HS senior with questions about rotc and army reserves

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Frequ, Aug 30, 2016.

  1. Frequ

    Frequ New Member

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    So I asked on reddit and someone suggested that I ask here. Just going to copy paste what I said. Thanks in advance for reading/answering!
    So a week/2 ago an army recruiter/counselor just kind of stopped me out of nowhere and started talking to me about the reserves. Long story short I took the ASVAB yesterday (99 AFQT, dont remember my other scores as he left the paper in his office, I'm going back there tomorrow if you need to know the others) and tomorrow I'm going to MEPS. I'm highly considering joining the reserves as it puts money in my pocket/gives me work experience/builds networking/life changing and becuase I'm interested in it (also helps pay for college). IIRC my recruiter said if I decide to join I'll have to do 6 years for full benefit (GI Bill). He also talked about rotc but we didn't get to talk too about it. These questions might be dumb but I can't find/infer the answers. Anyways:
    1) Does being in the reserves affect my chances for ROTC/can I still apply for the 4 year ROTC? I googled but couldn't find the answer, on the website it says has to do 4 years active + 4 years reserve so I was wondering if I'm even allowed for it as it sounds like it might be a incentive for those not already in reserves/AD to join.
    2) Are the scholarships full tuition? It just talks about monthly stipends, it has a bullet that says full tuition but I don't know if this means it is or if some of the scholarships are.
    3) If I am qualified for the scholarship does the 6 year contract I sign count as part of the 4 years AD+4years reserves or not?
    4) Do I have to do AD? Only reason I ask is because my recruiter made it sound like I could stay reserves for the whole period and also because I saw another thread here where someone said you could do 8 years of reserves.

    Note that I'm not in the reserves yet but I probably will be in the near future. Also what is the competition like for the scholarships? If someone wants to give me a "chance me" I'll list some stats below (note that this is all junior year and below):
    Took AP chem, AP calc bc, AP bio, AP US History, AP Psych, AP World. Scores were 4, 3, 3, 4, 5, 4 respectively. I also got As in all of them except calc bc where I got C first quarter, B 2nd quarter and an A 3rd quarter. My GPA (uw) is around 3.75 and for ecs I've done cross country and track except I'm not doing them senior year because I'm taking college classes instead. I have no communty service though. I'm pretty sure I'm in top 10% (I was in top 5% end of junior year but senioritis = grades have dropped start of senior year so I'm probably not anymore once this quarter ends)
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2016
  2. johnny1530

    johnny1530 Member

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    Sorry, I do not know the answers to 1, 3 and 4 but for what it's worth, I'm pretty sure the answer for 2 is yes, ROTC is a full ride scholarship including money for books and some money for food and other miscellaneous costs of college. Also if you don't get the 4 year scholarship you can always join the program at the college you are attending and work hard in college and get a 2 or 3 year full ride scholarship. Plus you'll be an officer so you'll get better pay, more responsibility and other benefits you don't get from enlisting. Nothing wrong with enlisting but I think it's more beneficial to be an officer if you have the opportunity to. I'd at least apply for ROTC and see how it plays out. You're grades are probably fine but focus on trying to get some volunteer work and work on your fitness. Best of luck
     
  3. clarksonarmy

    clarksonarmy Recruiting Operations Officer at Clarkson Army

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    Do not sign anything until you talk to an enrollment officer/ROO at an ROTC battalion, preferably at a school you are thinking of attending. My recommendation is before you enlist you try ROTC if you want to earn a 4 year degree and serve as an officer. Not that recruiters are bad or doing something wrong, but the are notorious for pushing the benefits of enlisting and downplaying ROTC. I'll bet you will be surprised by what the ROO has to tell you. Don't rely on REDDIT, or even this discussion board for the most accurate information. Visit a campus that has ROTC and speak to someone there.

    There is another thread that just started from someone who joined the guard and then enrolled in ROTC. Now he is stuck in the guard and wants to quit both. If he had told his recruiter to chill and enrolled in ROTC he could have dropped the class when he discovered the Army wasn't for him and he would still be a happy college student.
     
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  4. 5Day

    5Day Member

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    2) ROTC scholarships are full tuition, a monthly stipend, and money for books. It does not include room and board. There are some schools that will provide a scholarship to cover the cost of room and board and there is a sticky in this forum that list them.

    +1 @clarksonarmy "Do not sign anything until you talk to an enrollment officer/ROO at an ROTC battalion" Maybe the school where you are taking college classes has an ROTC Battalion, talk to them or just get on the phone and call a ROTC ROO. IMHO, based on your stats, you will want to be an officer and earn a college degree.
     
