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Nalej
12-07-2009, 07:01 PM
I'm active military and just got selected for a program that allows me to go to college full time while still active duty.
I'm enlisted now and after I get my degree I will be commissioned.

My question is... I've been accepted to Oregon State, Penn State, U of Arizona and U of New Mexico.

WHAT'S THE BEST SCHOOL TO GO TO?!
I'm going for Mechanical Engineering.
Married with a little boy... so something family friendly would be nice.
Cost of living? Quality of school?
Anyone go to any of these universities? Or live in the area close by?


Help me out!!!

diabsoule
12-07-2009, 07:09 PM
I don't think you can go wrong with Oregon State, Penn State, or Arizona. I don't know much about either of the aforementioned schools mechanical engineering programs, though.

Congratulations regardless.

Wally03
12-07-2009, 07:14 PM
If I remember correctly from my time at RPI a lot of the mechanical engineers I knew applied to both RPI and Penn State because both RPI's and Penn State's engineering departments always ranks fairly well in national publications. I've also visited Penn State while looking at Ph.D. programs and have had two different professors who earned Ph.D.s there and it always seems like it is viewed as a pretty nice college town.

tjsunstein
12-07-2009, 07:21 PM
All very good academically in general aside from the U of New Mexico which I don't know much about.

Do some research on the programs. Visit if you can. Depending on your family, decide on where you'd like to raise your child/ the proximity of your extended family.

You can't make a wrong decision here it seems. Congrats man and best of luck.

By the way, thanks for serving!

CC.SD
12-07-2009, 07:21 PM
Hey congrats man, that is great news and a terrific opportunity. I don't know too much about those schools but I have plenty of family in New Mexico and they all love it.

KCJ58
12-07-2009, 07:23 PM
go 2 U of A out of all those schools

CJSchneider
12-07-2009, 07:23 PM
I'm active military and just got selected for a program that allows me to go to college full time while still active duty.
I'm enlisted now and after I get my degree I will be commissioned.



1. I never knew you were in the military, what branch and MOS?

2. Is this like a "Green to Gold" program? If it is I have some advice for you.

kalbears13
12-07-2009, 07:58 PM
Go to Cal Poly Pomona :P

U of A is the only one I've been to and it's really nice and relatively inexpensive. The only bad thing is you'll be spending the summers there.

Nalej
12-07-2009, 08:26 PM
Thanks to everyone. I'm still active duty and don't have the ability to visit.
I actually have to give my career counselor my selection by Monday so all I have to go by is Google and what friends (yes, that includes you guys!) have told me.

1. I never knew you were in the military, what branch and MOS?

2. Is this like a "Green to Gold" program? If it is I have some advice for you.

1- I'm in the Navy. MOS? That's not a navy term so I'll guess. What's my job? Rank? I'm an E-6 and I'm a Nuclear Machinist Mate. Basically, I'm a mechanic that works on Nuclear reactors and its auxiliary systems. I'm stationed in upstate NY as an intructor at the nuke schools.

2- Again- not sure but I'm guessing yes. I'm going from Blue to Gold so it makes sense.... advice? I could always use some. Let me know.

CJSchneider
12-07-2009, 08:36 PM
2- Again- not sure but I'm guessing yes. I'm going from Blue to Gold so it makes sense.... advice? I could always use some. Let me know.

I know when I was in the Army, Green to Gold programs only sent you to HBU's and you had to already have 30 - 60 college hours.

Make sure you look into what field you will get your commission in, I know a ton of Green to Gold people who had no choice but to branch "Needs of the Army", which meant most of them ended going MP or Chemical Corps. I'm sure having a family already will influence what you want.

Will you go from E-6 to O-1(E)? In any case, I've always felt that the best officers were former NCO's anyway. Good Luck.

Nalej
12-07-2009, 08:41 PM
I know when I was in the Army, Green to Gold programs only sent you to HBU's and you had to already have 30 - 60 college hours.

Make sure you look into what field you will get your commission in, I know a ton of Green to Gold people who had no choice but to branch "Needs of the Army", which meant most of them ended going MP or Chemical Corps. I'm sure having a family already will influence what you want.

Will you go from E-6 to O-1(E)? In any case, I've always felt that the best officers were former NCO's anyway. Good Luck.


