Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

    I have a 17 yr old that will graduate High School in May. He has been accepted for fall admission by our local state university (Biological Sciences major). However, after participating in JROTC for several years, he wants to join the Army while going to college. We have met with National Guard, Army Reserves and ROTC (I have to sign off since he wonít be 18 until September). While I find it fairly confusing, I think we both agree that the National Guard with participation in the ROTC/SMP program would be the best fit.

    The National Guard recruiter has suggested that my son sign up now as an MP and change his MOS to something else later after heís been through training. In addition, the recruiter said basic training/boot camp could be done over the summer and that because my son has some AP credits, he can just skip the fall semester and go right into AIT. I donít like the idea of skipping the first semester of school so the recruiter said that he could do a split option. I have a few questions:

    1. Iím interested in hearing what others think about the skipping the first semester of school vs. the split option. Note: Money is not an issue because after the Guard reimbursement, I have enough funds set aside for his room/board and expenses.

    2. Does choice of MOS really matter and can it be changed later? His ASFAB is 87 percentile so I think he could go into different areas but Iím guessing that MPs are what they need right now since the recruiter has signed up several others that my son knows into the same MOS.

    3. Are there any other questions we should ask or things we should make sure we understand before signing the contracts?

    I know my son would sign no matter what Ė heís wanted to join since he was about 4 yrs old. But, I feel like the recruiters are not totally honest and it makes me very concerned about signing off on anything. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

    Nice to see a concerned mother on this forum asking smart questions. In 1983 when I was 17 my mother signed for me but just signed when I brought her the papers lol. It is now 2013 and I am still serving at 47. And I am tired. ;0)

    I was split-op and sadly I ended up missing my first semester of college in 1984 since my AIT portion completed later than expected and I wish I had the jump on my schooling.

    Always, I say that education comes first. I would not miss school if I did not have to.

    As a former MP, are you sure he wants that job? He should find out what jobs are available in his state plus it is not easy to just switch to a new job. Yes, in the National Guard, it is more common to switch to an job than active duty Soldiers but it still depends on many factors. What if a new job was available but now that is 150 miles from your house? See where I am getting at?

    Also, I know that NG with SMP option sounds like a good fit but I am an active duty Soldier and it is just as easy now and days to complete an education while serving full-time. Understand that.

    I completed my associate's and bachelor's while in the National Guard and now my master's while on active duty.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

      1. I think split option is wiser. If SMP/ROTC is the real path that he wants to pursue, then school schould come first.

      2. It's not that easy to change MOS, but it can be done later. If your son does pursue SMP/ROTC though, he could commission into a branch that is totally different than whatever his enlisted job is/was. MP is a highly deployed field, and although we're in the withdrawl pattern in AFG that doesn't put him in the clear as his unit could get called up and then he could definitely be missing a semester or more of school (if he's not already contracted with ROTC). Keep that in mind on MOS selection, so yes it does really matter.

      3. Get more details on the SMP/ROTC option and info on contracting with ROTC if he's really going to go for it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

        Hi, First off, I think its awesome that you are helping your son on this path. I am 32 and just completed basic training/ait as a 19D Cavalry Scout. This is something that I wanted very badly from the first time I was near anyone in uniform. I didn't have a family that approved and a lack of support system kept me from enlisting until I was 31.

        One thing you should remember, even if your son does miss the fall semester from attending 31B OSUT (MP School) he will receive somewhere around 12-15 credits for that training program. I would advise your son to look at what HE wants to do in the Army. What job does he want. He also needs to think NOW about whether he wants to be active or guard. There are benefits to both. There are great schooling benefits for active duty, plus he can still attend college while Active. But, thats not to say that the guard wouldn't be a great option for him.

        A few tips.

        1) Regarding the recruiter, don't let the recruiter talk him into a job he doesn't want. It isn't exactly easy to change MOS.

        2) Look into ROTC over split option. He will not receive any education benefits until he is MOS qualified. Therefore Split option may not be your best bet.

        3) Recruiters know what is up in the system and what is local to you. Look up the guard unit find and see what armories are near your or your son's school. But, don't let the fact that just because he scored high on the ASVAB push him from what others call 'easier' jobs. Smart people make GREAT Cavalry, Infantry, Artillery, and Engineer Officers. Just a thought.

        Good luck to you and your son here.

        Jonathan McCune

        Originally posted by jessiew View Post
        I have a 17 yr old that will graduate High School in May. He has been accepted for fall admission by our local state university (Biological Sciences major). However, after participating in JROTC for several years, he wants to join the Army while going to college. We have met with National Guard, Army Reserves and ROTC (I have to sign off since he wonít be 18 until September). While I find it fairly confusing, I think we both agree that the National Guard with participation in the ROTC/SMP program would be the best fit.

