Citadel question

Discussion in 'Publicly and Privately Funded Military Colleges' started by jct95, Apr 24, 2013.

  1. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Hi all,
    I have a question regarding the Citadel - any advice is appreciated. Basically, I've been accepted to the Citadel - and I'm seriously leaning towards going there. Just have a few questions....

    - What is the average GPA for most Knobs? I understand that's a hard question to answer, but on average - what is it? And is it common to see Knobs/Cadets transfer into one of the service academies? Or is rare?

    - for any infantry/sof vets, did knob year mature you? To state the obvious, it's completely different than any other college environment - and they're there to prepare you for the military. Did it benefit you later on in life (in the military)?

    - and lastly, I'm very much interested in entering SOF - particularly the SEAL teams, and Rangers. Is it common to see a Cadet attempt to commission in with the hopes of getting a SpecWar billet and become a SEAL? Or do most tend to gravitate towards line/leg infantry units.

    And lastly...
    This is a stupid question, but how is Charleston? And are Cadets allowed to go out on weekends?

    Thanks any advice is appreciated.
     
  2. SuaSponte

    SuaSponte Member

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    This is more of a bump than anything, but I have something to say regarding the SOF stuff. The guys I've talked to at the places I've visited say there are a good amount of guys applying for SpecWar billets and it's pretty competitive to get them. TAMU had special units like SEAL Platoon that helped train for SOF schools (those guys were really impressive, good grades and great fitness), maybe Citadel has something similar?
     
  3. Jcc123

    Jcc123 Member

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    Jct95 - I'm not clear which service you're interested in, Army (Rangers) or Navy (SEALS) ? Or are you still deciding? For my information, how does service selection work at the Citadel if you're not on scholarship?
     
  4. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    If you are looking to try and enter SOF soon after commissioning then stick with the Navy. There are opportunities to go to BUDS, if selected, after you commission. The competition is stiff and you will need to be at the top of your game in regard to academics and physical fitness, you'll need to be scoring the max.

    If your looking at the Army as far as Rangers and SF you will need to wait a while after you commission. You will need to be a Captain or 1LT Promotable before you will be allowed to apply for either Rangers or SF, neither take a lot of officers so again you'll need to be toward the top of the food chain. Don't expect to be able to apply until you have been in for 3 1/2 to 4 years after you commission.
     
  5. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Yeah, I had a bit of a mental lapse. I'm sorry about that.

    Do you by chance know what the average GPA is for a cadet (knob year)?
     
  6. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    I'm sorry, I do not.
     
  7. Lot115

    Lot115 Member

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    Do not focus on the average. I had classmates that got gold stars and classmates that received 1. somethings. All you can do is try your hardest and remember that although you may get in trouble because your brass is not perfectly shined the next day you will still be a cadet and you cannot get kicked out because you were studying instead of shining.

    There is an Navy Seal preparation unit. I believe other branches also but that is the only one I know of.

    Cadets can go out on the weekends unless they get in trouble. There is a lot to do because Charleston is a small city.

    Good luck in your endeavors:)
     
  8. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    There's a SEAL prep unit? Really? Do you have any info on them?

    In regards to grades, I apologize about asking. It's just that I've heard a lot of rumors that Cadets struggle in school and because of their GPA they have a tough time getting into grad schools...again, those are just rumors and I doubt that they had any idea as to what they were talking about.
     
  9. CitadelGrad

    CitadelGrad Member

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    A lot of Citadel grads go to grad school. My class has more doctors and lawyers than I can count.

    As for knob GPA, you can usually expect it to be lower than in your last three years. I finished knob year with a GPA below 2.0. The remainder of my semesters were either Dean's List (3.2 or higher) or Gold Star (3.7 or higher) semesters. After I left the Army, I applied to three Top 20 MBA programs and was accepted by all of them.
     
  10. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Really? Do you mind me asking what you majored in? What degree you would recommend getting provided you want to go into business? And what MBA programs you applied to?

    ...and where did you serve?

    Thanks.
     
  11. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    Well, considering I just finished my knob year, I feel like I can answer your questions accurately and without too much bias.

    Average 4th class GPA usually isn't very good....on average. I would say a 2.5 is a good estimation. This is not always true. I finished with Gold Stars first semester and I am set up to get them again for this semester, I'll find out before too long. It all depends on your priorities and major, I will say I have it much easier than most being a liberal arts major who matriculated with 40 credit hours than an engineer who is starting as a first-semester freshman.

