Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Submarine Non-Vols

We always say that the Submarine Force is made up entirely of volunteers, but there are some people who really aren't. Every once in a while, the Naval Academy doesn't make quota, so they have to "force" some graduates into the Submarine Force. According to this Navy Times article, they're looking at getting an additional 33 "volunteers" out of this year's class. Excerpts:
In a message to the Brigade of Midshipmen on Tuesday, the academy’s director of professional development, Capt. Stephen Evans, wrote that the academy this year was required to send 125 officers into the nuclear submarine training pipeline, but that only 92 had been accepted by Naval Reactors. That meant 33 midshipmen would be asked to volunteer or told to become sub nukes.
“If you are subsequently identified for a submarine interview, understand that you were released from your preferred community after serious consideration,” Evans wrote. “Be professional and focus on the positive aspects of serving your country in the submarine force.”
Naval Academy spokesman Cmdr. Joe Carpenter said it wasn’t uncommon for academy officials to move midshipmen from preferred warfare areas to areas where they were needed, although he said there weren’t records showing when or for which disciplines. The academy’s mission to provide the officers the Navy requires means the school must sometimes supercede mids’ wishes, he said...
...In last year’s graduating class, 78 percent of midshipmen entered the warfare area they selected as their first choice, and 92 percent got their first or second choice, Carpenter said. The first midshipmen this year who will be urged to choose submarines are those who picked it as their second choice, he said. They are required to serve at least five years after commissioning.
I knew a couple of Academy guys who were ordered into the Sub Force against their wishes, and they ended up being good officers. Still, I think it's better when everyone who's on the boat knew they had volunteered at some point (even though there are plenty of Submariners who, if they had it to do over again, might have not volunteered in the first place). For those Academy guys who do get lassoed into the Sub Force, I say "Welcome", and if you have hard feelings about it, I can only pass on the words of one of my wise old LCCs at prototype when ship assignments came out and some people were complaining: "Tough shit, why do you think they call them 'orders'?"

72 Comments:

Blogger Just Nathan said...

I don't feel sorry for those mids at all. Everyone should know that if you put Submarines on your dream sheet there is a decent chance you will be a submariner. I knew that going into service selection and so did my classmates.

10/24/2009 10:53 AM

 
Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

In the early sixties, as the submarine force was expanding, the Navy also 'volunteered' a number of surface Lieutenants to Commanders for the submarine force. Most selected became outstanding submariners and their 'non real volunteer' status disappeared as they earned their dolphins. I was privledged to be subschol classmates to two of them and shipmates to two others. Later, one of them was my commanding officer during my department head tour. One of the more famous senior 'volunteers' who rejected the opportunity was Admiral Zumwalt who describes his Rickover interview in his memoirs. In any case, I am sure that these new 'command volunteers' will do well and have a bright future.

10/24/2009 11:06 AM

 
Blogger Ozy said...

Several of my friends are "sub non-vols." You don't have to put Submarines on your dream sheet at all to become a submariner.

10/24/2009 11:31 AM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

Interesting. It should surprise few, however, that middies with no serious aspirations to full naval careers in the first place prefer to bypass the fairly grueling nuclear training gauntlet.

How many lawyers have you met who are thrilled to have attended nuc power school?

Chester Nimitz, on the otherhand,
wanted to attend West Point rather than Annapolis. Although his preference was not honored, he became a fine submariner and admiral. Can we be certain young Nimitz even volunteered for subs?

10/24/2009 12:57 PM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

UPDATE: On the contrary; according to Nimitz himself,

“I didn’t volunteer. At that time, the battleship was the Queen of the Navy. I applied for my next duty on board a battleship. However I was sent involuntarily… as First Officer aboard the Plunger.”3

10/24/2009 1:04 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Former Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz once said,

“When I assumed command of the Pacific Fleet on 31 December 1941 our submarines were already operating against the enemy, the only units of the Fleet that could come to grips with the Japanese for months to come.

It was to the Submarine Force that I looked to carry the load until our great industrial activity could produce the weapons we so sorely needed to carry the war to the enemy. It is to the everlasting honor and glory of our submarine personnel that they never failed us in our days of great peril.”

10/24/2009 2:23 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/25/us/25detox.html?ref=us

excerpt:

June 20, 2006
Perfect Vision Is Helping and Hurting Navy
By DAVID S. CLOUD
BETHESDA, Md., June 17 — Almost every Thursday during the academic year, a bus carrying a dozen or so Naval Academy midshipmen leaves Annapolis for the 45-minute drive to Bethesda, where Navy doctors perform laser eye surgery on them, one after another, with assembly-line efficiency.
Nearly a third of every 1,000-member Naval Academy class now undergoes the procedure, part of a booming trend among military personnel with poor vision. Unlike in the civilian world, where eye surgery is still largely done for convenience or vanity, the procedure's popularity in the armed forces is transforming career choices and daily life in subtle but far-reaching ways.

