what game plan is best for me?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by sgmccool, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. sgmccool

    sgmccool New Member

    Mar 24, 2013
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    OK I'm a Jr. in High School and my primary goal is to become a officer in the Marine Corps. I've wanted to do this since 8th grade. My father was a swing with the wing Marine for 4 years and got out as a Cpl (E-4), his Uncle was a MSgt (E-8) and his son just got out as a Cpl and finally his daughter just married a fresh out of OCS this summer 2nd Lt.

    Ive had this plan since 9th grade and now I'm wondering is it the right plan.
    Plan A apply and get accepted to the USNA.

    Plan B apply for a NROTC scholarship.

    Plan C go to a local college and join a NROTC program

    Plan D enlist in the Marine Corps and then try and become a maverick.

    Hasn't been a plan per say but is a sub plan to plan A. Get a sports invite to NAPS.

    OK what is the best way to ensure my path to the Marine Corps as an Officer? Am I missing any other good paths?

    OK my stats. Jr. in high school with a 3.2 or 3.3 GPA, SAT scores so far Reading 480, Math 540, Writing 450 (retaking and parents will pay for SAT classes.)

    In the 50% of a class 500+

    3 years JAFROTC Rank Capt. Group Staff

    Capt of the Rifle Team, I shoot 3P precision and my personal best so far is 569 and I'm improving monthly.

    Made Eagle Scout at 16 and still active with Palms.

    Work part time at Chick-fil-A average 14 hours a week.

    I can get my PFT scores to 280-290

    OK Since the USNA is a long shot for a appointment and somewhat long shot for NAPS with shooting, how are my chances for a NROTC scholarships.

    Can I Enlist in the Delayed Entry Program to hold a good MOS and then drop it if I get a NROTC Scholarship?

    I live in Georgia.

    Thanks for all the advice in advance.
  2. pathnottaken

    pathnottaken Member

    Jan 28, 2013
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    First good leadership demonstrated so far, but you can always show more.

    Short term:

    Get all A's this year; work hard on your fitness and get it to 300; REALLY take an SAT class and study hard, take the SAT's as often as you can.
    Find some people who will write good reccomendation for you and do more for them so that they will write a better one by the end of the summer.

    Plan D can come after Plan C - I suggest you go to college get a four degree, and if you don't commision than enlist.

    If I have to narrow my advice to three letters they would be SAT
  3. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe Member

    Feb 10, 2010
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    Plan C is a good option.

    Plan D, remember you will still need a 4 year college degree to become an officer, even a "Maverick"

    You forgot one option, you can also go to college and apply for the PLC Program.

    Right now your SAT is just a bit above the minimums for the scholarship. Raising your SAT and maybe trying the ACT will help.

    Unless you are having a real good second semester your GPA and class standing will probably not change much.

    To be honest your stats are well below what you would need for the USNA, but remember you are only guaranteeded not to be appointed if you don't apply, the same goes for the NROTC MC Option, apply and hope for the best, but be ready to move forward with one of your other options.

    Look into the PLC program and also keep the College Programmer option open as well.

    Enlisting active duty before you go to college will mean a long road to get your degree before you could even think about becomming an officer.
  4. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

    Dec 13, 2010
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    sgmccool: lots of good advice so far. I want to echo jcleppe's advice regarding the ACT. The SAT and ACT measure knowledge/ capability differently and some people show significant improvement in one over the other. Its worth the shot.

    There is nothing stopping you from pursuing Plans A and B. You will never know unless you try. Plan C is really around pursuing a College Program scholarship.

    Plan D is the longest shot as you would have to earn a path via the Enlisted Commissioning Programs. As Jcleppe states: it is a "long road" to your degree.

    There are other options including the OCC program (get a 4 year degree and then apply) and the PLC program where you can be selected as a Freshman, Sophomore or Junior.

    I personally would not recommend the Delayed Entry Program if your goal is to get a college education and become a Marine Officer.

    One final point: I would recommend you get your PFT score up. A higher score can only help with interviews, impressions, applications, etc.

    Best of luck!
  5. Nick0726

    Nick0726 Member

    Mar 21, 2013
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    Definitely would say Plan C is your best bet. NROTC scholarships are hard to come by, more so than other scholarships, so it's a very competitive process. Definitely try to get your GPA up and you could compete.

