Sam S asked in Politics & GovernmentMilitary · 1 decade ago

Just a few Coast Guard questions?

I want to enlist in the CG but some of my family members are telling me not to because I will be enlisted and I will be "owned" by the military.

1. Do you get to pick your own job? I want to be in maritime enforcement of intelligence but my family keeps saying the CG sticks you where they need you. For example, there is no room in ME "A" school so I have to work at a position such a Yeoman, is this true?

Well thats all right now, I will think of some later.


2 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It is nowhere near true.

    You get to choose whatever job for which you are qualified. As you go through the MEPS process, after you take the ASVAB, the Recruiter will sit down with you and go through all the ratings for which you are qualified - and they'll be VERY clear with what you can do and what you can't do.

    The HUGE majority of our folks enlist under an open contract - meaning that after Boot Camp, you go to your first unit with no career field - you are just "general labor". This means that you can - and WILL - be doing everything that happens at the unit - from steering Cutters to being on boarding teams doing law enforcement to scraping and painting... you'll do it all. After you are advanced to E-3 (usually around six months after you graduate from Boot Camp), you can have your name placed on any A School list for which you are qualified (remember from the ASVAB process?). Then you wait for the list to be exhausted as folks go to school or folks get out or go to other schools, and then you attend your chosen A School for what you will do the rest of your time in the service.

    We do this for you. We have found that lots of people have wild notions about what the various ratings do in the Coast Guard... and once people see what the various ratings actually do on a daily basis, some want to switch to something else. Imagine chosing your career field based on a propaganda video and preconceived notions of what the job does... and the heartache if you chose wrong. You'd be amazed with the number of folks that enlist to be drive our small-boats, only to find out that those Boatswain's Mates actually spend time on Cutters and get underway for significant parts of their careers. We've found that if you come in under a general contract and can work next to people of various ratings on a daily basis, you can make a more informed decision - and can end up happier in the long run. This is one of the reasons that our reenlistment rate is double that of the next highest service (Air Force).

    Right now, the ME A School is not accepting new folks on their waiting list because it got SO big that the waiting time was over 18 months. It'll be closed until the wait is under 12 months (it should be open soon). You won't be forced into another rating.

    The ONLY time you may be "forced" into something, is if you fail out of school for another rating. ASM (rescue swimmers) have a very high failure rate - and those that flunk out are given the option of choosing another rating. That's as close to we have to "forcing" someone into something.

    And, like the Recruiter said - go talk to your Recruiter. We have enough folks knocking on our doors that we can afford to be brutally honest... if you can't handle the truth, there are several people in line behind you that can handle it.

    Source(s): I'm a Coast Guard Master Chief.
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