Author Topic: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school  (Read 643 times)

hashbrowns

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I'm 33 and am 2 years into a Mechanical Engineer degree. I've been taking classes at a CC and pay for them out of pocket. I'm set to start taking University classes in the next couple of terms and I don't know how I'm going to be able to afford school while keeping my grades up. BTW I work full time.

Strolled through a career fair at the CC the other day and ended up talking to the Air National Guard. In Oregon they'll pay for you first 4 year degree %100. So now it's got me thinking about joining.

Both my fiance and my parents are getting older and I'm kind of freaking out about finishing with school sooner than later just in case.

I'm just wondering what your experiences have been, suggestions, advice, pro's/con's, and general discussion. Some concerns I have: would drills and duty totally screw up my school schedule and progress, will it be a hindrance to an engineering career after school, and would it be a good decision?

Let me know what you folks think. I'll probably have a metric shit ton more questions here in a bit.

mozar

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2018, 10:08:18 PM »
Wait, how old is your fiance? Why are you worried about your fiance "getting older" are they a lot older than you? 33 is still really young, do you have a specific concern about your fiance and parents health?
 Do you want to join the military? Do you want to be an engineer for the military? I think you need to spend more time thinking about what you want because joining the military just to make the last 2 years of school free is shortsighted.

booyah

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2018, 10:25:44 PM »
I joined the ANG for that reason. It was the best decision ever and I highly recommend it.


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MommyCake

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2018, 04:57:00 AM »
You would have to attend Basic Training, which means you would need to take at least a semester off school.  This would not speed up your schooling. 

The national guard drill pay will not replace your full-time salary because it's only one weekend a month, so I assume you would still be working.  If you're worried about working and keeping your grades up, adding monthly drills to your schedule certainly won't help.

I would seriously consider what your life would be like if joined before you make the decision.




kpd905

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2018, 05:20:38 AM »
Keep in mind that we've been in various wars for the past 17 years.  I'd rather take out some loans than get deployed, but that is just me.

terran

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2018, 05:49:32 AM »
Keep in mind that we've been in various wars for the past 17 years.  I'd rather take out some loans than get deployed, but that is just me.

I think that's the key. If you want to join the military, do it! If you want to go to school, do it! Don't combine the decisions.

Have you applied for scholarships? That could be a good use of some time. Supposedly a lot of them don't get as many applications as you'd think.

booyah

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Re: I'm thinking about joining the Air National Guard to pay for school
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2018, 06:31:46 AM »
It appears some of the posters don’t really know what the ANG really is like. It’s way different from the Army National Guard. I spent 11 years in the ANG and 12 in the active duty Air Force, and feel pretty qualified to tell you what it’s really like. The person who said if you “want to go to school go to school or if you want to join the military join the military” is off base. In all my years I have yet to see an ANG member involuntarily deployed. Do people volunteer? Sure. But I was an airlift medic in the height of Iraqi Freedom with thousands of wounded and I still had to fight like hell to get deployed, I wanted to so bad. It is very much a part time job. I’m sure some people in certain jobs have been involuntarily deployed but you can ask your recruiter which jobs rarely deploy if that is something that concerns you. Frankly deploying was something I’m so glad I got to do. Now the Army National Guard? That’s different. They deploy a lot and for 12 months at a time.
The ANG paid 100% of my tuition, plus I got GI Bill, plus student loan repayment. Check different states programs so you can join whichever state has better benefits.  Each state also has different jobs available. For example if your state has fighter jets you will have different jobs available than if they have drones. You won’t be an engineer in the ANG because you don’t have the degree. So you get to pick your job! Many of them have signing bonuses too. It’s a sweet gig and one that I think people don’t take advantage of because they think there is a catch. It was a great experience for me and everyone else I know. I’d jump on it if you can qualify medically. Don’t wait too long or you age out. I think age 35 is the max.


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