Patrick Bateman wrote:
trayball23 wrote:Can someone elaborate on the living conditions at the various parts of the Army, Navy and AF JAG training. I am wondering at the various phases if you are required to live in barracks or if you live off base, if you are given liberty. Does it make sense to move your family out with you? Will you even be allowed to see them? I know each branch has different steps in their training. If someone can take the time to tell me the living conditions and restrictions in each part I would really appreciate it
For the Air Force:
This answer will vary depending on your commissioning path - OYCP/GLP involve field training with other ROTC units at Maxwell. I do not have any direct knowledge on this so I'll let someone better educated on that process speak to it.
If you go through Direct Appointment (DAP) you will have your 6.5 weeks at Officer Training School. There you are living in the OTS dorms. It is a training environment were you will be largely limited to the OTS campus and then Maxwell AFB. You will not be spending time with your family and the bulk of your time will be accounted for. For a training environment, the dorms are solid enough. Was pretty close to my freshman dorm in college. Two twin beds, a roommate, two sinks, one bathroom/shower.
Regarding OYCP/GLP: field training should be very similar to OTS. Your first likely exposure to ROTC and officer training will be at the end of the semester before field training (hopefully you will spend at least a little time with the ROTC cadets so you can see what they do and what is expected of them). Field training is normally 4 weeks, but JAGs are assigned to an additional remedial academic week. That first academic week was pretty relaxed and served as a nice way to ease into the more demanding regular field training. It includes morning P/T, drill lessons, and many hours in a classroom over that week to teach you what all the other cadets learned in their first two years of ROTC classes. It's mostly history and some human resources/about the military information. We stayed in pretty decent dorms at one of the local colleges there, and we had our own rooms and access to cell phones. No visitors, though.
After that first week, we were bussed over to Maxwell and began the real field training. The facilities for the in-garrison portion of field training are on the same campus that is used for OTS. The rooms are decently nice dorm-style rooms. The only difference from the above description is that we had 4 cadets to a room, however, so it was a bit more crowded. The rooms aren't perfect - we did not have hot water for the first two weeks. We didn't really miss it until we had it later. We did see a lot of COT folks walking around in PT gear rather than our hot ABUs - it looked so nice and relaxing compared to what we were expected to do.
After the in-garrison portion, we spent two weeks or so at Camp Shelby, which was very, very hot (understatement). The housing tents are air-conditioned, though, and are really pretty nice. You have about 12 people per tent, with metal bunk beds that sleep pretty well.
At the beginning of field training, you have to give all your electronic devices to flight commanders who hold them for you for the duration of the training. That means the only contact you have with the outside world is through letters. You do not get any liberty with the slight exception of Sundays at Camp Shelby during church time. Since field training is only 5 weeks, and since you wouldn't get to see them anyway, it doesn't make sense to haul your family out there. Even people local to the Maxwell area didn't get visitors or time off to leave.
All that being said, people with families do participate successfully in ROTC. One of the three to finish was married with at least one child.
As a side note: ROTC field training (and likely OTS) requires a quick learning curve, but it is absolutely do-able. In my experience, nobody wants to see a JAG officer fail out. BUT health issues, be they injuries or long-term problems - CAN force you out of the program. Two of the 5 OYCP/GLP people at my field training did not complete the program for health reasons - one for a silly yet serious running accident/injury she got on the very first day that became seriously infected, and one for a newly manifested serious underlying health problem. Two of the rest of us experience some kind of injury (one infection and one sprain) that jeopardized our ability to complete, although we persevered. Absolutely do your best to avoid preventable injuries - that's the quickest way to find yourself out of the program. To my knowledge, only one of the 1 of us did NOT get injured or have a health issue. Maybe we were a freakishly injury-prone group, but I'm just sayin'. Lots of regular ROTC cadets also got injuries, became sick with colds, or had heat issues, so I think it's just evidence that the program can be physically demanding.
If anyone has questions about OYCP or GLP, feel free to PM me!