recieved this in a PM, posting it on here for him.
Im 21, have 2 1/2 years of chicago city college under my belt and just finished a semester. I want to continue my education at the university level and get an exercise science degree. So I've decided that joining the military would be a great option to choose in helping me achieve that. I've been familiarizing myself with the military lifestyle mostly from about.com. My dad is a Marine Corps Gunny and still serving, suggested to me that one of the national guards(he proposes Air National Guard in specific) would be good for me, being I want to continue school.
He also prefer that I go for ROTC training when at school, hence become an officer. A big concern for me is that in being an officer, Im sure that I will be required to carry more responsibilities, which will consume more of my time, but most importantly if Im positioned in a job for something I dont like, then I imagine it would be so fucking agonizing working, whereas It would be less stressful being an enlisted personnel, with less shit expected of me.
This may come off as a bit distasteful/lazy to readers, but Im just trying to be dedicated to the truth. If I'm Doing something I like, its going to be difficult for someone else to work harder than me in that profession, I hate to half-ass things, I want to give it my all by working on something I like and grow from the experience considerably because of my positive/determined attitude I carried throughout the work to learn more and more. The joint exercise division caught my interest on the national guard website: http://www.ng.mil/...te/default.aspx
If anyone has experience with the joint exercise division or knows a little bit about, it would be awesome if you could fill me in how the job is.
Overall, I'd greatly appreciate viewpoints on this entire topic.
I know officers in the joint exercise division at a COCOM, but not in the Air Guard (I'm in the Air Guard, and highly recommend it--been active duty and IMA reservist before this and Air Guard is tops).
I think Vince is being too simplistic in his views of what its like to be an officer versus enlisted. The best advice would come from someone whose been both (and I know a few I could ask), but my experience as an officer (JAG) has been nothing like what Vince is worried about. I'm sure some career fields might be, but then it depends on service, unit, leadership and a bunch of other unknowable factors.
Vince should pursue is passion, whatever that is. If the military offers a career in his passion, he should pursue it with vigor regardless of whether that means enlisted or officer.
His dad has given him good advice--advice I have recently passed on to my 19-year-old son. I recommend he take it. Happy to talk off-line with Vince too.
My advice: Figure out what you want to do in the military, which will of course require looking at different jobs within different branches.
If you are looking for an exciting job doing stuff outside (SOF type gig), being an officer might not be the smartest. A Navy SEAL officer, for example, will do his first tour as the second officer in a platoon, then second tour as a Platoon Commander. After that, unless he were to come to a boat team and do a Det Commander tour, he drives a desk for the rest of his career, for the most part.
Go enlisted (again using the SEAL example), and you can do multiple deployment cycles as you work your way up the ladder. From what I understand, most of SOF is the same way regardless of branch. Again, depends on what you want to do. I have no idea if he is even looking at SOF, I am just giving an example from my own experience. Basically, the higher in rank you are (or start out at), the quicker you advance your way out of the fun stuff.