AROTC and Alcohol

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Jcleppe, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    There has been a lot of great information and discussions lately about Summer Training Programs and the how the OML works. A lot of discussions have been geared toward how to succeed in ROTC. This is all helpful to prepare this years future cadets for next year.

    There is however one thing I feel needs to be addressed, that is college drinking. We all want to believe that our kids will be responsible when they get to college, that they will understand the consequences of drinking. That being said, drinking happens at college, most colleges at least. I just wanted to reafirm what can happen.

    Cadet Command has adopted a Zero Tolerence Policy toward drinking infractions. There are several infractions a young college student can receive. If the student is underage they can receive citations for MIP (Minor in Possession) MIC (Minor in Consumption) meaning if the campus police stop you and you have been drinking you do not need to be in possession to receive a citation. If you receive either of these citations you will most likely be disenrolled from ROTC. Once you turn 21 you can sill be cited for having an open container in public.

    If this happens during your freshmen year you have no obligation to repay your scholarship. If it happens from your sophomore year on you will have an obligation, you will either pay back your entire scholarship or will be required to enlist if you can receive a waiver for the infraction.

    This year at my son's battalion a MS4 received a DWI for .082 over the Thanksgiving Break. He sweated for a month while the cadre sent in a waiver request. The request was denied. My son said it was tough, he was with him when he found out, the cadet broke down and cried, it was the end of his dream. The cadet had to wait another 3 months to find out what the Army was going to do with him, he had requested enlistment. In the end he was allowed to enlist to fulfill his obligation, had he been required to pay back the scholarship he would have owed just over $100,000.00, that would have been a very expensive DWI.

    Do not take this lightly, campus police look hard for underage drinking and they will cite you for a first offense.

    The best advice, Don't Drink. As a parent I am also not naive, if you drink, don't leave where you are at, don't walk outside with a beer in your hand. If you are at a party or a Fraternity and you have been drinking and the party gets loud and the police are called, they can test everyone for alcohol and give citations to those under age. So again, the best way to avoid this problem is not drinking. Be smart and be aware that one slip up can cost you everything. Once you turn 21 Do Not Drive when you have been drinking, even if you think you feel fine, it is not worth the risk.

    Your cadre will tell you all about the regulations regarding drinking, basically....don't do it, it is not allowed.

    A lot of young people choose ROTC because they want the traditional college experience but remember, you are under the same moral obligations and requirements as cadets at West Point.

    Be Safe, Be Smart, and Be Careful
     
  2. Packer

    Packer Member

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    Fantastic post! For many college kids this is their first real freedom. There are parties every weekend and everybody is having a great time. Stop and think about why you are where you are, how hard you worked to get there and what your goals are. For some things there are no second chances.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Let me also add another thing that many cadets do not realize.

    They think that the command are old farts and don't know how to work the internet, including FB. I can't tell you how many cadets get nailed because some good friend that belongs on FB and to a group forum snaps a pic, posts it showing the great party on their page, and now because they are on a group forum everyone in the forum can view it.

    Join the BN forum on FB and you are there for everyone to see.

    I do not want anyone to think OK hide it, I am trying to inform you all that as much as you see the command near SS or death, they too know the ins and outs, because once upon a time they were college kids.

    Alcohol in college is a biggie. It is not only ROTC, but most colleges also have a 0 tolerance. At DS's you must sign the 0 tolerance to move in the dorms. Get caught on campus, and they kick you out of the dorm, which means reporting it to the administration, and that filters down to ROTC. You lose it all.

    So, just remember before you post those fabulous pics of that great party on FB showing you underage drinking, Big Brother might be watching!

    FYI, I can tell you that I know people who just pop into look at updates and pics so they can be assured nobody under their command is violating.

    At 18 we look like Morons to you because we are old. At 21, you realize, CRAP they figured out how to work the system before we ever tried!
     
  4. VAMOM2015

    VAMOM2015 Member

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    Great information! My son was happy that he could use ROTC scholarship as an excuse why he can't drink, since he doesn't want to drink.
     
