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Clearance Question

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by JPS999, Jul 23, 2012.

  1. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    This fall I will be a junior and I will contracting with the AROTC department at my school. It is my understanding that I will be required to fill out forms for a security clearance. How thorough are they for 'secret' clearances?
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2012
  2. nick4060

    nick4060 5-Year Member

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    For secret, not very thorough. The paperwork is pretty tedious and it will be a pain if you have a lot of past residences or foreign contacts. But its nothing to worry about. Just be honest, and be consistent in your answers. And keep a copy for your records, so it will be easier when it comes time to renew your clearance in a few years.

    If you go into a career field that requires a TS/SCI, then you'll have to go through a more thorough process, where they'll send investigators out to talk to people you've lived/associated with, etc.
     
  3. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    So they just do criminal backround check, credit check, and call your references to ask about your character and whether you drank/did drugs etc? Is that basically it? Do they contact other people not listed in the form to talk about you? In this day and age it would seem easy for any investigator to find other friends who you didn't list and talk to them too...Just curious
     
  4. -Bull-

    -Bull- 5-Year Member

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    Yes, they do. They go back 7 years and you are required to list references that knew you at each residence you've lived at. The paperwork can be long and the more places you've lived and more foreign travel, the more work. Once you submit the packet, a special investigator will contact you and have a face to face interview regarding the packet. As long as you're truthful, it should be no sweat.

    They could contact teachers that aren't listed, but most likely won't because the backlog is long and this slows it up now. They're not looking for a squeaky clean record necessarily, but that you aren't hiding anything or associating with terrorists or foreign governments.
     
  5. MemberLG

    MemberLG 5-Year Member

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    Just fill ou the application honestly. Having a DUI won't disqualify you from getting a clearance, but trying to hiding it or not changing your ways will disqualify you.
     
  6. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    Okay, I am going to be honest here. The reason why I asked this is because in rare bout of pure stupidity and shame I answered no to the DoDMERB questionnaire on drug and alcohol use when I filled out the forms earlier this year. The fact is I do drink but only on the weekends and never too much to cause a problem. I experimented with pot my freshmen year of college (well over a year ago) probably about 4-5 times and haven't done it since. Several months ago I also used a prescription ADD med my friend gave me( only used it once). I was never in trouble with the law for any of those and other than a few roomates at college very few people know I've used pot or whether I took an ADD med. It was a combination of fear of an automatic DQ and the fear it would get back to my parents and the shame that would result that made me answer no. I planned on disclosing the drug usage on on the clearance form but I realized the mistake I made several months ago would haunt me.

    I understand this puts me in a terrible situation but I have not contracted with ROTC yet or signed anything. I haven't been asked this question by anyone in ROTC so I didn't lie to them. Should I email DoDMERB now and try to correct my mistake? What do you think the consequences will be for my medical status and my status in ROTC if I do that?

    I know there are people who lied about this just like I did and got away with it but doing that just doesn't sit well with me.

    Any help/advice would be appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2012
  7. -Bull-

    -Bull- 5-Year Member

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    I'd wait til you sit down with cadre and do entrance counseling (Form 139R if I remember correctly). You WILL be asked about drug use on this form (what and how often). It won't necessarily DQ you, but it's been a couple years since I filled out that form, so things could have changed.

    I say wait on emailing DoDMERB, because your cadre will have advice none of us can give you, and I would heed that over some dude named Bull on the internet.
     
  8. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    Interesting. I feel like if I waited till that point to tell them then they would get PO'd and ask me why I didn't do it earlier. Especially because in light of all this I'll probably need a waiver to continue if they don't completely bar me from contracting altogether. Should I try and correct the mistake with DoDMERB first before going to the cadre?
     
  9. -Bull-

    -Bull- 5-Year Member

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    I never told, nor was asked, by cadre until I did my entrance counseling. From there the waiver was completed by the HR person. Expiremental is not that big of a deal. I'd still wait. Or call the cadre and ask if trying pot will DQ you now. Let them know how long ago it was and how you only tried it and don't do it now.
     
  10. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    Keep in mind I also used an amphetamine without a prescription once to try it, is that an automatic DQ or is it more on the level of experimental pot use? Thanks for your advice, Bull
     
  11. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    IMHO it doesn't matter either way. Just be honest about it. It's dishonesty that will sink you, not the use itself (necessarily). This all sounds like normal "college kid" stuff to me so I wouldn't worry about it. None of us are squeeky clean... just spill your guts and get it out of the way one way or another. If you're dishonest now it WILL get you later.
     
