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Prior Navy going to CG
Last Post 03 Dec 2017 03:46 PM by zarant. 3 Replies.
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zspartan11User is Offline
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zspartan11

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30 Nov 2017 09:03 PM
    I'm a 28-year old veteran served in the Navy for 4 years and have been a drilling reservist since getting off active duty (a year ago). My education includes a bachelors degree but since the Navy has already turned me down for their OCS program I have opted not to dawdle with the far-more-selective Coast Guard OCS spiel. I've been doing the in-processing for the coast guard since getting my DD368 and am at the stage of picking my ship out date. There are some matters I wanted to address before making my final plans and I was hoping some of the other forum members might be able to offer some insight into details from people (not my recruiter) who have endured the real deal.

    1) Boot Camp vs DEPOT.
    I am well aware of the 3-week accelerated program but from what I understand it is incredibly selective and spots are extremely limited; my intention of going Coast Guard includes resuming an active duty career. I would really prefer to not dawdle with Cape May for several months to see if they'd even be willing to offer me the opportunity to attend DEPOT because if I can get a guaranteed slot at regular boot camp and finish those 8 weeks LONG before I would even theoretically report to DEPOT I would definitely choose the former. But then comes the next issue.

    2) Being a non-rate vs picking an A-school at the recruiters' office
    I was an Operations Specialist with the active navy but there are a couple other ratings in the CG I was interested in trying for. I did do time (9 months) as an undesignated seaman chipping paint off the weatherdeck before striking OS and would greatly appreciate not having to endure a similar situation with the Coast Guard.

    -For those of you who served in the other branches before making the transition to the Coast Guard, how would you describe the experience? (If you're willing to share your story of whether you did boot camp or DEPOT, served as a non-rate or selected a rating right off the bat, that would be great)
    -Percentage wise, what volume of prior service applicants would you say go through regular boot camp as opposed to 3-week DEPOT?
    AndisossUser is Offline
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    Andisoss

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    30 Nov 2017 09:57 PM
    Hi there.

    I am a prior enlisted Officer and use to work in recruiting. I have a lot of friends who are prior service and also recruited many (prior service guys) as well.

    1. I hated Boot Camp and I hated OCS even more. After being enlisted for 10 years and having to listen to some LTJG with 2 ribbons tell me "how it is in the fleet" for 17 weeks sucked. But it is what it is. If they offer you DEPOT, awesome. If not, at least you will come out of Boot Camp in the best shape you have been in since you graduated Navy boot camp. The Company Commanders will know you are prior service and are going to put you in leadership positions.

    2. Did you like being an OS? What other rates did you want to do? I put in a Marine who dropped from E5 to E3 to join the Coast Guard. This dude was a certified bad ass (2 tours in Iraq, 1 in Afghanistan and saw combat several times) He become a non-rate (fireman) on board a newer patrol boat out of Miami out of basic. He ended up becoming a Gunners Mate (GM) and is already testing for E6 just 4 years later. He knew going into it that he would probably be working for some 22 year old who joined out of high school. But you know what? He was OK with that and for what it is worth, he told me later on that his worst day in the Coast Guard was like a normal day in the Marines. (the quality of life being that much better). That said, even when I was an E6.. shit, even as an Ensign I was helping guys chip and paint. So I dunno man. If it really bothers you that much, I would pick a guaranteed "A" school and run with it.
    BellsUser is Offline
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    Bells

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    02 Dec 2017 07:07 PM
    We currently have a prior service E-5 from the navy that bumped down to e-3 And is a firemen. He's a nonrate and plays his role well, we naturally give him a bit more responsibility, and he was a DC so he kind of is a lead in alot of DC drills.

    He wants to go aviation so he will be with us for about 2 years. It's worth it to him. He hasn't changed his mind. Being a nonrate sucks but isn't the end of the world. 5-7 years ago most of the a-schools were over 2 years for a wait. We didn't really have guaranteed a-school except CS and OS. So it's all objective.

    You ask someone thats been in for a while if the wait is worth it, they'll probably say yes, because they probably were a nonrate for a while. You ask someone that's been in for only a couple years, they'll probably say it's not worth it because they probably didn't have to wait that long. ME HS and the aviation rates, and a couple others are still a long wait. It's a drop in the bucket career-wise. If it is what you want I wouldn't make a rash decision and pick a guaranteed a-school.
    Take what you like and leave the rest behind.
    zarantUser is Offline
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    zarant

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    03 Dec 2017 03:46 PM
    I was prior navy, I was an AM On the H60s so my experience is limited to aviation. I transferred over to coast guard and went to Depot, and now I’m a AMT.

    I would definitely encourage waiting for Depot. The coast guard boot camp is no joke, way harder than navy on my opinion. After seeing what they go through I considered myself extremely lucky to go through Depot. There is no time in Depot to get in shape, they hold you to the same physical standard as the regular recruits as well as all the acedemics. It’s extremely fast paced.
    We only had 5 prior service in my Depot class, and the rest were reservists who got into Depot because having college degrees and professional experience.

    As far as the job goes, coast guard aviation is the best job I have ever had. Especially compared to naval aviation. It’s a different world. All of the guys I work with say being a non rate was well worth the wait for aviation. I know a guy who waited 4 years for AMT A school and he still says it was worth it because of how amazing the job is. You are a lot more involved in what is happening in the coast guard because there is so few people that you get to do a lot more. Let me know if you have any other questions specifically about navy vs coast guard.
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