Army Corps of Nurses?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by NovaGrad, Nov 9, 2017.

  1. NovaGrad

    NovaGrad Member

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    My DD has applied for ROTC scholarship under the Nurses program and as a parent I was wondering if someone currently serving in this capacity could enlighten me. It is my understanding upon graduation she would be placed in at least a year med/surg rotation in 1 of 8 locations (7 stateside and 1 in Germany) after which she would specialize for the next two years (wondering where that would be?) It is also my understanding that at year 4 focus is shifted less on the clinical and more on the military leadership/achieving higher rank and responsibility (is this accurate?) What are the chances of deployment in that time and what is a typical deployment like? Will she have time to seek advanced degree in her first 5 years of service either on the Army's dime or her own? If Army picks up the cost what is the additional service requirement? What is the quality of life like as a Army Nurse (shift lengths, leave, at what point is starting a family really realistic) Thanks so much!
     
  2. Dckc88

    Dckc88 Member

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    @k2rider might be able to help with some of your questions, his daughter is serving as a nurse and went to the same University as my DD is at now. If you have any questions about nursing scholarships, school as a nurse, ROTC training, etc., let me know.
     
  3. rothnroll

    rothnroll Member

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    I am an Active Duty Nurse Corps Major with 26 years of Active duty. I can answer your questions about the "Army Nurse Corps."
    You are asking many questions that are not easy to answer. I will try my best.
    Her first duty assignment will be as a medical-surgical nurse. This is essential in order to develop a strong foundation in nursing.
    After 1 year she is able to specialize in Labor and Delivery, OR, ICU, etc. I spent 1 year on a medical surgical floor and then specialized as a perioperative (OR) nurse.
    Where she gets stationed after she specializes depends on what she specializes in. Not every hospital had a an operating room, or a Labor and Delivery.. etc.
    Also you do not have to specialize. Many decide not to specialize and stay as a 66H (Medical Surgical Nurse).
    Her primary duties will be clinical until she is senior CPT or so. This depends on the staffing situation and her leadership abilities. Eventually she will progress to charge nurse of a shift to head nurse of a section (Clinical Nurse Officer in Charge).
    It is impossible to predict deployments. That depends on the political atmosphere and her job, if she decides to specialize.
    She will have a chance to seek an advanced degree. I am not sure on the timeline. Some of that depends on her. Somewhere around the 5-7 year mark she will be able to go to long term schooling. I have done this twice. The military values education and there will be many opportunities for her to obtain a degree. The military paid for my master's and PHD in nursing. If she wants to become an advanced practice nurse, like a nurse practitioner, then she will have that opportunity.
    A typical deployment would probably be at a combat support hospital. We also have Forward Support Teams, etc, but those are manned by less people. A deployment would be 6-9 months. I deployed to Iraq twice and it was the most rewarding experience of my life. It is an honor to take care of America's Son's and Daughter's. You also take care of the enemy combatants as well. Her job during a deployment would be to perform nursing care, although the injuries are typically more severe. According to the Geneva Convention , she is a non-combatant. As a nurse she would be in one of the safer roles in the military. There are no "safe" roles, but statistically speaking, there were only a handful of deaths to military nurses compared to the fighting force.
    As far as family life, I met my wife in the Army. We have four kids. They were all born in military hospitals. 2 are grown now and are successful. They all love the military. My wife decided to get out a few years ago and work as a civilian. It's a wonderful life, but not easy. It is demanding and stressful, but very rewarding.
    I have been stationed all over the world - Italy, Germany, Hawaii, many conus assignments. I love the population I provide care to, our Nation's Warriors and their families.
    If you are a planner, then the military will be hard for you. It is very unpredictable as far as selecting assignments. Sometimes she will have a say in where she goes, and sometimes she will have to go wherever the military needs her the most. It is the military after all.
    I don't mind talking to either of you on the phone, if you have any questions.
    Send me a PM and and I will send you my number.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2017
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  4. GreenMountainPatriot

    GreenMountainPatriot Member

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    Thanks for this info. My DD is just starting her journey. MS1 in the nursing program.
     
  5. USN16x

    USN16x 5-Year Member

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    Just to add on what rothnroll said from my experience at NSTP this summer I was able to talk to a lot of junior officers about lifestyle ect. Depending on where you are at and what unit you work on you typically work 3 12s, however you have collateral duties and responsibilities i.e. Scheduling personal for the unit, keeping track of in-services, getting the opportunity to the OIC at the range, and other duties that may require you to come in on "your days off." A majority of the specialty courses are held at BAMC in San Antonio and like you said you typically go after the first 2 years enroute to your next duty location. I'll upload a career pathway map that I receive this summer at BAMC!
     
  6. USN16x

    USN16x 5-Year Member

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    IMG_2387.JPG
     
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  7. GreenMountainPatriot

    GreenMountainPatriot Member

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    Anyone have any experience in the Public Health Corp?
     
  8. NovaGrad

    NovaGrad Member

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    RothnRoll,
    Thank you for taking the time to go into such detail about your personal experience. It sounds like it is an extremely rewarding path for the right individual. As a parent I try to convey to her how rare it is to go to work and love what you do. She is a candidate for the Academies but that path has a very low probability of allowing her to seek a career in the medical field. DD is on here but rarely signs on as she is so busy. Thank you for the offer to talk with her personally and I will refer her to your rexpertise if she has any further questions (she will).
     
