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Old 06-13-2017, 05:18 PM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
4 posts, read 2,004 times
Reputation: 10

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I've been reading different threads on the subject to get an idea of where I stand, but a lot of the ones I've read were from 2010 and before. I'm not sure if things would be different today. Also, I figure starting a new thread specific to me would end all my questions (until/if I ever I talk to a recruiter, of course).

Anyway, I've been stuck in a huge rut the past couple of years and am now contemplating joining the Reserves (Air Force or Navy). I've always wanted to serve my country and I regret not doing ROTC in college or trying to commission sooner. I decided on Reserves because my husband has an amazing federal job and don't want to subject him to moving around and civilian life is what I think is what's best for me right now.

Basic information: Female, 25 years old. Bachelors of Arts in Communication/Advertising from a selective-ish private college. 3.5 GPA. Haven't landed a degree-related job since graduating in 2014 (a 3 month internship that fell short in providing experience or references, a year doing photography sales, and the last two years just barely freelancing in graphic design).

Physically, I'm not even at minimum standards for either branch, but I'm working towards them (at least 2 more minutes down for my 1.5 mile run and 20 pounds to lose). I don't really want to start talking to any recruiters until I reach my weight goal.

My question is, since I already have a degree, do I stand a chance trying to commission as an officer?
Or, should I just enlist and work towards becoming an officer later, while enlisted?
Also, which branch would be better suited for me (or better in general, haha).

If it helps, I'm really only interested in Public Affairs jobs, so my degree is relevant there (I've read that only STEM degrees usually make officers). I'm not sure how many of those jobs are often available. Second choice would be Intelligence or Personnel/Admin related jobs.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-13-2017, 07:34 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,183 posts, read 9,221,015 times
Reputation: 4716
As for the Air Force, you likely don't have the GPA for the jobs you want. I've seen Collegiate student body presidents, while a captain of a football team, while editing the school newspaper, with letters of recommendations from Titans of Industry, 4.0 GPA, and Masters Degrees with multiple certifications get turned down for public affairs, Intel, and Personnel in the Air Force.

For Air Force though, you could do "dual track" which is where you apply for an officer position, and work on an enlistment for after you find out that you're not selected to be an officer.

Additionally, your lack of finding a job tells me that you may have weak interview skills, and the interview is a HUGE portion of your total score for the Air Force.

Good luck whatever you decide!
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Old 06-13-2017, 07:49 PM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
4 posts, read 2,004 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
As for the Air Force, you likely don't have the GPA for the jobs you want. I've seen Collegiate student body presidents, while a captain of a football team, while editing the school newspaper, with letters of recommendations from Titans of Industry, 4.0 GPA, and Masters Degrees with multiple certifications get turned down for public affairs, Intel, and Personnel in the Air Force.

For Air Force though, you could do "dual track" which is where you apply for an officer position, and work on an enlistment for after you find out that you're not selected to be an officer.

Additionally, your lack of finding a job tells me that you may have weak interview skills, and the interview is a HUGE portion of your total score for the Air Force.

Good luck whatever you decide!
Thanks for the input! I had no idea Public Affairs and Personnel could be so selective! All the sites ever say is you need a Bachelors Degree to become an officer, but there's so much more involved. I've had many interviews over the years but just kept getting passed over jobs for people with more experience, but yes, my interview skills could use some work -- especially to be an officer.

I haven't heard of "dual track" but that seems like something I'd be interested in so I'll check that out/keep it in my question bank for if I talk to a recruiter!
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Old 06-13-2017, 07:58 PM
 
Location: Middle America
35,817 posts, read 39,334,463 times
Reputation: 48613
I will private message you. My spouse was once in a semi-analogous position as you, and has parlayed his experience into a 16-year career and counting with the Navy and Navy Reserve, currently serving as a Senior Chief Petty Officer. He, too, enlisted in upper twenties, already a degree-holder (of two non-STEM degrees, no less). He was consistently working in his previous field through his twenties, but was unfulfilled.
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:55 PM
 
Location: East Helena, MT
763 posts, read 478,094 times
Reputation: 2003
I am a medically retired Navy Veteran. I will advise you based on my experience. I am also a career civil servant.


First, your husband can submit a hardship move request to your duty station. Depending on what job he does, he will probably be able to find something.


