some additional "field intelligence"

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by educateme, Oct 6, 2010.

  1. educateme

    educateme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had a few conversations with several PMSs. Since I learned so much from this board, I would like to share what I learned.

    *** 4 year scholarship vs. 3 year advanced designee scholarship.

    I asked them who decides whether a candidate gets 4 yr or 3 yr scholarship. Well, it sounds like though CC has the last say, the local det has a lot of influence. , After the CC sends downs the initial list to the local PMS, if the local PMS feels that the candidate is sort of a borderline, he/she can say "we recommend 3 year scholarship" to the CC. Sometimes, if the local PMS does not "recommend" the candidate, CC puts him/her down for a 3 year scholarship. One PMS told me "Oh, we won't recommend 3 yr scholarship for your son. From us, he is going down for 4 year" (he said this while he was going over my S's application he downloaded). Of course, ultimately, it's the CC's decision, but we all know, there is a wide margin for "local" influence.

    I asked them if 3 yr scholarship is for the candidates who did not look like thoroughly committed, the answer was NO. It's all about the candidate's qualification and fit for the school.

    *** Expensive school vs. inexpensive school

    If your S or D is gunning for a private school, the odds are much better if the school s/he chose is NOT a cross town affiliate school while a majority or the hosting school (where the battalion is located) are public. This was an important factor for us. On my S's school list, except for a state flagship, every school is a private school. I was worried that since he is going to be a such an "expensive" candidate, CC will decide not to humor him.

    I point blank asked one PMS "the school you are at is a private school. Then there are bunch of cross town affiliates that are public. Won't CC allocate most of the scholarship headcount to the students from public schools?" She said, "all of my scholarship cadets of this freshman year are from this school (pricey one). You must realize that this school invested a lot to host the battalion, and continues to provide direct and indirect support. We (Army) "respect and appreciate" that". Given that majority of the scholarships are awarded to the public school cadets, after giving scholarship to private school cadets going to the hosting school, there may not be enough room to "accommodate" the scholarship candidates wanting to go to a private cross town affiliate school of a battalion drawing a majority of cadets from hosting public school.

    After this conversation, I advised my son to drop any expensive private school that is not a hosting school from his school of intent list (with one exception: a cross town affiliate school where every school of the battalion is a private school, and this cross town affiliate has the largest number of cadets in that battalion).

    ***** Admissibility to the school and scholarship odds

    I thought in this tough competition year, you have to be at the upper end of the general admitted student population in a given school to be a viable ROTC scholarship candidate. I was wrong. All three PMS (all private schools in the top 30-70 range) told me that the 4 year scholarship cadets they have now this fall as freshmen all have about mid range stats (GPA, SAT, etc). they also indicated that a borderline candidate in terms of admissibility into the school benefit from the fact that s/he won a ROTC scholarship (no surprise there).

    **********************************

    I was pretty amazed by the level of candid feedback and insight they shared with me. They all downloaded my son's application packet, and went over several points. I even got feedback on how my S2 might benefit from rephrasing some part of the personal statement, since S can still make changes before the file is closed on Oct 18. One of them was already familiar with my S's application since he read it several days before, even before I called, and said "I am glad that your son upped the priority for my school, since I saw the change this morning". Another one told me that so far among the candidates who put their school on the list, S is within top 10% in terms of desirability from their perspective. Of course, none of this matters if the CC does NOT choose him as one of the initial list of candidates they send down to the local battalions.

    Moral of the story: call the local battalion officers. They are in general very helpful bunch. Don't worry about looking like a helicopter parent or making your S/D look like a passive passenger. The kind of discussion like this os way above the pay grade of a teenager. I don't think they would have been so candid and open with a teenager with this kind of information sharing and conversation. And they know that unlike applying to a tippy top school under duress and parental pressure, most kids apply to ROTC because of their own determination - so it does now go down as "lazy kid and over bearing parent".

    (I apologize for any grammar error or typo. I am doing this on the go)
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  2. k2rider

    k2rider Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2010
    Messages:
    512
    Likes Received:
    213
    I like how you pointed out that they PMS noted that you raised his school higher up on the school choice list. It would be interesting to hear how big of a deal that it; especially since MOST kids would be thrilled to go to almost any school on their list for free.

