Naval ROTC Essay Help

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by BeefBrown, Dec 23, 2013.

  1. BeefBrown

    BeefBrown New Member

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    Hello! Merry Christmas everybody, I'm making use of my Christmas break by finalizing my NROTC application. I have been poking around threads here, seeing what everyone else writes and the commentary they receive and I figured I might as well share mine to get some feedback.

    1. Discuss your reasons for wanting to become a Naval Officer. (Limit 2500 characters)

    Growing up, I had never considered joining the Armed Forces, primarily because I was unsure what I wanted to do with my life. It was not until high school that I gave the Navy a thought. I was told of the Naval ROTC scholarship program, and was immediately enticed by its benefits. I realized that becoming a Naval Officer would allow me to serve the country I love while making a difference in the lives of others as well as my own.
    The unofficial, although commonly accepted Navy motto is "Non sibi sed patriae", which is latin for “Not self but country.” This phrase alludes to the importance of putting your country and its people before yourself. It has always been a goal of mine to make as big of a difference as I can, and I believe a dutiful service in the Navy will allow me to do so. Naval Officers are coveted for their ability to help people selflessly, setting an example of excellence for which all others should aspire. I believe that selflessness is an honorable trait and one I wish to gain through service in the US Navy.
    Naval Officers are commonly referred to as exemplars of good morals. Working diligently, honorably, and with unshaken resolve, Naval Officers will always give 100% on any task, regardless of the caliber. Naturally, I aspire to gain the respect commanded by members of the Navy, by adopting the traits that make them so desirable. By joining the Navy, I will not only adhere to the strict regimen put forth to all Officers, but I will also undergo challenges, both physical and mental, that will turn me into a much stronger person.
    The primary reason for my desire to join the NROTC program is that it will give me an opportunity to do my duty to my country. My experience in education has made me appreciate the fundamental liberties given to all Americans. I feel it is my duty, like everyone else, to protect these privileges as well as aid those in need of aid. Simply put, United States Naval Officers are exemplars of honored duty and service to country. Helping to maintain peace, aiding war-torn countries, and helping to nurture those in need, the Navy is a beam of light in an increasingly darkening world, and I want nothing more than to be a part of it.

    Character count: 2219 (including spaces)
     
  2. VMI82

    VMI82 Room 131

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    too much fluff

    1st - the following is strictly my opinion. if it does not ring true for you take it with a huge grain of salt

    2nd - i believe you spend too much time with background ('growing up ...') and extolling the virtues of Naval Officers instead of going straight at the question.

    Example: instead of By joining the Navy, I will not only adhere to the strict regimen put forth to all Officers, but I will also undergo challenges, both physical and mental, that will turn me into a much stronger person.

    were I you, I'd make a bullet point of your reasons like:
    • I want the challenge of being a Naval Officer as I'll be stronger for it.

    assume the officers reading your essay already know the virtues of the service

    tell them in a short, no fluff manner why YOU want to join their ranks.

    do so from the heart in a sincere manner. they can smell BS 100 miles away

    that is my nickel's worth.

    i hope this is of service and wish you well
     
  3. Mandyj34

    Mandyj34 Member

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    I really like the 2nd and last paragraph. Naval officers know what they do already so stick with the reasons why you WANT to be one.
     
  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    Have to say I agree with VMI82. Tell them something they don't know... preferably about YOU. And not only what you might get out of the Navy, but what you bring to the Navy. Keep it personal and from the heart.
     
  5. BeefBrown

    BeefBrown New Member

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    Thank you all for your comments, I rewrote most of my essay, trying instead to focus on the cut-and-dry, rather than the compliments and fluff.