    It is very common to see knobs who were rejected from the service academies and The Citadel was plan B, as was the case with me. Not many transfer afterwards, it doesn't make too much sense considering you already will have finished a year of ROTC. Almost all fall in love with The Citadel and our culture, which is often described as a more relaxed West Point melded with any big, southern SEC school. I sure did. We play Dixie and Imperial March at parades. I promise you, a huge lesson I learned here is that you don't have to be an Academy grad to be a good officer, they preach it all over these forums because it's very, very true.

    I'm not an SOF vet, and Infantry is doubtfully going to be my first choice when I eventually fill out my LDAC branch selection, but there are many graduates on campus who were Green Berets (mostly TAC officers) that had very illustrious careers. We've also had some SF/Ranger/SEAL/FORECON/Justice League members (both officer and enlisted) on campus that apparently like how things are done here.

    As for your aspirations, remember we commission via ROTC. If you go Army.....remember this means your guranteed Active Duty, but your branch first choice, not necessarily. I know I've been cynical but I'd rather a new knob know the facts than show up next year wanting to commission as a Delta lieutenant, even as classmates those guys can be aggravating.

    Everyone wants Infantry. Your going to have to compete for it. That means a 4.0 and a superscored PT test just for a >50% shot. That's the most facilitable way to get into Ranger school for the Army, and SF down the road if you're a real stud and amazing leader. Not always the case: there's a couple guys that branched Chemical Corps, one of the least desireable, and are getting attatched to SF units, turns out Green Berets require staff experts on chemical warfare. Alot of it depends on luck and timing, and all of it depends on the needs of the Army. We commissioned a ton of Field Artillery officers this year. I guess Uncle Sam needed some. Some instructors and senior cadets I've talked to have talked about how about 4/5 years ago, one would be offerred a commissioning slot if they had a 2.0 and could pass the PT test, and they usually got Infantry....because the Army needed Infantry officers and alot of them. Just be thankful you recieve a commission at all is how I look at it: so many want one, but there's not alot of money or huge need for officers at this exact point in time.

    The Navy ROTC world is broke from what I see and hear.......I already have freshman classmates who are switching from Air Force and Navy to Army because there's just no money for scholarships or available commissioning slots. A junior I know, with a 4.0 and an amazing PT score, simply was not competitive enough for a Marine Corps commission and switched to Army this year, almost too late in his cadet career to commission. And commissioning as a SEAL officer from what I hear rarely happens from ROTC....I've heard most slots from that go to OCS actually, but don't quote me on that. Most Navy guys I know who commission this year are going SWO, though one academic stud with Gold Stars in a double Tech major got a Sub slot....you're not the big fish in the pond anymore.

    Any more questions Citadel-related, please ask....
     
  12. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    ^ thanks for all the advice!

    I just have a few more questions....

    - I've heard that not many Citadel cadets actually choose to commission? Is that true? And how many enlist if they don't commission in?
    - how is Charleston? And are you guys allowed to go out on the weekends?
    - Did you show up in shape?
    - This doesn't exactly pertain to the Citadel, but if you choose to do 4 years of ROTC - and not commission will you have a problem later on in life (provided you're trying to enlist)
    - how badly did you get..."messed" with Knob year? And how did you handle it?

    And three stupid question...
    - if you guys are allowed to go out, do you have to wear your uniforms?
    - how bad does bracing suck?
    - and Girls...I'm assuming they're aren't many at the Citadel - how's Charleston?

    Thanks again.
     
  13. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    Only about 1/3 of each graduating class commissions each year. This is for a variety of reasons. The vast majority of cadets simply have no intention of joining the military in any form post-graduation, that's just how it is. Many want to commission but can't keep up their grades, stay in shape, or stay out of trouble in order to. Some aren't qualified through DODMERB, and find that out the hard way. There are other technicalities that exist as well. Hardly anyone enlists, but some do. Several go the OCS route post-grad because for whatever reason it's a better deal for them (higher probability of getting branch selection/ warfare community they want).

    Charleston is alright. Pros and cons, just like anywhere. Great seafood and historical stuff if you're into that. It's by the water, which I also really like. But often it's a drunken tourist and college town, which gets old after a while, but if you're a big partier it's awesome I would assume. I just prefer more rural areas personally.

    You better show up in shape!!!!! There's a PT test the first week you're here, you better do well unless you want to be an especially attractive target for your cadre haha!!! Also, if you're pursuing a commission I can't emphasize how competitive it is.....be able to run, do pushups and situps, and pull-ups if you're pursuing a Marine Corps commission.

    I'm not sure what you mean by "a problem"...?