  12. Pima

    Pima 5-Year Member

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    Here's the thing you need to remember, in a few yrs from now depending on your career field you may need a TS. As Nick stated that is much more in depth. They are going to line up this clearance and that clearance, if all of the sudden the TS has a different answer flags will appear in lovely shade of red. In the AF all rated officers get a TS before UPT. Fields that handle classified information need a TS. Keep that in mind. Not everyone gets a TS, i.e. PAO's, Nurses, Mission Support not so much compared to Intel, Maintenance, Comm.

    I also agree with -Bull-, taking someone's advice on this situation is typically anecdotal at best, i.e. someone in our det had the same thing happen and he is fine. What the poster doesn't know is how the process worked and what might have been the saving grace to allow him to be fine.

    Your cadre are AD members that understand the system intimately. You could follow a poster's advice, get to the unit, report it to the cadre and now leave them with a mess to clean up because of a clerical error.

    I am not sure why you feel you have to wait until you get there to inform them. Pick up the phone and call them today. Det's don't shut down over the summer, they are still there. In honesty, it is probably better you call now than wait because those few weeks is just like public school...lots of paperwork and administration items to be cleared off due to AROTC regs. Contacting now they can give you one on one guidance. Worse case the answer will be solved within days of getting to the unit.

    I understand your college may not be around the corner and thus you can't do it in person, but the cadre understands that too. They will respect you for being proactive with a phone call.

    DO NOT EMAIL THEM to initiate this conversation. DO NOT LEAVE A VM discussing it. Call until you have a live voice at the end of the phone.

    OBTW, yes, you should have told them on the DoDMERB that you experimented with drugs. It was a 1 time deal, they are not going to have the police arrest you.
     
  13. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt 5-Year Member

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    To answer one underlying concern/question: depending on the level of security clearance needed, investigators can and will interview neighbors, friends, etc. depending on the level, it can start with a list you provide and then branch out from there.

    High level clearances are not just a function of a career field. They may be required for some temporary assignments, etc. in other words, don't assume it's one and done.
     
  14. MemberLG

    MemberLG 5-Year Member

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    An interesting twist. I am just giving you things for you to consider, not what to do.

    First, you need to separate ROTC contracting and your Security Clearance. They are connected but not connected. If your security clerance investigator is good, he or she could cross reference your records. If you don't contract, you won't need a security clerance investigation.

    Once you lie about something, more than likely you will have to lie more to cover up, and lies will catch up with you eventually (my opinion).

    I don't know if you still have the paperwork your filled out for DoDMERB or not. If you do, read it carefully, especailly the legal part, if there is any. Lying on your DoDMERB is not as serious as lying on your security clerance paperwork.

    If or when you fill out your security clearance paperwork, it shouldbe e-QIP, read each question carefully. It does ask about your illegal drug use, but I don't think it asks you about incorrectly filling out government documents.
     
  15. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe 5-Year Member

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    It looks like you have several issues here. From your other posts it sounds like Dodmerb will be the first issue that will need to be resolved. I just wanted to get clear on a couple things, you stated in a previous post that you have a history of Pronating Feet and you have also received shots for Allergies. You state in your post that you hope Dodmerb does not find the one piece of paper in the files they requested. I just have one question. When you filled out your original Dodmerb Medical History Form, did you check yes next to the question..."Do you or have you ever had" regarding foot problems or allergies. If you answered yes then your fine, if you answered no, then that will be a problem as well. Dodmerb will see that you falsely answered questions on the medical history form when they review your records.

    If by chance you did answer no to the questions mentioned above and then you add to that the issue of answering no to Drug use, well, that will just compound the problem.

    I'm not sure how other battalions work, my son's battalion tries to contract everyone who is ready a couple days before school starts. Depending on when your school starts, that's not far from now.

    The question will come up, whether it's now or when the cadre sits down with you. There is a lot of paper work that needs to be done before contracting. There is also the issue of how competitive it was to get a contract at your battalion. Your cadre may not be very happy if you wait until the last day to drop a bomb like this on them.

    Experimental drug use is something they have looked past, keep in mind that experimental means just a couple times and not over an extended time. What is not experimental is when you engaged in multiple drug use, Pot and then Prescription drus.

    AROTC Contracts are getting much more competitive, because of this the Army is less likely to grant waivers. In my opinion you need to get in touch with your Cadre soon and just lay everything on the line with them and see what to do next. Tell them about the Drug use and about any dodmerb issues, definatly tell them if you answered wrong on the medical history form.

    You mentioned that you know others that have lied and got away with it, just remember, they haven'y got away with anything yet if they are still in ROTC or in the Regular Army, it will very likely still come back to bite them.

