Downsizing Contracted AROTC

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Ohio2015Parent, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    Hello all.

    DS has come home to visit this weekend - there was a MS1 meeting this morning before he left campus. The number of contracts available to his unit has been cut to 24(unsure what the previous number was exactly so I can't give a percentage). There are currently 54 MS1s, 8 4 year scholarships take 8 of the 24 contracts, leaving 16 slots. Internal OML is in place and many of these cadets are SMP who will be losing the ROTC contacts they were "promised".

    DS should be in good position(until he blew his APFT run this morning, 16:20 isn't passing..., he was #6 on the list and since he will retake it in March before decision time he can redeem himself.) However, thought this information might be worth looking into to see if there is a pattern of reductions. DS is Ohio public university(Brigade ??). Does anyone else know anything from their school?
     
  2. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I am willing to bet that this is an across the board reduction and other colleges will also see reductions.
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    ^^^ Sends shivers up and down my spine! I would hope that there are only 24 already contracted and that no one on contract loses their standing or scholarship.

    Haven't heard anything from DS's NROTC unit, but if its happening in AROTC I expect its probably coming to an NROTC unit near us, which of course would put usin jeopardy for an in-school scholarship or Advanced Standing later on.

    Hope your DS's run performance was simply due to laying off over break, or a bad day due to illness or something along those lines. I'm sure he'll redeem himself in March.
     
  4. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    kinnem, I think we are reading the post differently.

    I did not take it as those contracted will be revoked, but the amount available to contract has decreased. I read it as 24 will be contracted, 8 are already contracted out of the 54, leaving 16 slots available and 46 candidates vying for them. Basically a 1 in 3 chance.

    As many have stated what you may now see is "hardball" for contracted cadets/mids. In other words they will be faster to send you to a review board for academics or PFT than in previous yrs. It is a way to cut.

    For cadets/mids and candidates nothing should be seen as off limits, and you can not afford to rest on your laurels.
     
  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Pima,
    We certainly read it differently. I think the key phrase was this...
    I expect you read it correctly, but I took it to mean the entire unit and not just the MS1s. I certainly hope you're correct. Still not good news, but it changes the odds dramatically.
     
  6. paradoxer

    paradoxer Member

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    Same elsewhere

    Similar cuts as well, beginning before the first day of class fall semester where they cut using PT scores to get to 50 for MS1 level; so if you didn't come to school in shape you were already outed. Believe the other numbers are similar except there is only 1 4 year and 1 3yr AD awarded so more spots available.

    Good news is they were all told early on the new numbers and what they'd be up against. Honor roll for DS so very glad he's on track.
     
  7. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    Here's the deal. Cadet Command is putting a hard cap on contracts. In the past, it wasn't micromanaged as we padded our contracts to ensure we met misson. What that means is that there will have to be some hard choices made in each Battalion. Each Battalion will probably try to crack this nut a little differently, but if I was a PMS I would just not rush to contract anyone who is not on scholarship. I would be very meticulous in validating 3AD offers, and would hesitate to not validate and reoffer if the scholarship winner was substandard. I would also allow as many quality cadets as possible to continue to compete for the available slots. If they get into sophomore year, and I have a solid OML built, and I have reached my cap I will be prepared to make the argument that I have a need for one more contract allocation. What is ultimately going to have to happen is for the Brigades to manage the overages and underages.
    I just got back from our annual ROO conference. This was definitely one of the major topics of discussion. The bottom line for cadets is to control what you can, take care of business, and remember that there are very few guarantees in this business. As a point of reference, at my school the freshman class has a mission of 15, and a contract mission of 20, so by sophomore year I will need to have 20 contracted. Hard choices will be made. Hope that makes sense.
     
  8. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    ^^^ Thanks Clarkson. That's certainly clear and actually no different than usual procedure (I think) other then the number of slots are decreasing as the needs of the service decrease. It's unfortunate; but that's another thread for another day on another forum.
     
