Fort Knox, Ky., – Cadets of 7th Regiment, Advanced Camp were given the opportunity to attend a branch round table event during an evening at Cadet Summer Training, allowing them to explore possible branches to join after commissioning as Army officers.
Cadet Geovanna Olan, student at Texas Christian University, native of Miami, was able to explore her career options while at the round table event.
“Tonight we’re getting our branch briefings. It’s an explanation of each branch that you like or are interested in possibly joining when you commission. All they are doing is giving you an overview of each branch and telling you the culture that goes into the branch, and the kind of leadership positions you would be placed in,” said Olan.
Olan was seeking stability when she began considering different branch options.
“I’m currently interested in Air Defense,” said Olan. “Air Defense is my first choice at the moment just because of the stability they have within their branch. It’s a smaller branch so they have less duty stations that you can go to, and because I am a mom, it’s something that attracts me for stability for my family.”
Olan felt like presentations were very practical and honest about what expectations would be for each branch.
“So far all the branch briefings that I have been to, they give you a pretty clear layout of what to expect all the way up to almost major, and from then they tell you if you want to make it a career or not, it’s kind of between captain and major that you want to make that choice, so they are pretty clear about,” said Olan. “I had my mind made up before. I was able to hear more about it and more about the defense systems, and I was able to get clarification on the different systems they have at different bases, so that was very enlightening.”
Stability and a smooth transition into the civilian career field is what drew Olan towards the Air Defense branch.
“So, because I am a little older than the average Cadet, I know I would be getting out sooner than most, and air defense is a readily transitioning branch,” said Olan. “It’s very transition-able into the civilian sector.”
Cadet Connor Sullivan, student at Michigan State University, native of Tampa, Florida, was able to explore his future options and ask questions at the event.
“This helps us as Cadets to identify branches that we would like to select in the future to serve under, or get a better understanding of what the Army has to offer, the different jobs and details,” said Sullivan.
Sullivan said that Fort Knox and CST is a great place to explore future career options.
“I feel like here it’s a little more real. So you get through all this training and you’re getting certified and this is the last hurdle you have to leap to get your commission, and a lot of the times during ROTC development you really don’t know what you want to do in the Army. You might have a general sense of some branches that you are eyeing, but you really don’t know much about each branch, or what you have to do, or even what you will have to do as an officer in each branch,” said Sullivan.
Sullivan is interested in both the Signal Corps and Field Artillery branches.
“Tonight I’ve gone to Signal Corps and I’ve also gone to Field Artillery. My original plan since I began a freshman was to branch detail Signal Corps and Field Artillery, and I knew a little information about each branch, but I wanted to get a solid concrete foundation and ask good questions and see how they play into developing me into the leader I want to become,” said Sullivan. “So far I’ve heard really good things from both branches and I’m really excited to be a branch detailed Field Artillery officer, because I feel Field Artillery is really amazing.”
Sullivan sought guidance from Cadre when he began considering possible branches he would be interested in joining after commissioning.
“Reinforce open-mindedness, I never thought when I was coming into ROTC originally that I wanted to be a Field Artillery officer or go into the Signal Corps, it actually took one of my Cadre members to ask me what my degree is and what I wanted to do, I originally wanted to do armor, and I was a communications major, and he asked why I wanted to do that when I could just go to the Signal Corps and Field Artillery where I could learn tangible skills toward my degree that would help me transition into the real world,” said Sullivan. “I didn’t really think about the civilian world, I thought I would be in the Army forever, but eventually you have to take the uniform off, so I was like all right, planning for the future really put my mind at ease, and Signal Corps and Field Artillery were the plan.”
Facing all of the different branches can be daunting for Cadets who still remain uncertain of where they are best suited.
“I would say keep an open mind, every branch is very specific and unique at the same time, so don’t feel like you’re out of place at all whenever you come to join the Army, because there is a job out there for you,” said Sullivan.
Olan also suggested doing research before arriving at the round table presentations.
“If you are unsure I think you should do a little research on your own prior to coming to these briefings, that way you have questions for the ones that do spark your interest, and at that point you could possibly decide based on the questions you ask and the presentations given by the officers and NCO’s here,” said Sullivan.
Cadet Summer Training will bring 8,200 Cadets through Basic and Advanced Camp this summer on Fort Knox. These camps are designed to help challenge, grow and improve various skills and leadership qualities within the Cadets. If you think you have what it takes to be a Cadet or if you are interested in a job after college click the following link: https://my.goarmy.com/info/rotc1/index.jsp?iom=IP08-AUTO-R1NA-BR-XXX-XX-XXX-MO-XX-X-BRCMAC:IP08