    Knob year sucks. I thought it'd be alright as long as I did what I was told, but that's not true. Prepare to be very sore and sleep-deprived.....as in about 8-10 hours per week deprived. The Citadel and VMI (and I'm sure the other SMC's) are state-funded schools, not federal academies, so what is considered "over the line" at our big brothers up river is not necessarily so at The Citadel simply because there is less at stake except for our school's own reputation. There is more control and measure, and more limits placed on what the upperclass can and can't do to 4th class at West Point and USNA and their brethren simply because of the risk. Unless you're on scholarship, one is paying quite a bit of money to come here, so it's seen as "your choice". Is there a line? Definitely, and if an upperclassman crosses it I promise they won't be seen, depending on what actually happened, either on campus or at least interacting with knobs again. But I know a few USNA midshipmen, a former West Point cadet, and a few folks at VMI....and from our exchanges, The Citadel and VMI are a wee bit more lenient on cadre, more "cool" with "unleashing the hounds", so to speak, just because there's less risk in my oppinion, and the oppinions of a few others.

    We can go out on most weekends as long as some event (such as a big-deal weekend inspection) isn't planned, which really isn't too often, plus you get leave right afterwards. There are leave uniforms which change seasonally. Many don't wear them, and of course they get in trouble if they are caught.

    Bracing sucks, I hope you don't have back problems.

    As for girls.....depends on your taste.....but I promise there's plenty here and if you really want a girlfriend I assure you that won't be difficult to obtain, but there are a few at The Citadel and there all over the city and it's several female-majority colleges.

    Again, happy to help, and please feel free to ask any more questions.
     
  14. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Thanks again, I have a couple more. Just to clarify, my deadline is Wednesday...so if you could get back to me ASAP I would appreciate it.

    Knob year, not to sound like a little b**** but what was the worst thing you saw? And are the senior cadets tough across the board, or are some worse than others? And for those who choose not to commission, how are they - in regards to the rules? Are they tougher/easier on the Knobs?

    And provided somebody does commission from the Citadel, how big of a deal is it being a Citadel grad? Is it respected in some circles (can you elaborate)?

    So, uniforms...hmmm. Do most guys just keep clothes in their 'dorms'? Or is it a constant struggle trying to stay away from the uniforms? And as far as grooming standards, what is it? Shaved head, clean face? Or is short good enough?

    For those who choose not to commission, do most go on to grad school? And someone mentioned earlier, that many grads go to top 15-20 MBA programs? Is that true? (If so, what undergraduate degree would you recommend?). And for those that have no interest in serving, why do most go?

    Are there any SOF training units? Like a SEAL training platoon?

    I don't know, Charleston looked really nice. Very old world, and at the same time pretty beautiful. Can you elaborate, is it only a party town?

    No offense to any citadel chicks, I'm sure there have been a few hotties throughout the years - but how are they at the Citadel? Beastly? Or not that bad? And how are some of the college chicks in town? And without trying to sound like an immature pos, do they allow you to take girls back to your dorm? (I assume not)

    In regards to that problem, would it be harder to enlist if I did 4 years of ROTC and didnt commission?

    ...and Bracing. Please, explain. How long do they have you do it for? How bad does it hurt? Do they really have you brace while you run? Is it only for Knobs, or is it for everyone? Do people crack up while they do it, and how bad do they yell at you when they do it?
     
  15. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    Anytime, I'm happy to help.

    And the worst thing that occurs that's "ok" within the school's culture? Depends....hard to answer, there is too big a grey area between the writtin/unwritten rules, induvidual unit cultures, etc.....I can promise you it was pretty strenuous but nothing too.....sadistic, and I will tell you that with the absolute worse thing I ever saw, those upperclassmen involved are no longer cadets.

    Some are worse than others, from completely relaxed to you'll probably think they learned their training methods by studying abroad in hell. Most are in the middle, and whether or not they want to commission has nothing to do with it. A huge factor, however, is company/battalion culture. Some companies are easy and almost fun, others are always under investigation from the Commandant's department for hazing.

    From what I've seen, it's a pretty big deal in the civilian world. But from what little experience I've had with the Army, noone cares where you go to college, what matters is that you're a good officer and don't get an ego from going to an SMC or academy. But The Citadel is a huge deal wherever you are in the South.

    Most people keep civvies in their dorms. Actually, that's not even against the rules. There is a constsnt struggle with most cadets to be "normal". I just wear my uniform, saves alot of pointless trouble methinks.

    Knobs get really short high-and-tights. Upperclassmen have short hair but some grow it out fairly long, but always within basic military regs. Everyone that isn't a troublemaker is clean shaven.