    We had one school from the Big Ten actually (jokingly) tell my daughter to push their main rival farther down her schools list. I thought it was pretty funny, especially since I really liked the school's PMS. The other school never contacted us. My daughter was personally contacted by the top 4 schools on her list.
     
  3. armynavy

    armynavy Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2010
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Son is very interested in ROTC at Rice which is part of the University of Houston Battalion. He is very competitive but a borederline candidate for Rice. He would like to improve his odds by applying ED. Obviously a 4 yr Army ROTC scholarship would help too. Are you advising that he should not bother applying to Rice, a private school, because host school has a lot of public affiliations?
     
  4. educateme

    educateme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0
    I certainly am NOT saying that he should not bother to apply.

    I am saying, if you are gunning for 4 year scholarship at a private school, the odds are better if it's a school that hosts the battalion, not a cross town affiliate, while the hosting school and other cross town affiliate schools are public.

    The best thing to do is to call the battalion. Ask them how many 4 year and 3 year scholarship they gave out to this year's freshmen cadets. Ask them how many of them were awarded to Rice vs. the home school. Furthermore, ask them how many applied for the scholarship to be used at Rice. Vs. how many applied for the U of Houston and how many got it.

    If you see that ratio of applied/received ratio for Rice is 10/1, while it's 4/1 at U Houston, you have a reason to be worried.

    When I called the scholarship/enrollment officers of the battalions hosted at a private school while there had public cross town affiliates, most of the scholarship went to the applicants for the "expensive" hosting schools, NOT the inexpensive cross town affiliate schools.

    Be aware though that the officers may not be forthcoming with the data. Some don't even have clear ideas how the scholarship was distributed among different schools.

    Some are really on top of things. One officer even told how my son stacked up against other candidates for the scholarship at the hosting (expensive) private school. This officer was monitoring on almost a daily basis who put down his battalion and its schools on the school of intent list.

    By the way, timing wise, I am afraid the result of the first board won't be out before the ED deadline. So, you are running a risk of getting in Rice and not having the scholarship.

    What I am guessing, based on discussions with current and former PMSs is, it's pretty difficult to "trade in" a ROTC scholarship designated for a public school into a spot in an expensive private school.

    If I were you, I would still put RICE on top of the list of the school of intent, but also put a safety school that is a private, battalion hosting school as a choice #2 or so. In this manner, if he does not get a scholarship to Rice, but get a scholarship to another private school, you have better odds of switching the school from the other private school to Rice U come April next year.

    In my son's case, the only private school that is not a hosting school on the list is a cross affiliate school of a battalion where EVERY SCHOOL is a private school, and my son's school has the largest number of cadets in the battalion.

    By the way, when you or your son calls the battalion officer, make sure that he knows that Rice is your #1, and also that he is applying to ED. If your son is a borderline candidate, this may spook the officer - meaning, they don't want to allocate a spot early on to a candidate who may not even be accepted to the school. Everybody knows that ED boosts the odds, so it's a good thing to share with the officer. If there is any way your son can have a face to face time with the battalion officers, do arrange it. It helps. We are all human beings. If a CC sends down a list of candidates who put Rice on the list, and when the PMS of the battalion has to decide "yay" or "nay" in terms of taking the candidate or not, it's natural that the officers will be positively influenced in their orientation if your son had a face to face meeting and left a terrific impression. Without really saying it as such, one officer even insinuated as much.

    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2010
  5. dunninla

    dunninla Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,866
    Likes Received:
    5
    regarding parental involvement:

    I have picked up that perhaps there is a difference bewteen Army and Navy. I first noticed this when some parent posters here commented that they accompanied their child to the Army ROTC officer interview. That is really not a good thing for Navy ROTC. I got the impression that he Navy wants to see the child exhibit the kind of leardership and independence they seek in future officers DURING the application process by owning the process themselves, rather than permitting the parent to take the lead.

    Or I could be wrong :)
     
  6. The OC Josh

    The OC Josh Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would agree. The applicant should go into the interview alone. It is up to him or her to get this scholarship because it is his or her life on the line when serving.
     
  7. educateme

    educateme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0
    regarding whether the parent should accompany or not, it depends on the location. In my son's case, he wanted to interview with the PMS of the battalion for the #1 choice school on his list. That was 4 hours worth of driving to a congested city. There is no way I will send him, an inexperienced driver with only 1.5 months of driving experience, on his own. He was also visiting PMSs of several schools on his list (1-4 on the list). All of them require hours of driving. For the same reason, I took him there. I took several vacation days last few months doing this.

