Air Force and Prior Drug Use

  1. Let's say a Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduate wanted to enter and serve his or her country as an Officer in the United States Air Force. This graduate had experimented with marijuana four times as a senior in high school and the following year. This graduate is now in his/her late twenties and is, for the most part, a 'straight arrow', i.e. above average grades, rarely drinks, etc. What are the ramifications of this graduate's prior marijuana use? Will this graduate's chances of being commissioned into the Air Force be hindered? Should this graduate be fully truthful on the application? Thoughtful responses welcomed.
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    About Riversurfer, BSN

    Joined: Oct '08; Posts: 52; Likes: 2
    Registered Nurse; from US
    Specialty: 6 year(s) of experience in ICU

    16 Comments

  3. by   Skeletor
    Say nothing and be proud of yourself for quitting your illicit behavior in your teen years.

    Good luck
  4. by   USAFhopeful
    Hi,

    Although I cannot answer your specific questions, I can tell you that they will ask you about marijuana use at least a couple of times throughout the application process. For instance, they ask you about it before scheduling you for MEPS. Then you have to fill out a medical history form prior to MEPS then again at MEPS all of which will ask about marijuana use. Then the doctor at MEPS will ask you straight out during your medical consult if you've ever used it, carried it, etc. If you have ever been caught with it, they say that they will eventually find this out, and if you lied on your forms, you will be "dishonorably discharged and held for up to 2 years in a military prison." Maybe this was just a threat...they try to scare you at MEPS into being as honest as possible - to the point where you start believing that you have done something wrong and just never knew it! Maybe you are the only person who knew that this BSN grad used marijuana in the first place ;o).
  5. by   Skeletor
    Quote from USAFhopeful
    Maybe you are the only person who knew that this BSN grad used marijuana in the first place ;o).
    :idntdt:

    Do NOT say a word about it to anyone...that is unless you wish to not be in the military.

    I highly doubt a moral waiver would be granted for a prospective Army Officer.
  6. by   USAFhopeful
    To clarify in case I didn't come across the way I intended is... the only person who knows about this "marijuana" use is you and it's best kept that way. Does that make any sense? lol
  7. by   Skeletor
    Quote from USAFhopeful
    To clarify in case I didn't come across the way I intended is... the only person who knows about this "marijuana" use is you and it's best kept that way. Does that make any sense? lol
    I was poking fun, that's all

    I agree 100%, don't say a word.
  8. by   Cursed Irishman
    If you did it as a kid and don't do it anymore, no one really cares. Tell 'em. I forget what the limit is, but from my recollection: for security purposes you can use up to 20x's prior to the age of 21, then only five times after that age and it still be classified as "experimentation". As long as you didn't get into legal trouble associated with its use and are not a habitual user there is no issue; they even allow experimentation w/ cocaine and other hard drugs these days. Don't lie, just be upfront. Hard to believe: but you're not the first person to try drugs.
  9. by   Shimano0606
    Don't forget the AF core values. I hate to be cheesy, but "Integrity First" has its place here. I have a similar background and have been completely honest about it with no regrets. BTW, I also have a TS clearance and didn't have any hiccups in the application process. They care about who you are right now. They also will want to be convinced that you won't return to experimentation...sounds like enough years have passed for you to make that case comfortably. Just be consistent with whatever you tell them. When I went to MEPS, it was documented on several pieces of paper and no one really gave it a second glance. Good luck.
  10. by   fins
    You really really don't want to be caught lying about this. Such minor drug use is not going to be an issue, but if during some security clearance investigation they find out you lied about it, you will be bounced out of the service in a heartbeat.

    I had a history of teenage marijuana use, and I admitted it. I was still able to get into and graduate from the Naval Academy, get into submarines, and receive a top secret security clearance.

    Your usage history is well within the "experimentation" limits. It's not even going to raise an eyebrow.
  11. by   NursePamela
    As long as you didn't inhale....... :spin:
  12. by   Riversurfer
    Thank you all for the replies.
  13. by   athena55
    Hi:
    I inhaled during my teen age years. I told the MD at MEPS....I was Commissioned and I also received a Secret Security Clearance
    Worst thing you could do is lie. You are seeking to become a Commissioned Officer in the Air Force. Don't Lie. That lie may come back to bite you in your arse....
    Army Values (and I am sure they are the same in the other Branches)
    LDRSHIP = Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless-Service, Honor, Integrity, Personal Courage
    athena
  14. by   nydoll911
    I did not lie and told about one time experimenting with cocaine plus marijuana use when I was 15 and was told that because I had used drugs other than marijuana I am permantly disqualified from the Air Force. I wish now that I had only copped to the mj cuz I really want to be in the AF. I am pretty sure you will be ok since it was only Mj but keep that in mind.

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