It’s the end of your senior year of high school and the time has come for you to figure
what you will do with the rest of your life. You decide to go to college. How are you going to
pay for school without depleting your parent’s life savings? You could get a job, apply for
financial aid, apply for student loans and that pretty much wraps up your options in a nutshell.
Well there is one more option that is still available to you and that is the Military. In today’s times
you can earn up to $40,000 for college for just two, three, or four years of serving your country.
Sounds good doesn’t it?
Lets’ say that hypothetically you decide to join. Well that is the first step in this long
road.Next is for you to call your local recruiter and tell them that you are interested in signing up.
Then you schedule a time for the two of you to get together to talk things over. During this
meeting he will ask you for your height and weight because there are certain guidelines you have
to fall within.
He will then inform you that there are documents you must provide for him such as,
Certified birth certificate, copy of your Drivers’ License, and your Social Security Card. Then
he’ll ask you if you have taken the Armed Service Vocational Aptitude Test, ASVAB for short.
If you haven’t he will set up a time for you to take the test.
The ASVAB is a three hour long, timed test. It test your knowledge in the following
areas; Math, Science, English Usage, Reading Comprehension, Geography, and some Mechanical
skills. Your goal is to score at least a 32 or better in order for you to qualify. After the test you
will go and see your recruiter and he will give you the test result. If they are good enough he will
the set up an appointment for you to go to the nearest Military Entrance Personnel Station, MEPS
for short. This is where anyone interested in the military goes to get a complete physical, as well
as picking out your Military Occupation.
So now you’re at the MEPS station sitting in the lobby with many of others who are
wanting to join. After waiting for what seems like hours, a man finally comes in and announces
that you will be going to several different “stations” to get looked at. Then while you’re waiting
for a station you will stand single file in the hallways so you aren’t cluttering them. Now he
separates the men and women. Each are to go a certain way.
The first thing they do is take a urinalysis. They check the urine for drugs, pregnancy, or
anything else that shouldn’t be in there. Afterward the men are checked for a possible hernia and
the women are given a pap smear/pelvic exam. Then you are brought to another room and are
instructed to walk across the room, on your tip toes, on your heels, then squatting down hugging
your knees. This is to check to see if you have flat feet or a balance problem.
Next is to check out your skin for any lesions, tattoo’s, body piercing of any kind, and
scars. The person in charge of this station writes all this information down because it’s a way of
identifying you. Then they look at your teeth to see what kind of condition they’re in and then
they take some x-rays. This is the start of your dental records. Then you are given a hearing test
to see how good or bad your hearing is.
Well now that you have endured this lengthy and in depth looking over it’s now time for
lunch. The food reminds me of the slop you see in the movie MASH. When you’re finished
eating you will talk to the Medical Doctor and discuss the results of all the tests.
When you get to see the Doctor, he explains that everything looks just fine. You can now
go and see your counselor. Off you go back to the lobby. You find the section for the Army and
you sit and wait until your counselor comes and gets you. Suddenly a man comes out and yells
your name. You follow him into his office and he explains to you that the two of you will be
looking for an occupation and to figure out