Venting a little...

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Dadof2, Jun 3, 2016.

  1. Dadof2

    Dadof2 Member

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    Perhaps this isn't the correct forum for this, but I'd like to vent a little.

    A couple of nights ago we had awards night for our DS's graduating class. DS was presented with the big check for his NROTC Marine Option scholarship at the beginning of the ceremony - the only ROTC scholarship this year at his school. Later, students were recognized one by one in alphabetical order for all other awards. When it came to his turn, DS was recognized for NHS, several academic, leadership and athletic awards, several small local scholarships and his ROTC scholarship. Very proud moment for his parents.

    The next day someone approached DW and asked, "can I ask you why (DS) received the other scholarships if he has full ROTC scholarship?" DW, who is more civilized than I am, calmly replied that ROTC doesn't cover room and board and he will have other expenses for books and supplies. The person went on to ask "doesn't he get a stipend for that stuff?". The whole tone of the questions was "why is your son taking away scholarships from other kids if he already has a "free" ride? This person also knows that our DD is at USNA on her "free" ride. I found the line of questioning to be pretty bold, rude and insulting and probably wouldn't have handled it as well as DW did. We've heard other less rude, but similar comments from well meaning people who either don't understand or fully appreciate what these kids have signed up for. Is it nice, and do we appreciate, that our kids will have minimal college debt? Absolutely. But this "free" ride isn't free for them. This is what they want to do, and no one is forcing them to choose the path they have chosen, but it would be nice to hear more congratulations for what they have achieved and appreciation for their service commitment and less of the rude and insensitive comments.

    OK, I'm done now...
     
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  2. Capri120

    Capri120 Member

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    Although DH, DD and I did not exactly experience the same questions, we have had similar. DD is going to USAFA, which as you said for SA's is not really a free ride considering the service obligations and expenses they incur that is deducted from their paychecks. DD also received a scholarship that will help pay some of the other expenses. It is amazing how many people outside of the military, and even some in the military, do not truly understand the costs of SAs, ROTC, etc.

    So, I do not see your post as venting, just saying what many of us are experiencing or have experienced.

    Best of luck to your DS and DD.
     
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  3. rocatlin

    rocatlin Member

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    He received the other scholarships because he earned them. Scholarship offers are independent of one another and are awarded based on merit. Organizations that give scholarships don't consult one another and lessen or deny monies earned based upon the number of the scholarships earned. He didn't take away another person's scholarship -- he earned his own, multiple times.

    Surely there are other kids that earned multiple scholarships -- and the same logic should apply to those. Of course, some folks confuse "scholar"ships with "entitlement"ships -- and don't comprehend the competitive nature of earning the award.
     
  4. Capri120

    Capri120 Member

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    Totally agree! Our "kids" work very hard to earn merit scholarships and in no way feel "entitled".
     
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  5. LongAgoPlebe

    LongAgoPlebe Member

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    If I may, a different perspective. Could it have been that the asker was both nosy and naive? We're in kind of a bubble here - we all understand what our brothers/sisters and DDs/DSs are getting into. We understand the selection process, the commitment during and after the college years. But other people generally don't. My college has no ROTC program, but we do have a few cadets who travel a short distance to another college's battalion. Many, many of college faculty, staff, and cadets' classmates don't really understand how it works. All they see are a handful of men and women in ACUs every Thursday. When my colleagues or students make comments or ask about this, I view it as an opportunity to provide information - and perhaps make these cadets a little more approachable in the process.

    The question was certainly bold and nosy, but perhaps, not ill-willed? I wasn't there, of course, so your own perceptions in the moment are probably better than mine.
     
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  6. AJC

    AJC Member

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    Not a free ride when they have to serve after graduation.
    Not a free ride when they have to fill out the next of kin form.
    Not a free ride when they have to pick a life insurance beneficiary at the age of 22.
     
  7. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    As the kids say "haters gonna hate." If they're so concerned about how much money your kids get versus theirs, they ought to focus more on theirs.

    Congrats on the scholarship(s). I don't know what your particular locale is like, but I've generally found that most people are of the opinion that once high school is finished the best option is to never look back.
     
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  8. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    Yeah, SGLV is like $24 a month now! ;)
     
  9. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    A post or two like this comes up each year around this time. As ScoutPilot notes, some people are just rude and resentful. As LongAgoPlebe notes, we have such a small amount of the population who serve in the military there is a general lack of understanding about these programs. Then there are the knowledgeable, experienced folks who will genuinely thank your DS/DD for volunteering to serve. Parents, students (and even active duty personnel) run into this stuff all the time. You should develop your response for each group and get used to it. For instance: ignore and dismiss the rude, educate the interested but naïve, and be very humble to those who understand.

