Would this be a good step for me? This was briefly mentioned in one of my other threads but I didn't get much input on it from anybody as it was overshadowed by the rest of the thread. As you know,I am graduating in the fall with my associates degree in general studies from community college, and don't have a clue as to where I'm heading with my life. The military is nothing new to me, I grew up around it. I feel like it would benefit me in many ways in my life such as discipline and that it would make me a better man and give me a marketable skill once I got out. Once I got out, I would head back to college and finish my bachelors. I want to hear some of your guys opinions and stories if you have them. Thanks in advance.

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I love this country. I know exactly that I would be putting my life on the line. The reason I would be doing this is to grow as a person, give back to the country I love, and honestly to get out of a small town and see the world all while bettering myself as a person and gaining a good resume. It's not all about the money. There are many reasons I am considering this.

You want to serve your country and your fellow man? You want to get out of a podunk town and see more of the world? You want to bring discipline and honor into your life? Go back to school, become a cop, a nurse, or a paramedic, and go to a bigger town. Travel with your friends, see the world, by all means. But there are other things to provide those values than the military. You say it is not about the money. That is a statement i deeply respect. But there are millions of people in this country who suffer every day, not from the actions of foreign enemies, but from poverty, crime, and disease. There is cruelty and suffering everywhere. Do not overlook that which lies outside your own front door. Here is another thing to consider: the company I work for has a contract with the VA, and every day i see the ruin that a military life can inflict on men, as well as the cruel deception that they will be taken care of like the heroes they are. However, Andrew is right. For some people, the skills and values they learn go on to serve them very well later in life. But it is not a decision to be made lightly.

Disagree with your anti-military sentiment completely.

I don't see anti-military in this. His statements come down to:
1. There are many ways to serve, get out of town, gain purpose, and life skills without joining the military.
2. Many vets are not getting the fair shake they deserve, and a military life can be hard on families.
3. Consider those factors before making your choice. 

Do you disagree with my assessment, or those statements? 

I thought that he wrote the same general idea as Andrew, just with a different angle.

Thank you Liam. Your second point is really what makes me so bitter.

No. Registered conscienscious objector (Not to mention the fact that i used my draft card to roll a joint at an anti-war rally in college. Tasted terrible). But i do come from a military family. My grandfather served in WWII, and it destroyed him. I've lost several cousins in Iraq and Afganistan, one uncle who died in Vietnam and the other came back... Not right. My objection is not so much with the military per se. I believe in the sanctity of personal choice, and for some, it is the right choice (I am not one of them, but that is not to say others may not be). But it is not a decision to be made lightly, as i said. I have seen the treatment veterans recieve from the VA, and it disgusts me that a promise of decent care should be given them, and then they are given... Next to nothing. A good friend of mine went through paramedic school on the GI bill, and he had no end of trouble. Almost had to drop out a couple times due to the slowness of getting funds. In addition, is it not willfully neglectful to overlook the atrocities at our own doorstep?

Hank,

I would like to thank you for considering joining our military and being willing to serve. I too grew up around the military. My grandfather was in WWII, my dad retired from the Army and did many tours in Vietnam, and my mother was in the Woman's Army Corp one one of the first German female interrogators. My younger brother, older sister and I all served in the US Army. I joined because I could not figure out what to do, lacked discipline, and was wasting my time. The other posters are correct, you may well die if you serve in the military. You may well die tonight too, but for sure you will die sometime. I decided it mattered more how I lived my life than how I died. I think the military is a great option, and I have to say go US Army since my whole family served there. Your experience will depend on many factors, including the type of job you are assigned. I would suggest you spend time exploring the options and get the most from it. I have a very minor service connected disability. Once a year I go to a VA facility for a checkup. Nothing will make you more grateful for your life and all your problems, than to walk into a VA medical facility and then be able to walk back out on your own accord. Good luck, God bless, let me know if I can help I would happy to do so. 

Phillip

What was your experience in the Army and your M.O.S? My dad was an Army man, I know more about it than the other branches.

I was a 98C and I had a great time. I went to basic in MO, AIS in Goodfellow, AFB.  I did 2 years at Ft Meade, and four in Augsburg. I was able to travel around Germany, Turkey, and the UK for the Army. I helped with some multiservice and multinational training before the Gulf War in Saudia Arabia. I did a lot of correspondence work while I was in AIS that helped me make rank and made E-5 in 26 months. I worked with all the services and several other nations while I was in the service and really like it. There were hardships to be sure, but I had a far more positive experience overall. 

If you are overweight then you'd need to loose some pounds.  The military is getting very choosy as to who it takes.  They are also cutting back the number of troops.

If you actually join then welcome to the ranks.  Of the three branches I served I enjoyed the Navy far more (we hit quite a few ports so I got to see quite a bit of the world).  As for discipline that comes from within and without it your military service will be very short.

I'm currently in the DEP (delayed entry program) for the Navy. There is a lot to consider, as others have said, but I know for me personally it is a decision made out of wanting to serve and give back to my country. Yes, my family will be provided for, and the benefits are better than I have now, but those are secondary reasons.

 

A lot of people are talking about joining up as if you will be in combat on the ground. There is always that possibility, but it's not as high for some MOSs/ratings. I'm going into the nuclear power field, so I'll basically be assigned to an aircraft carrier or sub. Depending on what you want to do, and how seriously you took your studies, you could be offered a plethora of jobs in a lot of different catagories, some of which come with a sign-on bonus.

 

If you do decide to join up, and it seems like you're leaning that way, choose your branch of service carefully! The Air Force is popular with a lot of people, as some say the quality of life is better, but my main reason I didn't go with them is because you don't get to choose your job. You give them a list of what you're interested in (top 7 choices, I believe) and then half-way through basic training they tell you what you'll be doing. Other services give you more of a say. Like in my case, I signed a Navy Nuclear contract, not some open-ended deal that basically give them the next 6-8 years as a blank check. Yes, I do understand the concept of "needs of the Navy/Army/etc" so don't start hammering me there, all you who have served previously or currently are serving.

 

My advice is that if you're single (I'm not) or are married but qualify, go for it. It's only 4-6 years, depending on your contract. And who knows? You might like it and decide to make it a career.

 

But remember, this is YOUR choice. Get advice, but don't let other people make the decision for you.

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