Aging fighter pilots can now remain in the cockpit longer, reducing annual recruiting needs. And recruits whose bad vision once would have disqualified them from the special forces are now eligible, making the competition for these coveted slots even tougher.

But the surgery is also causing the military some unexpected difficulties. By shrinking the pool of people who used to be routinely available for jobs that do not require perfect eyesight, it has made it harder to fill some of those assignments with top-notch personnel, officers say.

When Ensign Michael Shaughnessy had the surgery in his junior year at the Naval Academy, his new 20-20 vision qualified him for flight school. And that is where he decided to go after graduating last month ranked in the top 10 percent of his class, rather than pursuing a career as a submarine officer....

...Officers involved say the failure to meet the quota is due to many factors, including the perception that submarines no longer play as vital a national security role as they once did. But the availability of eye surgery to any midshipman who wants it is also routinely cited.
...The failure to produce enough submarine officers, though, is the source of greatest worry to academy officials and the Navy as a whole. This year the academy's quota was 120, but only 88 midshipmen chose to go into submarines, according to academy records.

10/24/2009 2:30 PM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

"...his new 20-20 vision qualified him for flight school. And that is where he decided to go after graduating last month... rather than pursuing a career as a submarine officer...."

Indeed, why would a bright fellow like the Ensign not choose the path with the most promising civilian employment reward when his 5-1/2-year obligation is up?

Time will reveal whether he is a careerist worthy of his first-rate, taxpayer-funded USNA education, or merely one more civilian graduate in a temporary uniform.

By the way, I certainly do not blame any of the academy grads for playing the game set up by our congress.

10/24/2009 4:29 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would wager that RIGHT NOW a nuc in good standing leaving for a jpb in the civilian nuclear power industry would make more and have a brighter future than his aviator classmate. Does anyone have the stats? Certainly hasn't been that way in the past, but airline hiring is down and we're building new power plants.

10/24/2009 6:01 PM

 
Blogger Ozy said...

vigilis:

Sir, your rhetoric about "civilian graduates in temporary uniforms" doesn't hold water. If it did, second-class midshipmen would sign 2-for-22's every fall instead of 2-for-7's. The government asks for a specific commitment in exchange for a commission, and even those who "five-and-dive" fulfill that commitment. Suggesting that it's less than honorable to go in without staying until retirement is insulting.

10/24/2009 7:33 PM

 
Anonymous LT L said...

5 years, 20 years, or 35 years, everyone ends up the same: a veteran.

-LT L

10/24/2009 8:32 PM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

I’d be careful with that, the Ayn Rand republican’s "I hate the government" philosophy is breaking down and can’t carry the current fleet of nuclear plants, certainly with the recent event about the poor quality designs of the Westinghouse plants, it is not going to carry the Nuclear Renaissance either. We got a ideological breakdown of historic proportion in the nuclear industry...the problem with the nuclear industry it is wedded to a single narrow minded ideology.

This isn’t even close to a technological failure or issues with modernity in general....the question is what vision or world view or philosophy is best for the nuclear industry and our nation. I am not saying the democrat default is the best because of its narrow-mindedness. I am saying what kind of philosophy or world view are best to carry the nuclear industry into the future...cause republican/ nuclear/ electric utility politcal gestalt is dying right in front of us. This is all exacerbated by a absolutely historic collapse in grid electric loads, electric spot prices can’t carry the economics of the present fleet, coal and natural gas have collapsed do to our economic problems.

I am just saying our domestic nuclear industry is in a historic crisis...as our electric industry. The public is becoming very warry that the green environmentalists are lying through their teeth trying to game global warming and carbon credits for their own financial gain. There is global warming...but the public is waking up to the fact the environmentalists are as bad at telling the truth as coal utilities and the nuclear plant's management.

You know what I’d tell you, I know the submarines are difficult...but I’d try and get through another 4 years until there is certainty. It is very uncertain out there.

10/24/2009 8:32 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a proud member of last year's sub-draft, I know exactly how these Mids are going to feel in the next few days, and it is a horrible feeling. The Navy destroys the age old adage that you can do anything if you work hard enough. Yet, as the OP says, they are orders. I do not enjoy going to Nuke school each day, nor am I thoroughly thrilled about the next few years. But, I did make a commitment when I put on my 2/C boards, and now it's my turn to make good on that promise. Regardless of community, I still strive to be the best officer I can. To look out for my division, be it on a submarine, or in a squadron.

