anybody want to help me with my career choice??

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by tkepongo, Aug 8, 2007.

  1. tkepongo macrumors regular

    tkepongo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Location:
    Oregon State University
    #1
    i'm really close to getting an army rotc scholarship (worth about $40,000). i'm a bit afraid of what comes after the military though. i'm a finance major (will be trying to work as a finance officer in the army) and hopefully double minoring in military science (if i choose to accept the scholarship), and political science. is that a good combination of education and military experience for life after the military?

    does anybody specifically knows what a finance officer does in the army? is it an office job, or do they go secure foreign money? (pamphlet and websites doesn't tell much)
     
  2. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    #2
    You will probably doing budgeting and planning of large projects with contractors. Its a pretty good job. You will be in a cubicle, pimping it stateside. Just don't be too much of an ass to the engineers you work with. The ROTC part will probably be the hardest.

    When you get out you will get a great job on the contractor side. Make sure to make a lot of civilian friends
     
  3. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #3
    The military sucks, don't do it.....

    I made that mistake and spent over 18 months getting treatment for post traumatic stress disorder, I lost over 30Kg and my hair fell out.

    Take my advice, before taking the ROTC path make sure you read the fine print very very carefully.
     
  4. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    #4
    Finance majors in the Army do a lot of different jobs once they are commissioned. Do not expect to automatically get a job doing what you studied. I have seen engineers become combat platoon leaders and history majors become pilots. The needs of the army come first.

    As a finance officer, you would be in charge of a lot of budgeting like shu82 said but you will also be in charge of allocating were funds are spent and procurring the funds to support a wide variety of expenditures. There are a lot of finance jobs stateside, but many finance officer deploy as well. The engineers and contracting officers in Iraq need someone to manage their money. You would not be on the front lines, but you might be deployed to a remote location to be in charge of finances for that base or post. I have also seen an Army finance officer be selected for convoy duty in Baghdad to accompany combat engineers outside the wire to project sites and to deal with contractors. It might be a cubicle job in the US but when you deploy it becomes a whole different story.
     
  5. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    #5
    You probably won't even carry a gun. Just make sure you use the new cover sheet on your TPS reports;)

    It probably is one of the least risky jobs out there. If I had to go back, thats the route I would take. I work with a lot of finance officers. I repeat, please don't be an ass when you start working with contractors!
     
  6. JHacker macrumors 6502

    JHacker

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    East Coast
    #6
    Haha! I saw that clip in probably 4 of 5 of my business classes last semester!
     
  7. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    #7
    I think this is a bit misleading. He might very well carry a gun if he deploys depending on where he goes, especially if he is at a small post in the middle east somewhere. And as I said before, just because you want to be a finance officer doesn't mean that the Army needs a finance officer when you graduate from college. You could wind up doing nearly anything.

    That being said, the military does pay fairly well in the officer positions especially after you reach the rank of captain. The job has really good job security and the retirement benefits are great. There are few other positions in the civilian world where you could get as much responsibility immediately after college than as a military officer. There are the additional problems of moving every couple years, deploying to support or fight in various wars, being separated from your family for long stretches, limited personal freedoms, and wearing the same outfit every day. The military is not for everyone but it is perfect fit for many and if you have the desire to support your country and have the personality requried it can be a great career or at least a great career boost.
     
  8. shecky Guest

    shecky

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    Obviously you're not a golfer.
    #8
    and don't forget you get the added benefit of traveling the world, seeing new places, meeting new people, and killing them.
     
  9. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    #9
    Well, gotta nuke something.:rolleyes:

    Don't listen to the anti-millitary folks here. If its something that is interesting to you, go for it

    Guy's don't turn this into an anti-war thread. For some people it is a great choice. War or not the military will always be there as an option.
     
  10. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #10
    I have known some airborne ranger pathfinder finance officers. So you never know. :)

    Others have mentioned some good information.

    Most important issue for you at this time in your life, is to decide if you want to serve your country or not. You will be subject to the needs of the Army whatever they may be. And you might just end up in Iraq or where ever because finance folks are everywhere. Having said that, serving your country is wonderful. Of course I am biased.

    But don't confuse Resource Management (RM) known as S-8/G-8 with finance. Different ball of wax. So are contracting officers. Now many finance officers become contracting officers. But they do different functions.

    Maybe this simple explanation will help:

    - Contracting officers contract for services, supplies, etc.

    - Resource Management folks manage resources -- mainly funds and manpower.

    - Finance officers dole out the funds based upon orders, contracts and funding documents.

    Here's an example. A military person receives orders to travel TDY to somewhere to conduct business and return. This trip was programmed and planned by his organization"s RM folks based upon their budget plan. When he travels he may travel on contracted airlift support that was coordinated by the contractor folks. When he returns, he must settle up his TDY costs which he does with the local finance folks at the finance office.

    So all three aspects are different but interrelated. And a finance officer could be in each one of these positions (RM, contractor, finance office).

    Then again, you could end up in the infantry! :)

    That is why I believe that you need to want to serve your country first, then look at your options. Because you will always serve at the needs of the Army whatever they may be.
     
  11. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #11
    One of the goals of any military unit is to be a fighting force, so yes he will be trained in using a rifle and most probably a side arm, and as soon as you're deployed you WILL be given a rifle or pistol being an officer or not.