  9. CadetMom777

    CadetMom777 Member

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    My son attends AROTC at an SMC where they are expected to go active duty upon commission as long as they pass everything (grades, PFT, LDAC, etc.). He told me the Army is giving some cadets in the graduating class the option to go reserve instead of active duty, which is unusual.
     
  10. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    Sorry to hear about the PT, Ohio. Make sure your DS gets out and runs and runs and runs. Going forward, I think those with the fewest "dings" will be getting the active duty opportunties, and even if a cadet passes on the second try, a bad PT score may still be viewed as a "ding".

    As for revoking contract offers, I think that once you are in the tent, you're in the tent (unless DoD gets whip-sawed into making unplanned reductions in response to the additional automatic cuts, which I don't see materializing but can). I also think we are going to see a gradual shift of questions on this website from, "what are my chances of obtaining an ROTC scholarship" to "what are my chances of receiving an active duty slot". It may not much matter, because as many have said many times, the REAL value is getting the active duty slot.

    Clarkson, are the SMCs affected by these cuts as well? I'm really curious about that, because it will confirm my belief that the "guaranteed active duty" statute that purportedly helps SMCs is really a toothless tiger.
     
  11. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    This is actually what they do when downsizing occurs, and this is precisely what happened in the 1990's. There was a debate about whether this would occur again in another thread, and it appears to be happening. Of course, past historical conduct is no guarantee of future conduct. Sure looks like it, though.

    Others may disagree (in fact, I know there are folks who simply want to leave the discussion as "just do what you can control and don't worry about the big-picture because nothing is certain"), but I firmly believe that any ROTC or SA cadet who knows by visiting this website that there are major changes ahead will hopefully understand that the standards have changed. Cadets cannot measure themselves against what the standards for AD slots that existed over the past decade. Instead, cadets must understand what is happening in this profession in the "big picture" and work harder than the cadets who graduated last year -- indeed even this year -- in order to cross the finish line. This, of course, means any "dings" must be kept at an absolute minimum, because the competition for AD slots is just starting to heat up.
     
  12. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    Just to clarify a few points -- the 24 slots are for MS1s, currently non-contracted(scholarship awardees are "safe" at the MS1 level but it reduces the slots available to 16 additional contract offers). Apparently this situation is also bringing to light the POSSIBILITY of MS2 having their contracts "voided" for lack of a better word...due to any problem with academic or athletic performance.

    DS is now wishing he'd listen to old momma Ohio and gotten his a$$ out and run over break...I'm only the advisor, he controls the final decisions, good and bad. The OML in use by his school mirrors the final OML structure and it was given to them in writing and reviewed at the meeting this morning. Fair warning has been given to them all.

    DS will redeem himself athletically. He's been put on remedial PT which will bring it to 5 mornings a week. He also signed up for the German Profincency(spelling not my strong point:wink:) badge and will be swimming 3x a week. If this level of workout doesn't get him back on track(previous APFT was 270...)nothing will. Since this APFT was consided "diagnostic" is is only worth a fraction of the total points for overall OML standing - the March one is worth significantly more points.

    He also has quarterly counseling session with his MS1 instructor next week so he can weigh how much damage he has caused to his reputation with the cadre. Also, he can ask the hard questions "what if" I do not get offered a contract -- National Guard currently isn't requiring him to go to an AIT school based on him being contracted in the fall. A lot of questions, but unlike last year when he felt powerless against unknown "board" decisions he understands exactly what the standards are now and what must be done.

    Thanks for the feedback and encouragement to DS. Good kid, bad decision not to keep up the workout over break.:rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2012
  13. educateme

    educateme Member

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    Help me understand this correctly.

    Am I right if I say:

    1. contracted 4 year scholarship MS I are safe from this.

    2. However, they have to make sure they stay on a straight and narrow path: no infraction on anything lest that gives a "justification" the cadre to ditch them.

    3. Keep up a high standard for AD: this will become INCREASINGLY more competitive.

    Did I get it right?
     
  14. philmont

    philmont Member

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    ?

