Take Plan B very seriously!

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by singaporemom, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. singaporemom

    singaporemom Member

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    Well, my son is out of the race!

    After suffering an injury, he has decided to withdraw his application from USAFA. In August, he was one week away from CFA and was injured in football. He will recover fully, but not in time to be strong enough to excel at CFA before deadline. We just received word from Doctor, that barring any further trauma (he may not trip, stumble or fall to the ground!) he will avoid surgery and heal with no problems.. During this recovery period he learned more about the ROTC: Army, Air Force and Navy, and researched more schools. He has decided to apply to one of the schools as Early Decision. This made him realize that USAFA was not his top choice. Because of this he decided to withdraw his application and get letters out to his MOC before their boards meet.

    He now has many, many options on the table and feels better that he doesn't need to worry about the CFA training while he recovers. (ROTC may grant waivers for PFT with doctor's note)

    So, all of you candidates and parents of candidates...take plan B very seriously. And Plan C! He has a full ride at one University, with no ROTC as his back up. JUST IN CASE. Do your research, because there are many options out there, and many opportunities for your child to receive a college education on full scholarship.
     
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    You make an excellent point. There are many reasons that candidates drop out of the process during the year -- medical being chief among them.

    A backup plan (Plan B) doesn't mean you're any less interested in a SA, merely being realistic. Also, in all honestly, some kids realize along the path to an appointment that a SA is no longer their dream. If there is a ready Plan B, it's a lot easier to make that decision to drop out of the process. If there isn't a Plan B, some kids continue on their path to a SA, knowing it's not what they want, and then end up quitting during the summer or first year. That's always tough on everyone.

    As a USNA BGO, I always ask my candidates about their Plan B. I really don't dare what it is (NROTC, civilian college, etc.) as long as they have one. If they don't, I advise them to get one asap.
     
  3. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Singaporemom; 1st; glad to hear your son is going to be fine. I know that such changes in plans can be very stressful. But I always believe that it always works out for the best. The bright side is that it happened now instead of an injury in April/May after receiving an appointment and too late to have as many appealing options. It can't be said enough times to apply to numerous schools. If you believe you're good enough academically and such to get into the academy, then you're good enough to apply to 95%+ of all schools in the country. And as you have shown, there's a lot of scholarships and financial options out there for those interested in college. Fortunately, most younger college bound students are finding that finances isn't something that should stop them from attending a fine school. It's usually their parents and others in the older generations who remember how it was when they were applying to college who portray college as many times being unattainable.

    I'm so happy things are working out for your son. I'm sure he will excel and find his goals and future in whatever course he takes. Thanks for letting applicants know how important it is to have backup plans. later... mike....
     
  4. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I always say, sometimes you can do everything and anything, but if that is the path you are meant to take, than you will be on it. The thing is not only should you have a plan B, but never leave this site. You will be amazed how much you have to offer, plus, eventually singapores DS and you will meet up again, since the AF is incredibly small when you enter it, you'll enjoy the fact as 2 FNGS you at least have something that will create a bond.
     
  5. mmct

    mmct Member

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    My son has a similar problem too, but I am seeking advice on the topic. Just recently he partially tore his rotator cuff, according to the orthopedist, he will make a full recovery without any surgery. The only problem is that the recovery time interferes with his training/taking of the pullups and pushups part of the CFA. He can take the CFA but his pullup and pushup scores will be weak.

    Would this be a large problem in the application process; could he be potentially rejected for low scored in those two areas? Also, are there any other alternatives?
     
  6. singaporemom

    singaporemom Member

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    Speak to your ALO. He'll be able to give you guidance. If the doctor thinks he can safely do pushups and pullups before the deadline then he just needs to do the best he can. We have been told that there are no waivers....but, if son had gone to USNA summer, they would transfer his CFA test from that. Son didn't go...no such luck.

    Good luck! It's a lot of pressure on the kids, so just concentrate on keeping him healthy and strong. Follow doctor's orders and he'll get the scores done if he can. Take SAT and ACT again to make his application as strong as possible. He'll be competing in a larger pool of candidates as the deadline approaches.
     
  7. Memphis9489

    Memphis9489 Parent

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    What you describe certainly does happen, but I think the reciprocal of that is actually more common.

    In other words, a candidate applies to a service academy for many of the wrong reasons. Maybe they're not even that enthused about being in the military or serving their country. Maybe they have a parent pressuring them.

    And then ... when they get there ... they discover they actually like it. They adapt. They discover that military life isn't as bad as they thought it would be. They discover that life at a service academy does afford opportunities to have fun and make friends. It's not nearly as sterile as they thought.

    They enter with uncertainty, apprehension, doubts and transform themselves into a confident individual who is thankful that somebody steered them in the right direction, even if they entered the academy like a cat with his claws in the carpet.

    I don't think it's always true that a candidate has to be all that enthused about it. Many of the candidates are 18-yr-old kids who are sometimes not the best judge of what is best for their future.

    Everybody always says that attending the academy was a life long dream for them. Baloney! That is true for some, but there are many more for whom that is not true - but will never admit it.

    There is a silent group who were pressured into attending (usually by a parent) and, 4 years later, end up saying, "Thanks, Dad. I'm glad I listened to you."

    Is that ideal? No! But it happens more often than is ever discussed.
     
  8. mmb5

    mmb5 Member

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    Memphis 9489, thank you for a reminder.

    Academies were not on our radar screen; we were thinking Ivy or smaller alternative-- but when son visited and when something clicked for him, it made sense to us as well as a goodfit for his personality. Have been having slight guilt pangs brought on by worries on whether we have crossed the between "Cheerleader" and "coach" in the process, and what pressure even "cheerleader" can put on a kid.
     

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