    Joining the military had not been a lifelong goal. In fact, I had never even considered the idea until I had almost completed my Scouting career. Scouting introduced to me the values of perseverance, integrity, and responsibility. At the suggestion of a family member, I looked into the Naval ROTC program, immediately intrigued by its immense benefits. I realized that becoming a Naval Officer would allow me to serve the country I love while making a difference in the lives of others as well as my own.
    The unofficial, although commonly accepted Navy motto is "Non sibi sed patriae", which is latin for “Not self but country.” This phrase alludes to the importance of putting your country and its citizens before yourself. It has always been a goal of mine to make a difference to my country, and I believe a dutiful service in the Navy will allow me to do so. Naval Officers are admired for their service, setting an example of excellence for which all others should aspire. I believe that selflessness is an honorable trait and one I wish to employ through service in the US Navy.
    I would bring to the US Navy the same determination, perseverance, and enthusiasm that I exhibited in my Scouting career which led me to the rank of Eagle Scout. Serving will permit me the opportunity to travel the world, while acquiring a diverse skill set that will establish me with a sound future and an honorable career path. An NROTC Scholarship assures me a promise of employment and service after graduating college, while benefiting both myself and the Navy in the process.
    The primary reason for my desire to join the NROTC program is that it will give me an opportunity to do my duty to my country. My experience in education has made me appreciate the fundamental liberties given to all Americans. I feel it is my duty, like everyone else, to protect these privileges as well as aid those in need of aid. Simply put, United States Naval Officers are exemplars of honored duty and service to country. Helping to maintain peace, aiding war-torn countries, and helping to nurture those in need, the Navy is a beam of light in an increasingly darkening world, and I want nothing more than to be a part of it.

    New character count: 2212
     
  6. Mandyj34

    Mandyj34 Member

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    You make my essay look like a dead fish. I really like it now. I think it shows passion, which I'm sure is a good thing. It also brings up the fact that your an eagle scout which Im sure is what they reaaallly like.
     
  7. mbitr

    mbitr Member

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    Is it a good idea to open with stating you never had the intention of joining the military? If I were applying for a job, I wouldn't open with "your firm was never my first choice."
     
  8. rvicek

    rvicek USAFA Cadet Fourth Class

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    Generally, I would say no, but not all cadets (or prospects) have dreamt of being a member of our armed forces since childhood. I certainly did not nor did my grandfather, who ended up being a successful pilot in Vietnam. Joining any branch is a huge commitment, and being honest about not always wanting to join may, in some aspect show personal growth. That's just my opinion though, you may be absolutely right in wanting to avoid such a statement. :smile:
     
  9. VMI82

    VMI82 Room 131

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    agree with MBITR

    +1 mbitr

    i agree 1000%

    i'd start off with something like:

    As an Eagle Scout (duty, service, values, etc etc) Because of my passion for Scouting a family member thought ROTC would be a good fit ...

    BTW ... I was a Scoutmaster for 23 years and appreciate your Scouting - don't stop at Eagle though :) Consider becoming a Jr Scoutmaster and attending Woodbadge when you can.
     
  10. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    I wouldn't normally weigh in on this but I don't see any issue with the opening statement. The OP is not saying that the Navy wasn't his first choice - only that it wasn't a "lifelong goal." That sentiment is an overused phrase anyway - most applicants can't honestly state that position. They all come to an awareness and interest over time.

    I think the opening statement is fine and reflects a writing technique that seems popular these days where students are taught to open with an "attention getter." I am not a big fan of the process and it often turns gimmicky. This opening pales in relation to a lot that I have seen and serves the purpose. From where I sit, keep it in if it works in context with your entire essay.

    Every reader is going to form a different opinion on style and substance. Take all the feedback and weigh it out to find the right balance.

    Most importanly, finish the application up. You are running out of time.

    Good luck!
     
  11. Bakslash

    Bakslash Member

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    I'm a Marine Option, but the essays were essentially the same. What my adviser told me really helped is that I put a lot of emphasis on the fact that the scholarship wasn't about the money, it was about becoming an officer first and foremost. I stated that whether or not I received it, that I would continue pursuing a commission.
     
  12. mbitr

    mbitr Member

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    Yeah, probably doesn't make a difference. But we're always taught that the average amount of time spent on anything we write in the military can be measured in seconds. Personally I would choose the same way to open as the OP if I were just writing to write. If I knew my essay might only be skimmed through, I'd probably take a different approach.
     

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