    The officers noticed that he was coming from quite a distance. They fully understood my involvement, and they appreciated his desire to introduce himself personally to them.

    I talked to a recently retired PMS. I actually asked this question: does it look bad on the kid if he is accompanied by a parent. He said, "not at all. If anything, it's good to see that the family is really behind the kid's choice and decision. This makes the kid more likely to follow through with his commitment and commission. A "mama's boy" shows in the way he comes across during the interview. No 17 year old can fake enthusiasm and initiative that well."

    So, my input is, whether the parent is there or not is immaterial. The candidate will have to show what kind of stuff he is made of.
     
  8. Centhea

    Centhea Member

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2009
    Messages:
    70
    Likes Received:
    0
    I absolutely agree. My DS's unit made it clear to us from the start that they expect the Mids to take care of their business themselves, exercise personal initiative and responsibility, and not have their parents involved. They are all adults and expected to behave as independent, responsible, thinking individuals. Although this was challenging to me at first, I have resisted many times getting involved and he has clearly grown and learned from having to deal with things himself. The CAPT joked with parents at O-Week drop-off that we are the "helicopter parents" and kids have a much harder adjustment because we have always been there to swoop in and save them or manage things for them. I have come to really appreciate them drawing a line and making us stay behind it.
     
  9. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,806
    Likes Received:
    943
    This is also true for the AF. As a matter of fact once they see on the candidates record that they hit 18, they will not even speak to the parent.

    I also think that this is important because they want to see that the candidate is doing this for their own personal reasons, not because of parental involvement.

    Now some interviewers will want to talk to the parents, but the interviewer will be the one to broach this subject. If they don't, than don't go. The reason that some opt to talk to the folks is because they want to see the level of support from the parents, which can range from "I told him/her if they didn't go this route I'd buy them a brand new car" to "I loved the military and told them this is their best option". Both ends hurt the candidate because they know that there will be a large amount of parental input for the child.

    For helicopter parents take note that as soon as they turn 18, which could be when boards are meeting, at least for the AF they will not speak to you one iota. You can tell them that they are at school, go straight to soccer practice and then work, thus they won't be home until 10 at night. You will still get the same answer...sorry, we cannot release any info to you. Trust me every yr some parent who is going through this process will throw up a big red flag screaming for help, because they got a letter or an email that needs to be responded by the end of that day. They will always get the same answer, you need to get in touch with your kid because you will not be able to talk on behalf of them, if that means you drive to the school and pull them out, then that's what you will need to do! Even if you have their access codes, if you have to speak to a live person, it will not matter.
     
  10. ProudMom

    ProudMom Member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2010
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Some of our Seniors going to interviews out of town are still only 16. I would never go into an interview with my son, but I sure will go with him.
     
  11. Pima

    Pima Parent

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    12,806
    Likes Received:
    943
    I would think 16 is really very rare. The avg SR will turn 18 within the yr.

    In many states you can't get a license at 16, so of course you will have to take them.

    Taking your child and waiting in the parking lot as they enter the building is different than entering in the building and meeting the interviewer.

    Honestly, I don't know of a 16 yo in this process because that means as a freshman in college, they would have yet to turn 17. (We are coming up on Nov). The only students I can think of in this situation would be those who jump grades, which is very rare. I am not saying, that it doesn't occur, what I am saying is it is unique, and not common.

    Interviews will be unique for each every candidate. You can make broad strokes in describing the process, but it will be different for every candidate. Just like every cadet on this board will have different colleges. majors and military aspirations. This is a broad stroke. The broad stroke is that the interviewers are looking at a lot of things. One is going to be the maturity of the candidate. One is going to be the fit into the service. One is going to be the fit into the college and det. One will be why they are doing this route.

    The parents on the ranking system is the very bottom. This issue only bubbles up if the interviewer feels that the parent is a helicopter or they have a great input in the child's decision.

    Interviewers are really getting a feel for the kid, their dreams, goals and aspirations regarding the military. They are not concerned about anything more than their potential as a military officer. They want the best of the best.

