Posted on May 4, 2020
Kelly Re
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I have spoken with recruiters, but I have a few years of schooling left before I'd be eligible, so thought I'd ask here!

I'm looking to direct commission as a 73B after I graduate with my PhD.

1. How competitive is the HPSP program, specifically for this MOS?
2. Would I be a civilian until graduation? Or would I drill during my PhD program?
3. What is the process like for receiving orders? I had a friend who became a Navy officer after finishing with her BA. She was in ROTC all of college and when she was graduating, she ranked the bases she wanted to be sent to. Would I also rank where I want to be sent/do I have any say? Or is it completely up to the Army?
4. Any other advice or suggestions are greatly appreciated :)
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Responses: 3
MAJ Byron O.
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How many years of schooling left? These maybe better questions for then than now depending how long. Direct accessions (another name for direct commission) can be spotty. Your best bet is to find an AMEDD recruiter (might be DHA now) and ask these questions. Medical for officers has completely separate recruiting than your normal neighborhood recruiting station. Depending how may years out you are, ROTC might be a better option. Really need to know how many years we are talking before most can give good answers.
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Kelly Re
Kelly Re
7 mo
Hello! I have about a year left in my Master's program, then 5 years in a PhD program. I have reached out to my local AMEDD recruiting office, but they haven't gotten back to me in a few weeks. From what I have been told, it sounds like their office has been especially busy with COVID-19 going on, so there has been a big delay in response time. I plan on of course following up with them again, but since I am not in a time-sensitive position, thought I'd give this site a try :) I can provide more information if it helps!
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MAJ Health Services Human Resources
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Edited 7 mo ago
It’s been a while, but the HPSP is very competitive and we only offer 1 and 2 year scholarships. The only training requirement you would have while in your PhD program might be the direct commission course in the summer. If your academic obligations conflict with the direct commission course or the officer basic course, they will have you wait until after you graduate. You will be assigned where the army needs you. You may be able to list your preferences but there’s no guarantee because there must be a vacancy for you to go into. Go to goarmy.com/AMEDD for information and to locate a recruiter. You cannot apply for HPSP until you are in your third year of your doctoral program.
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Kelly Re
Kelly Re
7 mo
MAJ Byron O. all great points. My two main objectives are to work in mental health care and to join the military, but ideally the two would be combined. While my MA make me qualified to work as a therapist, the military only accepts master’s level social workers or PhD level therapists. Basically, my degrees do not qualify me for any mental health jobs in the military. From what I’ve seen, all branches have some type of behavioral specialist MOS for enlisted members, but the position seems very entry-level and I’m not sure I’d feel challenged and fulfilled by it in the long run. I’m totally open to other branches! From my research and conversations with recruiters, it doesn’t seem like any other branch has another job that is more fitting unfortunately /:
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MAJ Byron O.
MAJ Byron O.
7 mo
I would not enlist with what you are wanting to do but would encourage you to look at the social workers in the Army. It is a commissioned level job and my director for Behavioral Virtual Health is a social worker. I do not have a lot of information to give you as I am critical care RN however this far into your education you obviously have research abilities :) Enlisted time is great and I loved mine however your education already has you past some of what the instructors would have in AIT and when you get into the assessment level of healthcare from the technical side, some people have problems downing their game for those tests.
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Kelly Re
Kelly Re
7 mo
MAJ Byron O. from what I’ve read online, you have to have a Master’s degree in Social work. Mine is in Counseling /: when speaking with recruiters, I’ve basically been told to either get a different Master’s degree (social work) or keep going in school (PhD in Clinical or counseling psych). That’s why I’ve been looking more into PhD programs for the latter. The psych pathway follows more closely with my academic past, whereas getting a second Master’s in social work would be more of a career restart for me. Wish the military accepted Master-level therapists and this would save me a big headache lol
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MAJ Byron O.
MAJ Byron O.
7 mo
Kelly Re - I would not think it would take much from the school that gives you a degree in counseling to add some classes and have a SW grad degree. Beyond that, I do not think we can be much more help on here. You have a goal, you know what you need to do to obtain that goal, and that is great. From the sounds of this conversation, I am sure the military would benefit from you being an officer in any career field and doing so off your bachelors would benefit us but probably not you. Good luck in any pathway you chose.
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MAJ Aeromedical Psychologist
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Not clear if you’re at USUHS or an y Dee grad. You’ll need your license for independent practice first before you can direct commission as a 73B. Your doctorate must also be either in clinical or counseling psychologist. Talk to an AMEDD specific recruiter.
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MAJ Clinical Psychology
MAJ (Join to see)
1 mo
You do not need to have yr license for a direct accession but it is in yr contract and yr active duty ADSO date only counts once u are licensed. For me I completed my internship and postdoctoral years of graduate school in the Army, but not the 'real army. I think I made this confusing topic even more confusing for u. Bottom line- it depends when you sign yr contract that will stipulate these important details but all this information is readily available through recruiters specializing in yr mos 73B/64D.
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MAJ Aeromedical Psychologist
MAJ (Join to see)
1 mo
MAJ (Join to see) you’re describing a student being trained in the Army. I was referring to a professional who was done with school. You can’t direct commission without a license if you are not part of an Army training program.
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