Nah, this program (Seaman To Admiral-21) doesn't require you to have any credits. I actually have zero bc I joined right after high school.
I also got picked up for the Nuclear field so that's what I'll be doing after commissioning.
You're also right. I'll go from E-6 to O-1E.
I feel you. I also thought the best officers were prior enlisted.
i'm hoping to continue that trend...
The best part of this program is that for the next 3 yrs I'll be active duty
but the only thing I'll have to do is go to college full time.
I'll continue to get E-6 pay and money for school. Then 3 yrs from now i'll return to the fleet.
I've been in 7 yrs. After commissioning I'll be half way to retirement. Sweetness. I'll retire at 37 with 0-4 pay (hopefully)

CJSchneider
12-07-2009, 08:43 PM
Sweet deal. Will they use up you GI Bill money, or will you still get that after you retire?

Navy does have GI Bill, right?

Nalej
12-07-2009, 08:48 PM
Actually No. It's weird when it comes to finances.
They give me 10K/year for college. I can apply for FAFSA/scholarships and grants
I can not use my GI Bill, Tuition Assistance or any other military college financial help.

I'll be applying for every scholarship. Better believe it.

dabears10
12-07-2009, 08:57 PM
Actually No. It's weird when it comes to finances.
They give me 10K/year for college. I can apply for FAFSA/scholarships and grants
I can not use my GI Bill, Tuition Assistance or any other military college financial help.

I'll be applying for every scholarship. Better believe it.

You should also look into residency rules for tuition. Some schools you could pay in-state rates if you live there for even a small amount of time.

Nalej
12-07-2009, 09:00 PM
^^^True. I do have to look into all that mumbo jumbo.
I've heard that some states (none come to mind at the moment) that allow active military to pay in state tuition. Anything to save money.

fischbowl
12-07-2009, 09:13 PM
https://honors.rit.edu/amitraywiki/images/thumb/f/fd/Tiger_walking_rit_color.jpg/350px-Tiger_walking_rit_color.jpg

RIT!

Nalej
12-07-2009, 09:17 PM
Not an option. It's home page looked nice!

fischbowl
12-07-2009, 09:18 PM
Not an option. It's home page looked nice!

Sucks. If I was engineering, that'd be my choice

Nalej
12-07-2009, 09:26 PM
https://www.sta-21.navy.mil/education.asp

•University of Arizona

•Auburn University
•The Citadel

•University of Idaho

•University of Illinois

•University of Kansas

•University of New Mexico

•North Carolina State University

•Oregon State University

•Pennsylvania State University

•Purdue University

•Southern University and A&M College

•SUNY Maritime College

•University of South Carolina

•University of Texas

•University of Utah

•University of Washington

•University of Wisconsin



Those are the only schools I'm allowed to go to.
RPI would be a good school to go to as well. It's nearby where I live now.
I'll go wherever the Navy'll send me though.

Penn State is looking real good right now due to Wally's post

The Unseen
12-07-2009, 09:58 PM
Academically Wisconsin, Texas, and Penn State are probably the best on the list. I dunno which has the best mechanical engineering program tho.

andyjo672
12-07-2009, 10:12 PM
https://www.sta-21.navy.mil/education.asp

•University of Arizona

•Auburn University
•The Citadel

•University of Idaho

•University of Illinois

•University of Kansas

•University of New Mexico

•North Carolina State University

•Oregon State University

•Pennsylvania State University

•Purdue University

•Southern University and A&M College

•SUNY Maritime College

•University of South Carolina

•University of Texas

•University of Utah

•University of Washington

•University of Wisconsin



Those are the only schools I'm allowed to go to.
RPI would be a good school to go to as well. It's nearby where I live now.
I'll go wherever the Navy'll send me though.

Penn State is looking real good right now due to Wally's post

In terms of Engineering the best schools on that list (really the best schools overall on that list) are these:

U of Illinois (I assume you mean the Champaign/Urbana campus)
U of Wisconsin (I assume you mean the Madison campus)
Purdue University
University of Texas (I assume you mean the Austin campus)




U of Washington

Those four schools above are generally in the Top 40 nationally ranked undergraduate programs. U of Illinois and Wisconsin are ranked I believe T-32nd overall (7th among public universities) and the other two are not far behind. Illinois is a better engineering school but I know Wisconsin is also up there, especially for nuclear engineering. Wisconsin has its own nuclear reactor on campus for research, etc and apparently that's pretty rare. Wisconsin also has the highest federal research grant program in the entire nation meaning more money pumped into research programs.

LonghornsLegend
12-07-2009, 10:29 PM
Damn man, congratulations, those are some excellent choices and you should be set with whatever you take.


