Help with parents please?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by Paddyb98, Apr 21, 2017.

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  1. Paddyb98

    Paddyb98 New Member

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    Good Evening all, I have been on this forum for some time, but this is my first post. I was a candidate for the USNA class of '21, but in March I got my TWE email. My parents were a little hesitant about my decision to pursue the Naval Academy, and I suspect they were secretly relieved when I was rejected. My "Plan B" choice is to attend the University of South Carolina, where I was offered a hefty scholarship as well as admission into the school's Honors College. Since my goal is to serve our country in the military, it only seemed logical to me that I would apply to the NROTC program at USC. (Since the deadline for the scholarship program has passed, I would only be a member of the college program for my freshman year, which is fine by me.) However, my parents are vehemently opposed to the thought of me in NROTC. They want me to have an enjoyable college experience and believe that ROTC would prohibit that. I have a strong desire to participate in the program and to reapply to the Naval Academy, but I also do not want to cause a major conflict within my family. Whenever I try to bring up this subject my parents become stubborn and refuse to talk about it. Can anyone offer some advice as to how to handle this situation. I want to take ownership of my own career, but I also do not want to hurt my parents in the process. Thank you all.
     
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  2. ktnatalk

    ktnatalk Sailor. Shipmate. Parent.

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  3. 5Day

    5Day Member

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    NROTC can enhance your college experience. It will keep you physically fit, teach you discipline and leadership. It will give you a smaller group to associate with common goals and aspirations. Even if you decide the Navy is not for you and you never contract, NROTC will be a learning experience. Unlike a SA, ROTC is not a 24/7 experience. Yes it does take up time, and you will have to wake up early at least twice a week, but there is still plenty of time to have a life outside of ROTC. You may want to convince your parents that joining ROTC as a college programer is so YOU can decide if the Navy is right for you. You will have zero commitment and since a scholarship is not a driver you could quit whenever you want.

    Another option to consider, and it remains an option until you contract is NUPOC. https://nupocaccessions.blogspot.com/ If the nuclear navy is something you could be interested in you should check it out.
     
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  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    DS joined the NROTC program at South Carolina as a college programmer several years back. I support everything 5Day said. In high school DS was a solid B student. Usually 1 A and 1 C each semester. But he never really achieved what I knew he was capable of. I really think participating in NROTC enhanced his college experience. He applied himself academically which he had never really done before and was on the Dean's List 6 of 8 semesters. His motivation was getting that NROTC scholarship, and when he got that, it was to be the best leader he could be. He's a Marine officer in Okinawa today. He also had a damned good time, made lots of friends inside and outside of NROTC, and took up new hobbies (think of the art of all forms of fermentation ). He also did some extra-curriculars (ball room dancing among others) and had plenty of time for his girlfriend. NROTC is the best thing that ever happened to him.

    DS actually wanted to enlist in the Corps out of high school. Mom was dead set against him serving. When DS was not around I would tell her he is going to be 18 when he graduates and he can do whatever he wants. Eventually she came around to a degree and told him she was fine with him joining the Corps but he was going to college first and if he went in it would be as an officer. Today she is the proudest Mom around.

    I guess that's all a way of saying you are old enough to choose your own path. It's your life and not your parents, and you need to let them know that, with due respect. One never knows but I suspect your parents will come around, especially if they see positive changes in you. Also, as 5Day points out, your not committed to anything. It's a way of finding out if it's something you'd like to do and you can learn valuable time management and leadership skills there - which you will use whatever you do in life. Think of it as extra education that's not available to non-participants.

    Hope this is helpful in some way. If there is any way I can help please reach out to me here, or PM me. BTW.... South Carolina is a great choice as a college and as an NROTC unit. Go Gamecocks!

    EDIT: I know of a current 1/C midshipman there who is also in the Honors COllege so if they're worried if that's do-able.. it clearly is.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2017
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  5. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    I thought maybe some videos that perhaps your parents could watch might be helpful.

