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Air force question

Old 08-03-2011, 05:38 PM
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Default Air force question

My 19 yr old son has been accepted and is enlisting in the Air Force after scoring pretty high on the ASVAB exam..

I serve 8 years in the Marines and i am in the Dark about what advice i can give him as he trying to find a military occupational field for 4 years.

He is thinking Cyber Surety, EOD, intelligence and a few others..

any advice you could relate would be appreciated..

Also, throw some great duty stations in the mix as well so he can put them on his dream sheet..

Semper Fi

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Old 08-03-2011, 05:47 PM
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cant go wrong with intelligence, have him get his clearance, and the job field when he gets out is incredible, i know two navy guys in similar field, with their top secret clearance, that have nice $$ jobs coming out of the navy lined up.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:28 PM
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Anything but security forces. The more technical and higher clearance the better training and job prospects will be when he gets out.
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:30 PM
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pm me a phone number or email and would be glad to talk to you or him.....I spent 21 years in air force...retired in 2004. Started as Combat Controller and ended in Intelligence Operations. Just let me know...throw me all your questions on an email or over phone. I can tell him what I would do or would not do given hindsight 20/20 based on his desires, education, family situation and goals in life. Cant say it will be right for him but wish I would have had some advice other than BE STRONG when I joined. Dad is retired Marine...all he asked is ARE YOU GOING FOR A CAREER OR TO FINISH COLLEGE? I said college... HE said to go into Air Force as they take better care of you and your family but for a career go in Corps. 21 years later I retired and this year I finished my Bachelors degree finally. Start Grad School hopefully in January. LOL Funny how life changes your goals sometimes....haha
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Old 08-03-2011, 06:53 PM
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great advice and reponses so far...and Brock63 that is a great story and congrats on your retirement and thanx for your service.. I will let my son know about your invitation for a phone or email conference, talk soon and thank you..
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Old 08-03-2011, 08:29 PM
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Can't go wrong with the Air Force OR the Navy for the kind of position he's looking for.

I was in the Navy from '66-'72 - Naval Security Group. Was a "CT" (Communications Tech) and had a TS clearance. Only spent 2 weeks of that on a ship - the rest on shore. Loved the work, the "mission", and all the high-tech equipment - even way back then!

ANYTHING involving intel, electronic equipment, computers, etc. will keep him interested and gung ho during the tour, plus, lead to bigger and better "things" when he decides to get out! Along the way, he could get his degree before enlistment is up and be READY! Also, the "high-tech" jobs in the military tend to be more "open" for promotions and advancement (there are only so many "billets" or available openings for promotions in each "rating" - the more technical ratings usually have a smaller number of qualified/experienced personel vying for the positions. At least it was that way when I was in.).

Compared to when I was in, there should be GREAT opportunities with the Feds and high-tech private sector when he gets out. Heck, he may like it so much in the military, he'll do his 20 and be ready for a second career with, say, a defense contractor at age 39!

There's so MANY "fields" in the military - especially the AF and Navy - that he'll certainly find one or more of great interest! AF and Navy tend to educate, feed, and offer "safer" duty stations, most of the time, too, IMHO.

After the tour (including the RIGHT military schools!) and the degree, he could look into the "civil service" side of agencies like the CIA, NSA, FBI, DOD, DHS, etc. (example: maybe as a field inspector for classified government projects or vendors with defense contracts, etc.).

Looking back, I wish I had stayed in for 20 or so - keep your nose clean and the military will treat you right! Even had one instructor who "switched" from Marines to Navy when he was an E-6!

Sounds like your son is in a good position to get the right schools and education from the military, and the economy has GOT to get better over the next 4 years and beyond!

KUDOS to him for looking to serve his country!

Regards,
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Old 08-04-2011, 04:41 AM
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Thanx Bruce for the motivation..

When I was stationed in guam at the Naval Magazine in the 80's for 2 years I remember taking a road trip many of times up to Anderson Air force base to relax on Terague Beach and stopped off at there chow hall and couldnt believe my eyes at there menu...OMG..well maybe at the time it was good chow compared to MRE's and chit on a chingle..lol
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Old 08-04-2011, 05:45 AM
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Stick with intel or cyber security. The clearance he'll get and the technical training will help with a good career after his contract is up.

Some of the other jobs like PJ or EOD might seem sexy and will be a great character builder for a few years, but are difficult to translate into the civilian world.

