How's my essay?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by joejoe903, Apr 2, 2016.

  1. joejoe903

    joejoe903 New Member

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    I just started my NROTC application and was hoping to get some comments or suggestions for my essay in response to the question, "Why do I want to be a Naval Officer?"


    I aspire to become a naval officer for a few reasons. I, first, have always had a genuine desire to serve my country. Now, being me, I never go halfway. I want to do the best of my ability to serve my country and have the biggest impact possible. I know that as an officer you lead and have a heavy impact on the enlisted which is why I want to be an officer. Its a chance to get to serve the largest Navy in the world with a heavy impact on it. The Navy wants people that can serve and will serve well. I know that I can be one of those people. I feel that the knowledge that gained in college, whether that comes from NROTC or just living as a college student, will be useful to the Navy. I want to supply the life and academic knowledge I have gained in the college, regardless of how little it may actually be, I want to give that to the service. As well, having a career that will require me to be physically and mentally fit will be an interesting one, no matter what it is. The idea of a monotonous job sitting in a cubicle, doing the same thing over and over again, makes me fear the life as an average working american. It sounds incredibly boring and I hate boring. I want excitement and interest in the things I do and only the military can provide those things for me.
     
  2. Row2020

    Row2020 Member

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    Full disclosure: This was my first go around with this process and my DS was denied am NROTC scholarship but plans to reapply as a college programmer at SUNY maritime if USNA or USMMA doesn't work out. Good for you for getting the ball rolling. This will help you in the long run. The best thing to do with a broad based question like this is to write your knee jerk response and then keep the question in the back of your mind as you go through this process. Right now your essay is probably the cookie cutter response so many write. You should have an English teacher help you with this if you can. I don't know how much weight the board puts structure but as a college professor I see a few screamers here - "I, first" "now, being me" "I want to serve my country" is repeated several times, in addition there are some grammatical and punctuation issues. Substantively: HINT: everyone applying for the ROTC scholarships/SAs want to serve their country before they were even born ;) What makes YOU a good leader? Why the Navy? Why NROTC rather than AFROTC. What do you hope to gain by going the "regular school" route? HINT: even as an officer in the Navy you might find yourself at a "monotonous job sitting in a cubicle doing the same thing over and over again." Needs of the Navy first and foremost! We enjoyed the NROTC process very much. The information exchange was steady and helpful. I am not an expert on the matter and I hope others chime in! Best wishes on your endeavors!
     
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  3. forumjunkie

    forumjunkie Member

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    Ha started to comment on not sounding Condescending and how military spend a lot of time sitting at a desk when i looked up a realized you already covered that
     
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  4. Row2020

    Row2020 Member

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    Another valuable nugget I learned on this forum. Probably from someone just like you! Thank you!
     
  5. swrakow

    swrakow Member

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    The board will already know you want to serve, or you would not have applied. Try to find out what makes you different than the others applying. What are you interested in? Engineering? What part of the Navy do you want to serve in and why? (surface, subs, aviation). What makes you physically fit? What makes you tough enough to handle deployments and family separation? Are you willing to serve where called? How well do you follow orders? What leadership positions have you held (club president, team captain)? Do you have a family history of military service? If not, what got you interested in the military? Be as specific as possible.

    Once you draft your essay, just like you did here, get people to read it and comment. Have your English teacher read it. Grammar, spelling, verb tense, and the like are all important - especially know the difference between its and it's. Officers need to be able to communicate well with the written word. I know your first draft above is just that, but if I were on the board I would have set your package aside because the essay is too common and filled with errors.

    Good luck.
     
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  6. Maplerock

    Maplerock Proud to be an American

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    Joe joe, take your essay to your English teacher. Your composition needs a lot of corrections and could be more concise. Good luck.
     