    This video talks about the scholarship process but it's sort of aimed at parents and suggests to me that the Officer Selection Officer (or whatever Navy calls it) might be a help in speaking to your parents....

    This midshipman discusses summer training opportunities when one has received a contract or advanced standing:

    This one is aimed at Marine Options but an awful lot of what's said applies to Navy Options as well. Fitness, leadership, purpose...

    This last one is similar to above but is more focused on Navy Option midshipmen. It's probably the best one for your parents to watch.


    A couple anecdotes about that one...
    Lest you or your parents are concerned about wearing a uniform on lab days, one lab day while DS was crossing campus in his summer whites he overheard a young woman say "He hot!"
    DS did not go to Mt Warfare School as a rising junior. Instead he cruised aboard an amphibious ship along with USNA and other NROTC midshipmen from Norfolk to San Diego via the Panama Canal. Awesome! Certainly not something I'll ever have the opportunity to do.

    In 1.5 years of active duty DS has already attended follow-on schools, lived in and explored the high desert at a great location for 6 months, moved to Okinawa, been to Tokyo, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, San Diego and has a lot more plans to see the world.

    Hope you can get your parents support in joining the Gamecock Battalion.

    EDIT: The University of South Carolina is very military friendly and has great PT facilities. Nearby Ft. Jackson is also used for training, especially their Leadership Reaction Course and Obstacle Course. Contact the freshman adviser or another officer at the unit to find out what courses you need to enroll in as a freshman. It's that enrollment at freshman orientation in May or June that will get the ball rolling for you in NROTC. The adviser may also be able to speak to your parents either by phone or perhaps during freshman orientation. You could make an appointment or there is usually an NROTC table set up in the lobby of one of the events at freshman orientation.
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2017
  6. galileo.galilei

    galileo.galilei Member

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    Thanks for posting these videos! The summer trainings opportunities are awesome. My guess is parents that are opposed to their kids attending ROTC just don't know enough about military or opportunities available. My advice would be to share information and educate them, in a way that doesn't alienate them. Perhaps finding another parent that was initially opposed and now is all in to talk to them would be helpful. Offer them to connect to one of the parents on this forum.
     
  7. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Damn. I can't help myself anymore. Here's one more video made in 2013 that you will especially appreciate. I include it in case your parents thing NROTC is oh sooooo serious. Notice the Marine Option midshipman in the video.
     
  8. Paddyb98

    Paddyb98 New Member

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    Thank you so much for you help! I'll be sure to show my parents all the links you provided. Would you mind if I pm'd you with one or two questions about the program at USC?
     
  9. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Please do PM me.
    In the meantime it's been raining hard all day and the satellite signal is iffy, so I headed over to YouTube. I stumbled across another video. This one is parents talking about their children enlisting in the Marines. Their fears going in and their pride upon completion of boot camp. It may not directly apply but it's still parents talking about their kids going into the military....
     
  10. Dckc88

    Dckc88 Member

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    I have an ROTC student and I have two girls who will be student-atheletes next year. As a parent, I knew the athletes would get extra oversight and resources academically but I had no idea that my ROTC cadet would get so much help. She still has time to do outside activities and have a life, but academics are focused on highly from her ROTC leadership. As a freshman she has mandatory study hall and has access to tutors. She has a school academic advisor but she also has an advisor from her brigade (she is Army), and when her midterm grade for biology came in as a C, her Army academic advisor was concerned and my daughter got a new tutor. Just some things I have appreciated about her first year academically in ROTC as a freshman. I am also happy to report that she is going into her bio final next week with a solid B, and I didn't have to micromanage her at all!
     
  11. Dckc88

    Dckc88 Member

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    They are also welcome to come onto the forum! I learned so much. Not being from a military family Inhad a lot f pre-conceived ideas, finding out I wasn't as smart as I thought I was.
     
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