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What's the real deal?

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Expand view Topic review: What's the real deal?

Post by jakandjillsmom » Sun Jun 28, 2009 7:19 pm

A college op soldier has a college degree and is not prior service and can go straight from BCT to OCS.

Krysta

Post by haleys » Sun Jun 28, 2009 6:33 am

This might be a dumb/obvious question, but what is a college-op?

Post by Feena425 » Sun Jun 21, 2009 11:18 am

Well, I am somewhat in your situation! I am pregnant, and I am due September 25th, my husband doesnt graduate from OCS until Oct. 8th! But, I figure it wont be to bad because I should be able to see him on the weekends and as long as he is not in the field I have heard he might be allowed to join me for a nice screaming match during delivery. Nobody can tell you when you should get pregnant, and honestly it could take you longer than expected to get there! If your worried about doing it alone, then I would wait until he is done with training. There are no guarantees in the military! :)

Post by haleys » Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:50 am

Ladies - this information is extremely helpful. I have been trying to find out about this BOLC thing for weeks now and finally think I have some sort of idea about what it entails. My husband starts Basic in September - he is 28 and I am 29. We have been married for a year and want to start a family soon, so my big question is WHEN should I get pregnant??? Any thoughts on this? I want him to at least be around for the last trimester, labor and first month (I know he'll get deployed at some point). I plan to quit my job and move to wherever he is after Basic. But if I go into labor in the middle of OCS, will he be able to get leave to be with me for just a brief time?

Post by jakandjillsmom » Sun May 17, 2009 10:54 am

my DHs graduation is June 4th. We leave June 2nd. Here's what I know so far: We get to "sign him off post" from about 11 am-9 pm both days (IF he doesn't have any chores left undone, is in good standing, etc...). I am a little bummed that he can't spend the night with us, but I am learning to just go with the flow and am grateful if we really get that much time with him! I haven't reserved a car yet (we need a minivan for all of us and they are pretty pricey!) but I think there's no way around it for us! Maybe since you are only going with your baby you could get by without one? I'm not sure, maybe someone else will chime in with that and it may be different at Ft. Benning too. We got graduation info sent via email and mail about a month prior to graduation date (around week 5). My DH said he has heard the on- base place to stay isn't very nice at Ft. Sill (if anyone has heard any different please let me know). So I got a hotel reservation. There are some pretty good military discounts, so it wasn't too bad. I will let you know more when I get back and will be hoping for lots of phone calls for you!

Post by DianeKramer » Sat May 16, 2009 8:40 pm

Yes my husband started bct on May 5th well actually was shipped then and started on the 13th and told me his family day is July 15 and Graduation is 16th. About that how was that did you go? If so would love some info. I plan on going with my 6 month old baby boy. I wanted to know if u needed a car while on base? Anywho that is so funny they are so close in age my husband turns 39 on May 27th! I know he wanted infantry but who knows because of age. He has BCT in FT. Benning and OCS which he starts on July20th. If you can give me anyheads up in anything that would be great. They told me they would move me up after OCS unless he gets asked to do ranger school or any other "school" but you know how it is. Just wait and see. Well good luck to him and I hope he calls tomorrow he did call on Friday and I missed the call i was with the baby and didn't have a free hand I felt sooo bad:( I hope he is as lucky as your DH was.
Sorry for going on and on. Talk to you soon!

my experience so far

Post by jakandjillsmom » Sat May 16, 2009 4:30 pm

Hello, I am new here and haven't formally introduced myself yet. We are in a very similar boat though so I wanted to chime in. My husband is 38 and just joined in March. He finishes BCT on 6/4 and will begin OCS at Benning on 6/8. He turns 39 at OCS on 6/17 so our husband's are almost the exact same age! We also understood (from his recruiter) that he would be "stationed" right after OCS. It wasn't until the DAY he was sworn in (about 2 hours before) that we even found out about BOLC 2 and 3! We didn't even know they existed before then! That made the decision kind of scary at the last minute, but he too really wanted to do it and was ready for a career change as well (he has been in the IT industry for 15 years).

We knew it was right for our family, but the added time was a bummer to say the least. We also have 4 kids and live in AZ so there is no way that I was going to move all over with him. I am now considering moving to his BOLC 3 location though depending on which Branch he goes into and how long it is. Anyway, did your husband just start BCT? my husband has been lucky and has gotten to call every Sunday for at least an hour (except one Sunday when they only got 10 minutes). He has also gotten to call about 3 other random days out of the blue! Once for 2 hours. I know this is not always the case though and that it really depends on your company, but you never know and you may get lucky!

Anyway, hope you are doing well.

Post by char362 » Thu May 14, 2009 1:57 pm

Just my 2 bits from what we've seen in the ADA branch.

