Tips for I-day

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by pjnavy82, May 7, 2010.

  1. pjnavy82

    pjnavy82 Member

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    I pulled this off the Navy side of the forum and it's a year old. Hope nobody minds! :redface: Maybe someone can go through and make appropriate changes (Mid to Cadet, Plebe to Dooley, etc.), but the gist of a lot of the info. seems appropriate.

    PJ



    Company assignments will come in a later mailing. You will have it prior to arrival.
    Do not worry about your report time- just arrive at the time designated.
    If you have an early arrival time, the line will be short and will move quickly, so get those hugs in ahead of time. Parents- don't worry too much, you will see your new plebe again after the oath of office- those will be the hard hugs, but all good.

    If you arrive a bit later, the line can move a bit slower. Stay relaxed.


    OK. So perhaps time for some information that will be of use to you for I-Day.

    Clothing.
    Might as well get this out of the way now.
    Please show up neat- and "plain."
    Son wore a shirt with a "polo" logo- that tiny little guy on that horse thing- and believe it or not, attracted 2 comments before he was through the door. Funny in retrospect, but on that morning, just added to nerves already on edge. So think "plain." I will spare you the story of the candidate that showed up in a "beat army" shirt. I will leave that one to "buyers beware".... aka.... NOT recommended. YOU have not EARNED that yet, and THAT is how THAT will be looked at! NOT GOOD.

    PLAIN SHIRT.
    TUCKED IN.
    PLAIN PANTS. SHORTS OK. NO JEANS. BELT. PANTS PULLED UP.
    RUNNING SHOES-BROKEN IN. Make those as white as you can as well.

    Nothing else, except a small piece of religious jewelry if you have that (cross, etc)
    Girls- very small gold ball stud earrings.
    Anything else leave at home. Watch included.

    Girls-
    Get your hair cut ahead of time. 2 inches above the collar, no exceptions. Longer than that will get you a seat in the barbers chair (emphasize barber). NOT GOOD. Get it over ahead of time when there is more than a few minutes devoted to getting it styled. Think "locks of love."

    NO belly rings, tongue rings, nose rings, and any other rings for that matter. Don't even go there.

    Keep one thing in mind: "FLY BELOW THE RADAR." That is your goal. Shut those lips unless asked. This is "not all about you" anymore- well, actually it is, but not in the way you have experienced before. It's all about "all of you." You are a plebe, one of MANY faces in a SEA of plebes. Trust me when I tell you that it will be hard for mom and dad, who know every nook and cranny on that face, to pick yours out of a sea of shaved heads. Chances are you will spot them well before they spot you. Just remember, it's all good.

    I Day.
    No doubt you will hear lots of war stories between now and then. Truth be told, with all the hype, for many the reality is actually a bit of a let-down! Just don't worry about it. It is an exciting day, lots of yelling, lots of hurry up and wait, lots of lines for issue, go here and go there's, in-your-face-what-did-I-get-myself-into-things, but it is all doable and lights-out arrives eventually. This is what you have worked for- savor it, the good and the bad parts, savor it and lock on. The faster you lock on, the easier it will be.

    Don't worry about how you look. It won't matter to a soul. You are not there to "look good." You are given a uniform for a very good reason- to LOOK UNIFORM... not unique, but the same as the 1200+ next to you. You are there to work hard. Girls- forget the makeup, you will sweat it right off, so better not to have that mascara streaking down your face and getting all over your white works- ditto for other makeup. Forget it for today; for that matter, forget it for plebe summer. For all- have mom pack a good facial cleaner in your first care package- heat and sweat and open pores are a recipe for disaster, and getting a jump start on getting any acne under control early is a good thing. Instead of face paint, put some sunscreen on your face- it is a hot sun.

    Guys:
    Might be a good idea to get your hair shortened a bit too before you arrive- think traditional cut. Don't come with a high-and-tight, or shaved head....again, YOU have not earned THOSE (unless you are a prior)... so don't go there. But getting it cut before hand will give you time to get the sun on your forehead and neck, so that when they do buzz it all off, you are not looking like some weird snow cone. And when they do buzz it, if you get a chance, put some sunscreen on your scalp and the back of your neck- sunburn is not fun, especially in places where the sun has never shinned before.



    Glasses. You are getting BCGs whether or not you want them. Don't worry about it. They are ugly as heck, but you are not here for a beauty contest, and no one is going to care except you, so why bother. It is what it is, and it is only for a few weeks, so go with the flow and don't sweat it. No one is going to care!

