Got the color blind waiver but . . .

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by ProudDad2022, Feb 17, 2018.

  1. ProudDad2022

    ProudDad2022 Member

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    In the mail, my DS got notification that he has received his color blind waiver (Yay). However, it states that he must accept a commission into the Marines if offered (not yay). He isn't interested in the Marines and is planning on majoring in Ocean Engineering at USNA. He understands that he will only be able to be a RLO in the Navy and has accepted that fact and would love to become an engineering officer.

    So, that brought up a couple of questions:
    1. Are there Marine careers for a graduate of ocean engineering?
    2. If he does commission into the Navy, would he be able to go to sea?

    Ultimately, his goal is to become a Naval Officer and now he's a little confused/deflated.
     
  2. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    I would call admissions and talk to someone who can give further details. Usually the letter states Marine Ground and USN Restricted alone. His options would be limited. For USMC there isn’t really an Engineering option. Yes they have engineers, but it’s not what one would think of Engineering. It’s combat and support engineering which you can google to get the details. Also for USMC, there are a few MOSs that are off limits to color blind such as communications, ATC, air defense and maybe a few others. As to sea, can’t remember if they can or not. In the Navy Engineering usually falls into Civil Engineering (Seabees) and EDO. But to go EDO someone usually goes aviation or SWO first.
     
  3. NavyXC939

    NavyXC939 Member

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    To my understanding, those who are colorblind can go out to sea, but it doesn't happen often as Restricted Line jobs are usually needed ashore. I'm not sure about what he could do in the Marines, but I would assume that there would be at least one or two jobs that he could do with an ocean engineering major. Your son may not be happy with limitation of jobs that there are with colorblindness, but remember that a colorblind waiver is pretty rare, and the fact that he got it shows that the Navy feels as if there will be a spot that he is fit for in the service. Be happy that he got in! The Naval Academy is very prestigious and those who get in are greatly admired!
     
  4. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    OK..I will refrain from the Marine jokes and answer seriously. (Relax --some of my best friends are Marines :)). Your USNA major has little to do with your Service Selection. The USNA curriculum is designed to provide the necessary STEM background to succeed in the Fleet or USMC. An Ocean Engineering major is qualified , perhaps over qualified (Sorry, couldn't help myself) to be a Marine Corps officer. If you are asking whether a USMC officer is going to use his Ocean Engineering major while serving as a Marine , probably not directly , but the core education that he gets at USNA will serve him well wherever he ends up.
     
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  5. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    His major would have no bearing on his MOS as a Marine. But it could dictate his follow on assignments and some secondary MOSs. I have plenty of friends who went infantry or even logistics. They then went to Naval Post Graduate School (NPS) for an MS in systems engineering. They then owe a pay back tour and often will find themselves as project officers, test leads or other engineering like roles for the USMC at either the Pentagon, Quantico (Marine Corps Systems Command is here among a few other spots they can go) or MCTSSA in San Diego. Some Marines either get out after this tour, go back to the fleet or apply to become an acquisition officer. This additional MOS is similiar to the USN’s EDO role and they would remain in this community instead of going back to the fleet. Some end up loving this work and others want to go back to the fleet. The DC area is desirable for some and others not so much. Many if my friends as seneuor Capt’s or Majors pursues this path as it really sets them up for retirement.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2018
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  6. falconchic88

    falconchic88 10-Year Member

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    My daughter was an OE major and is currently serving in the Navy as a Civil Engineer Corps Officer, this is considered a restricted line officer position. To clarify, she is not color blind, so I can't speak to that.
     
  7. AF6872

    AF6872 10-Year Member

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    The MC doesn't care what your major was. Can you lead? DD has not spoken Chinese for seven years but has many assignments that have nothing to do with her USNA major.
     
  8. EngineerDad19

    EngineerDad19 Member

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    Can you help me or contact me with your son's criteria and how he received the waiver? I have a similar situation. My son received a Letter of Assurance that welcomed him to the class of 2024, only to then be declined a waiver for his poor color vision. I understand we can appeal and his B&G officer has asked for an example. Thanks
     
  9. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    I just posted an explanation of the Colorblind Waiver on another thread, but wanted to clear up a few misconceptions here:

    1) The LOA didn't admit to the Class of 2024, it is a Conditional Offer of Appointment, and the common condition is qualifying medically.
    Colorblind is a disqualifying condition.

    2) I am not aware of, and don't think there is, an appeal process for denial of color blind waiver. The Supe grants the waiver to a limited number of person(s) he thinks is most qualified among those candidates that are not medically qualified because of color blindness.
     
  10. EngineerDad19

    EngineerDad19 Member

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    Okay, this is helpful. Would this mean that the Superintendent is the only person who can grant a waiver?
    ... and correct, it did say it was upon medical qualification.
    This is tough because his B&G and other alumni had told him that he should easily get a waiver once he had a nom and an LOA.
    He was up front in his application about the color vision too.
    Serving in the USNA means everything to him, so if someone who could make this decision had the opportunity to offer that waiver, then the Navy would receive a great leader to mold.
     
