Beginning of SMP Process, wondering what to expect

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by CoachBart, Mar 28, 2014.

  1. CoachBart

    CoachBart Member

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    DS has completed basic training and AIT and is in Natl Guard and attends a SMC. He is supposed to submit all of his paperwork for contracting to ROTC as soon as he gets accepted into a unit to be in SMP. He said he has 30 dayas to do this. The last thing he told me was he turned in a 104 form that had to do with his proposed graduation date. He was told now he needs to find a NG unit that will accept him into SMP. DS put together a resume which includes his gpa (3.9) PT scores 337, and clubs and leadership positions he has attained. He started his phone calls yesterday to NG units to see if they had any SMP openings and express interest. He said in every phone call so far he is interupted by the sergeants mid sentence and told "We don't need anyone." DS said he was frustrated and said it appears that no one wanted to hear what he had to say and he was not allowed to continue saying what he wanted to say and ask. I asked him if he should be speaking to a higher rank but he said that he was using the chain of command as he was supposed to. He did say one of the things he wanted to tell the sergeants answering the phone was if there was a specific person he could email his resume too but he said so far he is cut off before he can even get to that info. Please understand that I am still learning about this process my son is going through. DS said that to get contracted he must find a unit to accept him for SMP. Right now it does not look like anyone is interested. He told me one of his sergeant's (DS currently trains in the unit at his college) told him if he continued to have no luck that she would make a call to someone she knew but that the location was a 5 hour drive from his campus. She told him that SMP cadets were not popular with many units and that may be what he is running into. Any thoughts or ideas? I am eager to hear your comments about this. Thanks.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2014
  2. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    DS attends a JMC and is ECP but is doing SMP also. He contracted first thing in the fall and got all his paper work filled out ASAP. They had a local recruiter that helped place them in units.
    However, many of his classmates that are in the same program did not get their paperwork done as quickly and there are no more SMP slots available or the units do not want anymore. So the cadets are left drilling on campus.

    DS got a little lucky in that the unit he drills with really didn't want any more SMP's as they had bad experiences in the past. However, they accepted him and he has done great and they even told him he's been the best they have had in over 5 years (since this sgt. has been there). He had a classmate that came to the same unit about 3 months after him that shows up late or not at all and I think they have gotten rid of him.

    If I am not mistaken you are at UNG. With that and the JMC in Georgia, I can imagine the units being filled up with SMP and ECP cadets. A 5 hour drive might be his only option to fulfill his requirements.

    DS's unit does not have room for him to stay at the armory as a lot of the soldiers drive a long distance to drill (sapper unit). So he gets a room at a motel nearby. A chunk of his pay goes to a room or to food on drill weekends, but it's the price you pay to get started. I believe next year they will make room for him though.
     
  3. mbitr

    mbitr Member

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    He has asked his recruiter to pull vacancies for him? Like QA said, there's normally a Guard recruiter or liaison that works closely with the school. I wouldn't bother wasting my time playing phone tag with unit readiness NCOs unless he has to. The truth is that many units see SMP Cadets as dead weight. They take up space but aren't deployable and can't be mobilized for state emergencies, and often have ROTC training that conflicts with the drill schedule. They aren't going to care about his "resume" because it means absolutely nothing to the unit's readiness.
     
  4. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    I have to agree with QA and mbitr - try and have your DS get a NG liaison or recruiter involved to help him find a unit. DS's unit is 1 1/2 hours from campus - 2 1/2 from home - but it works out since he already does receive a room for overnights at a local hotel. This is in Ohio, I'm sure Georgia is different.

    The SMP program has been good for DS, I hope yours gets a chance with a unit. If 5 hours is the only option - it would still be worth it from what I've seen my DS experience and learn from his unit's officers.

    Good luck!
     
  5. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    Another thing that affects matters is if your ds is in state. We live in state to both the college and the unit ds drills with. I know that matters here. The ROO at the college told us that up front.

    Right or wrong it can make a difference.

    In some cases state "A" may not like to teach and pay cadets that live in state "B" because they know will depart them after 2 years. DS has a classmate from an island nation that is an excellent cadet, top 10% of the oml, and a good kid. But not being local he has not been able to find a unit to drill with because he does not have transportation and they know he won't stick around after he graduates.

    I do not know if it is possible for a cadet to get a so called "SPONSOR" unit from his home state and then drill at the university he attends.
    It seems like some of the cadets at ds's college do this but I am not 100%. Someone with more knowledge than myself would have to comment on that.

    Best of luck to you and your ds. I am sure there is someone at the college or with the guard that can help him.
     
  6. CoachBart

    CoachBart Member

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    Update/Thanks

    Thanks for the info. DS said a Sgt called him back after reading his email and resume and asked him to call a point of contact back on Mon in ref to SMP at thier base. This one is only a 2 hrs drive from his campus. I will keep you posted ;)
     
  7. UndeadPoet

    UndeadPoet DS - AROTC/AFROTC Winner

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    Fingers crossed, CoachBart!:thumb:
     

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