Out of your original choices I think you would love University of Arizona. All the beautiful females aside since your married and that's not your driving force(but I had to mention it since I think they have one of the best rated campuses for beautiful women and it's so true) but the campus is beautiful, so is the outside area. Then again, most of those schools probably are but I have heard nothing but good things about that school, and I've visited there and know how great of a place it is.


I do know that Univ. of Texas has some superb academics, in the entire country. Obviously they aren't the only school on that list, but it's definately up there with one of the best you can go to.


I think any of those schools would look great with a degree though so I'd take an education from pretty much anywhere you listed and be proud.

Nalej
12-10-2009, 08:48 AM
My deadline is Monday and I've been accepted to PSU and UNM. (Notified by email)
I gave up on Arizona bc the LT there is a dick and I'm not trying to deal with that while I'm in ROTC.
Oregon State said they'll have a decision for me today.

With my deadline so close- PSU is the only acceptance letter I have in hand.
UNM is still in the mail and OSU will probably be sent out today or tomorrow.
I love PSU as a school and I like what I've seen of their ROTC unit.
I like UNM's location and is far more affordable. The ROTC seems cool too.
I'm leaning to UNM if I get the acceptance letter in time...

CJSchneider
12-10-2009, 11:21 AM
I gave up on Arizona bc the LT there is a dick and I'm not trying to deal with that while I'm in ROTC.


Get used to that. Every O-1 to O-2 assigned to an ROTC battalion:
a) thinks they are a God
b) is a dick (or a ***** if they are female)

What they don't realize is they are there because no one else wants them, but the military has decided that they can't throw them away due to all the money they have invested in their training.

When I got to ROTC, I made sure I wore my NCOPLD ribbon so they knew I had been prior service and wouldn't play their BS.

descendency
12-10-2009, 01:07 PM
NC State is awesome... no bias here... patriots fans are always welcome.

(I'm a mathematics and computer science undergraduate about to finish his degree; will be done in Spring 2011).

SuperKevin
12-10-2009, 01:17 PM
I'm considering applying for MECEP(The Marine Corp's Enlisted to Officer program) myself. They pay for all 4 years of my school while paying me my full salary and benefits.

Nalej
12-11-2009, 07:34 AM
I'm considering applying for MECEP(The Marine Corp's Enlisted to Officer program) myself. They pay for all 4 years of my school while paying me my full salary and benefits.

You should do it. I don't know if you're trying to make it a career or not but if you are then you should definitely do it.
Some words I took to heart that someone in the Navy told me-
"If you're going to do 20 and you do it all enlisted then you're an idiot"
Simple enough. The pay is so much more on the Gold side.
MECEP sounds better anyways- they pay for everything.
I get 10K and all my benifits stripped. That ******* blows.



CJ- The PSU LT sounds like a hands off type of guy. Like he understands its only ******* college. UNM guy sounds more strict and by the book but he's prior enlisted and still seems like he'll be aight to be around. The AZ guy just made me punch him in the face though. He's the exact type that you described.

SuperKevin
12-11-2009, 07:11 PM
I realize there is more money to be an officer but I really like the hands on leadership you get as a Staff Non-Commisioned Officer. Officers are feared while a good SNCO is respected.

Nalej
12-11-2009, 07:45 PM
Yea, I understand that. More hands on "Deckplate Leaders" is what we call them in the Navy.
The reason why I did it though was bc officers generally control moral and all the decisions.
I've been under enough horrible leadership that I wanted to one day be that leadership so I can change ****.
Also, at the end of the day- I have to look out for my family- in their eyes- this is a promotion and a pay raise. That can't me overlooked in times like this.

No one in my fam has a college degree either. In 3 years... that won't be so anymore.

CJSchneider
12-11-2009, 09:57 PM
Yea, I understand that. More hands on "Deckplate Leaders" is what we call them in the Navy.


Lead from the front.

Nalej
12-18-2009, 01:05 PM
Penn State it is... anyone attend?
I've started looking for appartments and townhouses....
any place you guys recommend?

Matthew Jones
12-18-2009, 01:09 PM
Everyone I know who went to Penn State LOVES it. I don't think you could go wrong there.

EDIT: Didn't see that you'd already picked it, I only read the original post. Awesome choice dude!

Nalej
12-18-2009, 01:13 PM
Yea, I met a couple people who attended PSU and all them went nuts when I asked about the school.
Seemed like they truly loved it and missed it and treated me like I was joining their family lol

Rosebud
12-18-2009, 01:14 PM
Everyone I know who went to Penn State LOVES it. I don't think you could go wrong there.