  5. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    This should be required reading for every cadet to read. The MS4 from Jcleppe's post should have been ordered to travel school to school talking about stupid decisions and the costs!! We all pray our kiddos won't be the cautionary tale - but I personally know mine is as much at risk as this MS4. Not a partier in high school, but the lure of the college party is prety darn strong(been there done that, got the t-shirt:redface:).

    Thank you for posting this VERY important topic for all new college freshman -scholarships might be on the line, but so are lives and there is no repayment plan or enlistment option there.
     
  6. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Thank you for adding that last line, that should be the most important thing to keep in mind.
     
  7. paradoxer

    paradoxer Member

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    Cost

    Didn't someone (Pima maybe?) run some numbers on the difference in salary between someone enlisted and commissioned? I bet there is still quite a financial cost to this student as well as the life changing course.
     
  8. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    The difference in annual salary between an O1 and an E3 (Because of his college degree he enlisted at an E3 paygrade) would be $12,651.00 during the first year before benefits and other pay allowences.

    Between risking his own and other lives, the cost of the scholarship had he been required to repay, and the difference in annual salary, it was an expensive lesson to say the least.
     
  9. sg1fan93

    sg1fan93 Member

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    I just looked up my school in regards to the "party scene"...its ranked as the #1 party school in the nation! :yikes: looks like I'm going to have to "just say no" a hell of a lot :thumb:
     
  10. paradoxer

    paradoxer Member

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    Let's see

    If you took only that $12000 and invested it for 50 years you'd have about $600,000 mistake.
     
  11. nick4060

    nick4060 Member

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    There are a lot of cadets/mids out there who think that its impossible to follow the rules AND have a college experience. Well those tend to be the same cadets/mids who dont make it to commissioning.

    Ive had a couple of friends kicked out for alcohol violations. All i can say is that ($18Kx4years) $72,000 is one damned expensive drink. Its not worth it. Wait till you're 21.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2011
  12. sg1fan93

    sg1fan93 Member

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    as a cadet would I be allowed to go out to a party if I don't drink anything?
     
  13. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    MIPs can be charged when a minor has access to alcohol without appropriate controls.

    For example, a young lady I know (not in the military btw) got a MIP when she went for a ride with a friend who borrowed his uncle's SUV (with permission) that happened to have an unopened case of beer in the back. Both of them were under 21 and neither had realized the uncle had left the beer in the back when the cop pulled them over. Neither had been drinking either.

    Getting back to your situation, if the party has a keg and nobody is banding people for age and controlling the pour, just being there when the cops arrive is likely to result in a MIP. You might catch a break if you put down your diet coke and can get the cop to take you to the jail for a breathalizer and blow a 0.00, but don't bet on it. They are not obligated to do this.

    BTW, if you are caught in such a situation (not the smartest thing to be doing, consider yourself warned), go directly to the ER at the local hospital, present your ID and ask for a blood alcohol test. You might get a judge to dismiss the charge if you can present evidence that had a 0.00 within an hour of the bust. Don't depend on it, though. Some judges convict to send a message that you should even be near the stuff. Having uncontrolled access to alcohol is enough to convict in the right circumstance. By that I mean, your parents don't have to lock the liquor cabinet if you are home alone and the police come in for some other reason. Likewise if you have a 21 year old roommate your sophomore year when you move into an apartment, it would take more than the presence of alcohol in the apartment to make a violation. However, not having a legal owner living in the unit, or a legal owner of the alcohol allowing uncontrolled access (open containers) puts everyone present in MIP jeopardy.

    If you have to ask how close you are to crossing the line, you probably shouldn't be considering it.
     
  14. AlabamaMom

    AlabamaMom Member

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    What great information. The minute I saw this post I made my DS read it. I have always told my DS if you don't put yourself in a questionable situations you won't have to worry about how to get out of it. This is were the "make good decisions" lectures come into play. I just hope he has been listening.
     