    However, if you don't get it, joining the local NROTC is your best bet. You can get in, shake some hands, and show the Cadre that you are devoted and can work hard. Best of luck!
  6. semperfi50

    semperfi50 Member

    Sep 16, 2012
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    Don't know what I can say that hasn't been said here already. However, your extracurriculars are pretty solid, but your grades, SAT, and class rank are on the low side. You would be hard pressed to find a scholarship awarded or USNA apointee that wasn't in the top 10% of their class. My advice to you, coming from someone who was awarded the NROTC MO Scholarship this year, is to axe the PFT, and knock both the essays and the interview out of the park. The essays and the interview will give the board some insight as to the person you are. Good luck and remember if you really want to become a Marine Officer, nothing will stop you if you keep trying.
  7. dunninla

    dunninla Member

    Jan 26, 2010
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    Let me make a few observations and then a few suggestions:

    - USNA does NOT guarantee Marines (ranges from about 15% to 25% of commissioning class, depending on year, and many who want Marines don't get it), but NROTC Marine Option does.
    - you didn't specify Marine Ground, or Marine Air. If Marine Air rotary wing, or Marine Ground, the Army offers many different in specifics but similar enough assignments/lifestyles. Only Marine Air fixed wing would not be possible in the Army vs. Marines. Ask a few Marine officers... West Point offers considerably more and better ground combat skills and platoon leadership training than does USNA. This is not the case with Army ROTC vs. Navy ROTC - Marine Option though.
    - Unless you are a black male or recruited athlete, your current academic stats are not competitive for USNA. (please don't comment on this comment within THIS thread... make a separate thread if you really want to argue that point). They are fine for NAPS, and ironically, if you score above 600 on either part of the SAT you might even over-qualify yourself for NAPS. To get NAPS consideration, you MUST be deemed academically unqualified for USNA.

    Based on the above:

    1) Get to 300 on the PFT to possibly over-ride the academic weakness
    2) Get above 25 on the ACT or 580 on both parts of the SAT
    3) Consider USMA or AROTC as backup plans
    4) finish this semster as strongly as possible, and enroll in tough Sr. year classes. I say this b/c if you are not sufficently trained currently to be able to keep up with AP type classes in high school, you will struggle and there is a good chance you will fail to keep up with the mandatory curriculum at USNA or USMA, or be a drag and burden on mids/cadets who have to burn hours and hours tutoring you.
    5) with your academic stats, you will need all the support you can get. Start building relationships with your congressional offices, Marine District Recruiter, and the NROTC units that are currently at the top of your list of possible colleges.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013
  8. Thompson

    Thompson Member

    Dec 11, 2012
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    One small comment to this - enroll in these AP/Honors courses, but NOT at the expense of your grades!! An "A" in an honors course is certainly better than a "D" in an AP course. True, AP courses will help you prepare more for that college equivalent course, but nothing will prepare you the best than your own will and self-determination to succeed.
  9. EDelahanty

    EDelahanty Member

    May 7, 2010
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    You describe a full schedule, particularly with 14 hours of fast-food work, which can be exhausting. So you need to be strict with your time management from here on. That means making good choices that will help achieve your goals.

    As has been suggested already, in the remaining time during this school year, focus hard on getting the best grades possible. Make that your job and take it seriously. Do all the homework, make sure you understand the answers to homework and exam questions you got wrong, see the teachers after class, form a study group to go over the work - whatever it takes.

    Before the summer starts, get a reading list from your English teacher and spend plenty of time reading. If you want suggestions for other books that might suit your interests, people on these boards will be happy to suggest them. If you run across a word you don't understand, don't blow past it: look it up. If you don't understand a sentence or paragraph, be patient with it. You don't have to like everything you read, and some authors are clearer than others.

    Regarding the SATs, I don't know whether it's a matter of insufficient knowledge or just poor test-taking. Taking a course will probably help, but you'd do well to get recent SAT practice test books and work at it on your own. Same as above, go over what you get wrong. Some folks here recommend the ACTS.

    You come across as a motivated person with a lot of potential, and I wish you good luck. And work on improving your fitness.
  10. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

    Oct 21, 2010
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    I was surprised I didn't see attending college and pursuing the Platoon Leaders Course (PLC) anywhere as an option. It should probably come before enlisting. The majority of Marine Officers come through PLC (or at least they did fairly recently). As dunninla pointed out the USNA route doesn't guarantee Marines while the NROTC and PLC routes do. Also, USNA is not the best fit for everybody, YMMV.

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