NROTC Marine option Vs. PLC

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by DevilDogg88, Mar 25, 2009.

  1. DevilDogg88

    DevilDogg88 New Member

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    first question....can i do both?

    Second what is the better option for a transferring college sophomore that intends to do 3 more years of school
     
  2. Kemp7

    Kemp7 Member

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    look into OCS
     
  3. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Both NROTC-MC option and PLC are sources of commissioned officers for the Marines. The other two routes are USNA and OCS.

    You will pick one. Obviously, you need to attend a college with and NROTC-MC program to participate.
    PLC is a one or two summer program depending on when you start. If you start after your freshman year in college then you do 2 six week programs and the summer after your junior year you go to OCC for 10 weeks. This allows you to commission upon graduation and head right to TBS.
    If you make a commitment there is money available for your college expenses and you and pick ground, air or law.

    If you go the OCS route you will go either the summer before your senior year or after graduation. You won't get a scholarhsip or stipend to help with college expenses.

    This website explains the options well:
    http://officer.marines.com/page/Officer_Home.jsp
     
  4. muthukumaran

    muthukumaran New Member

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    Thank you for your kindly information PLC will allow for you to transfer easier.
     
  5. Gameengineer

    Gameengineer New Member

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    Sorry to kick this old thread but as a confused parent I need to get some advice or more importantly, my son does. My son recently applied for NROTC. At this point the application has been completed and he went through the early board interviews. He has been working with a Marine recruiter to help with the process. Now here is the thing. This recruiter is encouraging him to also apply for the PLC program in parallel. That feels suspicious to me in that he wants to fill a quota with little regard to the ramifications to my son. I asked if my son did get the NROTC scholarship what does that mean for the PLC? Does signing up for PLC mean he is enlisting, officially, as a reservist and therefore have to give up the NROTC? His recruiter said signing up for the PLC would improve his chances for the NROTC scholarship. He also said if he gets the scholarship he would simply "remove" his name from the bootcamp (would be summer '17) roster. Seems fishy and recruiter-ish to me.

    -Steve
     
  6. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    PLC is not enlisting, but I don't see any point to applying for both and I certainly don't think applying to PLC is going to help with the NROTC application.

    Your son should apply for NROTC. If he get's a scholarship, great! If not he can enroll in NROTC as what is called a college programmer. This is a student who does NROTC without the scholarship. He can then apply for the scholarship the following year (again) and also a "side-load" scholarship which are only awarded to students already in the NROTC program. If he fails to win a scholarship prior to Junior year, then he could be granted Advanced Standing which allows him to continue in the program without a scholarship but entitles him to the monthly stipend. If he fails to obtain advanced standing, then he should attempt to enroll in PLC.

    Bottom line, use PLC as a backup plan if it becomes impossible to commission via NROTC. This was my son's approach to it but he fortunately won a scholarship in the middle of his sophomore year.
     
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  7. Gameengineer

    Gameengineer New Member

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    So much to learn. You summed up what I have been recently reading about (side load, college programmer, etc). Okay I thought PLC required or meant that he was enlisting in the Marine Reserves. His recruiter talked about marine boot camp in summer '17 so I thought it was connected. My son did apply and went through the interview and passed the PFT. We are now waiting for the results. Apparently there is another opportunity early next year for the second phase of applicants.

    For the Marine Option would you know if the ASVAB (AFQT?) is also required? He took the test as a Junior but didn't do so well so. He needs to actually study this time.
     
  8. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    Gameengineer: something is getting lost in translation with the Marine recruiter. A PLC candidate will not go to bootcamp. Perhaps he meant the six week PLC session at Quantico? USMC bootcamp is either at Parris Island or San Diego. Many of them urge youngsters to enlist to improve their chances of getting a scholarship - DO NOT buy that pitch.

    Kinnem's advice is spot on.

    No need for the ASVAB test - not required.

    There are several former Marines and parents of current Marines on this forum. Feel free to reach out with questions.
     
  9. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Grunt and Kinnem are spot on as always. I am a former Marine via USNA. I would advise anyone in your shoes:

    Plan A - NROTC MO scholarship
    Plan B - No scholarship and enroll as a college programmer. Apply for side load every opportunity.
    Plan C - No scholarship, gain advanced standing
    Plan D - No scholarship/no advanced standing then apply to PLC
    Plan E - Do not get PLC, apply for OCC post graduation.

    Are you talking to an enlisted recruiter or OSO (officer)? Your son would not go to boot camp. Depending on the program he is selected for he would attend OCS in Quantico, VA. The big variable would be length of time and when he attends. Each program has slight nuances to this. He does not need to sign any contract with any recruiters, officer or enlisted, outside his NROTC paperwork. His actual NROTC contract would actually be signed with his MOI at school when the time comes. The MOIs at school generally have a good relationship with the area OSO. This twofold... helps PLC kids get USMC exposure via ROTC kids and ROTC kids who don't get contracted or advanced standing in via PLC or OCC. If he gets to Plan D his MOI at school would be able to help guide him.
     
