Posted on Jan 12, 2016
SPC Keelan Southerland
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I was medically retired in 2011 from combat injuries. So when I get the chance to talk with young men, who have no future prospects, about the military I tell them the good the bad and the ugly.

One of the guys left for boot camp as a 19D back in September and did all the things I told him not to do before going to boot camp. He bought a new car, got a girl pregnant, and chose a combat MOS. By the way there is nothing wrong with Combat Arms, I was a 19D as well, but he wanted to have a career and there is not much call for combat arms in most work places. Now that he is about to graduate boot camp he learned he will be going to the 101st and is scared to death he will die in combat and wants to re-class as an 88M or anything non-combat MOS related.

His question to me is this. "Is there anyway of reclassing out of boot camp?"

I informed him that, since he is brand new that the odds were very low or nonexistent, because the Army just dumped a serious amount of money into training. Furthermore, he should get to his unit bust his butt, learn his job and become an asset and then ask to reclass. Additionally, I told him do not do anything stupid or say anything he might regret.

He is afraid to go to his COC because they will single him out and "make" him quit.

I am wondering if my initial reaction is correct or if there is a loophole that may help this kid?

Any help would be great.
Posted in these groups: 090710 a 3251c 006 Reclass
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Responses: 21
SFC Retention Operations Nco
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The answer is no.
He would have to have at least 1 year time on station before he could even request it.
After that, there are line scores, rank requirements, clearance requirements, and ever elusive class dates to contend with. Along with the almighty In/Out calls.
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SPC Keelan Southerland
SPC Keelan Southerland
6 y
Great Information SFC, that is what I was looking for.
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SSG Retired!!!
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He needs to seriously own up to what he signed up for. Was he not aware that people die in the Army?
There is no good, bad, and ugly here, he is gonna have some terrible days and some great ones and he needs to concentrate on his craft so if he goes to combat he doesn't get himself of his buddies killed over something dumb.
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SPC Keelan Southerland
SPC Keelan Southerland
6 y
SSG I do not think most 17-18 year old kids are aware of what they really signed up for. I tried to make him aware of what he was signing up for and showed him my scars as I lifted my shirt and lifted my cane. I even showed him the house I could not build while it was being built for me and my family. I paid for it of course, but still. I told him about the burn ward at FT Sam after my spinal surgeries and heard these same kids screaming as their skin was being scrubbed off. I told him "I bet none of those kids thought that would be the summation of their military service when they signed the dotted line." So he fully heard what the ramifications of signing the dotted line were. However, if he listed or not is a different story.
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SSG Retired!!!
SSG (Join to see)
6 y
I'm not sure if your saying he didn't sign up yet or not. But if he did, he defiantly needs to own up to his choice. Visiting and talking to disabled/injured vets does not give him the right to just say "ok...I don't wanna play Army anymore".
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SPC Keelan Southerland
SPC Keelan Southerland
6 y
He is graduating in 12 days. I am not advocating for the guy to reclass here. My initial conversation consisted of 'You made you bed, now sleep in it.' Make no mistake about my intentions here. I am looking out for someone so they do not take the easy way out.
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SSG Retired!!!
SSG (Join to see)
6 y
We are definitely on the same page here.
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1SG Claims Assistant
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It is possible, but requires a lot of hoops jumping many commanders would not abide for a brand-new E-nothing. There are also contractual complications to contend with, as he may well have a bonus or other considerations tied to his MOS.
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SPC Keelan Southerland
SPC Keelan Southerland
6 y
I understand 1SG. Thank you for your input. As per my initial gut reaction I will tell him to do his job and work hard and then maybe he can ask for an MOS change. Only after he proves his worth to the Army. Thank you for your guidance.
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