  9. Dckc88

    Dckc88 Member

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    @NovaGrad another thing to advise your daughter on is that nursing ROTC is very specific. If she chooses that path she will be expected to finish nursing school, pass her boards and serve as a nurse. The money for nursing scholarships comes out of a "different bucket" than the rest of the ROTC line scholarships. So while academies have a very small chance of leading to nursing, a nursing scholarship isn't going to lead to a different medical path. Both of you most likely already know this but I have seen on here more than once the question asked "I got a nursing AROTC scholarship but I don't want to study nursing, can I keep my scholarship"? And the answer is no. That doesn't mean the person cannot continue with ROTC without a scholarship and then try to get a campus based one, but it doesn't seem to work to just transfer a nursing to a non nursing scholarship to study something else. So being sure about wanting to be a nurse is the number one thing in accepting a nursing scholarship. My DD thought she might want to be career Army, but of course she didn't have to decide that upon acceptance just that she was willing to complete her obligations, but she felt sure she wanted to be a nurse, and if she decides to not stay in as a career, she can still be a nurse after the Army. She is in her second year of school and still feels the same way, pretty sure she wants a long term career in the Army but not a hundred percent, but definite about wanting to be a nurse. Good luck to your daughter this is an exciting and overwhelming process!
     
  10. NovaGrad

    NovaGrad Member

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    She does understand it is written in stone if she accepts the nursing scholarship. She feels it would be a very rewarding path and would want to seek advanced degrees most likely. West Point has a kinesiology major and she was also interested in physical therapy but that would be a slightly more convoluted path with less chance of her major making an immediate impact in her career as an officer. I am sure God will put her on the path she is suppose to follow.
     
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  11. GreenMountainPatriot

    GreenMountainPatriot Member

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    Your DD's journey sounds like my DD's. She loved WP, but she couldn't see a clear end game into the medical profession, even if she obtained a kinesiology degree. She went the AROTC nursing route and, so far, so good.
     
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  12. k2rider

    k2rider 5-Year Member

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    I saw rothnroll's post above and thought I'd just add a few tidbits based on my DD's experience and what I've been told over the last (3) years. Most of her roommates in college were ROTC Nursing majors as well so I've followed their paths as well. If it matters, my DD graduated in 2014 and pretty much went to LDAC almost immediately after graduation so she is coming up on 3.5 years of service. Barring something unusual, you are automatically promoted to 1LT after 18 months. She made the Captain's list the 1st time around so should be promoted in mid-2018.

    As you get close to graduation, the Army let the nurses put in a "wish list" of where they would prefer to be stationed after LDAC (which is at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio). Where you went was pretty much based on your OML scores so if you're in the top 10%, you'll most likely get your 1st choice. My daughter was assigned at Ft Sam on a Med/Surg floor like has been mentioned by everybody. She was pretty much told right when she arrived that she should plan on not moving out of that position unless she ended up being deployed. Yes, you can put in for other specialized assignments after 18 months but when she hit 18 months, nobody was moving due to staffing issues. It got worse in late 2016, at least on her floor. She was offered (2) other assignments but her floor wouldn't let her move. I will say that the scheduling was very fair to all military folks (there are civilians working there as well who get preferential treatment) as your work a 3/12 schedule and my daughter almost always had a 3-day weekend every other week. She has since moved on to another Med/Surg floor with higher priority patients and the schedule is a little less structured but she has had several runs of 5 days off in a row so it's worked out overall.

    When you do get chosen for a specialty (ER or OB for example), you will be agreeing to extend your time in service. It took my daughters initial trainer over (5) years to get an ER slot, even though she had her Masters and made the promotions list the 1st time every try. However, this year, one of the Nurses my daughter trained got an ER slot after only (2) years so maybe things are loosening up. Yes, you can go back to school and the Army pays a set portion of it, I *believe* you do another 1.5 years for every year they pay for.

    As far as getting deployed, my DD would have loved it, even volunteered but it went on a rotation and she has been told she's going to Germany (her absolute dream assignment), Alaska, Kuwait and Tennessee but none of those ever transpired in the end. Luckily for he, her Air Force husband just got orders for Germany and leaves in July 2018. My DD will follow (6) months later....pretty cool since me AF nephew is heading there in April 2018 and my Army 1LT son is going there for (9) months in June 2018 :)
     
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  13. AROTC Parent

    AROTC Parent 5-Year Member

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    k2rider - I believe you intended to write BOLC (Basic Officer Leader Course) for each LDAC (Leadership Development Assessment Course) entry above.

    If she stays in Germany long enough she might be there for the opening of the new military hospital replacing Landstuhl.
     
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  14. k2rider

    k2rider 5-Year Member

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    Indeed I did. So many acronyms. Nice catch. Unfortunately I'm too late to edit.

    Her husband's assignment will be for (3) years starting in July 2018 **but** he is scheduled to make Major in 2019 and their school is in Biloxi, MS. No idea if they will send him back to Germany or not. As goofy as the Army is at times, some of the AF decisions with him baffle me.
     
  15. brob

    brob Member

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    My DD is a freshman AROTC nurse major - your answer is interesting, inspiring, yet honest and realistic, too. I will share with my DD, which I am sure she will find of interest to her in thinking about her future. Thank you
     
  16. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator 5-Year Member

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    +1 AROTC-Parent

    Also it may be noteworthy to new AROTC parents and cadets that LDAC is now called "Advanced Camp" just as CIET is now called "Basic Camp."