To those who are forced in, life does not stop, nor does your commitment clock. Also, you can always hang on to the hope that it will better than you think. I honestly don't know yet.

10/24/2009 8:46 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So if you're "volunteered" for sub nuke duty at Annapolis, what's to stop you from tanking the 08 interview? Or were they already accepted but got their first choice for warfare assignment? Or something else?

10/24/2009 8:53 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it is one's second preference, it is still a preference. Is non-vol really accurate?

I didn't know about Adm. Nimitz, but I recall page 1 or 2 of Submarine! related how then- Ensign "Ned" Beach was involuntarily pulled from his beloved four-piper to the pre-comm Trigger.

-3383

10/24/2009 9:42 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Easy fix: Fail the psych or rock nuke school. How bad could that be for a ring knocker?

10/24/2009 9:56 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I would wager that RIGHT NOW a nuc in good standing leaving for a jpb in the civilian nuclear power industry would make more and have a brighter future than his aviator classmate. Does anyone have the stats? Certainly hasn't been that way in the past, but airline hiring is down and we're building new power plants."

Not too many airlines hiring. But my utility is hiring boatloads, pun intended, of recently discharged nuke JOs and enlisteds for about $90k/yr to start.

10/24/2009 10:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mulligan, you don't know jack shit about the W design and the issue at hand. It won't even be an armadillo in the road.

10/24/2009 10:03 PM

 
Blogger Vrolok said...

I hate to say it...but they did sign a little piece of paper...multiple times.

Go where told, do what told.


It's nice to get your choice, but Needs of the Navy you know.



After being subjected to Middies too many times, I feel it's time some of them step up. The majority of Middies I meet are worthless. I only hope a good Chief can whip them into shape. But as I read about the SWO community problems, it appears things are bad.



It's always better to have someone around who wants to be there. But at the end of the day, 99% of officer can hack it...if they want to.



I wish these newest Officer's the best. Submarines are the best platform.

10/24/2009 10:28 PM

 
Blogger Port Tack Start said...

To anon @ 10/24/09 8:46-

Don't get too wrapped up in power school or prototype. All you really need to get out of either of those is the basics of the water boiling hot rock theory, and how to stand a basic EOOW watch.

After going through the pipeline twice, I got to my first boat thinking I was pretty good with nuclear power. Unfortunately, it mostly just taught me to say the wrong name for things on the 2MC.

So don't work yourself to death, maximize your time off, and I highly recommend going shark fishing off the pier...

10/25/2009 2:27 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

Don’t have to know much about the Westinghouse design, just have to know how cultures, organizations and human behavior works. We’d seen it coming from a million miles away that the nuclear industry and our nuclear regulator hadn’t slayed the nuclear construction monster of the 1970’s and 1980’s. The same pressures were still there, expensive new facilities, inexpensive competitor fuels, poor economy, the bottom half of the population doesn’t have a adequate income...the same basic blinded republican philosophy as back then...we knew they would go walmart and overseas compartmentization, to cheap to meter again, the one step NRC, the idea they would to redesign the new plants once operational.

We knew many years ago that they would exactly repeat the bad old 1970’s construction fiascoes. We got it all down in writing. We and the utilities lack the ability to do large scale infrastructure projects...we got a shortage of engineers before the first shovel of dirt is removed from the ground.

As I said, the new nuclear industry is going to collapse into disorganization chaos...the environmental community is in the process of collapsing because of a loss of credibility. The only help for the nuclear industry is carbon credits.

We in the civilian community just don’t value truth telling...just don’t value telling the truth to each other. We more are all believers in magical altruistic myths...we dress our up our common needs in altruistic obscene selfish profits for the few.

Save this e-mail...cause in five years you are going to be astonished with how close I predicted the future.

10/25/2009 6:13 AM

 
Blogger Mike Mulligan said...

We are losing faith in the rationales of altruism or doing good, our self interest has polluted altruism...maybe our military is the only organization left in the USA who can claim their soldiers are doing something in support of doing our common good...participating in a journey that is bigger than themselves.

You are the light of our nation!

10/25/2009 6:32 AM

 
Blogger SJV said...

It's surprising to me that we allow mids to have elective eye surgery. The rate and severity of complications is far to high for this surgery to be an acceptable risk.

As far as pilot vs. sub nuke, it's not about making an economc decision for long term employment. Both have good outlooks overall, even if you don't end up as a pilot or in the civilian nuke industry.