My hubby is having a loooong snowbird which has given him a chance to observe. He's seen that most of the 2LTs that branch ADA are being allowed to PCS their families to Bliss after OCS graduation. That's what we have seen so far. The married 2LTs are being assigned to Bliss after BOLC III, so they get to PCS here after graduation.

I have no idea how other branches are handling it, but the Army does seem to be (slowly) making improvements on keeping families together.

Best of luck!

Post by longhornhoney21 » Wed May 13, 2009 9:16 pm

Oh, forgot to add this... I know I said I'd shut up, this'll be quick. :/

The army usually will not move you (I think Infantry may be moved on army expense) until your DH gets through training and is on to his first duty station. Most wives do not move with their husbands, because it becomes cost-prohibitive, but for us we decided being together was worth it.

Good luck on your decision!
IN moves on army expense b/c all of the IN training is here at benning. We had PCS orders.

Post by DianeKramer » Wed May 13, 2009 7:25 pm

wow thanks for all the info. My DH is in basic now and then is going to OCS we have been told then after that we would get orders to be able to move with him I just don't know where? He is age critical whatever that means they say so they said it will go pretty fast he is 38 and turning 39 on May 27th. I got a call from him on Mother's day and can't wait to be able to write letters. Thanks for all the info!

thanks

Post by Walshswife » Wed May 13, 2009 3:51 pm

Supposedly, it is completely random, with half going to Sill and half to Benning for college-ops. You are however, going to run across those reserve to active or prior-service (read in-service) that will get assigned to Benning b/c they are given PCSes there. You will also run across those who finagle a Benning slot b/c of special or extenuating circumstances.

So. . . if your dh is college-op, luck of the draw.
Thanks! We have been looking into things, and have absolutely no idea where he'll be headed. He is a college-op, so I guess we'll cross our fingers and hope he's at Benning considering we moved all the way down here to be with him! Sorry about the double post on the last message...my pc was acting oddly.

Post by Wifey » Wed May 13, 2009 3:46 pm

Supposedly, it is completely random, with half going to Sill and half to Benning for college-ops. You are however, going to run across those reserve to active or prior-service (read in-service) that will get assigned to Benning b/c they are given PCSes there. You will also run across those who finagle a Benning slot b/c of special or extenuating circumstances.

So. . . if your dh is college-op, luck of the draw.

BOLC II location

Post by Walshswife » Wed May 13, 2009 3:36 pm

I know your DH has probably already signed his paperwork, but just wanted to get my 2 cents in. We've heard that most wives stay "at home" until their DH is out of training, which takes about a year for most branches (the length of BOLC III depends on what your DH gets branched during OCS) but some like me and kristinj decide to move with our husbands. We don't have any kids so that makes it easier for us to move, but I know kristinj did it with 2, so it can be done. Not sure about your having a very new baby, you and your husband would have to decide that for yourselves.

Just wanted to give you a little insight about our journey so far.

My DH went to BCT (basic) here at Benning (actually Sand Hill) then on to OCS here, so we decided to move on our own dime to the Columbus area when he went to basic training. We worked it out so we could spend 2 weeks together after we moved down here, so we got to explore the place together, and hang out alot, just the 2 of us. He left for BCT at the end of May, which lasted until the end of July. (I think it was 9 weeks, depending on how long the in-processing is.) Fortunately (because of the time frame) he was allowed to go to the Fourth of July celebration on Benning. He got to call his father on Father's Day, me a few times during in-processing week (if you get a bad connection, it's their pay phones, so don't freak out [I did :(] ) and once on the Fourth of July. We wrote letters every day (the only time he didn't write was when he was in the field) so I got to know the mailman's schedule very well. :) His letters were my lifeline while he was gone.

At the end of BCT comes Family Day (usually on Wednesdays, they do a short presentation, then get released until they have to be back that night) and Graduation (usually on Thursdays, they have the graduation, then have to go straight to OCS to report in, then are released for the rest of the day). My DH had to move his stuff in and "work" a 8-5 day on that Friday, but he was released on a pass for the weekend. (A pass means they basically can't go too far away.) Then he started OCS.

During the first week of OCS, we were able to IM (they could have computers) at night. After the first week, my DH got on-post passes, so since I lived nearby I got to go see him after work. We now know the PX by heart. ;) This is the main reason I would suggest moving to Columbus, if possible, because you get to see him almost every day. He started OCS in August, so his first off-post weekend pass was Labor Day (the 4th weekend, I think). I will caution you, though, not to expect this. The privileges always vary with the company, so you may not get the exact same privileges. Some companies were more strict, some were less. They get weekends off, for the most part, at least one day on the weekend. They can move off-post according to the company, sometimes the weekend before graduation, sometimes the day before.

If your hubby is a college-op, as mine was, he may have to "snowbird" at his BOLC III location while he's waiting for his BOLC II class date. The BOLC III location will depend on the branch your DH gets during OCS. Branching is currently (someone correct me if I'm wrong) based on the OML (order of merit list) which basically ranks all the candidates in the company according to how well they do on the initial PT test, the class tests, and various other "events" during the first few weeks. Then they use the OML to find out who gets to pick their branch first, based on what branches are available.

