Plan B?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by ElectedTuna, Apr 11, 2017.

  1. ElectedTuna

    ElectedTuna Member

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    Hello,

    As a current USAFA applicant with no response so far, I've been creating a back up plan but I'm kind of lost. My plan was to be a foreign language major at a "nearby" university and do AFROTC but it seems like it won't work out due to a complicated situation. I haven't found any other schools I'm interested in so I might not be attending this Fall.

    I've considered enlisting but my goal is to get my degree and become an officer, I'm not sure if being gone for several years would benefit me in the long run. My ALO told me I would be competitive for ROTC based off my past schooling so I don't want to throw that away.

    My last solution is to study abroad or go to a military prep school but I'm very unfamiliar with these processes. My ultimate goal is to attend USAFA or at least find a school I like where I can do ROTC and get my 4 year degree as a foreign language major (preferably flagship/ROTC).

    Does anyone have any suggestions so I can avoid taking a gap year? I feel very lost.
     
  2. DDmom

    DDmom Member

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    I think the prep schools do a great job preparing those that want to reapply. If my DD doesn't receive an appt. that is one of her back up plans. I would probably stick to those that the falcon foundation recommends.
     
  3. ElectedTuna

    ElectedTuna Member

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    Do you know anything about the deadline? I'm not sure if I was supposed to apply ahead of time before I receive a scholarship.

    Also, I forgot to note that I graduated with my AA degree and high school diploma simultaneously so I wasn't sure if a prep school would benefit me as much.
     
  4. cb7893

    cb7893 5-Year Member

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    First off let me wish you the best of luck and also chastise you for not already having back-up plans in place.

    Having a DS who took a gap year in Taiwan and having done a "gap year" in Poland after college almost 40 years ago, I am generally not a proponent of them for most people. In our experience, most people who do them are simply marking time and exaggerate the benefits. A significant number can't make it through their time abroad without getting terribly homesick or getting in trouble.

    In the right situation, in the right program and for the right person it checks more boxes than any other experience. You will quickly learn that you aren't the center of the universe. You learn to appreciate people individually, apart from their culture. You will learn to overcome difficulties you never thought possible. These were the rules I set for my DS before he left for Taiwan:

    -Have plans for next year already set. In his case he was accepted to a college and had his AROTC scholarship in hand and deferred. In your case, reapplying to USAFA, applying for the AFROTC scholarship and backup schools would provide a structure and set of tasks to keep you busy. Doing those things thousands of miles from home is evidence of one's ability to persevere, adapt and thrive. Few 18 year boys and girls get a chance to prove that.

    -Go with a purpose. His purpose was to learn Chinese so well that he wouldn't have to take it in college. The only Chinese =he learned prior was some tutoring over the summer. He went into it cold. Be prepared to study on your own.

    -Do not be in a situation where your English can bail you out. That means be with a host family that speaks no English, a dormitory with locals, a school where English is only taught as a foreign language. There is no lonelier feeling than that of not being able to be understood--I mean your words, not your feelings.

    -Have a place you have to be everyday with responsibilities. A school is the easiest place for that.

    Without going into detail or denigrating other programs, the only program I would allow my DS to use was Rotary, Your local club will have all the details. He had two excellent experiences--Brazil for his junior year of high school and Taiwan for his gap year. The experiences are still paying off for him as an Army O-2.

    Again, I hope you receive the appointment, but a gap year isn't a bad alternative under the right circumstances.
     
    ElectedTuna, DTX_21 and AROTC-dad like this.
  5. pa_ptmom

    pa_ptmom Member

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    My DS was in the same situation last year. He was accepted at a great plan B school but didn't feel like 'regular college' was for him. After getting the TWE from the USAFA last year , he didn't know what his options were.

    Someone on this forum reached out to us and told us about Marion Military Institute in Alabama. It is one of the recognized academy's prep schools.

    Though he didn't receive a Falcon scholarship, it has been a great fit for him and he has been excelling there.
    At first it looked expensive being that he was out of state, but he got his application in just under the deadline
    (Middle of May ?) and he was awarded scholarships that covered up to 80% of his tuition. The admissions department will really work personally with you to help in that regard.

    MMI is a junior college (2yr) and credits earned there are transferable so you would have 36 credits at the end of the year. If you self prep you will do AFROTC at UA in Tuscaloosa I believe.

    You could reapply to the academy as well as apply for other AFROTC (2,3,4 yr scholarships ) elsewhere during your time there. If you are strong academically, you may be asked to tutor peers through the academic success center, and can earn money while you are there.

    Truly, MMI has been a wonderful experience for him, and for us as parents, has been like finding a hidden treasure. The people at the school and locally are very welcoming and accessible.

    (One last thing....
    Our son is earning his pilots license there, at a fraction of the cost it would be otherwise. He earned a scholarship for that as well. )

    Don't mean to be so long but I know others may be in the same situation, and you may not have posted enough to PM yet. Check out their website, and programs available.
     
  6. lifelearner

    lifelearner Member

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    UNG is a Senior Military College and is supposed to have a great foreign language program, Chinese and Arabic are the biggies. Cadets receive in-state tuition. I do not know if it is too late to apply. However, it is the only SMC that is focused on one branch. The Corp of Cadets is Army only.
     
  7. OhGoody2017

    OhGoody2017 Member

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    I was under the impression that you had to be offered by the USAFA to attend prep school. Like only 240 candidates get offered or something.

    I have had a plan B for a while now. Even though my goal was to attend the USAFA, I still applied to many colleges and scholarships. I ended up getting 20,000 dollars in financial aid and scholarships, but that all went out the door when I received a Falcon Scholarship to prep school. If money isn't a big deal for you, and you seriously want to get in, I would suggest going to your local community college, raise ACT/SAT scores, and reapply. I have heard that the Academy appreciates those who are willing to reapply, as it shows dedication. I wish you the best of luck, and hopefully we will both be appointed for the class of 2022!
     
  8. ElectedTuna

    ElectedTuna Member

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    Wow, this was the response I needed to hear. I really appreciate the advice!
     
  9. ElectedTuna

    ElectedTuna Member

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    MMI honestly looks like one of the best prep schools in my opinion. I also really like the fact that you can get your pilots license there and for a reduced cost.