    As Bull said, take all this advice with a grain of salt, think about it and take away from these posts anything that you think might be of help. In the end you will have to decide what id the right thing to do and when.

    Bets of luck,
     
  16. Pima

    Pima 5-Year Member

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    :worship::worship::worship::worship:

    Jcleppe and I have DS's that had to get a TS clearance due to their career fields (rated).

    Heed his words, this clearance is the walk in the park. Jcleppe and our DS know every 5 yrs from now they will go through the process again. Retire in 20 yrs from now and work for a defense contractor you will go through it until you retire from contracting. Lie today and get away with it great, but the ones that have lied and got away with it does not equal they will AD.

    1 slip up because you were not 1000% honest in your youth can mean stress later on come commissioning, or worse yet, not your dream career. It is not a lie, nor an exaggeration they will interview personally every reference.

    My one piece of advice is you should understand us old folks (cadre/parents) are not as dumb as we seem regarding social media. 10 will get you 20 if your unit has a group site on FB, your alcohol imbibing is known. You all accept friend requests like the avg person blinks.

    Be honest, just like when you were 10 and broke a vase, but blamed it on your younger sibling, we knew it was you. Your punishment was less because you stepped up to the plate.
     
  17. JPS999

    JPS999 New Member

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    Drug/alcohol use was the only thing I was dishonest on because I thought it was some sort of trip wire. Other things like allergies, pronating feet ect were things I answered yes to and that's all fine. I will definitely let my the cadre know before school starts to try and set things straight. I am aware of the consequences and frankly they seem much lighter now than they could be several months or years down the road. Regardless of the consequences I think I am doing the right thing. I can't believe I got myself into this mess...

    They were planning on contracting 31 cadets by this time for MS14 year and I would be either the 30th or 31st person to contract. As far as I know I wasn't directly competing against anyone for that spot but that's just to my knowledge.
     
  18. nofodad

    nofodad 5-Year Member

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    lying

    I think this is the only context where you can comfortably lie...do these jeans/dress/shorts etc. make me look fat? Otherwise always be honest...
     
  19. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe 5-Year Member

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    Pima,

    I'm going a bit off track here but I wanted to share something that might shed a little light on how the Clearance process works for the OP. You'll get a chuckle out of this I'm sure.

    When I was in the service many moons ago I had to complete several TS clearances for my job. The paperwork, even back then was overwhelming. They asked all the questions they do today along with the Question “Did you ever drink alcohol while underage?” I answered yes, but not to excess.

    The clearance process took almost 7 months, about 4 months in I got a phone call from an old friend of mine, two FBI Agents made an appointment to meet with him. The two agents spent most of the meeting in casual conversation, they swapped stories of college and high school and laughed about all the stupid things they did in school. At one point in the conversation one of the agents asked my friend, “So when you guys were in high school and would get together for a party and drink would you drive home or have someone drive you” My friend quickly answered, “ Oh no sir, we would either stay the night where we were or have one of our girlfriends that didn’t drink drive us all home” The agent then said “So your saying he did drink when he was underage” My friend just sunk in his seat, he called me later that week and was completely freaked out that he had somehow just derailed me from getting my clearance, I just laughed and said don’t worry, I had already answered yes to that question. It was never an issue and I received all my clearances fine, had I lied on the first form, it could have been a different story.

    These investigators are skilled interrogators, they just don’t ask a question straight out, they know very well how to get the answers they are looking for. Honesty up front is the best policy.

    JPS999,

    I read your last post, you sound like a very honorable kid, do what your planning to do and then work through the process. Again, best of luck to you.
     
  20. Pima

    Pima 5-Year Member

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    Jcleppe,

    Since we are going off track regarding TS clearance, I have my own story.

    Bullet used me as a reference. Never told me. I was a sr in college. One day my college adviser calls me into his office asking why he had to discuss me with govt officials.

    ????

    I had no clue. Bullet put my name down as his SO, and they jumped me to my college adviser as a reference since that was the only thing they knew about me.

    To the OP our anecdotes are funny. To you, it should illuminate you that contracting and a security clearance is just the 1st hurdle.

    Lie, shade the truth, forget what you submitted, as Jcleppe stated your friends right now got away with it. Only you can answer if you want this to be an issue when you are commissioning.

    We are not trying to dog you, we are trying to illuminate the facts.

    Again, Jcleppe and our DS have a TS, our position/perspective is tied to TS and knowing that shading the truth for a scholarship would have bitten them at commissioning for their career.

    I don't know about SC, but I will place the lives of my children to swear TS is 5 yrs., and every TS officer keeps their records because they know the system.
     

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