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Old 04-17-2005, 02:42 PM   #11
John S. Powell
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Thanks for the responses, again. I've been regrouping and weighing my options. It looks as though my best bet is to go to UNC and either train with NROTC anyways, or wait until after graduating to enlist or try for OCS. I'm not quite ready to give up on the military entirely, though this has caused me to at least think about other options. Anyways, I really appreciate the help. If anything, this incident has gotten me more motivated to succeed when I finally do make it in to the service.
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Old 04-17-2005, 03:41 PM   #12
Don Stevenson
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John,

First thing i'll say is that its always to work on a problem like this from inside the system even if that means joining as a regular soldier or joining the reserves or national guard.

Second thing is if it's your dream then don't give up until you've absolutely exhausted your options.

Good luck, i've had to deal with that crap from the military and it can get to you but in the end persistence pays off
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Old 04-17-2005, 09:04 PM   #13
Rick Worthington
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John - Let me tell you how familiar this sounds to me...the only two schools I wanted to go to were USNA and USMA. I got into both for the Class of '95 in November of my senior year - mainly because I was recruited for wrestling. Three weeks later I tore my ACL and lost my admission to both. They told me I could attend a prep school and reapply. I went to Blair Academy in NJ and wrestled there and wound up tearing my other other ACL before I got my second application together. So, I sacked up and went off to a JC in New Mexico for a year. 20 days before I-day, I finally got admitted to USNA and graduated in '97 at long last.
The military has a way of getting a stick up their butt for certain things. Migraines are one of those things they just don't like to see. My advice to you...don't give up the dream. Do what you can with what you got right now. Keep the academies as your goal and work toward something else for the time being. Keep applying, keep working for a waiver. Strange things happen.
I've seen many officers totally destroyed because they couldn't become pilots because of eyesight. Only a few years later, the military began allowing corrective eye surgery and those guys are flying now.
Don't let the age thing bother you, there are more plebes at the academies who are not right out of high school than there are true freshmen. Of all your options, the enlisted rout might be your best bet. It will buy you time, allow you to mature and learn the military ropes (the prior enlisted guys get a ton of respect as freshmen).
Good luck to you John, I hope you find a way to make your dream come true.
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Old 04-17-2005, 09:38 PM   #14
Don Stevenson
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Rick has a good point about transferring from enlisted to officer training.

A year or two of enlisted service will mean you are way ahead of the direct entry guys and you will have less of the basics to learn under pressure. You will also know how the system works and in general the instructors may even treat you like a human and not a stain on the ground.

Disclaimer - the above opinions relate to my time in the Australian army. The US armed services may or may not treat you like dirt regardless
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Old 04-17-2005, 10:32 PM   #15
James R. Climer
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Like the doctor who was a patient, the officer who was once an enlisted is always the heart of the Navy, and NEVER ****es the Chief off.
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Old 04-18-2005, 05:28 AM   #16
Donald Woodson
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John,
Sorry I missed your post all weekend.
I can't really add much that these guys haven't already said.
Enlisting isn't all that bad, plus like these guys have stated, once you get a few years under your belt as enlisted, and you do get into an academy, you'll have it a lot easier than the highschool kids that managed to get in on their first try. Tha Navy can give you rank, but you have to earn respect on your own, and rank means nothing without respect.
And James is absolutely right about the Chief. As far as who gets the respect, it is definately the Chief. It's really hard for a young academy officer to come aboard ship, and start trying to tell them old salts what to do. Life will be much easier for you as an officer, if you have time enlisted under your belt.
Another thing is, none of the services like to have officers who tend to give up. Giving up is just not an option for any officer, or enlisted person either for that matter. Nobody ever won a battle by giving up.
Hang in there John. Be Barnacle Bill the sailor for a while. Just remember, in the beginning, it doesn't matter whether you're an officer, or enlisted, EVERYBODY gets treated like dirt. The trick is in learning how to love it and come back for seconds, thirds and fourths.

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Old 04-18-2005, 06:05 AM   #17
Larry Lindenman
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John, you've impressed me from your first post. I always have to remind myself your still in highschool. You have some very good advise here. I'm a police officer and have been promoted twice. What I've learned is you need to have credibility with the people you lead. They have to know you could do their job and that you don't feel important enough to lend a hand. True leaders lead from the front. Getting a couple of years of enlisted time will do a few things. You will prove that any past medical problems are just that: in the past and will not effect your performance. You will also learn the job from the ground up and really know what the men you are leading are going through. You will freak your parents out! You will earn money for college, no matter where you go. You will serve your country. The skills you learn and the experience will follow you through the rest of your life (just don't get a stupid tat, while drunk).
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Old 04-18-2005, 07:32 AM   #18
Frank C Ollis
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John,
The value of the Service Academies to the potential of military officers has decreased greatly in the last few decades. A four year degree from a reputable University will serve you just as well. Plus, you can focus on school with out all the other crap. Persue that avenue before enlisting and trying to convert. I am sure Lt Lane will tell you, the process to go E to O is a pain in the ***.

We don't trust ring knockers anyway. LOL

GySgt Ollis
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Old 04-18-2005, 04:47 PM   #19
John S. Powell
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A big, hearty thanks again for all the advice. I'm not yet giving up on USNA or NROTC. There might still be daylight at the end of this tunnel, but its getting dimmer. Failing that, I'll be a civilian puke for 4 more years at college, then go E side in the USMC. Starting out in enlisted has always appealed to some part of me, for the reasons you all have stated. Plus, I'll have more time to focus on academics and fencing, since it looks like I'll be stepping into a starting role my freshman year.

I can't overstate how much I appreciate the kind words here. They've helped me a lot to focus on that proverbial 25 meter target.
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Old 04-18-2005, 06:19 PM   #20
Joseph Hart
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Hey Gunny!

Did I miss something or did you get promoted?

Joe
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