It's just way more enjoyable to be in the sun flying an airplane than it is to be underwater trying not to sink. Although...I always heard that the most sure path to pilot training was to fail out of officer nuke school. Still true?

10/25/2009 6:38 AM

 
Anonymous LT L said...

@ Vrolok But as I read about the SWO community problems, it appears things are bad.

I'm out of the loop; could you please elaborate?

@ SJV Although...I always heard that the most sure path to pilot training was to fail out of officer nuke school. Still true?

When I was an instructor at SUBSCOL in 2006 failing out got you an all expenses paid 18 month IA to the crappy location of the government's choice.

10/25/2009 9:13 AM

 
Blogger John Rudolph said...

This was fully explained to my son the day we went to ODU for college day. We stopped by the NROTC office; the CO explained that if a community is short-staffed, the candidates graduating may be pipelined to that community in need. My son wants to become a naval aviator but as a former surface target kinda guy I told my son that he would serve proudly if he became part of the silent service.

I've always held a deep respect for all of you guys.

Btw, my book is now on the market:

http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/a-squids-story-my-first-four-years-in-the-united-states-navy/7820151

10/25/2009 9:15 AM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

Ozy,

"Suggesting that it's less than honorable to go in without staying until retirement is insulting."

10/24/2009 4:29 PM (couple of hours before you took offense)Vigilis also stated, "By the way, I certainly do not blame any of the academy grads for playing the game set up by our congress."

here is why

10/25/2009 10:26 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The guys who get drafted are also top performers. Just wait until they finish up their JO your and then get drafted, again, to work at Prototype. Don't think the Navy will hook you up just because they hosed you before. Best piece of advice I ever got: "You don't want to be the lead zebra either. The tiger will also see you."

10/25/2009 1:26 PM

 
Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

The only issue with drafting is that it sends the WRONG message to the top performers. Fight for four years to get your pick of service selection, then get told your reward for superior performance is no choice. Meanwhile, the guys well below #400 are in no danger and probably still get their choice.

Yes, they are are all volunteers and there are no guarantees, but no two ways about it sucks.

Several months ago we got forwarded an email from ADM Donald on this, the point being that these young men are needed and we should be ready to listen to concerns of mids.

I wonder why we cannot use NUPOC to make up any shortfalls like we used to do? All in all another reason to not go to USNA. Any ROTC getting non-vol'd?

10/25/2009 2:59 PM

 
Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

Oh, and before you all start drinking the nuclear koolaid, there are currently zero nuclear plants under construction. Yes some licenses have been granted, but no new construction has begun since 1978. Anyone know why?

And if the republicans back off of subsidies for nuclear power it won't be cost effective, and there goes the motivation for building since they don't want carbon price controls either.

10/25/2009 3:04 PM

 
Blogger Vrolok said...

is there any way to block the IP of Mulligan?

just weird random ramblings that don't pertain to anything

_________________________________

@ LT L 10/25/2009 9:13 AM
Read about the latest Surface Navy mishaps. They are being blamed basically on over-work, and inadequate training. The SWO community seems to be firing back saying it's job conditions, not their fault.

Don't know what to believe. I've seen what the 1st year of a JO's life is like. Especially a Nuke Trained one. Cannot see how a SWO has it any worse.


I've considered going commisioned and coming back as a Nuke officer. But as a E-6 MM, I command more respect than most O-1 through O-3's. For a reason.

I've had several DH's and DIV O's who were Prior Enlisted, and those are the best IMO. They know the game and what is required.


It isn't often that you find an officer these days worth a damn. Many are those gaming the system and waiting for their 5yr point to become Civvies again.

Some of the stuff we've gotten over the last few years have obviously been Bottom of the Barrel quality. The filter at NPTU seems to have a huge hole in it.


Hopefully some of these top performers who are "volun-told" into Subs can be worthy of being called Sir. It would be nice for a change to have someone I respect.

It is a crappy situation for them, but anybody worth his salt can run with it and turn it into a positive

10/25/2009 5:52 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

srvd ssn co, ever heard of Sanmen or Haiyang, China? Two plants under construction employing thousands of US citizens. Those same plants WILL be built in the US very soon.

10/25/2009 6:10 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Some of the stuff we've gotten over the last few years have obviously been Bottom of the Barrel quality. The filter at NPTU seems to have a huge hole in it."

Hate to inform you, but the filter was replaced with a pump years ago.

10/25/2009 6:12 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to anon@9:56 pm.;

I did fail the psych eval, and all that got me was a trip to the shrink who, after hearing my story said, "Unfortunately, I have to declare you fit for nuclear field duty."

