Is a AFROTC Large or Small Detachment Better?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by CristalLee, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. CristalLee

    CristalLee Member

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    As far as AFROTC is concerned would a school with a large detachment or small detachment be a better choice? My DS plans on re-applying to USAFA next year - which would be more beneficial for him? Or does it matter at all?

    Also anything you can add here for success would be great!

    Thank you for your insight.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2012
  2. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    This is just my opinion based on no actual knowledge whatsoever (does anyone really know?). In terms of reapplying I would rather be a big fish in a small pond, the theory being more opportunities for leadership, etc. That being said, he should pick a school and detachment that feels like home to him. He'll do better where he is happy and comfortable and... It may be home for 4 years.
     
  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I agree with kinnem, go to the school he wants to attend. Loving college is what will be his motivation to get high gpas.

    I would have him contact the dets at the colleges he is looking at and discuss the fact that he is re-applying to the AFA. Discuss statistically the % that apply who get an AFA appointment.

    You want to do this also because as an AFROTC cadet you are eligible for a ROTC nom. Telling the CC in mid-Sept is not the way to go because they need to write recs for the cadet. Telling them right off the bat allows them to guide the cadet and that can mean a better rec. from the CC.

    I would also look at the cadet. Not everyone likes to be a number, some love it! Smaller dets do pose more job opportunities for GMC's, but they also have less opportunities too because they are just that...small. I.E. there are 3 AF military fraternities, Arnie, Honor Guard an Angel. These are great for the cadets for bonding outside of the classroom environment.

    I would also ask the % of cadets that commission out of the det from a C100 perspective. Yes, I know that he wants to re-apply, but it also gives a perspective to the percentage of cadets that stick with the program for 4 yrs.

    It is something to think about because maybe next yr he will decide to be like vamom's ds and not reapply, or maybe he will, but not get an appointment. He needs to always as an AFROTC cadet to have plan B in place, just like he had it in place as an AFA candidate.

    Good luck.
     
  4. CristalLee

    CristalLee Member

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    Thank you for the insight.

    He is choosing his number one choice in school - which has the (much) smaller detachment. His second choice has a VERY LARGE detachment.

    If I had my way - he'd stay nearby - some great colleges in Texas within a 5 hour drive! I'm not looking forward to having him 28 hours away.

    As soon as he gets out of school today, he is calling the det (trick is, catching them with the time change and before the end of their duty day).

    He's pretty set on going to the AFA still... - I asked him what if he LOVES his AFROTC det and college, will he still go to AFA (if given the opportunity)... he said Yes, nothing is going to change his mind. As a parent - I play devil's advocate all the time. This is still what he says he wants.
     
  5. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

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    Funny how they are so sure of things at this age, Time will tell whether he decides to stay at AROTC or re-apply to the AFA. A friend of our's son was in the same situation, he went to college and ROTC with the full intention of re-applying to the academy. After one year he decided to stay at college, he really fit in well with ROTC and the thought of doing his Freshman year all over again at the academy didn't sound so good after already completing the first year at college.

    My son went 3 years swearing he was going to go Infantry, he ended up selecting Aviation at the last possible moment, funny how things change once they get started.

    I always's loved that old quote, "Life is what happens while we're busy making plans"
     
  6. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Jcleppe,

    The cliche people plan, God laughs exists for a reason!

    We all need to remember that their dreams in hs are just that. In college they get exposure to other worlds they never imagined.

    Our thing with DS in ROTC was have Plan A, like you did in HS for college, and have a Plan B like you did in HS too.

    Plan B does not end when you enter ROTC, and for some plan B needs to be in place even after commissioning...rated world especially.

    Keep fighting for that dream. Scholarship or not!
     
  7. blamblin

    blamblin Member

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    Ah...I'm jealous that he's made a decision! Still muddling through at our house. Best of luck to him (and you)! Everyone will do just fine. :smile:
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Good luck... AIM HIGH...ABOVE ALL!
     
  9. CristalLee

    CristalLee Member

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    Well *his* choice is made... we have yet to hear back from the school. Somehow paperwork was not "complete" but they never told us that - so when we checked on the status they said they did not have everything. Since turning in everything, the three times we called to make sure it was "complete" their status still showed incomplete. FINALLY today, their status shows "complete" - hope to get an answer soon!

    His second choice - had an acceptance for him same day as the application was complete.

    Gonna be rough to move him 1670 miles North East to then move him 1738 miles West a year later (if everything works out for AFA and he doesn't "change his mind" and stay with AFROTC).

    My dh during AFROTC did the same thing, was going to be a maintenance officer - only to re-designate. One day he came home and said I'd like to fly - I said "I am not saying yes, but I am not saying no, but I really wish you wouldn't"... Choice was his, but he knew my feelings, but I wasn't going to stop him from his dream. Then at one point we thought we were going heavies... then got picked up for fighter/bomber. He's in the B-1B now (his number one choice).
     
  10. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I had 2 friends that their DH came home one day and announced: Guess what I honey, I just joined the AF, and will be going to flight school! OBTW I report to OCS next month!

    No lie, their DH's had careers, and gave them up to go into the AF. At least you guys were in the AF, and he discussed it with you first, for them he signed on the dotted line without telling her at all. :eek:

    One got divorced after his 1st tour, the other is still married and he is now an O6.

    For all those going scholarship, remember to copy every correspondence and keep that file for the 4 yrs. You never know if there will be an issue in the future. For non-scholarship, do the same once contracted. Even at 18 memories fail, and by keeping the correspondences you will not only have the date, but the contact person for reference.

    For those that converted their Type 7 4 yr to Type 2 3 yr., remember to keep an eye on that DoDMERB exam, it is only valid for 2 yrs. If you applied AFA, and took it in the summer of your rising SR yr in HS, it could fall out before you contract, and that will be an issue.

    Every yr for the past few yrs. there has been a cadet on this site with contracting issues (pay) because of:
    ~~ Paperwork issues
    ~~ DoDMERB exam was past the 2 yr marker when they contracted.

    AFROTC will get it corrected, but the problem is you can't contract, and if you can't contract the college will have no record of the scholarship. Traditionally, colleges will lock the students account, which means they can't register for spring classes; usually occurs in mid-Oct. To have it unlocked may mean you need to come to the table with money that you did not plan for when they left back in Aug. They will also not get a stipend. Eventually they will get the back pay, but it is just another stressor on the cadet because they have to spend time working it out with the 1st shirt and AFROTC HQ, on top of the fact that they planned on that as spending money to survive.

    One last tip. Many people will laminate their SS card. AFROTC will not accept laminated SS cards for contracting. If you have done this, go now and order a new card.
     
  11. Non Ducor Duco

    Non Ducor Duco I am not led, I lead

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    Question. When the two years are up, do we pay to get another physical or is it free like it was this time?
     
  12. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    It is free because the AF requires this to contract, AFROTC will initiate the exam just like they did for the scholarship.

    For everyone, come C400 yr you will take another exam prior to commissioning. Rated will be flown to Wright Pat and it is 3 days of exams. It will include everything from dental to EKGs.

    Another reason why you should keep all of your records, including the DoDMERB physical.
     
  13. Non Ducor Duco

    Non Ducor Duco I am not led, I lead

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    Ok. Thanks for the clarification
     

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