Navy Dads

Advice for son is in A school at Goose Creek due to graduate on 9-19-2014.

Son was doing well in A school, but seems to becoming overwhelmed since a new Petty Officer took over his instruction group. He seems to be spending very large amounts of time, sometimes 7 hours after supper doing homework. Recently he mentioned that he might not have the time to spend with his Mom over a Labor Day vacation to purchase his first new car. Does this sound like normal for A school one month out from graduation? He was getting high 2's and 3's on his most recent work before the new instructor. 

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Ray Moser- This is fairly normal, not only during A school, but throughout the entire nuke training process as well. The curriculum is rigorous and demanding and if a sailor falls behind he must spend extra hours catching up.  He will get as much support from the instructors as he needs and wants, but he may be assigned forced study time.  Could be as much as 35 hours a week additional study time that is monitored by his instructors. The process does not get any easier as he goes along either.  It is high pressure up till the last day of prototype.  My son had a room mate who was washed out of the Nuke program just two weeks before prototype graduation.  That was two full years working towards certification...and then washed out right before graduation.  Make no mistake about it...this is a long and difficult journey that demands complete devotion and dedication by the sailors who finally do make it through the whole process.  Hang tough and support your sailor.  It will be a long road for you as well as him.  Best of luck.  

"Does this sound like normal for A school?" Yes.  As others have mentioned it is tough and gets tougher.  The Navy will help along the way and if it takes extra time it is worth it.  It is not always so bad to be assigned mandatory study time.  As I recall though, in A school the sailors still get, and need, weekends and holidays off.  The instructors can make a big difference.  Remember they are not trained educators, they are just good at the information, that does not mean they can transfer that knowledge in a way that all can use.

this track is one of the toughest academic training regimes in the US goes with the job!!!

He is probably in ICE, and many struggle with that. My son failed a couple of tests in that stage and had to go up-hours, but he had the average to carry him through and nailed the practical part. My advice, though: he should take Labor Day weekend Saturday and Sunday to relax and spend time with his Mom. He will have to do study hours Monday, but that downtime is really important. I bet his SLPO would tell him the same.

About cars, go cheap! My son remarked the other day that he knows guys who never have money because so much is going to car payments and insurance. My son is driving the old car he and his brother used in High School. It is ugly and nearing the end of its useful life, but it runs, is paid for, and is cheap to insure. He bought himself some electronics, but not a lot. A good portion of his pay goes in the bank.

used cars are cheap right now and there should be a ton available....

What is the housing like at Goose Creek? How many sailors per room, do they cook in the room or do they get their meals in a chow hall? Is their a housing allowance for the sailors at GC? Can they live off base or is that not recommended? It's a ways off for my son who will be at GC next October, but he is already thinking and planning for this adventure. He leaves for boot camp in August. Do they have a Navy Fed CU at Goose Creek?

It's been a while, but, I don't believe the rules have changed much.  The were two to a room with a shared bath with another room.  Dining hall.  Housing allowance depends on rank.  They can live off base only after Power School.  My son went to BS for prototype, lived off base, and got BAH. NFCU is outside GC, with ATM on base.



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