    What else.
    Get good nights sleep. Start a full week before, getting to bed by 11pm (lights out) and up by 0530. Let your body adjust ahead of time so that you are not dragging as much if you don't get acclimated ahead of time.

    Use your time wisely.
    Between now and I-Day, the BEST thing you can do for yourself is RUN. Every day. You should have been doing this already- so if you have not started, get going- TODAY. This is the single most thing that will get you snagged, so go prepared. Show up in shape and you will get less attention. Don’t and you might as well paint a bull’s eye on your back, and forehead, and everywhere else. REMEMBER YOUR GOAL: FLY BELOW THE RADAR. That means running in the pack, not following it.

    Attitude. Ego.
    Leave both at home.
    NO room for it here.
    You may have been a big fish in your pond, but you will be guppy food here- you don't even rate guppy. Humility goes a long way here- bring anything else and you make your road that much harder.

    One last thing.
    Remember to set goals.
    "I am going to get through plebe summer" is certainly one.
    But allow yourself to modify that as needed- there will be some days where "I am going to get to lunch," "I am going to get to dinner," "I am going to get to lights out"...are all you can manage. My Mid went through many weeks of "I am going to get to Sunday"....

    Sunday.
    Religious or not, time to see the Chaplins. Donuts. NO CADRE. REPRIEVE. Only for 2 hours, but they just might be the best two hours of your week! Sundays are great.

    Ok.
    That’s it, because the longer you sit here on your computer to read this stuff, the less time you are spending out there running and finishing up with senior classes and studying for those finals. You are not done yet, so don't get derailed. Stay out of trouble, stay healthy. Enjoy your final stretch of senior year.

    Parents.
    Buy a second battery for that camera. Make sure the memory card is downloaded and empty. Make sure to go to the Supe's brief- do not miss that!
    Bring a box of tissues for the ride home. If you can, stay overnight at Annapolis or wherever and head home I-Day+1. I-Day is exhausting for you as well. DO NOT RETURN TO THE YARD the next day. DO NOT. Get a good nights rest, walk around Annapolis, have breakfast at Chicks and Ruth’s, and head home. Your sons and daughters are in good hands. You have done your job. Work on stretching those apron strings- they will be cut at some point over the next 4 years, some sooner than later, but it is inevitable, so start stretching them a bit.

    For parents not attending I-Day:
    Historically, the sups brief has been shown again during PPW.
    Following the oath of office, there will be a designated place (usually at the Mexican Monument) where there will be cell phones available for your newly-minted, buffed and puffed plebe to call home- so stay in earshot of that! They won't have too much time, so put them on speaker phone so that everyone at home will be able to hear first-hand that your plebe is still living and breathing!


    That it for now. No doubt I will think of more later.
    If it is any consolation, I just received notice today that candidate packets for the CLASS OF 2014 will be mailed out this month. So your relief is already forming up behind you!

    Your days may drag, but trust me when I tell you the next 4 years- YOUR 4-years-by-the-bay, are going to fly. They will be over in a blink of an eye. Hard to see that now, but mark my words. And I have heard from more than one alumni, who couldn't wait for it all to be "done and gone," would give anything for an opportunity to do it all again! No matter how easy or how hard, never let a day go by that you take for granted the opportunity before you. Work hard. Do your best. Getting in is the easy part. Staying in- walking the straight and narrow, making the right decisions, staying afloat academically and physically, all will require 100%. Make it count- from day 1, make it all count. Get help when you need it. Seek it out. Give help when you can. OFFER it. You are now a member of a unique and very special community, one part of a very huge whole.


    Ship, shipmate, self.
    navy2010 is offline
     
  2. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    My comments in RED
     
  3. greentrees

    greentrees Member

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    We did not attend I-day (said goodbye to DS the day before at home airport and entrusted him to the AOG Bed & Breakfast program) but I think I can address a few of the items.

    You will NOT get Squadron assignment ahead of time -- basics get their assignment upstairs in AOG building - get colored lanyard for squadron (A-J) and will also be assigned a flight (1-4) w/in the squadron. Those will correspond to the 40 squadrons after Acceptance (A-1 is CS1, A-2 CS2, A-3 CS3, A-4, CS4, B-1 CS5 ... J-4 CS40)

    No assigned time to report - just between certain hours (don't remember how early it starts). I will say you don't want to arrive close to the end and be the only one on the bus ride over the hill or on the footrprints which happened this year to someone DS knows. Not a fun experience for that guy!