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  7. futuresoldier5211

    futuresoldier5211 Member

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    Agree with everyone above, no need to criticize it now. Just gonna try to give you ideas.
    In my essay (marine option), I spoke about an experience I had while backpacking. I used an anecdote that I believedon't the board would enjoy hearing and hopefully give them a glimpse of the type of leader I am.
    In another essay I wrote (USNA), I spoke about adversity. I talked about growing up with a mom who had many medical difficulties and having to spend entire baseball seasons without my parents seeing a game because of health issues and how that made me independent. Also spoke about recovering from a severe injury recovery and my work ethic. Whenjoy was the moment you truly knew you wanted to be an officer? Maybe you went to a base and looked up to all the men in uniform. Maybe you had a dad who served and you recognized the sacrifice he made to protect your freedom and you feel the need to pay ithe foward. Also talk about why Navy. For my Marines, first to fight, top of the food chain in the military was big in my essay.
    Hope I helped!
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    This is for other 2021 candidates and lurkers before they ask read my essay. Just food for thought using the OP as a barometer.
    Count how many I, me and myself you wrote in your essay.

    Take it to your honors or AP English teacher for their opinion. Discuss if this is a passive form essay?

    Hit the search tab here regarding essays, including the SA and nomination forums. You will find a ton of essays.
    ~ OBTW most will say what Maplerock said regarding reviewing it...you are assuming that other posters are not like you...a high school student with no experience.

    This is meant with kindness, but will probably hurt. I stopped reading it after the 5th sentence. 6 I's in 5 sentences, plus a couple of me and my on top of it.
    ~ Do a word count, and after that count how many I, me, my, myself. What is the %. Can you rework it for a statement like this:
    ~~ 3 I's in 1 sentence.
    ~~~ Also remember your audience...NROTC is college. Your statement of how little it might actually be was negative. HUH? Re-read it...academic knowledge I have gained in the college, REGARDLESS of HOW LITTLE IT MAY ACTUALLY BE. It reads to me that you are slamming the college that NROTC is tied to for their program. I know that is not your intention, but read the entire statement...that is the thing about run-on sentences.

    It is a cliche, but it exists for a reason...SERVICE before SELF. Just saying that it is something to thing about.

    Again, this is not meant as a personal affront. It is meant to say that you need to grab the readers attention in that opening paragraph, and the I, me, myself, over and again just won't cut it impo. I want to remember you, and not the boiler plate essay of since I was 6 or I,me, myself ...etc.etc.etc.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2016
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  9. Anthony B.

    Anthony B. Proud 4-year AROTC Scholarship recipient GMB '20

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    I personally think that you overused the word "impact" Also, I applied for an Army ROTC Scholarship and was a 4 year winner and I was advised to include why I wanted Army and not any other branch. I would assume that would be a good idea here as well, to specify why Navy
     
  10. zachcleigh

    zachcleigh Member

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    Completely agree with swrakow.


    Most applicants will write (generally) the same ideas and prospects down for their essays.


    Things the board sees all the time:
    I want to serve my country
    I want a college degree
    I want to be a pilot (or whatever it is)
    I have military history in my family tree


    These are great things to think about, and should definitely be mentioned. However, once you've expressed these basic concepts that EVERY paper has... you need to add your own twist.


    At the end of the day the military wants someone who's going to be a "money maker" for them. It's about having leaders who keep morale high and get jobs done efficiently, Leaders who keep their noses clean, and leaders who inspire those around them to strive for excellence.


    This concept is not touched on quite as much as the basics. If you express this idea and your understanding of it, you might just catch an eye or two.
    It worked for me.


    I wish you and all of the class of 2021 candidates the best of luck.
    Hopefully I'll run into a few of yall soon.


    Hooah
     
  11. txpotato

    txpotato Member

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    Buy a copy of A Writer's Reference or a similar style guide. Review basic rules of grammar, punctuation, and mechanics. It is difficult to concentrate on content when form is lacking.
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    AMEN.

    Remember that they will read a ton of essays and your goal should be to stand out in that pile of essays.
     

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