Disenrollment Question

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Jay1, Jan 30, 2013.

  1. Jay1

    Jay1 New Member

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    My son made some horrible choices regarding the use of alcohol last semester which resulted in him being temporarily dismissed from his university until May 2013. He does not have any legal problems but the dismissal is obviously a breach of contract as a Cadet and even though he is in good standing within AROTC, his Battallion Commander was obligated to begin disenrollment proceedings. Son is at home this semester, has a job and is taking a couple of classes at a local community college. He will apply for readmission back to the same university for the fall semester. We have now received the packet and he is requesting a hearing, as he really wants to stay in the ROTC program with or without a scholarship after he returns to the university in August.
    My son has been given the opportunity to request one of three options: immediate enlistment, postponed enlistment (until graduation), or repayment. My question is whether his desire to remain within the program is an option. And also whether requesting a hearing while declining any enlistment options (due to his desire to remain within the program), could potentially close the door to enlistment options down the road. Repayment is most definitely the least desirable outcome. As this goes beyond the Battallion I wondered if anyone had any insight into similar situations and their outcomes.
     
  2. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    Wow times have certainly changed in regard to alcohol discipline. In my first years 2008/2009 we had multiple scholarship cadets getting alcohol infractions (including me but I was 22 and it was only an infraction because the campus was dry and the uni apartments I was in subsequently allowed alcohol the next year for 21+...). Those same cadets who got into trouble turned out to be Distinguished Military Graduates as well. To be honest I don't see a problem requesting a hearing but it sounds like staying with the program is not going to be feasible. If I had to pick any of those choices I would postpone enlistment so I could come in as an E-4 and with a degree. However, I am not sure how the GI Bill works with school loan repayment down the road so enlisting now might be a better option if loans are not covered by it.

    I am wondering what kind of school he goes to if they dismiss a student after 1 or 2 alcohol infractions. Religious private? Or is there more to the story?

    EDIT: As Jcleppe said there is NEVER any tolerance for a DUI. I am assuming the the repayment interest rate would be pretty nasty as well
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  3. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    What year is your son at school?

    Your son lucky , if that term can be used in this situation, that he has been offered enlistment, most other programs have been requiring payback as the only option.

    How long did they give your son to decide which option to take?

    Your son would need to talk to his cadre soon to find out if a hearing is even available to him, if so how quickly could it happen.

    This happened to a cadet at my son's school, he had received a DUI his senior year. For him there was no hearing available and he chose enlistment after graduation. If your son'r infraction was not a DUI then there may still be a chance for a hearing.

    With the current reductions in the Army my gut feeling is they will not allow him back into the program. He will be behind in not only school but ROTC as well. Of course he should request a hearing, just make sure it can happen before the deadline they have set for choosing one of the three options. If your son declines any enlistment offer before the hearing then he stands a very good chance of having re-payment as his only option.
     
  4. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I agree with the others, he should go for the hearing if he can get one, but he also needs to be prepared that this part of his life is over.
     
  5. Jay1

    Jay1 New Member

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    @Aglahad - Unfortunately there were 5 underage alcohol infractions within a 10 month period. It is a private university and he was partying to excess. It is a good thing that he has been forced to take a break as he absolutely needs to refocus and rearrange priorities. At the same time he was in good academic standing and also in good standing with ROTC. No DUI.

    @Jcleppe - He is an MS2 and he has 10 days to return the paperwork. He has talked to his Cadre and a hearing is definitely an option to accept or decline. He of course will accept the hearing but the other two options to accept or decline are the 2 enlistment options. He has written a statement requesting re-instatement in the program in the fall and so to that end is thinking he should decline both enlistment options. I am questioning that strategy because if he's denied re-entry into the program and at the same time it is in writing that he has declined the enlistment options, the only outcome would be repayment which would not be good. Any other feedback you may have would be appreciated!
     
  6. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    I can see your concern with declining the enlistment option. Has his cadre said anything about what would happen if he accepted the enlistment after graduation but had his hearing and was allowed to be reinstated. Would they then cancel the enlistment requirement. That might be worth asking his cadre.