    Do contracted MSIs take the APFT every semester or just in the fall semester?
     
  15. Ohio2015Parent

    Ohio2015Parent Member

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    As it seems at DS's school, yes, you "got it".

    MS1s take the APFT twice a quarter -contracted or not - once in the beginning of the quarter and once toward the end, so technically 6 times an academic year(this school along with all Ohio public universities are changing to the semester system with Fall 2012 grading period.) This could be different based on the school.

    Goodnight all.
     
  16. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    I think the answer is yes on all counts. The times of automatic active duty are over for the time being, even if the "contract" has an active duty component.

    As I recall, in the 1990s, all contracted students had the same status (didn't seem to matter whether you were a scholarship student or not). I also recall that your branch (i.e., Infantry, Armor, etc.) played a role in your assignment as well. When the Cold War ended, a bunch were thinking that the days of large-scale conflict were over and Congress was demanding a "peace dividend". The military decided to cut.

    The one thing that I found amazing, though, was that after my active duty was over, I had to fight very hard to get the Army to honor my commitment. I figured at the time that my commitment was set in stone -- 4 years AD, 2 years Reserves, and 2 years IRR. But the Army wanted EVERYONE completing their AD time to go into the IRR, and only a few people (like 2 or 3) in the entire Army that year ultimately made it into the Reserves. For me, it was a matter of survival, because I needed the Reserve income while attending law school, so what I had to do is discharge from active duty in Europe and join the Reserves in Europe (where there was no officer freeze). I then served in the Reserves in Europe and thereafter transferred to a stateside unit near my law school. This got me around the hiring freeze that was then in force (where there's a will there's a way!!). There were stories about USMA and ROTC Scholarship grads not being required to fulfill their active-duty service obligations (perhaps someone can chime in here who knows whether this is true or not).

    In any event, I think everyone, including cadets, should take a hard look at the details that will appear in the President's budget in a couple of weeks. Note, though, that even the President's budget isn't final. In fact, it's been a few years since the last budget was passed. And if a conflict with Iran flares up, all bets are off and entitlement cuts will have to carry the water for a bit.

    My message to the incoming Class of 2016: The military is a profession. If you plan to be a part of that profession, you have to be aware of the current trends and posture yourself for it. Sure, you have to do well in all the basic stuff and stay out of trouble. But you have to think and plan ahead to be successful. You must plan your career and certainly meet all standards. If you think a branch of the Army is a dead end, don't sign up for that branch or else you will regret it 10 years from now when you are a Captain trying to make Major.

    My current take on all this is that the military's current thinking is that it cheaper and easier to train a tank crew than to design, test, and manufacture a new tank (insert whatever piece of hardware you care to here). That is why hardware is favored over manpower. I think.
     
  17. Packer

    Packer Member

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    I think you have a selective memory. Not being aware and having contingencies was not advocated by anyone that I recall. I recall many (me)saying it was not doing any good worrying about the things that may or may not happen that you can't control. Do your best at the things you can control.

    Cadetmom stated some are being given the "option" to go reserves. I believe this has always been the case at SMC's. They are "guaranteed" active duty if they want it and get commanders reccomendation. Perhaps some are being told they will not be getting this recommendation thus they will be going Reserves.
     
  18. CadetMom777

    CadetMom777 Member

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    Packer, I was specifically referring to the scholarship cadets. They were awarded their scholarship with a 4 year active then 4 year reserve commitment. It is those cadets that are now being given the "option" to go all reserve by the Army. It was not an option when they signed on the dotted line at the beginning of their freshman year. Sorry if I was unclear about that.
     
  19. Packer

    Packer Member

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    Thanks for the clarification. Are they just being given the option or are they being encouraged to go reserves?
     
  20. patentesq

    patentesq Parent

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    While past conduct is no guarantee of future conduct, in the past, the Army has typically asked for volunteers first, both among those about to begin their service commitments and those completing it (as well as higher up the ranks). If the numbers don't meet the projected force strength according to the budget, then other options are evaluated.
     

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