        The National Guard recruiter has suggested that my son sign up now as an MP and change his MOS to something else later after heís been through training. In addition, the recruiter said basic training/boot camp could be done over the summer and that because my son has some AP credits, he can just skip the fall semester and go right into AIT. I donít like the idea of skipping the first semester of school so the recruiter said that he could do a split option. I have a few questions:

        1. Iím interested in hearing what others think about the skipping the first semester of school vs. the split option. Note: Money is not an issue because after the Guard reimbursement, I have enough funds set aside for his room/board and expenses.

        2. Does choice of MOS really matter and can it be changed later? His ASFAB is 87 percentile so I think he could go into different areas but Iím guessing that MPs are what they need right now since the recruiter has signed up several others that my son knows into the same MOS.

        3. Are there any other questions we should ask or things we should make sure we understand before signing the contracts?

        I know my son would sign no matter what Ė heís wanted to join since he was about 4 yrs old. But, I feel like the recruiters are not totally honest and it makes me very concerned about signing off on anything. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

          Sorry about the duplicate post and thanks for your responses.

          We did talk with the ROTC and it is competitive to get one of the slots. My son has been in JROTC for 3 years, is currently a captain and the Chief always speaks very highly of him. Not to say the real ROTC is the same but he really seems to do well with that type of structure. So, hopefully he will be able to get one of those slots which, as I understand it, is the only way to avoid being deployed while in school.

          That brings me back to the valuable comments you both made related to MPs/MOS. The recruiter said that the MPs in my state just deployed so it is a good selection to start with and then change. If he does go SMP then the impression I got is that his MOS doesn't matter because once he does SMP he would be assigned as an officer to whatever area he is needed once school is completed. If he doesn't get into SMP then being an MP really doesn't look like such a good option based on your responses as well as other comments on the board related to changing the MOS. He originally wanted to go medic but I know there are no slots available. I think signal corp was available so I'll ask my son to look at other options. What are your thoughts on signal corp? (I think he ranked really high in that area on the ASFAB). P.S. Chief Kemosabe - we are in a very small state so distance is not an issue!

          Finally, EQMcClure, you were right on point about getting deployed if not in SMP and that is one of the reasons that I like the split option. He can't be deployed until completion of his AIT and he can't get into SMP until his second year of college so if he doesn't do his AIT until next summer, he could immediately go into SMP. If he completes his AIT now, he could be deployed anytime between now and fall 2014 which is the earliest he can SMP. The recruiter acted like that really wasn't an issue because there were more experienced MPs "on the bench" that would be deployed first. Really? I wonder if we could get that in the contract?

          Anyway, I think I have a path forward in my negotiations with my son. Unfortunately for him, until he's 18, we have to be in agreement before I sign. Fortunately for me, he is taking it in stride. Thanks again for your helpful responses!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

            I am a Chief Warrant Officer in the Signal Corps and since the field is highly technical and provides excellent skills for civilian employment; it will always be an excellent choice for a military job.

            Also, I know as a parent, the option to prolong deployment is attractive but as someone who has given this country many years and has deployed three times since 2005 to Iraq and Afghanistan, I feel that once you complete your training and fill a slot in a unit; you should be ready to deploy in a moments notice. Granted the SMP provides advantages to finish school without the worries of deploying but again, I have completed my education while as an M-day Soldier and even completed numerous classes in a deployed zone. My point being is that I will never provide guidance that provides a solution that will hinder deploying. But that is just me.

            Since SMP is his goal; the enlisted MOS should just provide an entry and job experience for the next four years until he commissions so that should not be the main focus at this point; even though there is no guarantee that he will complete ROTC and Commission, so you want him to be in an MOS that he is content with.

            He is 17 and he should be deliberate with his choices. There is no rush to enlist ASAP.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

              I'm back with a follow-up question. My son and I spoke about missing the first semester of school vs doing the split option and he agreed that the split option would work fine. We have talked to the recruiter about this and it seemed like the best solution especially since he's already been accepted into the state university for fall enrollment. Also, one of the other kids in his jrotc had decided to do the same thing. I told him that since we were in agreement, I would sign the papers before he was 18 so he could do boot camp over the summer. We were going to do that next week but...

              My son came home today and said that when his friend enlisted, he ended up not doing the split option because the 8 week mp school had to be attended in August so either way, he would miss a semester of school. Surely the recruiter must have known that? We specifically discussed using the split option as a way to avoid missing school. I am really frustrated with this whole process. We asked the recruiter if he could tell us what other positions were available that had schooling in the summer so that my son could see if he felt they were of interest (the mp slot was the recruiter's idea). However the recruiter said that he really didn't know anything about what's available or when the schools run.

              Any suggestions?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Split Option vs skipping first semester, MOS selection - feedback please...

                The recruiter would have not know that. Remember, young people all over the country are enlisting and filling up slots. And the person at MEPS has the visibility on what could be filled at the moment.

                Anyway, with split-op, you son will do basic this year and school next year. There must be a class that starts next year around May/June time frame; not only in August. One of my fellow Soldiers in my unit is a former recruiter and I will ask him on Monday.

                When I did it in 83 and 84. Training started for me in the month of June. I was a combat engineer at Fort LeonardWood back then.

                Comment

                Working...
                X