New to Navy, ODS, Portsmouth-need any help? - page 2

by Sw88tpea

Hi there, I've been a nurse since 2010 and graduated from University of Portland, Oregon. I worked in mental health and with the red cross for a year before applying for the Navy. 13 mos later I found myself at Officer... Read More


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    Hello everyone I just graduated from ODS in February with Sw88tPea and she is a shipmate and friend for life! I thought I might be able to add in a few other things about the transitioning process.

    It is very important that you get your HHG packed up before you leave for ODS. I moved across country and if you wait to ship your goods until after ODS you will get to your PCS (permanent change of station) before your items do. Another thing that is important to know is the Navy is not required to give you 10 days house hunting leave once you get to your PCS for your first duty station, so if you are able to find housing before or during ODS it is wise. *Bethesda is one of those places, I had to report the day after graduation (Saturday) and we began on Monday.* Sidenote: the Army DOES receive 10 days house hunting leave. Also, Bethesda base has VERY limited parking since they merged, so a majority of people take the metro, you will get reimbursed. Please keep this in mind when you are picking a place to live.

    Back to ODS; the galley food really isn't bad, but if you have allergy restrictions/personal reasons you may have problems. Make sure you bring this to the attention of your class team in the beginning as they will work with you for accommodation. I am a vegetarian, do not eat eggs, and rarely eat cheese. They always have a salad bar and a vegetarian option, but just a word of wisdom, I ate a lot of cereal for meals or side vegetables with grain.

    I have long blonde hair, make sure you buy blonde bobby pins (or your respective hair color) as you will get a hit on inspections otherwise. Also have hair ties that are close to your hair color or clear. Bring whatever products you need, you may wear 2 barrettes and unlimited bobby pins.

    Bethesda is a large base, with Navy, Army, Marine, and Air Force. The CNTP (clinical nurse transition program) is 25 weeks long, and if you have been a nurse for a few years but did not come into the Navy with a designator, this may feel like overkill. However, if you truly are motivated and competent, you may be able to shorten this orientation.


    Hopefully this helps, if you have any questions feel free to ask me here or PM me and I can get back to you.
    Sw88tpea likes this.
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    Quote from Sw88tpea
    Hi there,
    I've been a nurse since 2010 and graduated from University of Portland, Oregon. I worked in mental health and with the red cross for a year before applying for the Navy. 13 mos later I found myself at Officer Development School and graduated this February. I'm stationed at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth now and living in Norfolk. I wanted to offer myself as a resource to any of these topics since I felt like I was at a loss for information prior to coming in. Feel free to ask anything about the nursing, the Navy, the application process, duty stations, ODS, Norfolk, etc. Good luck to you and thank you for considering service in the US military.
    Hello Maam,

    I am leaving for ODS this upcoming May and I just have to ask if they allow you to wear swimming goggles during the third swim test qualification?? Thank you, and congratulations..
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    Sw88tpea!

    I am leaving for ODS May 13 and then to Portsmouth after. Do you have a private email account to ask a few questions about the area and the hospital?! Would love to get more information!

    Thanks!
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    No goggles, no cap. Just a black swim/navy swimsuit. Some people braved contacts. I just went blind. Some people went really blind. Just know it goes by so fast you don't really have time to think about it and you just do it.
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    You're welcome to private message me via allnurses.com. I'm happy to share information about my command and about Norfolk/Portsmouth.
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    I'm currently stationed at Bethesda and have been for over a year now. I just want to throw out there the CNTP is 25 weeks....BUT it's not 25 weeks of floating all over the hospital. I was one of the last bunches to do the original 10 week intern period. Now they do 10 weeks floating about the hospital but then the other 15 are on their assigned floor. I believe it's supposed to be like 10 with a preceptor then 5 "on your own". I know two girls on my floor our chain of command has already let them work on their own but keeps them listed on orientation status on our schedule. Apparently the floors have to send the work schedule of those still considered CNTP to the Navy LCDR in charge of it. Hopefully this helps anyone coming to Bethesda to not freak out as much!
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    Thanks so much for the input!
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    I guess since I don't get on here much it won't allow me to PM anyone. Is it possible for you to PM me? Hopefully it allows me to answer!
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    Quote from Sw88tpea
    No goggles, no cap. Just a black swim/navy swimsuit. Some people braved contacts. I just went blind. Some people went really blind. Just know it goes by so fast you don't really have time to think about it and you just do it.
    Thank you, and final question, How much cash/money do we bring/need overall for ODS?
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    Does anyone know if "time in service" includes time spent in NCP? I was just curious if I will be ENS with 0 time in or with 1 year since I signed my contract? Didn't know how it worked since I"m considered "Reserves." Thanks for the help! Love this forum, on my countdown!


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