And, as far as the ADM interview goes, they're going to be a little suspicious if a kid with a 3.8 in Mech E fails...

10/25/2009 6:45 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Submarine service sucks, period. The lack of true volunteers year after year prove the point.

10/26/2009 12:32 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

USNA class of 1980 had a VERY memorable draft in nuclear power. This was the beginning of the end for Adm Rickover as he opposed the draft and lost.

We had many people try and fail their interview with some epic tales...including one Mid sent back to the Academy being escorted by a couple NR O-6s and delivered directly to the Superintendent.

We also had quite a few fail (perhaps the most ever in my class...almost half) Nuc Power school, many did get to flight school eventually but it was a different time.

I think for our class the sense of betrayal was so high because such a game was made of selection. As an example a mid who had a 3.6 in Mech Eng who volunteered was turned down while an English Major with a 2.8 was drafted.

10/26/2009 7:23 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to the Charleston Navy Hospital's 5th floor halfway through prototype, shortly after my wife left me. Six months of shore duty and I was back in the pipeline. Even despite that setback, I still wanted to make a career out of it. Two years later, in the Torpedo room, right before board, made up my mind that I didn't want to spend the next 13 years feeling like I wanted to off myself. I was tired of compromising my integrity for ORSE and TRE and so we could get underway on time.

The Nab could afford be a little more selective when they throw around sub assignments...

10/26/2009 7:29 AM

 
Anonymous FineNavyGray said...

In RE to NPTU being a pump vs a filter.. Ballston Spa has been making a habit lately of getting rid of several individuals per class. Some competent (and a damn shame), some not (and thank God). So those of you out there complaining about the pump mentality, rejoice! Those of you concerned with shortfalls of bodies, be sad. Nobody wins.

10/26/2009 7:48 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe I have answers to several of your questions.

You can't just tank your interview at NR and be rejected. I had an ensign try just that and even told Donald he didn't want to do it. He graduated a few months ago from NPTU near the top of his class.

To whoever said 5 years and getting out is a disgrace or is playing the system, you are a joke my friend. There is no singular reason anyone gets out, each situation is different.

You will definitely make more money getting a job as a SRO when you first get out. However, there are multiple ways of getting compensated. Some will choose a job that doesn't require shift work and determine this is worth a lot. Some may want to live in a city, while others the boonies. However, you will get paid the most for taking a nuke job over an aviator job.

Wait, there is an E-6 that is bitter towards JOs? He thinks he's more respected? This must be a first. Contact Navy Times right now. I've known at least 100 people that were both enlisted and an officer. Every single one said that an officer was much harder FWIW.

10/26/2009 9:20 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just qualified along with my two good friends and classmates who were voluntold to go submarines. They both had the eye surgery, so that argument doesn't always hold water. I can honestly say that I don't know how they put up with the rigors of the training pipeline, because there were many times when us "true-vols" saw little light at the end of the tunnel. I think it's a testament to their core values. While we all understand that we are subjected to the needs of the Navy, there is something to be said about taking care of your people, so that the nuke community can start improving their retention numbers. As it is right now, the bonuses are large, but the money has little affect on quality of life. I don't care how or why people show up to their job, as long as they are enthusiastic and care about what they doing to help out.

10/26/2009 11:49 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Any ROTC getting non-vol'd?"

yes.. it is happening every year.. i know several that it happened to this year already.

10/26/2009 1:20 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

T anonymous who said,

"To whoever said 5 years and getting out is a disgrace or is playing the system, you are a joke my friend. There is no singular reason anyone gets out, each situation is different."

You are anonymous, my friend, but you are half right ... there are a variety of reasons for getting out early:

1. scamming taxpayers (gaming the system)
2. prioritizing personal greed over patriotism
3. personal cowardice (see #4)
4. you really wanted to be a lawyer
5. sudden physical incapacity
6. hetero or homo love life considerations
7. you are the politicians son or daughter

BTW, I KNOW who you are a&%____!

10/26/2009 6:07 PM

 
Anonymous LT L said...

Did a troll just get trolled there?

-LT L

10/26/2009 7:05 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1. scamming taxpayers (gaming the system)
2. prioritizing personal greed over patriotism
3. personal cowardice (see #4)
4. you really wanted to be a lawyer
5. sudden physical incapacity
6. hetero or homo love life considerations
7. you are the politicians son or daughter


Ah the US sub force...land of +1/2 sigma intelligence, +2 sigma confidence, and -10 sigma social skills.

