??s about DH joining the Navy — The Bump
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??s about DH joining the Navy

DH is considering joining the Navy. Obviously he's going to talk to a recruiter if he decides he's really serious, but we just aren't sure how it's all going to work. I have a year left to finish my degree. He's been working in factories. DD is 17 months old. We're still pretty young. DO people actually quit decent jobs to go to school and join the military? Any advice would be appreciated.

I didn't see much in the way of a FAQs for this board, but I may have overlooked it.

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Re: ??s about DH joining the Navy

  • NSLNSL member
    Yes, people quit jobs and sometimes school to join the military. What kind of advice were you looking for?
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  • Just wondering if it is a good idea. He'd like to see about the program that allows you to go to school and then enter the service to train as an officer. Maybe that's not the correct terminology. I'm just wondering if he's waited to long or is too old to start that. Usually around here those programs are targeted to high school kids. Not people who have been out of school for 4 years.
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  • NSLNSL member
    Are you thinking about ROTC? DH commissioned through ROTC almost a decade ago, and I remember several non-traditional students in his graduating class. He's deployed, so I can't give you more information than that, but hopefully someone else here knows more about the ins and outs of ROTC than I do.
  • If he is thinking of going the school route I personally would encourage it.  As far as being too old, I'm assuming if he's been out of high school for 4 years he's about 22 (give or take), and that is in no way too old. My DH was 21 when he joined.  He had tried finding a civillian job, but it just didn't work out for him.  He's never been great at book learning, but he wanted to better himself, so he chose to go the military route.  I think it all depends on your situation.  GL, and if you have any other question feel free to pm me :-)
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  • imageaundraya:
    If he is thinking of going the school route I personally would encourage it.  As far as being too old, I'm assuming if he's been out of high school for 4 years he's about 22 (give or take), and that is in no way too old. My DH was 21 when he joined.  He had tried finding a civillian job, but it just didn't work out for him.  He's never been great at book learning, but he wanted to better himself, so he chose to go the military route.  I think it all depends on your situation.  GL, and if you have any other question feel free to pm me :-)

    Yes you are right about the age. We looked at ROTC, but didn't know if was the right route. I don't know if the living allowance will be enough for us, even with me starting to work fall 2012. I had suggested school while on active duty, but he thought he'd do better with school first. I'm totally fine with that, I just needed some insight. I hope over the next few weeks/months while we make this decision I can find friends in you guys. Is anyone else Navy?

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  • mysticlmysticl member
    DH is Navy.  He dropped out of college to go AD.  He's been in for 16 years, just reenlisted for the last time.  He is scheduled to retire in 4 years. 
  • Okay so I just found out that we don't have a NROTC close by. So when he talks to the recruiter he's probably going to talk about the Navy College Program and maybe the Seaman to Admiral program. Am I right that these allow sailors to take get degrees while serving?
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  • my dh is in the navy too and has been in 16 years on the enlisted and officer side. I would say do the rotc and school first so that he can commission. yeah it isnt a lot of money at first but it will be not a lot of money for a while if he goes enlisted. what pay rate do they give you while in rotc? what does he want to do in the navy. that makes a big difference in what the life is like too because jobs can be VERY different. I was literally days away from joining when I found out I was pregnant and my job pretty much has NOTHING in common with what my husband does except we would both wear uniforms and be in the military but that is where the similarities ended. good luck on your decisions

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  • imageufsandra85:
    my dh is in the navy too and has been in 16 years on the enlisted and officer side. I would say do the rotc and school first so that he can commission. yeah it isnt a lot of money at first but it will be not a lot of money for a while if he goes enlisted. what pay rate do they give you while in rotc? what does he want to do in the navy. that makes a big difference in what the life is like too because jobs can be VERY different. I was literally days away from joining when I found out I was pregnant and my job pretty much has NOTHING in common with what my husband does except we would both wear uniforms and be in the military but that is where the similarities ended. good luck on your decisions

    All I've found online for ROTC is paid tuition, fees, a stipend for books, and a $250 living allowance/month that increases each year. There's no way we can live on $250/month + my income from teaching. Hopefully that isn't all there is to it. Plus there apparently isn't a NROTC close to us, so we'd have to move to do that. Maybe we aren't meant to be a military family. DH's brother was Navy, but no longer AD. His brother is using his GI Bill for school now.