    AROTC-dad and USMCGrunt like this.
  10. Gameengineer

    Gameengineer New Member

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    "Many of them urge youngsters to enlist to improve their chances of getting a scholarship - DO NOT buy that pitch.:" Yes that must be it exactly.

    We are working with a Staff Sergeant with title of SNCOIC for the Marines Recruiting Sub-Station in El Cajon (ie, San Diego). Their office interacts with local high schools which I would guess is a common practice to try and recruit kids. In the same breath he's talking NROTC, PLC program and Marine boot camp, enlisting as a reservist to help pay for college.

    My son has done about 4 years in the Navy Sea Cadet Corp and this year has made Chief Petty Officer of his unit. He has wanted to be in the service from a young age. My son's Navy Sea Cadet county chapter leader encouraged him if he doesn't get Plan A then to go through college normally and then go directly for Plan E. But given the advice in this thread it seems he should continue in NROTC (even without a scholarship) and improve himself along way and try for the 2 or 3 year scholarships. Then when all else isn't working do PLC.

    Thanks so much USMCGrunt, NavyHoops and kinnem. My son is all too eager to listen to whatever his recruiter is telling him so I need to make sure he understands all of this.
     
  11. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    @Gameengineer ,
    Definitely follow Navy Hoops hierarchy.

    The Marines draw from USNA and NROTC/MO first. PLC (and OCS) are used to "top off" their mission needs for second lieutenants each year.

    A quick PLC recruiting story:

    DS had idolized the Marine Corps most of his life. Nominated to USNA, he was heartbroken to receive an April TWE. To further rub salt, he also was turned down for a NROTC/MO scholarship to an SMC. Even though he was accepted to the SMC, we could not afford for him to attend the SMC without the scholarship.

    After being turned down by USNA and the NROTC/MO scholarship, DS started in 2015 as a non-contract Army Cadet at a state school. A few weeks into the year, he was approached by a Marine OSO (probably got his name from the NROTC/MO application). He pushed him to join PLC concurrent with Army ROTC. (DS's college did not offer NROTC). DS asked the Marine OSO if this would upset his Army cadre? He told him not to inform them. By that point DS had felt bonded with his battalion and thought this whole thing felt wrong.

    DS politely declined to do PLC while enrolled in AROTC.

    Later that year he was awarded a three year AROTC scholarship and is now thriving in his battalion as an MS-II.
     
  12. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Yeap you are talking to an enlisted recruiter who is giving you some, but not all info. If his objective is to be an officer then follow the path suggested by several of us. If you can afford to send him to school without the scholarship, then he is in good shape. Most achieve advanced standing if they do what is needed... PT, leadership, grades, don't get arrested. Most attrition is by those choosing to drop because they realize it's not for them or they aren't cutting it. The programs are sort of made that way to make this happen. Sure the reserve option while in colllegw sounds great, but it's a tough balance and will more than likely cause him to miss a semester with boot camp and MOS school. If money becomes an issue in a year or two he can always fall back on this option if needed.
     
  13. Gameengineer

    Gameengineer New Member

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    I can probably foot the bill or largely if he can get into one of our state schools (California) since we avoid the 3X out-of-state tuition costs. His Early Decision school and obviously top choice is CSU CAL Maritime. So if he doesn't get the NROTC/MO but still gets in to that school, he is golden and will attend regardless. My son's objective is to get commissioned and a good education as an Mech Engr.

    I feel like we just dodged a bullet (signing early for PLC or worse yet enlisting). No offense to those enlisted but his primary goal is school, OCS and commissioning.

    @AROTC-dad, great story. Nominated for the Naval Academy, wow! My son was originally trying but gave up after hearing stories from friends how hard and competitive it was. But I think NROTC is also as competitive so... I'm glad you told it and glad your DS persevered and got the AROTC.

    @NavyHoops, his recruiter was telling him to consider the reserve option and he'll "likely" get the MOS (if I'm using the right term) he wanted. That's when the red flags came for me and it was apparently obvious this guy wanted to make quota.
     
  14. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    An enlisted MOS would have very little to no impact on his future MOS as an officer. Plus there are 75-100 enlisted MOSs and about 20 ish officer MOSs. There are not always a direct correlation between them.

    NROTC and USNA are just as competitive in many regards. NROTC is national where USNA in many ways is district dependent. You are from Cali so it's as competitive as heck more than likely. It's not too late to apply for USNA. If his goal is to be a USMC officer and structure seems to suit him as he is looking at Cal Maritime I would suggest to discuss the USNA option. You never know. There are plenty of kids who get NROTC and no USNA and USNA and no ROTC.
     
  15. DeskJockey

    DeskJockey Member

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    I don't know how firm your son's interest is in the Marines, but a Cal Maritime Mechanical Engineering degree is way more relevant and valuable to the Navy side of things, both in NROTC and as a commissioned officer. It would be a big plus factor as an NROTC Navy option candidate, but of little or no extra significance to the Marines. If that is a consideration for you, perhaps it would be possible to change your son's application to the Navy option. If not, then there will be an opportunity to switch after the first year if he enters as a Marine option student.

    Cal Maritime also offers some additional avenues for commissioning that are distinct from NROTC and PLC. You can find out about them on the school's website.
     

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