    Some seniors go onto grad school....The Citadel is looked up to, and alot of smart folks come here, so it's fairly common. Not sure on specifics though, at the moment for me grad school is nowhere near the priority list. As for why? It's a well regarded school in the academia world. It's cheap and convenient if you live in SC. Every male in your family has gone for the past century, and so on.

    There is a Special Forces Auxillary and a Pre-SEAL club. The former is like a club that meets once a week and talks about SF stuff. The latter I'm pretty sure does actual PT and such to prep you for BUDS.

    Charleston does have some really nice old-world historic areas, just depends on where you go. There are at least 3 colleges here I can think of. That will cause a party town to develop on Friday nights no matter where you go, but that's not all there is. Just alot of what you'll likely see considering your peer group.


    As for girls, just like anywhere, you have some that are scary and others are gorgeous. There just aren't many of them. There are tons of beautiful girls in town to, but the party culture may turn you off, in other words, it can be hard to find a "good girl". But it's possible, trust me. You can't take them to your dorm.

    To be honest, I have no idea....but I doubt it.

    I don't want to give away much about knob year, it's the surprise that's a huge part of it....but it hurts, longest time would be maybe an hour. You don't do it while you run. Some people laugh, and are never seen again (jk, you'll get punished for it, maybe severely, but you'll live). I promise we won't kill you.

    Anything else? I have tons of free time now that exams are done.
     
  16. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Thanks again bro, you're awesome.

    Can you describe the worst thing you saw? And as far as the seniors go, were there any that you legitimately liked? And are you picked at random, to go to whatever unit?

    What major are you, and how hard was it? And what do most choose to major in?

    Have you heard any stories of guys trying to bring girls back to your dorms? If so, how bad did it get? And be honest, is there a single hot chick that actually goes to the Citadel?

    Have you seen that SEAL unit before? And do you have any opinions? Same goes for the SF club.

    How often is PT? And what does a typical day look like?

    ...and c'mon dude, dish on bracing. How bad does it hurt? And does it f*** with your back long after?
     
  17. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    Haha, you're too kind. Honestly, I'm trying to spend more time on here since I have so much experience with academies and SMC's/Army ROTC.

    Without giving too much potentially bad information away, the knob was hit. It was bad. Action was taken, those upperclassmen are no longer here.

    I liked most of my upperclassmen (fyi, it's mostly sophomores and juniors that are doing all the "fun" things. Seniors are usually hands off.). Many were good leaders, smart guys. Now that I'm recognized, I'm almost friends with a few of them.

    You're picked at random, but there's some slight bias toward sending the "smart" kids to 5th Battalion, to make it easy to work together, upperclassmen also prioritize academics, etc., and sending athletes to 1st Battalion, because their barracks is closest to the athletic buildings.

    I'm an International Relations major, minoring in German. It's easy for me, not for others. I'd die if I did engineering lol. I'd say the most common majors are the Political Science and Buisness majors....but that's a very uneducated guess.

    I've heard a few, but none I've ever scene, and I usually stay on top of things around here, so I assume it's never that bad. And there are several actually, just not common. And never knobs....they give female 4th class the worst inhumanly short haircuts ever :thumbdown:

    I've seen the seals run around campus, and the only I've ever seen of the SF club was when our barracks was the setting of a Taliban stronghold in a wargame where the SF guys played OPFOR against the Army ROTC juniors as part of a pre-LDAC prep. No real oppinions honestly, I've considered joining the SF club a few times.

    PT I think isn't done often enough. It's done every morning during hell week, but never ever again, unless you're contracted with an ROTC unit, then you'll follow their PT schedule.

    Days...ehh, depends...what's your potential choice in major?

    Bracing hurts after about 10-20 minutes. There are rumors of permanent back damage and it causing you to lose an inch or 2 of height. Just rumors though. My girlfriend is still taller than me :redface:
     
  18. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    Sweet...

    I've been thinking about majoring in Engineering/business. How bad is it for those guys (knob year)?

    What time do they wake you up, and what time do you typically go to sleep?

    Have you seen Cadets graduate quickly, like three years or less or is that unheard of?

    Is the SF club filled with what you might consider good guys, or are they d***s?

    How if the food, and how strict are they on you when you eat? I heard they pretty much yell at you while you eat.

    I didn't know that about bracing, during knob year how prevalent is it? Do they do it to you all the time, or is it kind of rare?

    ...and uh, don't take this the wrong way. But where can you actually spend time with your girlfriend? Do you have to go into town or something? Thanks again dude.
     
  19. jct95

    jct95 Member

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    ...and what's the deal, as far as using the Internet? Are Knobs allowed to have laptops/IPads?
     
  20. kewebbjr

    kewebbjr New Member

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    jct95, are you going to The Citadel next year?
     

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