Either way, the Post 9/11 GI Bill is absolutely outstanding and he will have college payed for when he's ready to go. (I did much better in school after a couple years in the infantry...)
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:21 PM
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I too was a Navy CT, but a (M) brancher. I can tell you, the clearance obtained while in the Navy is worth more than my engineering degree. By this I don't mean the cost of the investigation, but instead the employers who pay top dollar for people who already have clearances. The only other recommendation I could provide is; look for any of the rates where electronics, or electronics schools are offered.

Good Luck!

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Old 08-04-2011, 01:07 PM
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I work in cyber security (information assurance, security engineering, CND, etc) and all of our new hires must have a clearance or be eligible before they start (SECRET)...and for TS SSBI we want it BEFORE they start so that clearance means quite a bit.

As a reference we pay our brand new college hires with a computer degree as much or more than I made as E7/8 Active Duty

Unless he has a burning desire to see combat or get an adrenaline rush like some of us did early on.....

Have him look at Radiology Technician, Pharmacy Assistant, Intel, Computer Security, Communications type work....or learn a skill such as HVAC, Plumbing, etc. Have him finish his degree....he can get his Associates in less than four years on active duty by just doing his job and taking a couple classes as Air Force is only service with an Accredited degree program internal.....Community College of the Air Force (Maxwell AFB, AL).....then he can begin working on BS or BA while on active duty or use his VA benefits to go full time upon exit to finish it up. Experience, security clearance (poly if possible), growing skill......equals better than average chance of finding solid employment with a future.

CCT was sexy and fun...but no real call for it unless he gets tower rating and then wants to be a tower controller...or work for one of the contractors overseas.
My 2 cents.
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Old 08-04-2011, 01:24 PM
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My brother does Air Traffic Control in the USAF and he is poised for a good job when he gets out.
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Old 08-04-2011, 04:44 PM
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Thanx again gents and i will keep you all updated.. My son will be swearing in at the Boston meps station in a few days..
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Old 08-04-2011, 06:58 PM
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Just tell him to get a job guarantee...don't believe the hype and go OPEN GENERAL.
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Old 08-04-2011, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Brock63 View Post
Just tell him to get a job guarantee...don't believe the hype and go OPEN GENERAL.
Great advice to pass on.
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Old 08-04-2011, 09:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Semper Fi-sh View Post
When I was stationed in guam at the Naval Magazine in the 80's for 2 years I remember taking a road trip many of times up to Anderson Air force base to relax on Terague Beach and stopped off at there chow hall and couldnt believe my eyes at there menu...OMG..well maybe at the time it was good chow compared to MRE's and chit on a chingle..lol
Wow, what a difference. I was stationed in Guam at Anderson AFB in 1971-72. We used to drive down to the Navy base to eat as their buffet was way better than ours! Things must have changed.

As far as careers go, I was a grease monkey on aircraft and when I left the service, I applied at many airline and aircraft companies. They told me flat out that they didn't count on military training as helpful in getting a job at their companies. Again, maybe the career fields are different, but.............

I almost got into crypto as I passed their pseudo foreign language test, but my eyesight (glasses since 9 years old) and had a living relative in Japan at the time so really top secret clearance was out of the question. I later found out how lucky I was as I would've probably ended up with a radio in a remote location in a Far East jungle somewhere along with an M16 to intercept radio messages!

My younger brother also joined the USAF after the Vietnam conflict and got into avionics. He was assigned a temporary assignment in Afghanistan at a forward location before we were even "involved" there! He was actually shooting at Russian soldiers.

I hear that basic training in the USAF is no longer a piece of cake as there are no such things as "rear locations" anymore in conflict areas.

Good luck!
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Old 08-06-2011, 05:35 AM
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FWIW - Everyone I know that was an "MP" never had trouble finding work in a related field.

@the good life: The reason for that is that the military does not include civilian licensure as part of their maintenance training program. Most airlines have designated examiners to over-see upgrade training but won't look at someone without at least the basic tickets to start from.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:29 AM
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you can always get your certs and licenses on your own dime...lots of guys got their aviation maintenance certification for after retirement or service commitment. others like firemen and cops sometimes worked as volunteers for local units/houses in preparation for life after military. Just got to have a plan....and focus.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Kamper View Post
@the good life: The reason for that is that the military does not include civilian licensure as part of their maintenance training program. Most airlines have designated examiners to over-see upgrade training but won't look at someone without at least the basic tickets to start from.
I wasn't really looking for a job requiring the Airframe and Power license but just in a related field. As it turned out, I think I was lucky though as I had a friend who left the service just before I did and got his A/P license. He made a heck of a lot more than I did in salary but job security in the aviation field was sketchy at best. He ended up working for many different companies, some of them mutiple times.
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