EDIT: Didn't see that you'd already picked it, I only read the original post. Awesome choice dude!

We went down there to visit their chapter of our frat for their "beach party" and it was nuts. They literally had tons of sand brought in to fill up the basement and got sponsored by red bull. That said I'm surprised I was able to drive back that sunday since I got an hour and 15 minutes of sleep for the weekend and those precious minutes where spent sitting in a metal chair by a power outlet while my phone charged. Still came out of the adventure with two cases of red bull, a case of beast and way too much work to make up.

Rob S
12-18-2009, 02:01 PM
If you are married and have a kid, Penn State is a no go. Awesome environment for a college student, but it is literally in the middle of nowehere and University Park is just crawling with drunk college students. I was thinking about going there, but I ddidnt want to move so far from a major city.

Nalej
02-10-2010, 12:23 PM
Question!

I've read a lil bit on this site about people bitching about Comcast (?) cable
...is that what's available at College Station, PA?
Either way- I've only read negative things about it on this site- from you guys!

So... if Comcast sucks... what do you guys recommend instead? Help me out!

Hawk
02-10-2010, 12:30 PM
Directv. Then you get NFL network

tjsunstein
02-10-2010, 12:40 PM
Directv. Then you get NFL network

NFL Network is included with Comcast for me.

superman8456
02-10-2010, 12:42 PM
The second I saw that you had PSU listed, I would have told you to go there. But then I saw that you're married and have a son, so maybe the #1 party school in the US is not for you.

Nalej
02-10-2010, 01:04 PM
NFL Network is included with Comcast for me.

how do u like it?

TitleTown088
02-10-2010, 01:17 PM
University of Wisconsin. Madison is such a cool city. Great school too.

Shane P. Hallam
02-10-2010, 01:18 PM
how do u like it?

Comcast is fine for me.

Grizzlegom
02-10-2010, 01:29 PM
i just graduated from Penn State last year and had my son in the middle of my senior year so if you have any questions about the place feel free to hit me up. I had comcast for two years while i was there and i never really had any problems with it. The alternatives there are terrible unless you want to pay out the ass for directv or something like that. I know a few people that had the other local provider (can't remember the name...) and they bitched about it constantly.

also its University Park, PA or State College, PA not College Station, PA

CashmoneyDrew
02-10-2010, 01:31 PM
Comcast is ok. Mine comes with NFLN as well, but it is a little pricey.

Nalej
02-10-2010, 02:44 PM
i just graduated from Penn State last year and had my son in the middle of my senior year so if you have any questions about the place feel free to hit me up. I had comcast for two years while i was there and i never really had any problems with it. The alternatives there are terrible unless you want to pay out the ass for directv or something like that. I know a few people that had the other local provider (can't remember the name...) and they bitched about it constantly.

also its University Park, PA or State College, PA not College Station, PA


Yea, I keep ***** that up. I've called it College Town, College Station, University College... I'll get it eventually.
I still haven't moved down there. I'll start living there in April.
I'll definitely hit you up if any questions come up. Thanks for the help.


Thanks everyone for the input.

El Peefs?????
02-10-2010, 02:49 PM
I'm considering applying for MECEP(The Marine Corp's Enlisted to Officer program) myself. They pay for all 4 years of my school while paying me my full salary and benefits.

My friend was in this and loved it actually, but he was a bit of a crazy. He ended up getting kicked out of the program for using steroids. Personally I would of thought the military would implement a don't ask policy for roids, especially the marines, I mean he was a dog on killing machine!

Nalej
05-01-2013, 09:41 PM
Three years later... I'm graduating and commissioning in the next coming weeks.
Graduated from Penn State with a BS in Mech Eng. That's if I passed all my classes this semester which I'm positive I did.

I'm receiving orders soon to San Diego. Moving at the end of the month now.

I'm still in shock. Can't believe it's all over now.

Thanks to those who passed out words of encouragement
Snd to those who have served enlisted... I've been in over ten years now..
... You don't have to worry about me turning into a douche bag once I get pinned my butter bars.

Grizzlegom
05-01-2013, 09:55 PM
Congrats man...WE ARE!!!

vidae
05-01-2013, 11:02 PM
Congrats man...WE ARE!!!

Marshall?!

TimD
05-06-2013, 07:39 AM
Congrats man