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  • NSLNSL member
    imageRandiDeeAnn:

    imageufsandra85:
    my dh is in the navy too and has been in 16 years on the enlisted and officer side. I would say do the rotc and school first so that he can commission. yeah it isnt a lot of money at first but it will be not a lot of money for a while if he goes enlisted. what pay rate do they give you while in rotc? what does he want to do in the navy. that makes a big difference in what the life is like too because jobs can be VERY different. I was literally days away from joining when I found out I was pregnant and my job pretty much has NOTHING in common with what my husband does except we would both wear uniforms and be in the military but that is where the similarities ended. good luck on your decisions

    All I've found online for ROTC is paid tuition, fees, a stipend for books, and a $250 living allowance/month that increases each year. There's no way we can live on $250/month + my income from teaching. Hopefully that isn't all there is to it. Plus there apparently isn't a NROTC close to us, so we'd have to move to do that. Maybe we aren't meant to be a military family. DH's brother was Navy, but no longer AD. His brother is using his GI Bill for school now.

    Financially, yes, that is "all there is to it." ROTC is a scholarship program, not active duty service. If your H is serious about it, though, he could continue working while he's in school.
  • Agree. I completely supported myself through grad school. I got a job and lived in graduate and family housing so my rent was only like 400 a month. It wasn't a glamorous lifestyle my any means but college isn't meant to be. You are supposed too be poor in college :) it is kind of fun and in college towns there are so many free things to do and free events with food. I had a lot of friends who did rotc and they loved it. he could always enlist too and skip the college thing and get his degree while on the navy. That is what my husband did . He enlisted at 18 and they paid for him to get his nuclear engineering degree so he still has his gi bill for our kids

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  • imageNSL:
    imageRandiDeeAnn:

    imageufsandra85:
    my dh is in the navy too and has been in 16 years on the enlisted and officer side. I would say do the rotc and school first so that he can commission. yeah it isnt a lot of money at first but it will be not a lot of money for a while if he goes enlisted. what pay rate do they give you while in rotc? what does he want to do in the navy. that makes a big difference in what the life is like too because jobs can be VERY different. I was literally days away from joining when I found out I was pregnant and my job pretty much has NOTHING in common with what my husband does except we would both wear uniforms and be in the military but that is where the similarities ended. good luck on your decisions

    All I've found online for ROTC is paid tuition, fees, a stipend for books, and a $250 living allowance/month that increases each year. There's no way we can live on $250/month + my income from teaching. Hopefully that isn't all there is to it. Plus there apparently isn't a NROTC close to us, so we'd have to move to do that. Maybe we aren't meant to be a military family. DH's brother was Navy, but no longer AD. His brother is using his GI Bill for school now.

    Financially, yes, that is "all there is to it." ROTC is a scholarship program, not active duty service. If your H is serious about it, though, he could continue working while he's in school.

    This. ROTC is not designed to support a family.  It is designed to put a student through college and train them to be an officer.  College kids don't need much more than $250 when their tuition, room and board, and books are being covered :).

    My husband commissioned through the Naval Academy so I don't know much about the other programs.  But on a basic level, we have enjoyed the Navy.  We have met great people, gotten many opportunities for travel, and have felt taken care of.   My husband recently just finished a Master's at Johns Hopkins that was paid for by the military. I have an BA and M.Ed that I paid for myself so I am very jealous of how supportive the military can be :).

    I would talk to an officer recruiter about his commissioning options.  If he does ROTC, there is a possiblity that he could work too.  The job would have to be flexible because of the military commitment (particularly in the summer).  Seaman to Admiral might be good too, but I know it is very competative.

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  • My husband is also in the Navy. He went the enlisted route and will start his degree anytime now. (He had to wait a year at his command before he could start). But there are also options to go in as enlisted then opt to go to officer school and then become and officer.

    ROTC is good if you are single (not gonna lie)

    My hubby is currently and E-3 and since we live on base out BAH is taken away for the house we have, but we get around $850 for his "normal/other" pay and that can go a long ways when you don't have many bills to pay.

    It is really up to him, but if he was thinking of just going to school to specifically only concentrate on that then it seems like he wouldn't want to work.

    There are plus sides to both options because if you guys "rough it" for four years while he does the NROTC then the pay will be sooo much better when he is an O-1 compared to an E-1.

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  • If your husband wants to be an officer I would advise that he find a way to get started on that route immediately.  STA and the other enlisted to officer programs are very competitive and can take a long time to get accepted into.  ROTC is one option but not the only one.  My husband did a program where he got paid as an E6 (which included BAH, base pay and BAS) while he finished school and then went to OCS.  His program was specifically for nuclear officers but I know that they have similar programs for other career tracks as well.

    However, your hesitation to leave your area in order for him to go to school, specifically one with a NROTC program, makes me question if the Navy is really the right career and life choice for you guys.  We are preparing for our fifth move in six years, relocating is a common thread of the military lifestyle, one that we have chosen to embrace but realize is not for everyone.  That may be something worth examining further as you guys research your options.

