Army ROTC - Do I have a chance?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Hawk1996, Sep 23, 2014.

  1. Hawk1996

    Hawk1996 New Member

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    Hey there guys and girls, I just have a few newbie questions regarding if I even have a chance at joining ROTC. I'm currently a freshman in college at a small-ish town. I have recently become interested in joining ROTC my junior year by completing LTC over the previous summer. After doing a lot of research I have started to question if I would even be allowed to join.

    1) As a young kid I remember my dad took me to the doctor saying I had "seasonal asthma" and received an inhaler for it. I only remember using the inhaler like 3 times my entire life. Fast forward to middle school I no longer had any signs of asthma and no longer used an inhaler. Now I can't remember exactly, but I'm pretty positive that I was younger than 13 the last time I went to the doctor for seasonal asthma. Am I already disqualified? Has anyone successfully been waivered from this same situation?

    2) This year I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and have since been taking medication (armor) once every morning. Mind you, I feel no difference since I've been taking this medication and my doctor says I can go for long periods of time without taking the medicine and still be okay. Therefore it's not life threatening. But again, is this waiverable, or am I SOL? Assuming of course I am completely fit and in great shape.

    3) Okay... This last one is a bit of a doosie. I've read plenty of threads on this question and I'm still unsure of the answer. So back in high school (sophomore year) I made the stupid mistake of smoking pot a few times. Hated it. Stopped doing it. And never looked back. Now I've read that if I admit to trying marijuana on the forms then they will deny me acceptance. But others have said it can be waivered. What is the realism of this situation?

    Other than these three things I think I would make a great officer in the Army. I appreciate any feedback from you guys. Thanks.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2014
  2. Future2LtMom

    Future2LtMom Member

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    Hawk,

    Reference AR40-501 (Standards of Medical Fitness) for additional details on your medical concerns. Just google it and a pdf of this publication should pop up. However, I can tell you this:

    1. As long as the asthma was NOT diagnosed and symptomatic after the 13th birthday, you should be OK. My DS had the same issue as a child. When he went through DodMERB, they asked for his medical records pertaining to the issue and it didn't present a problem at all.

    2. Hypothyroidism NOT controlled with medication is a disqualifier.

    3. To be an effective leader, you have no choice but to admit to your previous pot smoking. To not admit it is a lie (NOT cool). Plus, if you ever go for a security clearance, they will probably find out about it anyway. Would you rather know the ramifications of your past mistakes NOW, or would you rather roll the dice and find out the ramifications once you've gotten your career off the ground (i.e. dishonorable discharge, no job, no benefits, etc.)? I have seen some posters out here in the past that were in the same position you are. It wasn't necessarily unheard of for the military to understand a few transgressions of youth. That being said, things are so different now and much more competitive. Therefore, no one out here can tell you it will be OK. However, we will tell you that evidence of your future leadership ability starts with you admitting to Cadet Command your past mistakes and taking responsibility for them.

    Best of luck to you!
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    +1 Future,

    To drive home the point there are threads here where a cadet on scholarship came clean on the number a few years later, usually at the time of TS clearance paperwork. TS paperwork is @ 60+ pages and they will require three people to be interviewed.
    ~If any of the info does not match up red flags will start flying and that is never good.

    When these cadets changed the number from their DoDMERB on file,red flags fly again. The posters here that I know of fessing up later on were disenrolled as cadets and AFROTC handed them a bill for the scholarship money!

    Who knows if their scholarship would have been pulled when they were in HS, but at least they still had control of their future...they may have decided not to attend that dream school due to cost. Instead they were now 21, no future career plans because they intended serving in the military for the last 4 years and 60k+ being demanded to be repaid in 4 years and they still have 1 more year of school left.
     
  4. Hawk1996

    Hawk1996 New Member

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    Thanks for the feedback. I figured the childhood asthma ordeal wouldn't be much of an issue considering it was so long ago. Also, thank you for clearing that up for me about hypothyroidism not being an automatic DQ when controlled by medication. I suppose the final issue for me will be playing the odds against whether or not they will accept me for admitting experimental pot use in the past. Btw, congratulations to both you and your son.
     
  5. Hawk1996

    Hawk1996 New Member

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    And that is exactly why I would rather come clean about it in the beginning. My only fear as of now is what will happen when I go to sign up and check on the forms that I had experimented with pot a few times back in high school. It's a 50/50 change I guess... Either they have me give a brief explanation of my past mistake, or they tell me I am ineligible for ROTC. Which I hope is not the case because becoming an Army officer is my dream career. I don't know what else I would do if they told me no. If only I could hear from someone who has successfully been through this situation. Thanks for the feedback.
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    You'll be asked to explain it in any case. I know of folks who have gotten through this. I also know of folks who haven't. A lot depends on how often, how long ago and your attitude about it. I always recommend disclosing if only because I wouldn't want to be carrying the baggage of the lie around,but it's your decision.
     
  7. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    If you are a freshman in college do not wait until the summer before your junior year to join ROTC. The LTC option may not be available to you at that time. If you want to be an Army Officer you need to enroll in Army ROTC class ASAP. If that means waiting till spring that should be fine. All your research regarding how things are done now are going to be useless soon, because there will be a lot of changes regarding the paths and options. If you aren't careful you will walk into the ROTC office at the end of your sophomore year and be told that they are full and don't need any more Cadets. You want to get in the pipeline now. There may not even be an LTC soon.

    None of your "issues" would be show stoppers in our Battalion, as far as I can tell, especially the experimental drug use more than 6 months ago. I am pretty confident your "asthma" will not be an issue. The only one I would be a little concerned about is the Hypothyroidism, but I don't think you will know for sure until you get a DODMERB started.
     
  8. Hawk1996

    Hawk1996 New Member

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    Thanks man. I'll make sure I just come clean about the past drug use then. Really the only thing stopping me from starting sooner is because I wanted to recieve some advice on how to deal with that situation. So many people told me to "withhold the truth" when it came to my Rotc and Dodmerb forms, then come clean about it when it came time to fill out the sf86. But I'd really rather not have to do that. Should I just walk straight into the ROTC hall next Spring and ask to talk to someone there, or is it better to sign up online?
     
  9. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I'd be guided by whatever Clarkson says, but why not walk in now so everything is lined up for the spring semester and there is time to deal with it? Heck, you might be able to get some stuff accomplished this semester.
     
  10. Hawk1996

    Hawk1996 New Member

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    I'll look into doing that soon. The only thing is my right shoulder has been bothering me for a few weeks and it's been getting better daily. I would rather wait until it fully heals before I have to start doing pushups.
     

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