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  5. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    Here is that thread for those who may be interested:
    http://www.serviceacademyforums.com...there-a-way-out-of-rotc-national-guard.50811/
     
  6. cajuncarrier

    cajuncarrier Member

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    ROTC pays DS's room and board because he doesn't need it for tuition. You have the option of tuition or R&B. Still gets a monthly stipend and money for books.
     
  7. Frequ

    Frequ New Member

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    Thanks for the replies, really appreciate it. Anyways clark, I've emailed the recruitment officer at a college I wanted to go to but its out-of-state and I looked into what 5Day said and was wondering if the Unit Admissions Officer is the same thing as an ROTC ROO as my current communty college has one. I still am wondering about my 1st question though as I've had varied replies.
     
  8. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    A ROO or Recruiting Operations Officer is specifically part of the Army ROTC Cadre at a four year college (@clarksonarmy is one). I'm not sure that your community college unit admissions officer is the same thing. I have seen the term Unit Admissions Officer used specifically for Air Force but not Army.

    As others on this thread have said, the main thing you want to do is specifically speak with a ROO from a 4 year college, ideally one that you might list on a scholarship application.
     
  9. 5Day

    5Day Member

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    Read the thread that @AROTC-dad listed above. It will partially answer #1.

    I don't know if being in the reserves will have any effect on your chances of receiving a ROTC scholarship. However to quote @clarksonarmy "This is the perfect example of why joining the Guard/Reserves prior to trying Army ROTC if you want to be an officer is a bad idea. At this point you are going to be released from the Guard/Reserves only if you receive a scholarship. You signed an enlisted contract an the only thing that will supersede that is if you were to sign a scholarship contract. If you sign a non scholarship contract then you are going to be SMP, which will keep you in the Guard/Reserves."
     
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  10. Dckc88

    Dckc88 Member

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    I have shared this story before, so for those that have heard it, I apologize. First thing I will advise, LISTEN TO CLARKSONARMY!!! Even if it means having blind faith, why? One, he is a ROO, and so he has seen many young people in your shoes, and he is giving you advice that is in your own best interest and he stands to gain nothing, The recruiter will gain you as a recruit if he convinces you to sign, so consider the sources before acting.

    Second point, the Reserves/Guard will be there for you freshman year, sophomore year, etc. You can join anytime. The recruiter will recruit you, it is what theydo, and he/she will do a very good job of convincing you that the benefits are those you cannot pass up. However, you have so many options and choices, you do not need to rush. I am just a Mom, not in your shoes, but I will share the experience my daughter had. She had the exact same experience you did, crossed paths with a Recruiter, the only difference was she has already received the national ROTC scholarship. However, after one conversation she came home and was convinced she needed to join the Reserves right that instant, and her reasons from him did not even make sense given the opportunities that she had ahead of her for ROTC, and like I said before, the Reserves are not going anywhere, they would love to have you at any point in time. She was frustrated with me for not just going along with it, but I told her to call her ROO before doing anything else. She told me that she wanted to get started then and that ROTC "gets to learning things too slowly", she apparently got that from someone... After sleeping on it a few nights, and I am assuming talking to her ROO, but I never asked, I never heard about it again from her. That just tells you how good these recruiters are at their jobs, evident by how much you have already completed in the process in such a short time, it feels like it needs to be urgent and it doesn't. Fast forward for her to the second week on campus in her freshman year, and she no longer feels like ROTC gets to things slowly, she is loving being a part of it, and adjusting, but still a little overwhelmed, because a lot is going on, and she already is looking forward to specific things they will be doing this semester. I have never asked her about the Reserves, but like I said, she hasn't looked back. The reality is they are still there if she wants them.

    As far as tuition and R/B. If you receive a national scholarship, you will get 1 to 3 schools to choose from your list you provided. You will get full tuition, book allowance, fees, and a monthly stipend once you contract (right away if you a 4 year, second year if you receive a 3 year). In some cases it might be better to use the tuition for room and board instead. However, some schools waive room and board for cadets. My daughter chose a private school that does that, and the Army pays full tuition, even out of state or private.

    What we are all telling you is, keep your options open. ROTC lets you walk away without any commitment prior to the first day of your sophomore year. The Guard does not. Best of luck to you, talk to a ROO soon, and don't be afraid to keep asking questions here.
     
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  11. ktnatalk

    ktnatalk Sailor. Shipmate. Parent.