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  • imageSmurphette:

    If your husband wants to be an officer I would advise that he find a way to get started on that route immediately.  STA and the other enlisted to officer programs are very competitive and can take a long time to get accepted into.  ROTC is one option but not the only one.  My husband did a program where he got paid as an E6 (which included BAH, base pay and BAS) while he finished school and then went to OCS.  His program was specifically for nuclear officers but I know that they have similar programs for other career tracks as well.

    However, your hesitation to leave your area in order for him to go to school, specifically one with a NROTC program, makes me question if the Navy is really the right career and life choice for you guys.  We are preparing for our fifth move in six years, relocating is a common thread of the military lifestyle, one that we have chosen to embrace but realize is not for everyone.  That may be something worth examining further as you guys research your options.

    Did your H do NUPOC?  My H is in the program and at ODS right now. 

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  • imageRandiDeeAnn:

    DO people actually quit decent jobs to go to school and join the military?

    My husband is enlisted in the AF, but while he has been enlisted, he's started and has just about finished a bachelor's degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (2 classes left). As he has been on active duty, it's been 100% tuition assistance without touching his G.I. bill. He only pays for books and we try to get them as inexpensive as possible (eBay, Amazon, etc...).

    He has the option of pursuing a masters degree now. He can also use the G.I. bill and I think he may also be able to transfer it to me or children.

    The education benefits are excellent. So he will retire with a pension and at least one degree. I cannot complain about the military at all. The medical benefits too are unmatched. He has his medical covered and the Tricare (insurance option) for the rest of his life. Not to mention, the benefits of the commissary... And the experience and military and job training he's received.

    If your husband DID decide to join and you believe it would be right for your family, I'd be so proud of him! It can be really tough at times and there are so many sacrifices, but I wouldn't trade it.

  • imageRandiDeeAnn:

    DO people actually quit decent jobs to go to school and join the military?

    My husband is enlisted in the AF, but while he has been enlisted, he's started and has just about finished a bachelor's degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (2 classes left). As he has been on active duty, it's been 100% tuition assistance without touching his G.I. bill. He only pays for books and we try to get them as inexpensive as possible (eBay, Amazon, etc...).

    He has the option of pursuing a masters degree now. He can also use the G.I. bill and I think he may also be able to transfer it to me or children.

    The education benefits are excellent. So he will retire with a pension and at least one degree. I cannot complain about the military at all. The medical benefits too are unmatched. He has his medical covered and the Tricare (insurance option) for the rest of his life. Not to mention, the benefits of the commissary... And the experience and military and job training he's received.

    If your husband DID decide to join and you believe it would be right for your family, I'd be so proud of him! It can be really tough at times and there are so many sacrifices, but I wouldn't trade it.

  • P.S. You mentioned you are still pretty young? My husband joined at 19. He will retire in two years at the age of 39. So he will have a pension from 20 years of service and can begin another career. He is pretty excited. With the skills and experience the military has provided him, finding a job will be so much easier than if he hadn't.It also opens it up to make it easier to qualify for government jobs (clearance qualifications).

  • imageAndreaArdelean:

    P.S. You mentioned you are still pretty young? My husband joined at 19. He will retire in two years at the age of 39. So he will have a pension from 20 years of service and can begin another career. He is pretty excited. With the skills and experience the military has provided him, finding a job will be so much easier than if he hadn't.It also opens it up to make it easier to qualify for government jobs (clearance qualifications).

    That is what my husband is planning to do also. =)

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  • imageSmurphette:

    If your husband wants to be an officer I would advise that he find a way to get started on that route immediately.  STA and the other enlisted to officer programs are very competitive and can take a long time to get accepted into.  ROTC is one option but not the only one.  My husband did a program where he got paid as an E6 (which included BAH, base pay and BAS) while he finished school and then went to OCS.  His program was specifically for nuclear officers but I know that they have similar programs for other career tracks as well.

    However, your hesitation to leave your area in order for him to go to school, specifically one with a NROTC program, makes me question if the Navy is really the right career and life choice for you guys.  We are preparing for our fifth move in six years, relocating is a common thread of the military lifestyle, one that we have chosen to embrace but realize is not for everyone.  That may be something worth examining further as you guys research your options.

    No, no. Travel is one reason we would love military. The problem is trying to relocate losing his current income and mine only being a teacher's salary (plus trying to find a job for me during the relocation process). It's the money that it would cost to move doing ROTC, not the actual travel. He is also considering another branch. We have family that have been in Navy and Air Force. But his starting option was Navy. We are still really early in this process, but he is really trying to figure out what he wants to do. I know that sounds terrible, like he's shopping around or something, but we have toyed with the idea of military several times before. We just want to make the decision that is right for him.