I would first go the officer route. I would stick to the Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. My advice is to go in willing to take any job you qualify for as an officer. The pay, benefits, far exceed enlisted. I don't want to seem to be hating on Solders and Marines (I love you guys too), but when it comes to duty stations, Navy posts of duty (PODs) are located in areas with lots of federal jobs. Some Army, Marine, and Air Force POD's are in the middle of no where.


IF, and only IF, you don't qualify for officer, I would talk to recruiters about enlisting. Again, you need to talk to Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, to see what jobs you qualify for. I would then base my decision on the job you like best. I talked to all of them, and decided on the Navy because they offered me Aviation Mechanic. The job is more important than the branch.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:14 PM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
24,130 posts, read 38,859,608 times
Reputation: 28092
Quote:
Originally Posted by kajo-buco View Post
My question is, since I already have a degree, do I stand a chance trying to commission as an officer?
Maybe, check with all the services.

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Old 06-14-2017, 02:00 PM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
4 posts, read 2,004 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by ericsvibe View Post
I am a medically retired Navy Veteran. I will advise you based on my experience. I am also a career civil servant.


First, your husband can submit a hardship move request to your duty station. Depending on what job he does, he will probably be able to find something.


I would first go the officer route. I would stick to the Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. My advice is to go in willing to take any job you qualify for as an officer. The pay, benefits, far exceed enlisted. I don't want to seem to be hating on Solders and Marines (I love you guys too), but when it comes to duty stations, Navy posts of duty (PODs) are located in areas with lots of federal jobs. Some Army, Marine, and Air Force POD's are in the middle of no where.


IF, and only IF, you don't qualify for officer, I would talk to recruiters about enlisting. Again, you need to talk to Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, to see what jobs you qualify for. I would then base my decision on the job you like best. I talked to all of them, and decided on the Navy because they offered me Aviation Mechanic. The job is more important than the branch.
You're very right, the job is more important than the branch. I like your advice, doesn't seem like there's anything to lose by trying the officer route. I don't mind enlisting at all if I don't get selected. Thank you!
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Old 06-14-2017, 03:40 PM
 
Location: Hard aground in the Sonoran Desert
4,549 posts, read 8,001,354 times
Reputation: 6273
Quote:
Originally Posted by ericsvibe View Post
I am a medically retired Navy Veteran. I will advise you based on my experience. I am also a career civil servant.


First, your husband can submit a hardship move request to your duty station. Depending on what job he does, he will probably be able to find something.


I would first go the officer route. I would stick to the Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. My advice is to go in willing to take any job you qualify for as an officer. The pay, benefits, far exceed enlisted. I don't want to seem to be hating on Solders and Marines (I love you guys too), but when it comes to duty stations, Navy posts of duty (PODs) are located in areas with lots of federal jobs. Some Army, Marine, and Air Force POD's are in the middle of no where.


IF, and only IF, you don't qualify for officer, I would talk to recruiters about enlisting. Again, you need to talk to Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, to see what jobs you qualify for. I would then base my decision on the job you like best. I talked to all of them, and decided on the Navy because they offered me Aviation Mechanic. The job is more important than the branch.
While I agree with your overall point, you start by saying the branch is more important and end by saying the job is more important.

My 26 years in the Navy showed me the branch is way more important than the job. I'm very glad I spent my 26 years in the Navy. I was able to switch jobs inside the Navy but was always glad I was a Sailor regardless of what job I was doing.
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Old 06-14-2017, 08:31 PM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
4 posts, read 2,004 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by LBTRS View Post
While I agree with your overall point, you start by saying the branch is more important and end by saying the job is more important.

My 26 years in the Navy showed me the branch is way more important than the job. I'm very glad I spent my 26 years in the Navy. I was able to switch jobs inside the Navy but was always glad I was a Sailor regardless of what job I was doing.
To each his own. My husband was in the Marines, got out, and two years later he decided to go into the Navy Reserves. If it were me, I don't know how I could wear another uniform after five years being a Marine!! But for him what was more important was that he could go back into the military as soon as possible with a job he likes (and also he didn't want to run 3 miles for PT anymore, haha).
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Old 06-15-2017, 10:23 AM
 
536 posts, read 330,688 times
Reputation: 443
Can't comment on service specific possibilities but as far as your husband's federal job goes, if you are active duty and get PCS orders to a different station, he can apply for Program S (part of the preferred personnel placement) which gives him priority in getting another federal position at the new location. Something I am currently going through with my wife who is active duty. Of course, it is rough to quit a good position but at times that may be for the best of both.
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