    Hopefully Clarkson or Marist will see this thread and respond with their thoughts.
     
  7. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    I am truly sorry for his trouble. I defer to many others here with more knowledge than me but I am just wondering, is this something you need to review with an attorney?
     
  8. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Good point.
     
  9. EDelahanty

    EDelahanty Member

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    I am sorry to hear of your son's trouble. There but for the grace of God goes John Bradford, and, probably, a disappointingly large number of AROTC cadets. That being said, if he had five infractions within ten months, there were likely many other instances where he was not caught. This would mean there is a real problem with alcohol and self-discipline, as you have acknowledged.

    I don't mean to play internet barrister, but I wonder whether the five infractions you cited were violations of local and state laws (as determined by law enforcement) or were violations of campus rules. Not to diminish the gravity of the situation, but there may be a legal distinction.

    Whether or not you decide to involve an attorney to ensure your son's rights are being protected, you may want to start by looking at his responsibilities and obligations under his Scholarship Contract.

    http://www.uvu.edu/rotc/cadet/contracting/DA FORM 597-3 ROTC Scholarship Contract.PDF

    and also at Cadet Command Regulation 145-1:

    http://www.rotc.armstrong.edu/Documents/Scholarship Regulations/CC Reg 145-1.pdf

    In fact I would recommend that anyone who is seeking an AROTC scholarship familiarize themselves with the terms of the contract, which is a binding legal document.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  10. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    Pardon my ignorance on the process, but is the hearing part of the dis-enrollment process, or is this a separate process that is dependent upon the outcome of the dis-enrollment process?

    It seems to me that the form is simply requesting his preference (no guarantee of outcome) for repayment. It is my understanding that the Army makes the final determination based upon their needs. A dis-enrolled cadet who chooses repayment is likely to be granted that because I doubt the Army wants an unwilling enlistee when they are winding down operations and contemplating troop reductions. Indicating that he would like to finish his degree gives the Army the opportunity to gain a higher educated soldier if they are needing them (although they could require immediate enlistment if they feel it more appropriate).

    Regardless, the Army will review all of his history (including his alcohol incidents on campus) when making its final determination.

    Although checking with an attorney as suggested above is a good idea (get one familiar with military proceedings or you are wasting your time), if the hearing is part of the dis-enrollment proceedings, he will be required to discuss his entire record (good and bad) on campus. This will most likely also be used to determine which of the 3 options will be required of him.

    If he is getting help (considering that he has 5 incidents involving alcohol in 1.5 years, I hope he is), he should be prepared to discuss the help he is getting, how it is changing his life to make him fit to serve (regardless of whether it is through continuation of ROTC or as an enlisted if dis-enrolled).

    I'm thinking here that you should turn in the form (unless your attorney indicates otherwise) with his preference. It sounds like it isn't accepting the dis-enrollment (that is the Army's decision without his input), but indicating what repayment he is most willing to part with.

    As to which option between the 2 enlisting options, if he is making progress in fixing his problem (nobody gets busted 5x without having a serious problem), he should stay in a supportive environment until he graduates. You might want to see what kind of support will be available once he returns to his original school.

    Sometimes, however, serving his time upfront may be a better option if going back to school will put in in the same situation where he had problems before. It gives him time to grow up and be in a structured lifestyle where he isn't cut slack the first 4 times he screws up. I would definitely seek out some guidance (perhaps from his cadre) on what the experience of dis-enrollees is when shipped off to basic, etc.
     
  11. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I can't imagine he would be forced to enlist after graduation if he was re-instated in the program. Somehow it wouldn't make sense. If he completes the program and is commissioned how could he enlist? But then, this is the military and anything is possible. Maybe they would extend his AD commitment or something?
     
  12. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    First, +1 regarding the civilian attorney. He must be familiar with the UCMJ and military procedure even if this is not a courts martial.