    For any ROTC candidate, you need to understand that all of the SA candidates will be applying too as their plan B. It is important to grasp that fact, especially in this economy. The candidate who applies to USMA will 99% of the time also apply to AROTC. You may only be applying for ROTC and not the SA, but the flip side of the coin is not the same for SA candidates. The ROTC program understands that 10K applicants open files for the SA. 6K are deemed competitive, 3K will receive noms. 1600 will get appointments. Even in that 3K pool you have 50% that will go into the ROTC pool.

    Janie Raincloud here, but ROTC scholarship may seem easy, yet it is very competitive. They don't interview for grins and giggles, they interview to rack and stack the list...which goes to the board.

    Anyone here is so ahead of the 8 ball it is insane, because they are learning how to navigate the system. If you opt to not absorb what is being said through personal experience, than you will get behind the 8 ball. If you opt to manipulate the information for your personal scenario than you will be sitting pretty.

    If your DS/DD is 16, you will be involved for many yrs because you will have to sign the contract for your child every yr for a couple of yrs. I would think in your case the interviewer will meet with you because even as a freshman they cannot contract without your signature since they are a minor.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  12. dunninla

    dunninla Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,866
    Likes Received:
    5
    to clarify my original post about parent involvement -- I meant to write

    "accompany the child INTO the inteview". that's what seemed odd to me.
     
  13. Rebel91

    Rebel91 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    My son was 16 when he completed the PMS interview during a college visit to the east coast this summer. Prior to the actual PMS interview, we both met with XO/Scholarship retention officer. This turned out to be a good thing for several reasons: XO asked my son some hypotheticals prior to the actual PMS interview, XO asked about my background (wanted to gauge the family military history, if any), and we established some rapport with the BN officers.

    After 30 minutes, the PMS called in my son for the interview and I thanked the XO and began to leave the building. He asked that I stay behind to see if I had any questions. This again turned to another opportunity - he wanted to know if this particular school was my son's first choice and also to give his pitch why this BN may be a good fit. We also traded some "sea stories" ( my USMC background vs. his Army SF). My point = building rapport is smart, giving the BN officers a chance to put name w/face and knowing a little more personal background about a candidate and his family background is advantageous.

    BTW - my son found out later from CC that he scored a 200 on the PMS interview. The PMS also suggested he take the full Army PRT in addition to the scholarship required 1 mile, 1 min PU, 1 min SU. This was good advice and I am confident the full PRT will assit with this whole candidate assessment score.
     
  14. educateme

    educateme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think several posters here make valid points here about parental involvement - that is, the candidates must own the process. I completely agree. Where I might have some difference in opinion is, what it means to "own the process". My son owns the process in that he is managing his application, did all the things that make him a good candidate for last few years, chose the schools, and battalions etc.

    I think there is a difference between being a helicopter parent and being a strategy consultant. The key difference is, if a candidate of a helicopter parent somehow squeaks through the system and gets the ROTC spot mainly due to the heavy duty helicoptering of the parent, it's not the kind the candidate Army intends to have, and Army loses out. But suppose the parent plays the role of a "strategy consultant." In this case, the Army get the same dedicated, committed, motivated, and mature candidate, AND the candidate gets MORE out of the whole process as in more choices of the schools, potentially a more enriching academic opportunity to go with the ROTC training, better financial deal, etc.

    My son is all about service to the country, dedication, devotion to the long term military career. This was not something I originally hoped for and encouraged. For a very long time, I thought and hoped that it was just a passing thing and he would "wise up" to choose a civilian career. But, a couple of years ago, it became very clear that this was his real goal in life.

    After I "resigned" to this fact, I did some research to get some feel for what it is like to be an ROTC cadet. In the process, I learned that the process is highly competitive and the whole selection procedure is like a black hole to the "uninitiated".

    If my S was a 4.0 GPA/1500 SAT student, captain of the football team, and a president of a student association, there would be NO role for me as a "strategy consultant". He would be a product that sells itself. However, my son, as dedicated as he is, is not a perfect candidate. But, he will make an outstanding officer, that much I know, having watched him for 17 years.

