Involvement in Gay-Straight Alliance?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Brooke, Jun 3, 2015.

  1. Brooke

    Brooke Member

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    I am one of the presidents of my school's Gay-Straight Alliance. Today, one of the teachers writing my recommendations for congressional nominations brought up the fact that one of my congresspeople is not exactly LGBTQ-friendly. He's concerned that my involvement in GSA might reduce my chances of getting a nomination from this person. However, it is a leadership position, so I don't want to just omit it.
    Do you think it'll have an effect? If so, how should I spin it?
    Thank you!
    EDIT: The MOC is Pat Toomey.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015
  2. MiddyB

    MiddyB Member

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    Well, theoretically, the nomination process is not supposed to be political. Also, it is not likely you MoC will actually see that. A nomination panel will be reviewing your packet and it is not likely they will discriminate if your social/political ideals do not align with theirs. However, if it is brought up, stand by it and stand strong. Sometimes nomination panels will say statements or ask difficult questions just to see how you react. It's about your response, not the material of what they said.
     
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  3. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    In general, I left off things that might polarize a group. Some people will appreciate you're involvement, but others not. You don't want to lose that "one vote" that would have put you ahead of someone else. On the other hand, you have to stick by what you believe in too.

    For instance, on my resume, now, I have the fact that I helped edit a Smithsonian Institution book as a volunteer activity. I don't have the fact that I was a trustee in my United Methodist Church. Between the two, I spent more time as a trustee and that time included the sale of a multimillion dollar building. So why no list it? It's not that I'm in any way ashamed of my association to the church, I just don't want to take the chance that I'll run into someone who has the ability to hire me, but has a beef with my church.

    Resumes and applications are like dinner, you keep religion and politics out of it.

    I'm not sure why we think a MOC panel won't be SOMEWHAT political…. they're representing an individual who is absolutely political, and if they're staffers, they're also likely political themselves. They may try to remain objective, but politics can still creep in.
     
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  4. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    I think you have two very good opinions expressed above. Ultimately this is your call to make. You won't know who makes up your MOC panel until you show up. And even then, depending on the introductions, you still might not even know anything beyond name. When I did my interview it was local folks from the community who tended to be supporters of the MOC and 1 alumni of a SA on the panel. In the city I currently reside in the panels are a mix of staffers and alumni from the various SAs. Some places the MOC sits on the board (this tends to be rare), others its all staffers, some its all alumni, others its a mix. This is why it is best to do what is best for you, stand by whatever decision you make and be prepared for difficult questions. Best advice I can give, if you do face a difficult question or one that you are not prepared for, take a deep breath and few seconds to articulate an answer. The candidates who tend to just start talking without that pause usually rabbit hole pretty well. I sat on boards last year, this is a character trait I looked for as you will face tough questions throughout your time as an officer, often from superior officers.
     
  5. 2018mom

    2018mom Parent

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    I am with you LITS. My husband had someone interview for a position with him and the applicant had on his resume that he has a concealed handgun license. My husband was not offended or concerned about that but others on the interview panel were and it may have been what kept this person from being hired.

    But Brooke, you shouldn't compromise who you are to appease others. I am sure certain people may take offense at whatever extracurricular activity you are involved with. If you are president of the math club you may be perceived as "too nerdy", football captain and you are "just a jock", or president of the knitting club and you are "really reaching for a leadership position". You don't know exactly what people are looking for and your LGBTQ involvement might be the leadership box that you need. Sounds like I am talking in circles, but this won't be the first or last time you will have to decide how to present yourself. If you were my child, I would say, be honest with your accomplishments and activities. If you have to change your resume or hide what you have accomplished to be accepted somewhere, you are probably going into a place you will not be happy in the long run. I know your question is based on your MOC nomination, but if you compromise who you are for one step in the process, you will probably do it all along the way. I consider myself pretty conservative and I would rather see a young person who presents his/her true self than one who panders to whoever they are trying to impress. Good luck!
     
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  6. ahs67

    ahs67 Member

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    Don't go out of your way to conceal it. Be yourself and be proud of your accomplishment. It seems your teacher was making a sweeping generalization about Senator Toomey based on his political affiliation. I would look past that ill-informed advice.
     
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  7. jebdad

    jebdad Member

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    I agree. I think the teacher isn't doing anyone any favors with that comment.
     
  8. Midwest

    Midwest Member

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    Brooke,
    If you don't get the nomination, will you 2nd guess what you put on your application? Will you forever wonder and feel like you were discriminated against? Will it be a banner that you carry with an angry heart?

    It sounds to me that you have hesitations because you posted the question in the forums. Yes, you have displayed leadership, but I am sure that you have other experiences that are just as worthy for the application.

    From my own work experiences, recently our small company had to let go of three people. I was told that I was discriminatory because of age, race and performance. Fortunately we documented the employee performances well and their remarks had nothing to do with reality. In fact, we were overly generous with letting people try to prove their worth. But they were all talk.. Not one of them could "Deliver the Message to Garcia."

    So, if I was interviewing or reading your application, my bottom line question would be "Can you deliver?" Titles don't mean much to me when it comes to getting things done. Action does.

    Hope this helps in figuring out what is important for you to share. Best wishes for receiving a nomination.
     
  9. Brooke

    Brooke Member

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    Thank you all so much for the advice! I think I'll keep it on my application after all.
     

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