  11. justdoit19

    justdoit19 Member

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    I mean this In the most respectful and kind way....this forum is full of extremely qualified, deserving people who have made it this far into the process, and are receiving the TWE. Read the threads and you will see this to be the case. Amazing kids!! It’s painful to see these wonderfully qualified kids ready to serve, having worked (some of them) since their younger years to attend, be told “not yet”. It’s always advised to maintain a solid plan B, especially at this point in the game.

    There is unfortunately nothing anyone can do to obtain a waiver. It’s up to the SA (USNA in this case) to peruse a waiver should they want. There is nothing that you can do to assist in that. I know from reading that USNA does grant a limited number of waivers for color blindness. They will notify you should that be their course of action. The deadline for notification for all is April 15th.

    Alumni and BGO’s unfortunately are not admissions. Admissions keeps to themselves. Outsiders make guesses and inferences, sometimes helpful and sometimes not. But the only people who TRULEY know are admissions staff. And they don’t share here.
     
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  12. usna1985

    usna1985 10-Year Member

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    They should not have said this -- in a way it's correct, but creates a misimpression. USNA only admits about a dozen colorblind mids per year. The reason is that so many USN jobs (ships, subs, aviation) require red/green color ability. I would expect that many more than 12 well-qualified candidates each year are colorblind. As OldNavyBGO said, USNA has to decide which of those to admit.

    Normally, it's easy to get a waiver for colorblindness b/c that simply puts an o/w qualified candidate in position to be offered an appointment. USNA can decide in offering the appointment whether that person is sufficiently qualified to be one of the ~12 who will be admitted. For an LOA candidate with a nom, the waiver essentially IS the appointment. IOW, once they give the waiver, they are giving the appointment because that is the last piece that is needed. Thus, waivers for LOA candidates could come more slowly (or not at all) -- if they granted all the LOA folks waivers up front, they'd have to admit all of them and there might be way too many of them. So, your friends and BGO were correct that a waiver is usually forthcoming but didn't fully appreciate that there could be quite a few LOA candidates, principal nominees, and MOC slate winners who are colorblind -- USNA can't admit them all.

    He did the right thing. First, they likely would have detected the issue during his eye exam. Second, if he was aware of it and did not disclose it, and they later found out (such as on I-Day), it would not have gone well.

    It's a tough pill to swallow but those who are colorblind have an uphill battle at the sea-going SAs. Not as difficult at USMA and USAFA.
     
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  13. ProudDad2022

    ProudDad2022 Member

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    My DS was definitely aware of being colorblind and was upfront with everyone. In fact, he used it in his essay and it was a major topic in one of his letters of recommendation.

    As for the waiver, we didn't actually do anything. He did his application, crushed the CFA, presented his best self, and ultimately obtained a MOC nom. From there, we played the waiting game.

    While waiting, he received an email stating he was being offered the foundation program. He then let Capt. Wallace (the absolutely fantastic man in charge of the program) know that he was colorblind and would not be able to attend USNA without a waiver. Capt. Wallace said they would seek a waiver for his foundation year and that the waiver would carry over to the following application year. My DS jumped on the foundation offer quickly.

    He is now CPR with a new nom and a carry over waiver while at a prep school and getting all Alphas and Bravos. He's doing his job and his parents are on pins and needles and crossing our fingers that the appointment comes soon.

    So, to make a long story a little longer, we didn't actually do anything for the waiver and I have no idea why he was chosen for foundation or a waiver. I really wish I could give you the magic words to say to get a waiver, but I just don't think there are any.
     
  14. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    If he still wants to serve he could always try USMA, AROTC, or NROTC Marine Option where color vision isn't as important. I know it's frustrating but I don't really see any other options at this point. Of course there is no obligation to serve.
     
  15. SCMids

    SCMids Member

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    Our C/O 20 received a color blind waiver in January of that year. His letter listed all of his options if he chose to accept, which he was doing before I finished reading it out loud.

    These waivers are rare and usually don't occur until April. We didn't even know admissions had submitted him for it until he showed up to the BGO as 3Q. The BGO then said, "Get ready. He's in." That's not always the case, but an early waiver for color is usually admissions making a strong request and the Supe deciding to make it happen regardless of other numbers.

    As for service, Naval Intelligence has already told him informally that they want him. He's got two internships with ONI this summer and time in Ukraine. You can be with any community through Intelligence. One medically DQ'ed friend of our C/O 17 is with seal Team 6 as an IO.
     
  16. SCMids

    SCMids Member

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    Also, tell him to rethink the Marines. Our C/O 17 is a Marine in flight school. He would be a Marine if he was in latrine cleaning school. He loves their pride and their commitment. He gets frustrated when he doesn't see as much in the Navy. He may be a pilot in training, but he's very much committed to every aspect of the Corps - unbelievable physical condition, expert marksman, trained in hand to hand 5 ways including some Kav Maga (sp). In other words, the Marine Corps is worth it.
     
  17. EngineerDad19

    EngineerDad19 Member

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    Thanks for the insight. My son did go in for more detailed color vision mapping. It turns out that he can differentiate Red/Green. It's a pretty mild case, but it's the red/purple that he misses.
    I don't know what colors they need to see, but if that got to the right person, would it help him qualify?