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Old 04-18-2006, 12:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
can't find a job, should I join the army?

So I graduated high school two years ago, but struggled with college and left after one semester. Got a job doing office work, liked it a lot, but there was no room for advancement without a college degree, so I decided to go back to school full time. I've been back in school for about 8 months now, and I'm really struggling, I'm lazy and have no motivation to do any work. I live on my own and have been living off savings the last few months, but the money is slowly running out and I decided to start looking for a job a few weeks ago. I like working a lot more than going to school, but I'm aware how important a degree is, so my plan is to work full time and take maybe 1 or 2 classes at night (yes, I know it'll be very hard, but taking school slowly should make it a lot more manageable for me). The problem is, I can't get a reasonable job. I've been applying for a lot of administrative assistant type jobs on craiglist, but haven't had any luck, and now I'm thinking of joining the military. I did some research online, and spoke to a recruiter last week, and it looks like the army might be a decent option. I know it won't be easy, but at least they'll give me some free training in a field I'm interested in, help pay for college, and basically offer me a job when no one else is willing. Any advice?
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Old 04-18-2006, 02:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
Only join if you want to go to iraq, period. Two friends of mine joined, one the marines one the army. Both recruiters assured they would have office jobs.. later this year, both are going to iraq as grunts..
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Old 04-18-2006, 02:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Haha your friends joined the military because they wanted office jobs?? Ship their asses to Iraq; serves them right. The military exists to kill people, not make photocopies.

Anyways, if you do decide to go into the military, MAKE SURE you read your contract and understand it. Don't believe any bullshit from a recruiter unless you get it in writing on your contract. Don't let them take you for a ride, go to the recruiter informed. I'm not saying all recruiters are bad and untrustworthy, but it really doesn't matter if they are or not. What matters is you getting what you want and being completely satisfied with your decision to become the property of Uncle Sam.

Really though, I don't think anyone can tell you if you should join the military or not. You need to answer that yourself.
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Old 04-18-2006, 02:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: Kansas City, yo.
While the armed forces are great for someone who doesn't know what they want to do or doesn't have the means to get where they want to without help, you have to realize you will be going to the sandbox, regardless of what a recruiter may say. If it's not in writing in the contract, it's not going to happen, not to mention that your muster out time might be fucked with, since the forces have been doing a lot of stop-loss. You need to decide whether those things are okay with you.
"The question isn't who is going to let me, it's who is going to stop me." (Ayn Rand)
"The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers." (M. Scott Peck)
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Old 04-18-2006, 02:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Location: DC/Coastal VA
Consider the Coast Guard.
I think the Apocalypse is happening all around us. We go on eating desserts and watching TV. I know I do. I wish we were more capable of sustained passion and sustained resistance. We should be screaming and what we do is gossip. -Lydia Millet
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Old 04-18-2006, 03:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
... a sort of licensed troubleshooter.
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You'd be safer in the Salvation Army.
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Old 04-18-2006, 04:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Jinn's Avatar
Location: Seattle, WA
Do you want a life or training?

It's the most succint question I can think of.

The military trains you, but only gives you a life if you pay for it (with tears and sweat).
Life is life, but it denies you training unless you pay for it (with tears and sweat).
"I'm typing on a computer of science, which is being sent by science wires to a little science server where you can access it. I'm not typing on a computer of philosophy or religion or whatever other thing you think can be used to understand the universe because they're a poor substitute in the role of understanding the universe which exists independent from ourselves." - Willravel
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Old 04-18-2006, 05:16 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Location: Some nucking fut house.
Perhaps you can't find the job you want. If so, you won't find happiness in the armed forces. Maybe you should split the difference and look into a manufacturing job. At least in manufacturing, you wouldn't be locked in for four or so years, and it will make that going back to school thing look a little more attractive.
Don't always trust the opinions of experts.
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Old 04-18-2006, 05:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
If you are looking for job training you should consider the Air Force. Although they do have to pull duty in the combat zones, the duration of the tours is usually shorter and the level of combat you are exposed to is usually lower. You can get some very top notch technical training in the Air Force. The tech school that I went through was 6 months (40 hours a week) of intense electrical component repair training. I have built a good career on the training and experience that I received.
I've learned to embrace my inner Geek.
I haven't found anything else I'm good at.
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Old 04-18-2006, 06:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Location: Princeton, NJ
Why the army? Maybe if you tell us that we could give you some better advice. Cause the way I see it (keep in mind that my civilian ass knows very little), the army is the last branch I'd want to join with the current mess. The IED aren't going after the Air Force's planes or the Navy's boats.

As far as the military generaly, is there a sense of patriotism driving you to this? A feeling of pride you'll get from wearing the uniform? These kind of things have real value, but if defending your country doesn't give you a special thrill it might not be for you. If so, go for it man.

And I second everything everyone says about being very wary of Military REcruiters. They aren't bad people, they are jsut given the very difficult job of staffing an all-vollunteer military in a time of war.
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Old 04-18-2006, 06:48 PM   #11 (permalink)
Filling the Void.
la petite moi's Avatar
Location: California
Go to school part time, work part time at any job you can find. Once you get a degree, try to go back to admin work. Don't join the Army unless you want to go overseas and fight in the war over there. Like Jack 1.0 said, you could try the AF. I have a friend that works at Moffett AFB four days a week, and loves it. Tech school was tough he says, and basic taught him a great deal, it seems. But then again, that's my take on it.
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Old 04-18-2006, 07:27 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Location: Sydney, Australia
You are talking night classes and working as an alternative. Take it from a uni-drop-out - night class after a full day's work sucks - you end up spending your weekend/free time doing assignments. Make sure you are aware what you are getting into if you choose that route.

Also - you enjoyed the office jobs - why not do it and stuff the promotion thing. You should do what you enjoy doing. If that means night classes or the military then go for it. You shouldn't just do something for the "advancement".
who hid my keyboard's PANIC button?
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Old 04-18-2006, 07:33 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Location: Bored in Sacramento
Originally Posted by Poppinjay
Consider the Coast Guard.
Amen, that's what I did.

I was in a pretty similar place about a year ago. I have a college degree, but I didn't feel like I was going anywhere with my job (because it was a dead-end job). I called the Coast Guard recruiter and we talked about the different things I wanted to do and he helped me figure out what rating would work for me.

I like the Coast Guard because it seems a little less military than the other branches. I am **NOT** bashing any branch, but this was something that was importiant to my decision. I don't want to give the impression that the CG has no military bearing... we do. But we do lack certain things like PT outside of boot camp. Depending on how much you want to put into it, the Coast Guard can be just like any job.

If you decide to join any branch, make sure you are fit enough to make it through boot camp.

If you have any questions, feel free to IM me.

P.S. Also the CG provides 4500 a year, in addition to the GI Bill, for college.
P.P.S. Im not trying to give you the recruiter spiel, but the Coast Guard worked for me.
This too shall pass.

Last edited by Harshaw; 04-18-2006 at 07:49 PM..
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Old 04-19-2006, 07:55 AM   #14 (permalink)
kutulu's Avatar
I'd echo those saying 'why the army?' You are a hell of a lot safer in the Air Force or the Navy and much more likely to pick up skills you can use later in life.
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army, find, job, join

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