    Without any involvement on my part as a "strategy consultant", he probably would get an ROTC scholarship to the flagship university in our state. S got to know the PMS there very well and was told that if he ever wants to be part of his battalion, S will be his first pick. In fact, this PMS gave him a lot of coaching about the application process, advised him to take APFT instead of the presidential fitness test, and trained him for it for a month or so - all this, knowing full well that his battalion is not where S wants to be at. He even offered to call the PMS of S' #1 school on my S's list to tell him what he thinks of my son. Additionally, S would be a strong candidate in a couple of other places too.

    What my involvement may accomplish is the breadth of choices and better odds for him to land in a much more enriching academic environment in addition to the ROTC training he is getting from Army.

    I am completely hands off in terms of his school work and any ECs. It was his decision to take 6 AP courses. I have no idea when he is taking exams and tests. I was dumbfounded when someone asked me what kind of senior courses he signed up for. It was all his initiative to join ECs related to military stuff and work his butt off to emerge as a leader in that organization. It was his decision to go to an overseas military related summer camp. It was his decision to join the summer encampment for teens for 4 years in a row, gradually rising as a leader. It was his blood, sweat, and tears that made him one of the youngest cadets to be selected as the best cadet of the year, and one of the youngest certified as an instructor in an annual survival, mountain search and rescue ranger school for young adults up to the age of 21.

    However, when it comes to getting just the right strategy put together to maximize the odds of getting the best possible combination of the kind of university/school he will land in that offers the overall the best academic opportunities in the field he is interested in, with the maximum financial support, and the best ROTC training, I think no 17 year old possess yet the judgement and sophistication of an adult with rich life experience, personal and professional.

    Let's face it, the whole process of ROTC scholarship involves dealing with multiple moving objects (school options, Army opportunities, financial options, etc). To come up with an outcome where every single one of these objects is perfectly aligned to produce the best possible combination is a very complicated stuff to manage. In order to manage this process the best, you need a lot of information and intel. There are so many facts and rules that are not made apparent anywhere. It takes a lot of talking and calling to gather the necessary information.

    A good example is a friend of my son who went through the process last year. He had no idea how to put together the school of intent list. He ended up putting all the high reach schools at the top of the list. He did not know that the PMSs are adverse to allocating a spot to a candidate who may not get admitted to the school. This is not an official Army policy and thus not written on any official site. He did not know that in some highly sought after schools, tney filled their quota during the early boards and he should have changed his school of intent list before the later rounds. So he ended up with the same school list through the whole season when for all practical purposes, most of the schools no longer had an available spot for later boards. He did not know that in one battalion he listed at the top, the local PMS/scholarship officer "unofficially" chose not to accept anyone with the SAT score below a certain level, even though that score was well above the mean at the school. As a result, he ended up with no combination of a school that admitted him and a scholarship he can use at the school. He is now attending a school and trying to get a 2 or 3 year on campus scholarship, but it's not guaranteed. Meanwhile, he is taking a lot of student loan, which may become a mill stone around his neck going forward. A bit of research, fact finding, talking/calling with the officers at the battalion could have helped him tremendously. This is what I mean by "strategy consulting".

    The better you know how exactly things are done, the better you can maximize the odds of producing the best possible outcome. The better strategy helps you maximize your odds. For instance, if I had not found out about the dynamics of a hosting school vs. cross town affiliate schools when it comes to private universities, S may have populated the school of intent list that significantly decreases the odds of getting the right combination of school and scholarship.

    We are talking about maximum $230K for four years (pricey private school, full tuition/book/stipend by the Army plus free room and board by the school). We are still dealing with legal minors (mine just turned 17). When a child is in the process of competing for this kind of prize, support and consultation provided by a parent is not an evidence of helicopter parenting.


    As I mentioned earlier, my involvement makes no difference for Army. My son will be an outstanding officer for them regardless of whether he commissions from a state flagship university or a much better regarded private school that is located in a much better setting and is a better fit for him. My involvement may potentially make a huge difference for HIM though. For him, it does matter where he commissions from, because after all, it's his career and life.

    By the way, none of the strategy would be necessary if he were a perfect candidate. At the same time, none of my strategy would have helped if he were not a dedicated, motivated, mature and devoted candidate for the Army. I do believe the Army is getting a solid, good deal in my son.

    I sincerely thank everybody on this board. You have been enormously helpful.

