Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by bigdog77515, May 7, 2013.
That makes sense, thanks for the clarification.
Whew! thought it was depreciation-like a brand new car driven off a lot
Next time they present that giant check at awards presentation, better read the fine print!
Exactly how many demerits did he have? The answer to that question, along with his latest issues will probably be very enlightening as to why your son is being disenrolled.
Given the circumstances of the military being over-manned, higher standards shouldn't surprise anyone.
BigDog - I sent you a PM.
Yep, "may" is the key word.
I know of three 1/c USCGA cadets disenrolled last year (1 honor, 1 conduct, 1 physical fitness) and AFAIK none have been required to pay back anything nor report to the fleet as enlisted.
Bigdog: First of all. I am very sorry for what is happening with your son. I am sure as a parent this is heartbreaking. I cannot imagine what you are going through.
That said there are several things worth considering.
1. Your son can always ask for reconsideration from the Superintendent. In general I believe anyone in his situation should ask, whether or not a finding is made in his favor - and while I agree that there is little chance his appeal would succeed (Considering what Falcongirl and Hornetguy shared), he has zero chance if he does not appeal.
2. If it comes down to paying back money, if a demand is made for him to pay back the academy, this is something that can typically be appealed and negotiated. As Luigi noted, there are many cadets who have not had to pay the government back.
3. As others have stated, as hard as this is, we parents need to let our sons and daughters deal with situation with regard to the military. We can be there to provide advice and support, but any intervention would be counterproductive on many levels.
Good luck to you and your son.
Worst thing about the bill is that it can arrive many years later. The government gives themselves 7 years (I believe) to decide on if you are going to pay anything back. Look what happened to this poster.
Wow! Then again, as Luigi notes, the payback requirement is sometimes waived.
This is why, if the OP's DS is separated, it makes sense to retain a lawyer to understand his rights, obligations, etc. Figure it out now -- and get agreement with the government now -- on what is owed or not owed rather than face what happened to the poster cited in the above link.
Finally, with respect to my comments re "appeal," I was referrring to a legal challenge. The OP's DS should, by all means, avail himself of all of the administrative appeals (to the Supe, the SecAF, etc.) to which he is entitled. However, once those appeals are exhausted and separation occurs (should that happen), taking on a legal challenge to be reinstated in the AF is probably counter-productive in the long run (other than the payback issue).
I would read the thread on ROTC about dis-enrollment and payback if this is a concern.
As it has been stated it varies case by case. For ROTC they have been handed bills for the cost of the scholarship, they have not been offered enlistment option. They were able to negotiate the payback period, but not the amount.
As a parent, the one thing I would do is if you have a financial/investment adviser or even a cgpa for taxes, give them a call. They would be able to at least direct you to people your DS may need to talk to if hit with a bill.
Gojira's DS was handed a 143K bill. He was dis-enrolled from NROTC for a much lesser infraction, and will be paying 1200 a month for the next 10 yrs. She might be able to assist you in the legal process and finding an attorney. She might tell you that in hindsight the cost of the attorney was not worth it. Attorneys that specialize in military law are not in every town, their rate may be substantially higher than a traditional attorney. Caveat: I don't know, just assuming that to be the case. You could be looking at several thousands spent to end up exactly where you started, owing the money back.
I know I've expressed many times my "Trust" in the academy/air force and military. But as Ramius and others have basically said; there was NOTHING subjective about any of this. Your son was aware of EVERY rule and policy at the academy. He knew of everything that could get him into trouble. None of these rules were vague. Missing class, unauthorized individuals in their room, uniform, etc... Again, nothing was subjective. It might seem it is to you, being you are not a cadet at the academy, but it wasn't subjective to him.
He was not living there in a bubble. He interacted every day with peers, upper classmen, and his squadron staff of AOC/MTI. I'm sure that he was talked to about past infractions a number of times. I'm positive they didn't just let him go 4 years with numerous infractions that they never addressed. And most importantly to remember; there are between 4000-4400 cadets at the academy with him. And the majority make it through without any problem. So again; there is nothing vague or subjective about any of this. Not to HIM. He knew exactly what he was doing. And between a weak economy where more than normal numbers of individuals apply to the academies/rotc/enlisted military; and budget cuts because of the economy; the cadets are aware that staying in the academy and military is more difficult. Again; none of this was a surprise to your son.