We are now in the final phases of BOLC II at Benning. When they are not in the field, they do get to stay off post (except for the first week), but they work very long hours. (very early mornings, even as early as 0330 like this morning :/ and late nights, usually after 6.) I've heard that they are not allowed to stay off-post at Fort Sill, so the off-post thing is only at Benning. He worked around the BOLC III class while he was snowbirding, so he tells me that, at least for his branch (Transportation), BOLC III should be basically a 8-5 course. Other branches, like Infantry for example, have other classes that are required, like Ranger school. Again, it depends on your branch. My hubby's BOLC III is only 3 months, but some can even be as long as a year, from what I've heard.

Okay, I know I've talked FOREVER so I'll shut up now. PM me if you have any questions about the process!
How will we know where my dh will go for BOLC II??? Does that depend on the branch? Or is it just luck of the draw?

BOLC II location

Post by Walshswife » Wed May 13, 2009 3:35 pm

I know your DH has probably already signed his paperwork, but just wanted to get my 2 cents in. We've heard that most wives stay "at home" until their DH is out of training, which takes about a year for most branches (the length of BOLC III depends on what your DH gets branched during OCS) but some like me and kristinj decide to move with our husbands. We don't have any kids so that makes it easier for us to move, but I know kristinj did it with 2, so it can be done. Not sure about your having a very new baby, you and your husband would have to decide that for yourselves.

Just wanted to give you a little insight about our journey so far.

My DH went to BCT (basic) here at Benning (actually Sand Hill) then on to OCS here, so we decided to move on our own dime to the Columbus area when he went to basic training. We worked it out so we could spend 2 weeks together after we moved down here, so we got to explore the place together, and hang out alot, just the 2 of us. He left for BCT at the end of May, which lasted until the end of July. (I think it was 9 weeks, depending on how long the in-processing is.) Fortunately (because of the time frame) he was allowed to go to the Fourth of July celebration on Benning. He got to call his father on Father's Day, me a few times during in-processing week (if you get a bad connection, it's their pay phones, so don't freak out [I did :(] ) and once on the Fourth of July. We wrote letters every day (the only time he didn't write was when he was in the field) so I got to know the mailman's schedule very well. :) His letters were my lifeline while he was gone.

At the end of BCT comes Family Day (usually on Wednesdays, they do a short presentation, then get released until they have to be back that night) and Graduation (usually on Thursdays, they have the graduation, then have to go straight to OCS to report in, then are released for the rest of the day). My DH had to move his stuff in and "work" a 8-5 day on that Friday, but he was released on a pass for the weekend. (A pass means they basically can't go too far away.) Then he started OCS.

During the first week of OCS, we were able to IM (they could have computers) at night. After the first week, my DH got on-post passes, so since I lived nearby I got to go see him after work. We now know the PX by heart. ;) This is the main reason I would suggest moving to Columbus, if possible, because you get to see him almost every day. He started OCS in August, so his first off-post weekend pass was Labor Day (the 4th weekend, I think). I will caution you, though, not to expect this. The privileges always vary with the company, so you may not get the exact same privileges. Some companies were more strict, some were less. They get weekends off, for the most part, at least one day on the weekend. They can move off-post according to the company, sometimes the weekend before graduation, sometimes the day before.

If your hubby is a college-op, as mine was, he may have to "snowbird" at his BOLC III location while he's waiting for his BOLC II class date. The BOLC III location will depend on the branch your DH gets during OCS. Branching is currently (someone correct me if I'm wrong) based on the OML (order of merit list) which basically ranks all the candidates in the company according to how well they do on the initial PT test, the class tests, and various other "events" during the first few weeks. Then they use the OML to find out who gets to pick their branch first, based on what branches are available.

We are now in the final phases of BOLC II at Benning. When they are not in the field, they do get to stay off post (except for the first week), but they work very long hours. (very early mornings, even as early as 0330 like this morning :/ and late nights, usually after 6.) I've heard that they are not allowed to stay off-post at Fort Sill, so the off-post thing is only at Benning. He worked around the BOLC III class while he was snowbirding, so he tells me that, at least for his branch (Transportation), BOLC III should be basically a 8-5 course. Other branches, like Infantry for example, have other classes that are required, like Ranger school. Again, it depends on your branch. My hubby's BOLC III is only 3 months, but some can even be as long as a year, from what I've heard.

Okay, I know I've talked FOREVER so I'll shut up now. PM me if you have any questions about the process!
How will we know where my dh will go for BOLC II??? Does that depend on the branch? Or is it just luck of the draw?

Post by Wifey » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:40 pm

They get partial during OCS b/c of the weekend passes. Like I said though, it was never more than $60 or so.

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