  15. AFAYahoo

    AFAYahoo Member

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    Another thing to remember if you are in ROTC, even if you are 21 and legally allowed to drink at a party, if you see under age cadets drinking and don't stop it/report it/etc, you can get in trouble and even kicked out of ROTC too. No matter if you are months away from commissioning. It happened on a campus this year.
     
  16. pp171

    pp171 Member

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    Another point, there was an AS200, engineer, great student, ranked #1 in the class, went to field training and did well at FT (If i could remember he got SP). The moment he got back from FT he was cited for an MIP and AI. He was gone from the AF so quickly it made my head spin. He has to replay his scholarship too.

    Case in point, military is cutting down, and there is no room for error or mistakes. Think about your actions before you do them.
     
  17. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    pp171 is correct, the military is coming under severe budget crunches, to the point that Gates is talking about hitting AD military pay. Kicking out someone as a cadet costs far less, and is far easier than an AD member.

    As they stated it can happen in a matter of days.

    Nobody is naive here and saying alcohol is not there for the taking. They are saying, that you will be naive if you take it and think you are not putting your career in jeopardy.

    OBTW, Mom speaking, but you are also putting your family's finance in jeopardy if you are on scholarship because they can come back for those funds if you are contracted.

    Plus, let's say you get caught Rush week your Sr. yr. where they are serving to minors. You lose the commissioning, the scholarship, the stipend, the book reimbursement, and now what? You are 30 credits short of graduating, how do you pay for that 1 yr? Loans, that the folks have to co-sign? How about the books? Spending money? How about after graduation, are you going to now come home and live there? All of that is going to impact your folks. They too will pay a price for you not thinking it out all the way.

    Tattoo it in your brain, if you can get kicked out, regardless of scholarship, than it is best to walk away from the situation.
     
  18. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    Yes, just be smart about it. I'm pretty sure just about everyone in my BN I've seen at some sort of party. Just know whats going on and what can happen.

    I've already had cadets in my class kicked out because of drinking/drugs.

    It is a very serious deal, but don't let it stop you from having a good time. Be smart, be responsible. Soon enough, your cadre will give you a weekly safety brief warning about underage drinking. The cadre is not dumb and know, that regardless of them telling you not to drink, some still will. So, if you plan on not drinking until 21, look at for your fellow cadets who will be.
     
  19. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Hint.

    The minute the party becomes noisy, raucous, get your arse out of there! The fact is inevitably police (campus or town) will arrive and you don't want to be there when they do.

    It is common sense, if you don't drink you will be able to see it coming way before they arrive. Imbibe and you won't see it coming, which at that point you will be standing in front of a review board on Monday!

    It is not only alcohol, it is everything. The bar is set higher for ROTC cadets re:expectations and honor code.

    We are all discussing the 0 tolerance re:ROTC, but at some schools that also is strictly enforced. Our DS and DD's schools will boot you from the dorms just as fast as ROTC boots you. Believe it or not, you won't be the prude on the sidelines as an ROTC cadet. There are many students who are not ROTC and also understand the implications of underage drinking at college can cause to them personally.

    Again, we as parents, know what we did, we are not being naive here. We are not saying circumvent the system. We are being honest and saying it happens, but don't be that fool, because it isn't worth it.

    I recall back when I was in college and a friend said I paid 700 bucks for a $2 Gin and Tonic (1986, with inflation, it would be @2K now). She got caught with a fake i.d., underage at a bar in town that was raided by the police. That was the fine, plus lost her license until she turned 21.

    As I said, you guys aren't re-inventing the wheel regarding drinking in college. We all have been there, done that or know someone who has. The minute you realize that, the minute you will understand you can't game the system. Realize you can't game it, and you will realize it isn't worth the risk.
     
  20. Packer

    Packer Member

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    For some of us this problem was a little easier to avoid. The legal drinking age used to be 19 in many places so most college kids were legal. Times have changed and it makes it more difficult for today's kids but the rules are the rules. Play by them!
     

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