jhare wrote:I'm thinking about entering the Navy directly after UG. Once I'm there and put the initial 1-2 years in I will apply for the FLEP program, which would make the military responsible for paying 2 years of law school (at least I think this is the case). I know FLEP is selective so there's a 90 percent chance I won't get it. If I don't, I will finish my 4 year tour of duty, proud that I served my country. I will then apply for law school and use the GI Bill to pay for it.
Is this plan feasible? It seems like joining the Services is a win/win whether or not I get accepted into FLEP. Either the military pays for me to go to school while I am serving or they pay for it after my commitment through the GI Bill. And along the way I get to serve my country, something that would make me very proud.
If you want to be in the military regardless of whether you ever get to be a JAG, your plan to join and then go to law school through FLEP or the GI Bill is not a bad way to go. In fact, I have wished I had taken that route a few times over the past few years. You will probably be a line officer, which would benefit you in a possible career as a JAG: (1) you will probably have a better idea of what the operational Navy is doing and why they are doing it, and (2) you will have gone through the full OCS treatment - no 5 week OCS lite.
A couple of things to consider:
(1) The FLEP program is great . . . if you end up liking the Navy. I have a classmate who is in law school through the AF FLEP program; he has incurred an additional 6 or 7 year committment. I don't know if any of that time includes the balance of his original committment.
(2) Don't plan on being able to get into the FLEP program at the 1-2 year mark. For instance, if you were a pilot select, it would take a couple of years to train you before you ever hit the fleet. I don't know if they would let you switch designators that quickly. Also, surface warfare officers have an insane opstempo from what I have read. It sounds like an interesting career field, and you would definitely be busy. But, that first sea tour will keep you hopping for a while.
Check out this website. Surface warfare, in particular, has some very informative threads. FYI, you will have to join the site. http://www.usnavyocs.com/portal/index.php
Best of luck to you. If I had it to do over again, I would probably do exactly what you are thinking.
Edit: there is another program besides FLEP that will allow you to attend law school while on active duty. The military won't pay for it, but you may be able to use your GI Bill. I can't remember what it's called; it's basically like an extended leave. I am sure it is on this thread somewhere.