Military Nursing Questions Answered - page 13

by navyman7 62,044 Views | 204 Comments

Hello. I have seen many questions posted about the recruiting, the military, and future military experiences, I wanted to start a Q & A forum where you can ask questions related to the military from someone who is in the... Read More


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    This is an amazing post. I skimmed through all of it just now. But navyman7, I noticed that you had said that RNs in the navy reserve are deployed more often than active-duty nurses. I am more interested in the reserves b/c I assumed they were deployed LESS. I don't mind up to 3 months/year, but I'm sure you understand why I would prefer to limit time away from my family and full time job.

    I know you are active-duty, but I wonder if you have any insight on how much time a nurse in the reserves could expect to be on active-duty.

    Thanks so much in advance!
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    I was wondering if anyone knows about loan repayment incentives and service commitment lengths. I spoke to a recruiter today via the chat feature and he told me there are no loan repayment incentives for navy reserve nurse corps. He also said a basic service commitment for is 6 years for navy reserve. The army reserve nurse corps offers up to $50K in college loan reimbursement and requires a 3 year initial service commitment. Of course the commitment goes up according to how much money you accept from the loan reimbursement program. Is the info I got from the chat recruiter accurate?
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    Ginacat/surfnnurse: sorry to say that my knowledge base is limited to AD nursing mostly. I only know a little about the reserves as I have encountered many reserve nurses while deployed and in the hospital while they do there "one weekend a month". So I am sorry to say that I can't answer those questions accurately. Do your best and try to speak to a reservist nurse. Remember a recruiter will give you some helpful info, but they may be withholding a lot more than you realize. I know this firsthand. Goodluck in your search.
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    General Question: Which is better Army Nurse corp or Air force nurse? Do they generally offer the same benefits/ incentives as far as education, career, and personal?
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    Thank you navyman7. I'm still a year away from achieving my BSN, so I've got plenty of time to figure this out. All I know for certain at this point is that I want to serve in some capacity, I make way too much as a civilian nurse to ever considered active duty, and I have to have a good financial incentive to get my wife to sign off on any of this. For now I suppose I'll stop worrying about it and focus on getting my bsn.
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    For those of you considering reserves for monetary reasons, let me share with you my experience with the military. You will have to earn every penny of it. You should plan on being deployed...which means that your high paying civilian job will be left (but not lost) for a job that pays less and is more demanding.

    There is no way Uncle Sam is going to shell out $50,000 in bonuses, and a monthly paycheck, and only expect a few weeks a year of work in return. Negative. My advice is, if you are thinking about signing on the dotted line then you should be prepared for the VERY likely possibility that you will be deployed to some place you'd rather not be. And if you don't get deployed, there is a VERY likely chance you will get activated and sent to a duty station for an extended period of time. AND, if you are specialized in critical care, psych, or something else that is highly desire by the military...you are sooooo going to get deployed.

    Long story short, if you are worried about being deployed or separated from your family...don't do it...it'll likely happen. I'm sure I'm coming off like a you-know-what but I've meet my share of ****** off reservists on active duty who did not plan on serving when they signed up. Just trying to give you ladies and gents the truth; however, cold it may seem.

    Also, the Army is probably the worst branch to pick if you DON'T want to get deployed. And they tend to have the longest deployments, too. Pick the AF or the NAVY...still going get deployed, but they're not as demanding.
    *Disclaimer: as always, for the most accurate military information, please contact your local recruiter*
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    I want the experience gained from deployments. I'm not interested in joining solely for the loan forgiveness, but I know my wife isn't going to be ok with it if there is no financial incentive. I am interested for the experience gained. Just need a good package if I'm going to sell the idea to my wife. I do appreciate and understand your concern though. I want to join navy, I come from a navy and af family. Not really interested in the army. Just pointing out the differences in the incentives offered at the time I inquired.
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    This forum is amazing. Thank you SO much for starting it. I, like everyone else here, need a little bit of guidance.
    I am in the VERY beginning stages of this. I have been thinking about it for a while and called a recruiter today and am waiting for a call back. My background...
    I am finishing my B.A in Communications in May and am working on being accepted to an advanced BSN program. It begins in January 2014 and I would be done in June of 2015 (scary, right?)
    I am not from a military background, and I have no knowledge of the Navy at all. I LOVE the idea of serving those who served and being able to use a BSN and RN in order to serve a much greater good. That being said, I am a family person through and through. I am close with my parents and brother and I have a fiance that means the world to me. I love the idea of traveling and working all over the country, and overseas.
    What I am wondering is this...can you still have a family, a real family life, while you do this? What are the chances of me being stationed in the states and not being deployed? What are the chances of me being stationed overseas, but not deployed per se? Can I bring my family? Are there long term assignments like that? What happens if/when I get pregnant? I guess I don't know anything, and am looking for some general info before I sit down with a recruiter all wide-eyed and excited ready to please people.
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    - I'm not sure what your idea of a "real family" is. You may have to elaborate. Military families move around a lot and have to deal with periods of separation...it's just the way it is. If you make a career out of the military you will absolutely spend time away from your family at some point.

    - Your first duty station will be inside the US. They don't typically send new nurses overseas for their first assignment...unless you are a prior HM (if you have to ask, you're not one). After your first duty station (typically 2-3 years), you may have the opportunity to get an overseas duty station like Italy, Guam, HI, Japan, etc.

    - Yes, you can bring your family with you. By family, I mean your spouse and children...not your parents, siblings, cousins, etc (Unless they are considered your "Dependant"). You said you didn't know anything about the military, so I figured I'd make that clear.

    - The length of assignments vary by where you are stationed. Overseas assignments tend to be shorter, strenuous assignments are shorter, and state-side assignments are a bit long. The average is around 2-3 years. Length of deployments depend on where the deployment is to, your job, and your branch of service (Army tends to be the longest).

    - Having a baby in the military is a lot like having a baby as a civilian. I don't know the specifics, though, since my wife and I don't have kids. Typically, women work up until it's time to have the baby, and then they'll get about 6 weeks of maternity leave afterwards. You will NOT be deployed if you are pregnant, so don't worry about that. A lot of bases have day cares and stuff, too.

    My advice is to start asking your recruiter questions now, so that when it comes time to apply you'll be ready for it. You can start putting together your package once you get your acceptance letter for nursing school...should take around 1-2 months to complete. The trick is to start as soon as you have the opportunity to because spots fill up quickly.
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    Thank you for responding. "Real" family wasn't a good way of putting that, sorry if I offended anyone. I just mean being able to spend time together, see your kids grow up etc. I do realize that there is a lot of travel involved, and that is part of why it appeals to me. I really appreciate you answering, I had heard that recruiters are sometimes more concerned with "selling" than they are with your concerns.


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