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To those who have served in the US military...

 
 
Reply Tue 14 Jan, 2003 10:55 pm
In your opinion is it worth it to sign up for an MOS that I prefer over an MOS that will give me an enlistment bonus and a rank of E-4?

I prefer an MOS that gives me training I can use outside the military but am being offered E-4 (instead of E-1) and a bonus to go to one of the intel MOSs.

I'm not interested in intel, the training would only serve me in carreers I won't choose once out.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 8,694 • Replies: 90
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Jan, 2003 11:54 pm
Craven, It would depend upon how long you're going to be in the service. If it's for two years, go for the E4. Not much more in pay, but you won't be harassed as much as a buck sargent. It's been my understanding that rank is harder to get now compared to when I was in the service. It took me two years to get E4. If the training you can get in the service has potential use in your civilian life, go for the training if a comparable training in a public college would be expensive and longer than two years. The final decision is up to you, because you know what's important for yourself. 1. Compare the pay differential between E1 and E4 for the two or more years you'll be in the service. 2. Determine the value of the training you can receive in the service. A.. Will the training be transferrable to civilian life? B. Will it be current? C. Will you be happy in that field? 3. What are your plans after you serve? c.i.
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pueo
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 01:54 am
being an e-4 a nco right off the bat is pretty good. didn't have that when i was in, took me 18 months to get there. c.i. i don't know which specific service cdk is entering but i believe in the marine corps and u.s. army an e-4 is a corporal.

like c.i. it would depend on how long you intend to stay in the military. is there a possibility of laterally changing your mos later?
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 03:10 am
There are distinct advantages to being even a junior NCO, which would have to weigh in any decision. With a likely pool of Operationally Experienced Combat Capable veterans soon to be available, rank will be harder for folks not of the "In Group" to attain. I see litle prospect for hugely manpower-intensive military adventures for a fair while once the current tizzy is settled, and I see no reason to suspect impending hostilities might thru attrition create increased opportunity to add stripes.

You are being offered stripes in an attempt on the military's part to benefit from civilian skills of military application you bring with you without undergoing the cost and time of training you to do the job they want done and you already know how to do. On the otherhand, if The Military trains you to do a job, it will expend time and money to due so, and will naturally seek to maximize the return from its investment. The Military will give you excellent training, but it will expect you to use that training to earn the stripes you are being offered up front. I'm sure you know this.


My call would be "Stripes are Nice". But Intel, while probably comfortable, and possibly fast-track promotion-wise, has to be something in which you see intrinsic value. If you don't enjoy it, you'll be stuck not enjoying it for a couple of years at least. There's a difference between happy and comfortable. Comfortable and eager rarely go together.


timber
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 10:48 am
pueo, I was in the US Air Force. E4 was buck sargent. c.i.
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Craven de Kere
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:03 am
Update: Today I will find out if an 11th hour job offer will keep me out of the military, I was supposed to sign up in 1 hour and my recruiter is pissed but hey, it's my life and if someone offers me a tech job making more than I can in the military I'm not going to join.

To further explain my criteria:

I'm am/was joining the Army.

I'm not worried about war, I don't think I'll go (to Iraq) because I might still be in boot camp. I'd prefer not to be tactical and not to be deployed because I'd like to get as much of the online study they offer done as I can and being deployed gets in the way of that.

The MOS they want me for (for which they'd give me a bonus and an E-4) is due to skills I already have (languages) and I don't forsee any additional training being useful to me in the civilian world (the training will be about interrogation and airbourne deployment).

My brother is doing exactly what they want me to do and is stationed at fort Bragg and deployed regularly. He has been in for almost 2 years and is an E-5 now.

I'm pretty sure I'd not like doing what the MOS has to offer. It would mean deployment to remote areas of South America and training I'm not interested in. The upside is that I get a better rank and a fast track for promotions.

The duration of the service is also another factor. I don't get any additional benefits for being in any longer than 3 years but most of the jobs they offer require 4 years or more.

I know that I'll have to make the decision based on the criteria I've determined but an additional bit of information I'd like to know is how fast I can expect to be promoted if I enter as an E-1.
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Piffka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:14 am
You're saying there is a non-military job being offered, is that right? And does IT look good to you?

Why wouldn't you take it? If they're willing to bring you in as an E-4, then most likely you could always go into the military later, if you wanted to go back to plan A.