    I may have occasionally come across as obsessive about minutest details of how things work and perhaps intent on "gaming" the system. I am a professionally trained business strategist. We leave no stone unturned, and every bit and scrap of information relevant to the business at hand and the goal in mind is analyzed to the umpteenth degree. The goal is to minimize uncertainly and ambiguity and maximize the transparency, clarity and predictability of potential business scenarios by relying on all usable information, however minute it may be, that can increase the odds of achieving the goal. I approached my son's ROTC scholarship navigation consultation the same way. It's a habit.

    I believe for most 17 year olds, this level of strategic planning is way above their pay grade. This is what I am doing for my son.

    Now, good luck to everybody who is going through this process this year. I wish you all the best possible outcome.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  15. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    Messages:
    5,541
    Likes Received:
    841
    I just wanted to comment on the issue of going into the interview with your son or daughter. When my son scheduled his interview back in 2007 he was called by the Major that was conducting the interview to confirm the appointment. During the conversation she asked to speak with me. I told her that I would be dropping him off and I would wait outside so he could do this on his own. She told me that she wanted me to come as well and sit a talk with her and my son, she also said that the Colonel wanted to speak with me as well. While I was not in the actual interview session we did spend a long time talking, asking and anwering questions. During his interview I met with the Colonel at his request.
    They told me that they wanted to get a feeling on our view and how we were involved with our son, the impression I got from him is that he was pleased that we were involved with the process.
    While I do not think we should do the work for our kids I have to agree with educateme on this one. My younger son is now going through the process and he has met several times with the PMS of his #1 choice school. Each time the PMS asks me to join him comments on how he like to see the family commitment. I would never push my way into a meeting but I will go when asked and so far I have been asked everytime. I'm sure the situation is different depending on the PMS. Just my 2 cents.
     
  16. dunninla

    dunninla Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Messages:
    1,866
    Likes Received:
    5
    ^ yes, it seems the anecdotal evidence is mounting that Army ROTC appreciates speaking with the parents, whereas I have not seen any indication that Navy ROTC does.

    Another difference: I do not think Navy ROTC units play a role in the Scholarship Committee's decisions, whereas it appears that in Army ROTC it does. e.g. I do not think the Commander at XX University NROTC Unit corresponds with the Scholarship Committee that they have met with YY Candidate and would appreciate a favorable review and placement into the XX Unit.
     
  17. educateme

    educateme Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2009
    Messages:
    323
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know whether this level of "intervention" takes place or not. Though it wouldn't be shocking if this takes place.

    One thing I do know since I was clearly told several times by the PMSs is this: Army Cadet Command sends down the initial list of candidates to the PMS of the school/battalions that were listed on each candidate's school of choice intent. A PMS can choose NOT to take a candidate, and the two most likely reasons why this would happen are (1) the PMS does not think the candidate has what it takes to be accepted into the school, and s/he does not want to allocate a spot to such a candidate (2) the PMS thinks that given the spot on his/her battalion, the candidate is not likely to choose it as a final destination. Again, the PMS does not want to allocate a spot to a candidate for whom his/her school/battalion is a mere safety net. The clearest way of signaling genuine interest is to put a school as part of the top 3 choices. One recruiting officer even told me plainly that he would like to see his school/battalion listed among at least top 5 if my son's interest is genuine.

    This is why putting together a school of intent list is a very important part of the whole process and why it can only help if the candidate manages to visit the PMSs of the top schools on his/her list (provided that the candidate comes across well in live interactions).

    My son's final school of intent list has #1 - his dream school/battalion combination. #2 - his safety school #3 - the most competitive school, also a school that provides free room and board to ROTC scholarship winners. Meanwhile, for all three schools, my son's stats put him well within the upper part of the middle 50% or well beyond of each school's admitted student profile.

    I don't know about Navy or Air Force, but for Army, every time I called the local battalion officers, telling them that I am a parent, and I am collecting information for my son, they all WENT OUT OF THEIR WAY to share with me whatever insight they have. Some even told me where my son stands vis a vis other candidates who put their school down on the school of intent list. Some were more on top of things than others. I have NEVER encountered an officer who came across as reluctant to talk to a parent or discouraging and/or disapproving of parental involvement.
     
  18. mtnman17

    mtnman17 USMA Appointee 2015

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Messages:
    392
    Likes Received:
    1
    educateme, PM coming your way:wink:
     

Share This Page