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  • my suggestion is for him to take the offer that will give him the most use when he gets out if he doesnt plan on staying in forever and would like to work after. Even if it is 20 years later. I have friends who would love to retire and cant because they cant get a job with a comparable salary in the real world with their experience because they do something like sonar. We are really lucky that my husband is a nuclear engineer and he can get out and have very high paying job with no problem. A lot of our friends regret not thinking about that earlier in their careers.

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  • imageufsandra85:
    my suggestion is for him to take the offer that will give him the most use when he gets out if he doesnt plan on staying in forever and would like to work after. Even if it is 20 years later. I have friends who would love to retire and cant because they cant get a job with a comparable salary in the real world with their experience because they do something like sonar. We are really lucky that my husband is a nuclear engineer and he can get out and have very high paying job with no problem. A lot of our friends regret not thinking about that earlier in their careers.

    That's a really good thing to remember. If he decides to go for it, he's talking about retiring there. I will tell him that he should look into something that will give a good job. Thanks.

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  • Don't just talk to the Navy or Air Force.  Talk to all of the branches including the Coast Guard.   One of them may have something to offer your H that the others don't.  One may feel more right than the other. 

    I was absolutely convinced that I was joining the AF until a friend of mine talked me into going to talk to all the recuiters.  The Army felt like a better fit right off the starting line. 

    I compare it to a marriage.  You should go out on a few dates with different types of people before you settle down.  Make sure you check out all the options. 

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  • imageiluvmytxrgr:

    Don't just talk to the Navy or Air Force.  Talk to all of the branches including the Coast Guard.   One of them may have something to offer your H that the others don't.  One may feel more right than the other. 

    I was absolutely convinced that I was joining the AF until a friend of mine talked me into going to talk to all the recuiters.  The Army felt like a better fit right off the starting line. 

    I compare it to a marriage.  You should go out on a few dates with different types of people before you settle down.  Make sure you check out all the options. 

    Thank you. I was really afraid I was going to offend you guys! That makes me feel great. I hope he's really going to consider this. We have a recruiting office near us. I think it has Navy, AF, Army, and Marines, but I don't know about Coast Guard. I'm talking to a former class-mate right now about her H's experiences with the Marines.

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  • If you're interested in getting a degree and going the officer route, contactan officer recruiter. These are different than the normal recruiting offices! If you walk into one of those places off the street they may not know much but convince you that if you join now as an E1, you'll be in an officer program in a year. Not true! It can take YEARS to get selected for one of the E to O programs. I know of a guy who enlisted with a masters complete and it still took 7 years to commission. They want you to prove yourself first.

     

    I'm not saying that to sound like I'm against recruiters if that's how it comes out. there are many good ones. I'm saying it because they do have quotas to fill and sometimes may not even know themselves what officer programs there are. Good luck with your decision!

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  • imagehunt2005:
    If you're interested in getting a degree and going the officer route, contactan officer recruiter. These are different than the normal recruiting offices! If you walk into one of those places off the street they may not know much but convince you that if you join now as an E1, you'll be in an officer program in a year. Not true! It can take YEARS to get selected for one of the E to O programs. I know of a guy who enlisted with a masters complete and it still took 7 years to commission. They want you to prove yourself first.

     

    I'm not saying that to sound like I'm against recruiters if that's how it comes out. there are many good ones. I'm saying it because they do have quotas to fill and sometimes may not even know themselves what officer programs there are. Good luck with your decision!

    No. You don't sound that way at all it makes complete sense. He's going to start out with our local recruiters and see what they offer. We may wait to make the commitment until next summer. I'll graduate next spring. That would allow me to get a job while he's going to basic and getting set up. I'd like for us to start right away, but I can't work and finish school so we have to have his income until I finish. I wish we could get started sooner, I just don't see how we could.

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  • I  did Navy ROTC and commissioned as a Marine. It was a fantastic experience and a fantastic education - I highly recommend it.

    My university gave me a room and board scholarship and, the two years I lived off campus, they gave me $9k to get an apartment (and this was several years ago - in my area, that covered a slightly rundown 2-bedroom apartment for the entire year). I don't see why it would necessarily be so impractical to live on a teacher's salary plus a part-time job for him.

  • my DH quit his really good job with toyota to join the Marines. it's hard at first to wrap your mind around "ok, he's going to be gone for a while, and it's all on me" but it's the best thing ever :] him joining has seriously brought us much closer!
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  • Here is my advice:

    I would inquire about all the new changes since they are trying to weed people out of the Navy. It is not the same as it was, people can't join and think they will just retire after 20 years. There is PTS...ERB's alot of changes. I know people (good) people not being able to reenlist thinking they would have a lifetime career here.

    And don't let the recruiter suck him into a crappy rate...that will just screw him from the start.

     

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