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    Totally agree with all responses above, but I'd also like to comment if you decide to join the reserve or enlist into active duty. With a 99 AFQT, you probably qualify for most, if not all MOS/Rating/AFSC/jobs in all the branches. Do not jump into the first one they offer you. Shop around and good luck!
     
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  12. Kyguardmom

    Kyguardmom Member

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    I agree. 99 is a perfect score on the ASVAB. Combined with your high GPA, I'm sure your recruiter is doing handstands.

    My son is enlisted Army National Guard, and enrolled in college/ROTC, so perhaps a similar path as you are considering.

    Regarding length of service - time served in the Guard/Reserves would NOT be deducted from new obligation if/when commissioning as an officer. You'd be starting over, so to speak.

    Yes, you can apply for a 4 year ROTC scholarship. As said above, if awarded, that would supersede Reserve obligation, but, if you did not graduate/commission from college, you have fulfill your original enlistment commitment.

    Without a scholarship, there is also option of attending ROTC through the SMP. And there are scholarships available to enlisted like the Minuteman. This also helps with tuition costs, but precludes the option to compete for active duty.

    But with SMP and Minuteman and Guard/Reserve tuition assistance, you must complete BCT and AIT. Both are impossible to complete in one summer between high school and college. You'd likely be a semester or a full year late starting college. There is Split Op, but this can also delay access to TA.

    Just to say, there are lots of variables in this path from enlisted to officer. The devil is in the details and requires careful choices for optimal results. That is why it isn't the recommended path.
     
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  13. 5Day

    5Day Member

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    Are there any advantages to Enlisting in the Guard as a HS senior (early this fall) vs waiting until after you know if you have a ROTC scholarship (say March) or after HS graduation? Would you generate income over the next few months?
     
  14. Frequ

    Frequ New Member

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    I'd get around $200 a month, Reserves is also something I could add on my college apps for extra competitiveness.
     
  15. Frequ

    Frequ New Member

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    Yeah BCT and AIT combined would be 19 weeks so I'd miss fall sem, I've started asking my counselors and admission counselors to see how this would affect me.
     
  16. Frequ

    Frequ New Member

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    I do have another question though, If I did get the scholarship does this mean I can skip out on BCT/AIT because it supersedes it? I'd assume I'd be out of the reserves at that point too? I'm going to ask if missing fall sem would nullify it, if it doesn't I'll probably do BCT and AIT and just start later. As for now, I think I want to join the reserves as it offers a lot to me and will probably (most certainly) change my life (in a good way, I'm kind of just a lazy bum right now) and I know that if I wait after uni I probably won't join it then.

    EDIT: If someone could do a "Chance me" I'd appreciate it too. 1410 new SAT (never took old one). 31 ACT, ~3.75 UW. I've done track since freshman year and cross country since sophomore year. I was in varsity/got varsity letter for Track in 10th and 11th grade. For cross country I got varsity/letter in 11th grade. I'll probably be doing track this year but I can't do cross country because I have Saturday classes at a local comm college. I also took 2 college classes this summer A in one B in the other :/ (so 3.5 GPA for comm college). Both combined were 6 hours worth of credit. Currently I'm taking another 2 classes worth 7 combined (although they won't be done when I submit the application so I am not counting them)
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  17. Kyguardmom

    Kyguardmom Member

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    If you enlist now, and make it through MEPS without issues, you'll drill with a RSP unit until you either 1) finish HS and complete BCT and AIT, or 2) your circumstances change if awarded a ROTC scholarship. RSP is sort of being in limbo, and, at least according to my son, not an exciting or transformational military experience. And once-a-month drill pay is pocket money, not a game changer.

    Which is to say, you don't have much to lose if you wait a few more months. If you don't get a scholarship, you can still enlist before the end of your senior year. Your stats are way above the norm for most enlisted - something to consider as far as how you'd assimilate to enlisted life. But I'm sure, if your character matches your academic accomplishments, they'd be thrilled to have you.
     
  18. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    I've decided to put my 2 cents worth in.

    If you want to become an officer, then concentrate on becoming an officer.
    If you want to be enlisted then enlist.

    I have a nephew that is long time enlisted in the national guard, when my DS was asking questions about enlisting early and so forth just like you my nephews advise was "don't do it". If you're going to join ROTC to become an officer, concentrate on that. You won't have any advantage by going thru basic and ait first.

    My ds, who is now an officer in the national guard has RSP cadets at his unit. It's basically PT, saluting, marching and that's about it.

    In my opinion, the money you'll get for 1 weekend a month of drill as a newly enlisted is not worth the hassle if you are serious about becoming an officer. If money is an issue, find a part time job.
     
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