Good luck in whatever you do!
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Lash Goth
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:31 am
Let your recruiter be pissed.
This is probably the most important decision you will make in your life.

Give yourself time to carefully weigh your options.

Guys, is there a chance Craven would be thrown out in front if he goes in without the stripes? If not Iraq, the Phillipines, any other brewing cauldron?
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:36 am
Craven, Opt for that civilian job. c.i.
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:39 am
Just an opinion - take the rank and bonus. There is at least a modest chance the MOS you enlist for won't be quite what you expect anyway. Remember my comments on the military usage of "engineer".

Focus on self-education and your college goals, instead. It takes mucho determination to stay with it on a day to day basis. Do it anyway. Many military specialties require additional civilian certification before you can function at the level you held in the military anyway.

I do not recall enlistment at the grade E-4 was an option when I was there in the '60s. Read the fine print - is it possible it lists E-4 as a potential within the rank? Not suggesting that is the case, but be sure.
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 11:56 am
roger, I don't think that's unusual, because I know that my brother went into the service as a captain, because he's a physician. He was talking to me about staying in when he made rank to major, because he could get promoted to bird colonel in no time, but I told him he'd be crazy to stay in. He did resign, and developed his ophthalmology business into two offices. c.i.
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 12:10 pm
Entering as E1 and undergoing training in a field new to your experience will entail at least a couple of years of being at the bottom of the military food chain, and likely 3 to 5 additional years to realize any direct military benefit of the training thus received.
A credible offer in the civilian arena bears careful consideration. I would opt for that, putting "The Wearin' o' the Green" on the back burner for a while. If Uncle Sam wants you to join the team now, he is likely to welcome you once more in a few months, should your civilian opportunity prove less than anticipated. You can always quit a job and join the military. Quiting the military to take a civilian job is a bit trickier. Go for option three. There will be plenty of uniforms left should you wish to try one on a little later; they are not an endangered commodity.



timber
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 12:14 pm
Oh, and don't feel guilty about disappointing your recruiter. Such types are acustomed to it, and will suffer no emotional harm from your rejection. They're a resilient bunch.



timber
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 12:16 pm
timberlandko wrote:
You can always quit a job and join the military. Quiting the military to take a civilian job is a bit trickier.


The woodsy one speaks truth.
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 01:28 pm
But Craven has not offered a civilian alternative. The choice is between bonus and rank now, or training applicable to civilian life.
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 01:53 pm
Psst! Roger - I think your missed a post. Craven mentioned an 11th hour civilian opportunity. Smile

But, for what it's worth Craven, I'd weigh this new opportunity and decide from there. If you do decide to still enter the Army then personally, I'd opt for the E-1 with my choice of MOS. One way or another you can count on your time being tied up for the 1st year you are in so you aren't going to get much done as far as other educational opps besides their basic training and technical training courses (I believe the Army referes to that as "AIT").

If you keep your nose clean you could make E-4 within 2 years as it is. One thing that recruiter is NEVER going to tell you is that amongst the military services the Army has a reputation for fast promotions and they are also pretty quick on the draw to demote people who messes up.

If you do well in your preferred MOS you'll be holding E-4 or E-5 in no time. You aren't planning on making it a career so get out of it what YOU want and can apply to your life later on.
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 02:02 pm
A few years of increasing Military Administrative Responsibilty, with demonstrated leadership abilities and consistent effective use of available resources, with the natural honors and promotions attendant thereon, always looks good on a resume.


Damn! I envy you your choices. What a delicious quandry.




timber
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 02:11 pm
Embarrassed

I sure did miss it, fishin'. In that case, the army be there awhile, and civilian jobs are indeed easier to quit, and may even open up more choices in the military. Not much downside to the civilian job.
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jjorge
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 02:40 pm
I did four years in the USMC. Four years is a lo-n-n-n-ng time!

I'd say if you do go in, grab the E-4 and the three year enlistment.

PS If it's not in writing don't do it. (and read all the fine print)promises a recruiter makes to you verbally are worthless.
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Wed 15 Jan, 2003 02:47 pm
jjorge*197982* wrote:
promises a recruiter makes to you verbally are worthless.
LOL .... yup, a Verbal Contract is worth about as much as the paper it's printed on! Laughing




timber
0 Replies
 
 

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