    What to wear -- cadre will find something wrong with whatever you wear, but yes, it's best not to call attention to yourself.
    Info passed onto me was to listen closely to what Cadre said and to do your best in answering their questions; to not be too cocky/arrogant, but not be too timid either. Get standing at attention down pat so you don't need to be corrected immediately.

    Chapel time / SPIRE program a definite reprieve from cadre -- but also good for all basics to realize everyone, & I mean EVERYONE is feeling the same way.

    Basic breaks the individual down so they can become a team and work together. Hard for alot of kids to do who have excelled at everything on their own and must now be willing to seek help.

    best of luck to all the 2014 appointees!

    Oh -- you will have their PO Box -- write lots, and lots of letters to them, though they don't get to the mail boxes everyday. Send only plain, white envelopes. Don't recommend pictures - they will be confiscated by the cadre. Expect to get the "this place s^&%ks letter early - then, hopefully a day or two later, it's manageable.
    I would type letters and save them on the computer so I knew what I wrote. Would also number the envelopes so he knew which one I wrote first.

    WEBGUY will become your best friend!
     
  4. packermatt7

    packermatt7 USAFA Cadet

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    Clothes:

    Best: if you can get some USAFA PC gear beforehand, definitely wear that. If not, wear your CAP/JROTC Uniform or high school letterman jacket.


    Items to bring:
    Copy of contrails to study in line at I-Day, then the Cadre will know you are especially "smart." Bring a camera for all the cool memories. Definitely bring your Qudoba card for in case you wanna order for delivery. Also, an Xbox is good to have to pass the time in your room.

    Attitude:
    Definitely smile a lot, show the Cadre you want to be there. When asked why you want to be here respond with something like:
    "I'm gonna be an astronaut!" or " 'Cause I'd be a badass fighter pilot!"



    Oh and if you do all of these things, let me know so I can be there to watch :yllol: :wink:
     
  5. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    Great advice packermatt, that sounds like a great plan. I will be sure to try it out. Thanks for the insightful and helpful post.
    Contrails: Check
    Camera: Check
    Qudoba card: Check
    Xbox: Check
    Smile: Check
    Badass Pilot: Check
    Matt and his video cam: Check (I'm sure he will be happy to attend)

    Now to find some USAFA PT gear... (any suggestions?)

    Later,

    Brian
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2010
  6. falcongirl

    falcongirl USAFA grad

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    Don't forget the giant wheeled suitcase! And I thought I was supposed to wear a "Train this" t-shirt for I-day!:eek: Brian, you check ebay for that PT gear and I'll take Craigslist.
     
  7. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    Wow, you can actually find a lot of it online. I scored on ebay and many other sites.

    Later,

    Brian
     
  8. kikoman

    kikoman Member

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    2014 clearly has the teamwork thing under control! :thumb:

    Make sure you call any ma'am you see a sir...
    My sister is working basic and says she loves that!

    -kikoman
     
  9. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    I was thinking more along the lines of a box instead of a suitcase. It would be much easier to carry around all day and I can draw pictures on the outside while waiting in line.

    Later,

    Brian
     
  10. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Most definitely, don't forget your "GO ARMY" T-shirt.
     
  11. DK6732

    DK6732 USAFA Cadet

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    What about a "Go Navy" shirt? Would that be acceptable?:yllol:
     
  12. buffalo

    buffalo USAFA 2013

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    I say do something crazy. It might get you yelled at, but it'll create some great memories!
     
  13. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Some of you need to watch "Private Benjamin" with Goldie Hawn. When you get to basic, ask where your condo is, and the spa. Tell them that your ALO told you that you'd have a private room with maid service.
     
  14. AcademyFriend1

    AcademyFriend1 Member

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    Very funny string. Good luck, Basics to be, keep a healthy mixture of a sense of humor and a willingness to learn under challenging circumstances, and you'll be fine. (if anyone does wear a "Go Army" or "Go Navy" shirt or pull a Private Benjamin, please post again in September or so and let us know how it went!)
     
  15. bsa07eagle

    bsa07eagle Member

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    I have an idea, but PM me so that it doesn't get out to all the lurking cadre on here.

    Later,

    Brian
     
  16. CadCandMateus

    CadCandMateus Recent Grad

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    i wouldn't recommend it.
     

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