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Old 12-14-2007, 04:09 PM  
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Questions about joining the Marines.

I have a whole lot of debt from graduate school and due to a bunch of career reversals on my part, I'm still two years away from a masters degree. I know what I want it in (let's hope it stays that way), and I'm holding down a job at the moment that, while very rewarding, doesn't pay well and barely covers for school.

So I hear about a coworker's son re-upping to the Marines for a signing bonus of $41K.

If I were to sign on, it might not be that much (I assume it's higher for guys re-upping than it is for newcomers such as I would be), but it'd be a significant amount that would forever relieve me of the tens of thousands I've built up through school loans over the years and can barely manage to pay off.

Here are my questions, please only answer if you're 90% sure:

1. How much is initial signing bonus for a newcomer, if there is one?

2. Do they allow for people to pursue masters degrees while serving, and would it be insanely difficult to try?

3. What requirements would I have to meet for them to cover much/all of my grad school?

4. Should I temporarily abandon my current job to become a Marine, totally pay off my student loans while pursuing a master's degree?

This is more of a trial balloon than anything, so thanks to anybody who may help.
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:25 PM   #2
MichaelH MichaelH is offline
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No offense to the Marines but a Master's degree and the Jarheads don't mix. Why not try the Navy or Air Force?
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:26 PM   #3
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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I had no idea you were such a smarty pants.
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:27 PM   #4
Deberg_1990 Deberg_1990 is offline
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If your going into the military with that much education already, you should become an Officer, not enlisted.

Talk to a recruiter, and definately go Navy or Air Force, unless you like being a desert rat?
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:40 PM   #5
2bikemike 2bikemike is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deberg_1990
If your going into the military with that much education already, you should become an Officer, not enlisted.

Talk to a recruiter, and definately go Navy or Air Force, unless you like being a desert rat?
This is the Best advice so far. IMHO it would be foolish to go in as an enlisted with your education. Seek out other branches and talk to them all. Don't take their word at heart get guarantees in writing.

I don't know what your degrees are in but see if there is something you can do similar to your current education.

My Sister went through nursing school and then joined the USAF as an officer and they then paid for her to get her masters. (They paid the tuition at Georgetown and she earned her pay while she went to school.)
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:41 PM   #6
Iowanian Iowanian is offline
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The Marines don't accept applications, Only Committments.


I have a buddy who is quite a bit younger and fairly eductated who joined the marines. He was put in Okinawa and quickly got snatched up by a higher up. That guy will never let him go, because he makes the officer look good.

Good luck with your decision, but my very good friend who is the recon instructor, told me a few years ago, when I was considering trying again, after college.....he told me to join the airforce because they sleep in beds, get new equipment, get more money and do half the work.

Explore your options carefully and make the best decision for you.

Good luck.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:17 PM   #7
pikesome pikesome is offline
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I did my time in the Navy and I'd recommend it over the Marines or Army any day. The Air Force isn't a bad idea either, my biggest problem with them is the idea that there are pilots and everyone else. I don't know just how true that is at the officer level though. DO NOT enlist, if you have a degree and want more becoming an officer is the only way to go.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:22 PM   #8
Phobia Phobia is offline
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If you want the luxury to finish college, join a different branch. You can finish in the Marines but a young lieutenant will likely be sent on plenty of deployments unless you land in the right field. I could have gotten a fat signing bonus if I had re-enlisted - in that neighborhood but I more than made up for it in 2 years in the private sector.

Based on your criteria, I'd say your an Air Force candidate rather than USMC.

If you do decide to sign up, move to Texas for a month, establish residency and make that your home of record. Not only will you be state income tax free but there are educational benefits available to vets there.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:23 PM   #9
Brock Brock is offline
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That's 10k a year. Seems to me a part time job would pay that.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:23 PM   #10
Count Zarth Count Zarth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phobia
If you do decide to sign up, move to Texas for a month, establish residency and make that your home of record.
And you can hang out with GoChiefs.
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Old 12-14-2007, 06:52 PM   #11
ChiefsCountry ChiefsCountry is online now
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I dont know if the military pays much for master's degrees. My buddy is in the Guard and he said its way different than his undergrad.
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:01 PM   #12
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Personally, I went into the Army with my degree and I was very happy I went enlisted. Yeah, I didn't make as much money as an officer, but I also didn't have to put up with the crap that officers did (and believe me, the politics of being an officer outweighs the benefits from what I could see).

By having my degree, I got promoted faster (maxed education points the second I joined) and got my pick of what I went into. Also, the Army paid off my college loan (had to ask for that when I went in) AND I got the GI Bill (for further education) AND when I went for my Masters, I got 75% of my tuition paid by the Army (if I was still working on my Bachelors, I would have gotten 90% paid).

So, you have to weigh exactly what you want out of the military - BUT - (you knew this was coming) - you better be joining with your eyes wide open. If you're only going in to get out of debt, you're going to be very miserable for the length of your enlistment (or commitment if you go officer). Being in the military isn't for the faint of heart or those who can't follow orders.

Still, if you're interested, there are worse ways to make a living.
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:19 PM   #13
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Still, if you're interested, there are worse ways to make a living.
Yeah, you could be married to Gochiefs.
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:20 PM   #14
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:24 PM   #15
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Honestly, your signing bonus would totally depend on your ASVAB scores and the field you choose/qualify for. The only person that knows those answers is a recruiter.

I would play every branch against every other one and I would make sure you know EXACTLY what you qualify for. I showed up at my computer school and many of my peers were a rank higher than me and were walking around with anywhere from $5-20k in their pockets.
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