year IRR obligation too (unless that's a CGA thing).... which involves a beating heart and nothing more....

    That three year IRR period just ended for me... so I REALLY don't owe anything... :wink:
     
  7. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fair enough.
     
  8. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for the input. I just feel that 9 years is a long time if I have no inherent desire for being "gung-ho military," but more of a desire to grow as a person. What are your thoughts?
     
  9. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Messages:
    8,755
    Likes Received:
    1,004
    I think you're correct. Nine years is a long time. And if you aren't somewhat enjoying it, it'll feel even longer.

    Honestly, it sounds like you already made the decision, but need validation. There is NOTHING wrong with not going to a service academy, and there is nothing RIGHT about going either..... it's a choice and a path, right for some, but not right for all.
     
  10. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2007
    Messages:
    1,886
    Likes Received:
    232
    If you don't want to be an Army officer, please let West Point know so someone who DOES want to be one can have your slot. We should not be convincing you to attend; if you are not sold on the idea, don't go.
     
  11. Spud

    Spud BGO

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2011
    Messages:
    528
    Likes Received:
    460
    My thoughts? You won't last plebe year. I estimate that in the cold, gray of February you will say "Gee, I have not grown as a person" and you'll be headed home.
     
  12. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm just afraid of being arrogant and thinking that I know more than I really do (which isn't worth more than a cup of coffee). Honestly, the military stuff sounds fun; beast sounds fun; I will learn a lot; I will get to play football. I again find myself at the fork in the road. LineInTheSand, when you fulfilled your active duty commitment did you/do you feel that you still have plenty of time to "hustle" as a man in your prime? I'm scared of the middle-class existence. I want so much more. When I say this I'm not knocking anyone- in fact, I wish I could be content with a nice 6-figure salary and the picket fence. Sadly, I am not. Really appreciate your valuable insight.
     
  13. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fair enough.
     
  14. tradecraft

    tradecraft Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2013
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    "To educate, train, and inspire the Corps of Cadets so that each graduate is a commissioned leader of character committed to the values of Duty, Honor, Country and prepared for a career of professional excellence and service to the Nation as an officer in the United States Army."
    Stated above doesn't coincide with your "personal" mission statement. Good thing it's WP and not another SA that has "service before self" as a core value. Brothers in arms would appreciate not having to serve alongside those who only have their "brand" as their priority. It would be very helpful to the admissions board that you include this in your personal statement so that both-your and their time is not wasted.
     
  15. cardinal21

    cardinal21 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2012
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    4
    IMHO you should move on and forget about the military.
     
  16. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fair enough.
     
  17. jebdad

    jebdad Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2013
    Messages:
    191
    Likes Received:
    67
    Yeah. I get that. I don't know how anyone could be happy making $100K+ with a nice picket fence surrounding their spouse and children they love. I would take at least 7 figures to tolerate that.

    (Sarcasm off). You are not officer material. In fact, it surprises me that people who want to build their brand or "make bank" (as a post a few weeks ago stated) want to endure a minimum of nine years of military life. Go to a great business school somewhere and get closer to filling your happiness jar with money. But, take this for what it is worth, money does not equal happiness. Might sound cliche, but the sooner you learn it, the happier you will be.
     
  18. Positivity

    Positivity Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2012
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tune-down the ego mi amigo. Good input otherwise.
     
  19. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Messages:
    7,544
    Likes Received:
    1,005
    @Positivity

    Didn't attend an academy nor does my NROTC MO son who is now at OCS and will commission next year.

    My son has never once mentioned serving for "liberty and freedom". In fact I don't think I've ever heard those words cross his lips.

    You appear to think your second thoughts need to be handled in the next 4 weeks. I expect your second thoughts will continue for the next 4 years. It's the nature of the beast (pun intended).

    You say your worried about spending your prime years in the military and will be an old man of 28 when you get out. Let me inform you that you don't even begin to hit your prime years until your 30s at the very least. Up until then you're still earning your stripes wherever you go.

    I agree with LITS that it's gotta be fun and not a burden.

    One of the maxims T. J. (Stonewall) Jackson had written down in his little book of maxims is "You can be whatever you choose to be". The choice is yours. Good luck with it!
     
  20. payitforward

    payitforward Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2013
    Messages:
    485
    Likes Received:
    88
    Have you considered moving to some other country? Some country where freedom was not bought and paid for by the middle class?
     

Share This Page