As for the degree and payback, that IS SUBJECTIVE. That is totally up to the air force to decide. Each situation is handled on a case by case basis. They will decide whether he needs to enlist for a number of years; or pay back the education; or if they'll waiver all/part of the restitution. Your son needs to address this himself. He still has a lot of control over his future with the academy and air force. As suggested, he needs to make an appointment to meet with the superintendent. He needs to demonstrate that he is taking complete responsibility for all of his actions; no excuses; and his willingness to do whatever it takes. Doesn't mean he'll he'll get to stay or graduate or not have to pay back or anything else. But it is the RIGHT thing to do. Only then can he walk away with whatever decision is made and be at peace with it. If he doesn't confront it, he'll live with making excuses about it his whole life. Best of luck to your son.
i have read many things regarding re-payment. evidently, USAFA has a hard time getting the money back. i assume the old "you can't squeeze blood out of a turnip" might apply to those instances.
disenrolled 22 days before....
Is not the motto of the US Air Force Academy,
Integrity First. Service before self. Excellence in all we do. With an emphasis here on the first one. Integrity First
They have and can garnish wages for years to come.
Assumption is the mother of all ____ ___.
Heed the wise advise and have your son seek legal counsel.
let's make one thing perfectly clear... i am not saying he isn't in the wrong. i never said he shouldn't be disenrolled. my original post asked if anyone thought disenrollment was excessive. the wholehearted answer to that question is "NO" from everyone and i haven't argued that at all.
the "subjective" statement i made is because he was still ok until his girlfriend stayed over. if he lost his ID at that point or didn't clean his room would he have been kicked out or was the late-night rendevous the last straw? from the posts i've read, having a girl stay over is enough by itself to be disenrolled.
As more anecdotal evidence, albeit a different academy (USCGA) I know of examples where cadets who were recommended for disenrollment by the Commandant have successfully appealed to the Superintendent, and were fully reinstated (with lots of punishments of course - restriction, marching tours, work hours, written essays, etc).
I even know of one who was on SFS probation and received another Class I (normally automatic disenrollment) yet successfully appealed to the Supe and was retained.
Anything is possible, so appeal it as far as you can go.
True you can't get something that someone doesn't have, but understand that the repayment is considered a non-dischargeable debt to the US Government, bankruptcy will not forgive it, and it will follow him around forever until it is repaid.
This wasn't a "final straw".
Let's say it's parking tickets. You son has many many parking tickets and he's told "one more parking ticket and you're going to jail".
Then he off and kills someone. Sure, that's one more "ticket" but the offense alone will send him to jail, forget about all those parking tickets.
Your son racked up demerits over the year. Frankly they're demerits a C1C cadet shouldn't be getting. Then your son does something that in the demerit system is like a "felony." Usually seniors at a service academy have a very hard time surviving a felony their last year. This wasn't a "final straw" small offense, this was a major offense. It'd dumb because even a freshman knows its wrong, and here's a guy a month away from being an officer, doing it too.
And in the end, you're going to have to come up with the story for your family and friends. Did he get the boot because the Air Force Academy is big mean and nitpicking? Or did he get the boot because he made a pathetic choice?
Folks, I don't think I have read anything from bigdog to suggest that he is excusing anything that his son is responsible for. I think like any one of us in a similar situation, he is reaching out to solicit advice and get a better understanding of the situation. I was 20 years in the military and the world of a service academy is very different from what I knew as an NCO and officer.
Bigdog : You can only focus on the options available. Focus on those and the other stuff is just noise right now. No one here knows what the outcomes might be for your son, but as Luigi just stated, you must pursue your options as far as you can and try to get the most favorable outcome possible.
As for repayment, as Luigi suggests, the federal government can always try to squeeze blood from turnips. They have the resources to do so. The idea is not to ignore repayment, but to mitigate the amount as much as possible.
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