    Don't call a rifle a gun in the army, it's bad karma if you want to be given a spoon or be made to stand on a chair and recite "This is my rifle this is my gun, this is for fighting this is for fun" that is the best way to get there.....
    Remember the recruiters are full of crap, they will say anything to get you in because they need people to fill positions, what you join up to do WILL NOT neccessarily be what you are doing. Scholarship or not the millitary don't give away anything thing for nothing, they will expect a lot in return.


    I'm not antiwar just anti military, I spent 4 years as a Flying Officer (Imagery Information) in the Air Force so I have experience the full "richness" of military it was not a good choice for me my advise is that if you have serious doubts then Army/Navy/Air Force or Marine is not a good career choice. I joined up after finishing a B Comm (Digital Media) because I was approached by a recruiter while I was at University. Boot camp was bad then the "real" military was even worse I had such a poor experience with them that I wouldn't want to see another person go through what I went through. I got out of the Air Force last year and have spent a good portion of time getting help for PTSD, trust me you do not want that.

    A fool despises good counsel, but a wise man takes it to heart - Confucius
     
  12. tkepongo thread starter macrumors regular

    tkepongo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Location:
    Oregon State University
    #12
    so if i get the job as an army finance officer, but the army doesn't need me for it then they can just put me into infantry? geez, i'm ready to serve but not in the infantry...

    okay, so here's another question: if i choose to major in accounting, what would be a good minor? computer science?
     
  13. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    #13
    Yes that's what can/will happen, whatever the military needs that is what they will use you for.

    I joined up to do Imagery Intell with the Air Force what I ended up doing was communications and PR.
     
  14. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    #14
    When you get an ROTC scholarship, you do not know what job you will actually get. Job selection normally happens during junior/senior year when they know you are going to graduate, and there is a lot of competition for some jobs. My experience is through the Air Force ROTC Instructor side of things, but I dealt a lot with the Army ROTC Instructors as well. You have to commit to serve long before you get to know what you will actually be doing. That being said, normally the military will use you in a position that fits your skills and abilities best. If they paid you a scholarship to get a finance degree, they will probably try to use that degree in your service to our country. However, if they have a bunch of finance majors graduating at the same time as you, there might not be enough open positions. There are always plenty of infantry positions open.

    If you don't want to take a chance to be in the infantry, I would recommend looking into Air Force ROTC if your school of choice offers it. There are still officers in the AF that will be on the ground in Baghdad with a rifle but not as infantry men.

    Like ezekielrage_99 stated, military recruiters will give you a load of crap just to get you to sign up. They want as many recruits or new cadets as possible, so please be careful. You can always accept the scholarship and if it doesn't work out you can walk away without committment. In the AF the first year is a trial. If you do not like what AFROTC has to offer, you can walk away and keep the free money you got for your first year. If you come back for your second year so are considered committed. If you have any specific questions, please feel free to PM me and I will gladly pass on what I learned as an ROTC instructor.
     
  15. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    #15
    Minors really don't mean squat. I have yet to meet an employer that gave a crap about what you minored in. I would recommend taking classes as electives that you enjoy and are personally interested in so you do well in them. Computer science courses are always great and give you great additional skills. On your resume, it will look just as good to say to your are proficient in X, Y, and Z, as it would be to say you minored in X, Y, or Z.
     
  16. art gardiner macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
    Location:
    Cairo, Egypt
    #16
    imac/cheese & sushi are correct - going in, you will be at the needs of the Army. Two of my PL's were Finance Officers assigned to my unit for their first assignment. Both were some of the best Lt's I ever served with, as they admitted that they were out of their element and let us do our jobs. As a result, we took care of them - guiding them on to become excellent officers/commanders.

    The end state - once you go in you will be at the needs of the Army; require an eight year commitment; and entering the service during war time. Regardless of which branch you are assigned to, anticipate being deployed. Anyone that tells you otherwise, either has no idea of what they're talking about, or has their own agenda.

    Remember, the military is not for everyone. Everyone that enters the Army is a soldier first, with their specific skill-set second. You will be required to qualify with your weapon, deploy a variety of mines, troops and equipment all as a part of your basic soldiering responsibilities. But, should you decide to go into the service as either a commissioned officer, or enlisted service member - the experience will be like nothing you will ever find anywhere else.

    Ranger's Lead the Way!

    Art
     
  17. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #17
    This is called branch detailing. This is where a junior (new) officer is detailed to another branch when they start out to get experience with troops. It is very common for the non-combat arms branches such as Finance, Ordinance, Intel, etc.

    Well put.

    :)

    Hooah! :D
     
  18. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    Jan 11, 2002
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    Los Angeles
    #18
    I was going to chime in w/something like this. My dad was a Ranger finance officer in Vietnam and he did deploy w/a rucksack and a rifle not a briefcase and a calculator. ;)


    Lethal
     
  19. tkepongo thread starter macrumors regular

    tkepongo

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Location:
    Oregon State University
    #19
    i decided not to go with the whole army rotc thing. i have enough money to pay for college anyways. so, now i'm back with the normal college life. does anyone here do financing or accounting?
     
  20. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

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    Location:
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    #20
    Yup! I do program management. Accounting BS and an MBA. Fun stuff. I just can't see myself doing tax returns. Its good to see someone with a specific interest just starting out. I was a history major until I realized I would have to get a job someday:D.
     

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