10/27/2009 12:26 AM

 
Blogger Vrolok said...

anon - 10/26/2009 9:20 AM
Wait, there is an E-6 that is bitter towards JOs? He thinks he's more respected? This must be a first. Contact Navy Times right now. I've known at least 100 people that were both enlisted and an officer. Every single one said that an officer was much harder FWIW.

when a JO gives an order to someone enlisted, and then that dirty blueshirt comes running to me, his LPO for my concurance...what do you think?

As a senior E-6 on board...hell yes I am more respected than most JG's. The other guys on the boat realize I've been there, done that...and I've been around longer than a token 3 yrs and have been qualified doing the job for longer than the JO has been in the Navy and/or college time.

I have considered getting commisioned as a Nuke Officer. I'd rather be a MMC though. That is where the true power and respect are. Officers get the $$$, but the chiefs run the Navy. Give it a few years though and I might put in a package for the retirement...or a CWO job.


JO's scare the hell out of me. We're able to get a few up to standards luckily in their short 3 yr term. Kinda hard though to achieve that when their time onboard is nothing more than a blink of the eye.

Many JO's however never do anything but the bare minimum and barely eke by for their 5 years as Nuke Officers. These people game the system. Pure and Simple. Been the victim of a few of those JO's over the years.




If you want to do your 5 or 6 and then get out...more power to ya.

But I expect you to be fully utilized and do your damn job. Too many are basically malingering in my eyes.

Many of the newest enlisted and Jo's have no sense of work ethic or personel integrity. It's a sad facet of life.

10/27/2009 3:09 AM

 
Anonymous 30 year CWO4 (EX ANAV/COB) said...

VROLOK...I don't understand your comment "I have considered getting commisioned as a Nuke Officer. I'd rather be a MMC though. That is where the true power and respect are. Officers get the $$$, but the chiefs run the Navy. Give it a few years though and I might put in a package for the retirement...or a CWO job." What are you trying to say about the CWO community? I was a Masterchief (COB/CMC) when I put my package in for the Warrant program, because I wanted to continue to grow until I hit 30 years. Your comment sounds as if you beleive the CWO community is made up of a bunch of slackers. Meet up w/me after school at the bike rack and I'll show you...

10/27/2009 4:32 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We had a MMCM(SS) on my boat that went the CWO route. He went to TENDER HELL in Charleston, all the down side of shipyard with none of the perks. His advice to me at re-enlistment time was to get out and rob gas stations.

ex-EM1(ss)

10/27/2009 5:24 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...all the down side of shipyard with none of the perks.



There are perks to being in a shipyard?

10/27/2009 7:04 AM

 
Blogger Squidward said...

Its a mistake to think that the only choice for nucs upon leaving the Navy is to go into the civ nuclear field. There are lots of ex-nucs crawling around the IT sector, especially mission critical facilities. There's room for plenty more, too.

The last time I went to a big datacenter conferences, I ended up swapping sea stories with a bunch of other former sailors, enlisted and officer. Being a former nuc has a lot of cachet in many parts of the engineering world. People know you bring a certain mindset to your work - constant improvement, procedure orientation, training, etc.

I don't see these opportunities for former aviators.

10/27/2009 8:06 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Ah the US sub force...land of +1/2 sigma intelligence, +2 sigma confidence, and -10 sigma social skills."

Anonymous critic 10/27/2009 12:26 AM, you must have zero submarine experience? Had you ever served on U.S. subs you would know how totally wrongheaded your funny sigma assertions actually are.

Intelligence is obviously prized, but alone it is inadequate. Confidence comes with being qualified to understand and recognize fact-based problems, take urgent actions with cool-headed dispatch, and perform cheerfully locked in a highly confining environment with scores of strangers at times.

Social skills are secondary to none of the above. But of brutal honesty and misfits, only honesty is tolerated very long with good reason.

To prove my point about brutal honesty, (this currently applies only to female skimmers)let me add one more:

8. Ticking of your biological clock

10/27/2009 12:35 PM

 
Blogger kwicslvr said...

"Indeed, why would a bright fellow like the Ensign not choose the path with the most promising civilian employment reward when his 5-1/2-year obligation is up?"

Hard for me to agree wih this. Our current CEO is an Academy Grad sub officer. Our current Chief Nuclear Officer is an ex submarine officer and academy grad. The plant I worked at before this one, the site VP was also an Academy grad sub officer. So if they go into commercial nuclear pipeline they can easily make a nice pay day in a short period of time.

10/27/2009 12:48 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

kwicslvr makes a timely point, Vigilis. We may not know how long his CEO, Chief Nuclear Officer, and former plant VP served after their academy graduations, but Jimmy Carter's post academy progression attests to the variety of excellent employment paths available in a free economy.