    All the posts above are dead on. Everyone treats the earning of multiple scholarships differently. Some take them all. Others return the smaller scholarships once the ROTC scholarship is earned - particularly if the monies can be given to another deserving applicant. That is a personal family decision based on a whole set of circumstances. Each family has a right to do what they see as best in this case.
     
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  10. Dadof2

    Dadof2 Member

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    Most comments we've heard are not ill-willed and do probably just come from a lack of understanding. This particular comment was spoken with a little venom though, implying that he was sort of double dipping and had no right to the "extra" scholarships.

    To be fair, I should state that the number of people genuinely congratulating DS far outweigh any negative comments. This was only one person, but it sort of rubbed me the wrong way. DS doesn't even know about it and we certainly won't dwell on it. It was good to have this place to vent and unload the negative baggage with a group that understands what it takes to earn what he has earned and also understands the commitment he has made as part of the deal.
     
  11. 1mom

    1mom Member

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    Some adults just cannot hold back their feelings of envy and tend to direct their negative comments without much thoughts or merit. All this be because their kids are not "high achievers".
    From our DS early elementary school years all the way up to now, my husband and I have had to respond to comments of envy. I think such comments are made to help those parents vent their frustrations.
     
  12. bman

    bman Member

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    In our community, scholarship committees do ask applicants what other scholarships they have applied for or received, and they do disqualify students based on the fact they have other scholarships. Most of our local applications state this in their directions, asking how you plan to pay for college and what sources of income/aid/scholarships you have. None of them are based solely on academics or ability. In my DD's case, she had an offer of appointment to USNA which she turned down to go the ROTC route, but since the USNA appointment offer was a "full ride" which she could have taken if she had chosen, she was disqualified from other local scholarships with the idea that they were to help local students attend college who might not otherwise be able to do so.
     
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  13. AJC

    AJC Member

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    It is one thing for a scholarship committee to ask the applicant , and another for some stranger to ask the student's parent.
     
  14. jiller59

    jiller59 Member

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    :( Made me cry a bit. Partially due to DS planned departure for Charleston this Sunday.
     
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  15. Capri120

    Capri120 Member

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    USAFA had DD name a beneficiary while filling out all the paperwork for a new appointee...at age 18. Opened her eyes a bit!:eek:
     
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  16. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

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    The ones who understand (ROTC, SA, military) or have personal experience with it will congratulate you. The ones that don't understand (or have no experience with it) will ask questions, sometimes rude-sounding questions. I get more rude questions from family members that don't understand but have put their own kids through civilian college. It is what it is sometimes.
     
  17. cb7893

    cb7893 Member

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    We were more freaked out by the request for dental records.
     
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  18. zachcleigh

    zachcleigh Member

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    You can only be insulted if you allow yourself to be.

    Your child (children) put in hard work to be able to get scholarships to ease their/your financial burden. These other parents have children that did not put in as much work. Therefore, they did not receive the scholarships yours did.

    If your aid is need based, FAFSA (Government aid) will help you out. ROTC scholarships aren't need based. They're based on achievement.

    Someone questions why your child got all these "FREE scholarships," if they already have a full ride. You could try to explain that the scholarships aren't free at all and that your child will be signing a contract to put their life on the line for this country, or.... you could simply state your child got all of his/her scholarships, because they outperformed the other kids trying to get them. Including the child of the parents who asked you in the first place.

    If they want to be "bold." Be bold.
     
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  19. brovol

    brovol Member

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    I didn't mind it when folks thought, "wow, that kids cup run-ith over", when my kids name got called and he was presented with his West Point appointment by a Colonel , and then got some local scholarships and awards on top of that. He earned every bit of what he got in addition to the standing ovation, which was awesome. If someone is bitter because his or her kid didn't get scholarships, and think that the wealth should be spread to the less deserving, like it is in most other aspects of life, I hope they enjoy their bitterness, because I know I am.

    In terms of the service obligation that our kids have after graduation, I tend to look at it as a bonus with some significant risks. To my son, and probably most of the rest of your son's and daughters, it isn't an obligation, but rather a bonus. Being a officer in the Army is his dream job, and he gets a guarantee that he will have his dream job right after graduation. How cool is that? And it pays well too; particularly for a first job after college. And promotions and raises are more than just a possibility .

    ROTC and SA appointments are an incredible good deal, and they must be earned, with only a relatively few being so qualified and fortunate. Let people make jealous comments. Then smile and say, "aren't we lucky".
     
  20. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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    Wise words, Judge Brovol!
     

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