    Second, I offer this anecdote to consider. During my active duty years, a service member who had alcohol issues/ infractions/ related violations/ etc was automatically "off limits" if he declared he had an alcohol problem and requested a 30 day detox program. In other words, they could not be discharged and became what seems like a protected class. Perhaps it is a civil liberties thing - I don't know. They were sent away, did their time and then came back to active duty with a daily dosage of anabuse (makes you sick when you drink) for some additional period. The dosage was monitored by an officer or senior NCO. If they stayed clean - all good. A relapse was automatic discharge (as I remember it)

    To point out the obvious: This was years ago, involved active duty vs ROTC personnel and may be long out of fashion.

    As several posters have indicated, there seems to be an unhealthy relationship with alcohol that needs to be addressed. This is a higher priority than the scholarship obligations. I wish him the strength necessary to resolve this issue. Good luck!
     
  13. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    I don't think it matters either way. All of the alcohol based suspensions and disenrollments I have seen were campus based except for one MIP. As far as ROTC is concerned campus rules are ROTC rules just as the police uphold state and federal laws. If the violation occurs on private property where alcohol is prohibited and the drinker is under-age I don't see how a legal distinction would be made. From what I saw any alcohol violation carried equal gravity in my batt and PMS's eyes. Granted a DUI or another serious charge such as selling to a minor would supersede everything.

    I don't know if the cadet has an alcohol problem as I am did my fair share of drinking in college which was just a few months ago. What he does need to do (as his father stated), is straighten his priorities and discern if drinking on campus (which I assume is the case) was worth it. With 5 violations in a 10 month period it appears he assumed, maybe due to youthful ignorance, that there would be no serious ramifications with on-campus infractions. A lot of these violations involve getting caught with a beer or shot in a dorm room, not someone publicly drunk staggering around on campus with a fifth in their hand. I got my violation for just being in a room with a beer on the table.

    Now I hope he does see the cost of haphazard partying and will adjust accordingly at home and at the CC.

    USMCGrunt- From a medical perspective you must be a pretty far-gone in terms of alcohol dependence if you need Antabuse (Disulfiram), nasty stuff.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  14. goaliedad

    goaliedad Parent

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    I'll agree that without knowing the specifics of the 5 incidents whether or not the cadet in question has a substance abuse problem. He clearly has an issue being around alcohol, though. Hanging with the wrong crowd (which tends to bring the busts because they do stupid things) will eventually lead to more serious problems. Living on the edge is a part of military life (it is not for those who do not enjoy a bit of risk), but knowing which edge to live on is critical to keeping out of the brig.

    Note that I said he needs counseling. It is obvious for anyone who messes up 5x in the same area. Exactly what the counseling is for (whether consumption issues or just not knowing who to hang around with) is entirely determined by the specifics of the incidents.

    I'm sure you evaluated the situation after your incident to make sure it didn't happen again. That is the sign of someone who knows how to mange risks.
     
  15. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    Just want to reitterate I chose my words carefully in complete awareness that I don't have enough information to judge the individual's dependence upon alcohol or the nature of the multiple incidents.

    I do think it is fair to call it an "unhealthy relationship"
     
  16. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    Agreed. There is a correlation that needs to be addressed.

    OP:

    For the here and now, best of luck for your DS at the hearing or with legal counselling. I do not believe they will permit him to be in the program, but that does not mean he won't have a successful career within the Army. Who knows, maybe with a postponed enlistment he will be able to drop a OCS packet down the road. All is not lost, but unfortunately mistakes have their consequences. Drinking in college as a regular student is no big deal, but a cadet who will lead soldiers in the very near future has to be held to a higher standard.

    Once again good luck with whatever happens
     
  17. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Under current OCS regs, you can't apply if you have been disenrolled from any other commissioning source, not sure if that still applies if the disenrolled cadet enlists first.

    I do wish your son then best of luck with whatever happens.
     
  18. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    I stand corrected, would that apply to WO packets as well?
     
  19. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Not sure
     

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