The commercial aircraft industry is depressed, but even when it rebounds, we cannot yet say domestic nuclear plant construction will resume. - Dan

10/27/2009 1:28 PM

 
Blogger SJV said...

Domestic nuclear opportunities exist currently because of the balloon sized group of operators who are retiring. Considering the number of plants with 10+ years left on their renewed licenses, this is a great stable opportunity and will be for some time. Other options for ex-nucs exist in every area of the civilian workforce. The combination of good basic technology skills, strong work ethic, and quick learning ability are keys everywhere. You'll find ex-nucs in just about every industry and field out there.

10/27/2009 2:02 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ex-nukes stand out like a sore thumb...for all the right reasons.

10/27/2009 2:23 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...So if they go into commercial nuclear pipeline they can easily make a nice pay day in a short period of time.


Depends on your definition of "easily" and "short". I'll wager that it wasn't "easy" or "short". You don't get to be CEO of a company 2 years after you leave the Navy..unless it's a small company, or you were a head cheese while in.

Is it true that you can get out as an E-6 SRO-qualified E or RC-divver and make $100K two years after you are out? Perhaps, but I'll wager you won't be working a 40-hour work week to do it. Everything is relative.

10/27/2009 2:46 PM

 
Blogger Srvd_SSN_CO said...

to the idiot who replied that there are nuc plants being built in China, DUH. Not a single one being built here. Licensing is not the same as building.

To those that think 5 and out is a disgrace: those are the rules. Feel free to have your Congressman vote to change the rules, but don't complain about ROTC or NUPOC or USNA if they quit when their time is up. That's like saying if you punch at EAOS you are disgraceful...absolutely not the case.

10/27/2009 3:39 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone who volunteers for the SERVICE and serves their time honorably has EARNED the choice to continue or seek greener pastures. If you feel otherwise then force your offspring into the military and tell them they are unpatriotic when their contract is up.

Oh and Muligan, the world ends in 2012, sorry we won't be around to bask in the glo of your insight and brilliance.

10/27/2009 4:21 PM

 
Blogger Vigilis said...

"To those that think 5 and out is a disgrace: those are the rules. Feel free to have your Congressman vote to change the rules, but don't complain about ROTC or NUPOC or USNA if they quit when their time is up. That's like saying if you punch at EAOS you are disgraceful...absolutely not the case."

Exactly my point, Srvd_SSN_CO.
Complain to your Congressman who wrote laws facilitating sending their sons, nephews, neices and big legal clients' kin bent on civilian careers, and all those women with their biological clocks ticking for the unprecedented, low retention rates of today's service academies. Favoritism? You betcha!

Did I mention the annual cost to taxpayers for Annapolis alone? Ammortizing student cost over 5 years after graduation (around $200K per) PLUS commissioned salaries, is enormous compensation. Does anyone truly believe, the current system is a wise deal for taxpayers, or U.S. security?

Rather, consider allowing a fairer, blind bidding process where all otherwise qualified candidates (political connections to Sen. so-and-so discounted), willing to serve more time in the branch they are allegedly committed to, receive greater matriculation consideration.

Too simple? Some of the officers getting out ASAP have been so valuable to the Navy that we dare not accept people of Nimitz's caliber? Many of us rather doubt that.

BTW, as stated twice in this blog, PREVIOUSLY, "I certainly do not blame any of the academy grads for playing the game set up by our congress."

10/27/2009 5:24 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"to the idiot who replied that there are nuc plants being built in China, DUH. Not a single one being built here. Licensing is not the same as building."

I'm the idiot, and since I'm directly involved, I know the process. But thank you for your typical bloviating. You might want to check the dirt around Vogtle and Summer, though.

To my next topic:
"Is it true that you can get out as an E-6 SRO-qualified E or RC-divver and make $100K two years after you are out? Perhaps, but I'll wager you won't be working a 40-hour work week to do it."

Actually, one can easily make $100k/year, without an hour of OT. Of course, you will be working a rotating shift that works out to a little over 41 hrs/wk avg. However, every fifth week is seven days in a row off. Some people like the $ and multiple periods off and some prefer working straight days.

10/27/2009 6:25 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...Actually, one can easily make $100k/year, without an hour of OT. Of course, you will be working a rotating shift that works out to a little over 41 hrs/wk avg. However, every fifth week is seven days in a row off. Some people like the $ and multiple periods off and some prefer working straight days.

