Future Goals

KM6371

Unverified
Joined
Sep 24, 2019
Messages
24
I should start off by saying that I fully understand my future decisions are no one else's but mine. What i'm looking for is advice from the outside on what would be a better path for me considering my life goals. I have fully committed myself to serving our country one way or another through Army Special Operations. My motivation stems from my family's long military history, and that I feel there is no other way I would feel complete without serving.

Im 17 years old, and a senior in highschool. This time is when I have to step up and make adult decisions for myself, and my future. My parents never handed me things and the money for college was certainly not going to be one of them. I decided to apply for the National ROTC scholarship early this year as a way into service while pursuing higher education. I submitted early and was not selected in the first review board, but there are two more early January, and March of next year. I aced my PT test for ROTC and have strong essays as well as recommendation letters. Although since I did not have the best grades in high school, my chances of a national scholarship are low.

Where I'm seeking advice is my options if I don't get a national scholarship considering I aspire to be Special Operations ultimately. Would it be beneficial to look for a scholarship after my first year of college at a school level and become an officer? Would it be better suited if I saved college for later and enlisted through an 18X or Option 40 contract? Either way, I want to serve my country. It's just a matter of getting there through the right path.

I'm more than happy to answer any questions, and please redirect me to any threads that have discussed a situation like this.
 

AWP

Formerly Known as Freefalling
Administrator
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Messages
16,683
Location
Not Afghanistan
- Do you want to be an officer or enlisted?
- How long do you wish to serve in an operational, trigger-pulling capacity?
- What branch do you want to serve in?
- What do you want to do? Medical, shooting, support, working with host nation forces...?
 

KM6371

Unverified
Joined
Sep 24, 2019
Messages
24
- Do you want to be an officer or enlisted?
- How long do you wish to serve in an operational, trigger-pulling capacity?
- What branch do you want to serve in?
- What do you want to do? Medical, shooting, support, working with host nation forces...?
-Originally I wanted to be an officer as leadership was appealing to me and my father was an officer. He was a 19D in 04 during OIF
The benefits of being able to get an education out of it as well.
Now i'm leaning towards enlisting due to the fact that getting a national scholarship is low and I want to serve in an operational capacity longer.
- I would prefer to get at least 6 years of operational experience
- Infantry, anything combat arms.
- All of that catches my attention, but shooting, medical and working with other nations stand out
 

AWP

Formerly Known as Freefalling
Administrator
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Messages
16,683
Location
Not Afghanistan
-Originally I wanted to be an officer as leadership was appealing to me and my father was an officer. He was a 19D in 04 during OIF
The benefits of being able to get an education out of it as well.
Now i'm leaning towards enlisting due to the fact that getting a national scholarship is low and I want to serve in an operational capacity longer.
- I would prefer to get at least 6 years of operational experience
- Infantry, anything combat arms.
- All of that catches my attention, but shooting, medical and working with other nations stand out

I'm trying to help you out, but you're all over the place which I understand. At 17 you really don't know yourself, what you want, what something is like, so I get it.

A 19D is an enlisted MOS, not a commissioned officer.

If you want to enlist and be an officer, check out the Green to Gold program in the Army.

Deployment opportunities are pretty limited across the board minus SF; even Rangers have really slowed their tempo. So, you have some choices to make if you go Army. What MOS do you want? Where do you want to go such as Airborne, Ranger, etc. Look at the Green to Gold requirements. You have shrt term goals such as enlisting, midterm such as getting your MOS and surviving your first year or two in uniform, and then longterm (which I would keep to yourself until you are ready to drop your packet) of commissioning.

If you go in from Day One and state you want to be an officer, you have set yourself up for failure. That's assuming after a few years you still want to be an officer.

The other branches have their own "in house" commissioning methods, so check those out.

Homework time: Go learn about the Army, the jobs, the units and their missions. Look at what you need for Green to Gold. Look into the other branches and what it takes to commission there. The Marine program was once called MECEP, it may still be. Again, the other branches have their methods as well.

Go do all of that and get back to us. Narrow your focus. Help us help you.
 

KM6371

Unverified
Joined
Sep 24, 2019
Messages
24
I'm trying to help you out, but you're all over the place which I understand. At 17 you really don't know yourself, what you want, what something is like, so I get it.

A 19D is an enlisted MOS, not a commissioned officer.

If you want to enlist and be an officer, check out the Green to Gold program in the Army.

Deployment opportunities are pretty limited across the board minus SF; even Rangers have really slowed their tempo. So, you have some choices to make if you go Army. What MOS do you want? Where do you want to go such as Airborne, Ranger, etc. Look at the Green to Gold requirements. You have shrt term goals such as enlisting, midterm such as getting your MOS and surviving your first year or two in uniform, and then long term (which I would keep to yourself until you are ready to drop your packet) of commissioning.

If you go in from Day One and state you want to be an officer, you have set yourself up for failure. That's assuming after a few years you still want to be an officer.

The other branches have their own "in house" commissioning methods, so check those out.

Homework time: Go learn about the Army, the jobs, the units and their missions. Look at what you need for Green to Gold. Look into the other branches and what it takes to commission there. The Marine program was once called MECEP, it may still be. Again, the other branches have their methods as well.

Go do all of that and get back to us. Narrow your focus. Help us help you.
All of this helps a lot. I'll do some studying and get back to you.
I also misspoke on my father's MOS, my apologies.
thank you sir for your time, and being understanding. Im working on really zoning in on what I want

will this thread still be open after I look all of this up?

A 19D is an enlisted MOS, not a commissioned officer.
He was actually a 19A, but took over a scout platoon. Hence why I got mixed up
 

BK2004

BK2004
Verified SOF
Joined
Nov 3, 2020
Messages
24
AWP is right. Lots of discovery. But there are other Special Operations Forces in the army, too. First off, decide whether enlisted or officer is the way to go for you. Definitely.

Beyond that, know what you’re getting into. Most young Soldiers think they know what SOF means by what they find on first person shooter video games. It’s why so many of our own think it’s all about stacking bodies and a high CDI (Chicks Dig It) factor. In my non-SF opinion, for example, the most unique thing about Special Forces isn’t that they can pull triggers effectively, but that they can build the capacity for others to do so. Unconventional, by/with/thru, is their most impressive skill. Yet, until recently, for many many years, they barely even taught it at the Q. Direct Action is done by lots of other capabilities, but only SF (don’t say “SFAB”, or we can’t be friends) can really teach stone age booger eaters in an austere and dangerous environment how to use our stuff. It’s amazing. It’s also got only a little to do with pulling triggers. From what I saw at JRTC, they’re doing a lot to get back to that.

With that in mind, ready yourself for a plug from my own community. I’m PSYOP. We manipulate battlefield behaviors. We use various forms of pressure (physical, social, psychological) to get foreigners (friendly/neutral/adversary) to act in ways that benefit the mission, whether that mission is SOF or Conventional. Competition or Combat. Even during diplomacy. We, too, are getting back to the basics of how we used to do business. A new doctrinal release is expected next month, freeing us once again from the shackles of information related capabilities. Warfare is nothing but human behaviors in a defined space and time, after all. And that’s our bag.

Just keep in mind that most SOF capabilities require a level of maturity and patience that only time on this planet doing heavy things can provide. Don’t shy away from taking conventional jobs while you earn that maturity. It’s more important than you might imagine.

Good luck!
 
Top