And what position is it that earns $50.00/hour in a nuke plant? Aux operator? SRO? Is it likely that you'll be a licensed SRO 2 years after EAOS? From what I understand, getting into a licensing class isn't exactly a given for nubs, more likely that you'll be an AO for years and years. If AOs make $50/hour, without a college degree, I guess I need a career change.

10/27/2009 6:41 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Plants are hir.ing Navy ROs, EWS, ERS, etc and putting them straight into SRO class - if they have a degree. Check out monster. The jobs are out there. But yes, AO first is the more typical route.

10/27/2009 7:19 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vrolok.....
I'm sorry your time in the Navy has caused you to be so bitter and I wish you had spent some more time with good officers. As a senior E-6 maybe you should ask yourself what you did to make those officers better.
You failed to address the fact that I stated every person I've ever talked to that has done time as an officer and enlisted believes that an officer was much harder.
Your belief that the true power is being a MMC shows that you have true pride in your job, which is great. Hopefully as you progress in the Navy you will gain greater perspective, lose some of that hate and make a difference rather than becoming a bitter chief.

BTW, for all of you who are ragging on about the people that get out, get over it! There are 3 types of people that stay in.
1. Those that already have 12-15 years in and getting out wouldn't make sense.
2. Those that simply love the submarine force (great for them!)
3. Those that are too scared to try something else, and stay in because it is easier than getting out. Unfortunately this is the largest group and one of the major reasons the negative aspects of the submarine force continue to perpetuate.

10/27/2009 8:24 PM

 
Blogger JanuskieZ said...

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10/27/2009 9:00 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In answer to Vigilis.

I have no data to suggest favoritism is the main way people get accepted to Service Academies.

I am a graduated of the Naval Academy who went with a SECNAV appointment. I do not know personally of anyone I was close to at USNA who got there due to favoritism or connections and I knew at least 100 people very well. There is the occasional flag officers son or politicians son but they make up a very small portion of any class.

To make through a Service Academy is no picnic. You have little time to yourself, little time off during the 4 years.

You may or may not know that Mids get paid half and ensigns base pay. BUT, we pay for all of our uniforms, all our books, our haircuts and laundry out of that pay and we have to buy a lot of uniforms.

I am not complaining about the above just trying to dispel some misconceptions.

For aviators their commitment does not start until they have their wings so there is no 5 and out for them.

In the end you are taking a lot of 18 year olds and putting them through an intense experience that requires a lot of sacrifice. I don't think it is unusual that over the course of the 4 years at a Service Academy and then 5 years in service that their goals and ideas about the course of their life might change.

10/28/2009 8:43 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last I checked, an officer's employment is at the convenience of the President. I remember writing my resignation not as intent but as a request. They don't have to let you go; in fact, my XO told me I'd guarantee myself an IA for putting in my resignation as a JO. Of course, I put it through anyway. Six months later, I had orders for discharge six months after that.

I'm sure that they take the officer's value into account before approving/disapproving.

10/28/2009 10:10 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

They don't have to let you go; in fact, my XO told me I'd guarantee myself an IA for putting in my resignation as a JO.

Points for creativity, but the quality of the officer corps must be declining if your XO lied to your face like that. So dumb.

Was he a detailer before that?

10/28/2009 11:01 AM

 
Anonymous LT L said...

@Anonymous 0843

Wow. The English department at Canoe U must weeping right now.

-LT L

10/28/2009 4:42 PM

 
Blogger Ozy said...

Wow. The English department at Canoe U must weeping right now.

Indeed.

10/28/2009 5:30 PM

 
Blogger Mark said...

(lol) Nice, Ozy - Lt L: you need to get a friggin' life...

10/28/2009 7:34 PM

 
Anonymous LT L said...

Sorry, beer got in the way.

-LT L

10/28/2009 8:35 PM

 
Blogger a_former_elt_2jv said...

I've recently heard that NUPOC offers the following now:

E-6 pay for up to 2 years while finishing degree (E-7 if recruit someone else)
BAH while in school
$15K signing bonus on the spot

These perks seem like a pretty good deal to Joe-blow 20 to 24-yr old.

10/29/2009 11:40 AM

 
Blogger King said...

a former ELT. I believe this is correct except that it's longer than 2 years. I think it's actually up to 2.5 years. Signing bonus was only 10k when I did it. It's a great deal, well, kind of. you still have to be a submarine JO.

11/01/2009 10:46 PM

 
Blogger King said...

Also, worth noting. I actually made more as a NUPOC than I did as an ensign due to the BAH in my college town (I assume many other college towns have high enough BAH's to do the same).

11/02/2009 6:03 AM

 

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