Frustration with Army enlistment process/recruiter

5 replies [Last post]
KsMom1
Offline
Joined: 01/14/2015

Hello,

I've posted once before regarding how long it is taking for my son to get an answer regarding his eligibility for Army service. My husband and I both are Air Force Vets, so watching how the Army recruiter is handling my son's case is beyond frustrating. This is the deal: my son was disqualified for service with the Air Force and Navy for medical reasons. His issues (tree nut allergy (NOT peanut) and ADHD meds (over 3 years ago) caused him to be rejected by the other two branches. While he was processing with the Navy, the Army recruiter kept calling him, telling him she could get him waivers and telling him that the Navy could not guarantee jobs for him like the Army could (he got an 80 on the ASVAB, 90 on electronics portion).

In any case, this "process" has been going on now for over 3 1/2 months. Lost paperwork, TWICE, excuses that her first sergeant is the problem, etc. Now she is saying maybe he should try for the reserves first THEN he can transfer to active duty?! Why would a recruiter tell a possible recruit such a thing if she hasn't heard anything yet?
I would very much appreciate any insight into this situation and what our options are and any actions we should take. I understand the waiver process CAN take some time, but at the very least, we should hear a YES or NO in a timely fashion. The Air Force and the Navy were very timely in their dealings with my son and that was much appreciated.

Thanks so much!

Share this
Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
MSG Glenn
Online
Joined: 08/31/2010
@ KsMom1

I really don't know what to tell you. What I can say is the Army is becoming very picky with recruiting. They, like all the other Armed Forces has to downsize as per Presidential orders & in so doing each month brings more obstacles. Even Combat Vets coming back from Afghanistan are being given their walking papers. If they're letting trained Soldiers go what does that mean for someone trying to get in?

I was never a Recruiter but I was always under the assumption that ADHD was all but a disqualifying factor. That coupled with the fact that the Recruiter doesn't seem to be the sharpest of NCOs puts your son in a bad position. She may also be a new Recruiter & it's possible many of the senior ones are on leave or away at a school & can't help her.

The Reserve isn't a bad idea because I think they still have more of a need for Soldiers but there's a problem - to transfer to the Regular Army from the Reserve means that the Soldier is now considered prior service & that's a whole different deal. Prior service has been a stumbling block for a former service member that wants to reenter Military service, especially in the last 5 years or so. When I went back into the service after being out of the Navy for 14 years I asked for & got just about everything I wanted. Prior service was a plus & the Army was going all out to get us back in. It's changed a lot since those many years ago.

I wish I could offer suggestions but I'm at loss. The only thing I can say is wait. Could there be a possibility that the waiver could be holding things up? Once the paper work for a waiver gets into the system it's out of the Recruiter's hands. It sometimes goes from one authority up the chain to a higher one. I can understand your frustration especially when the weeks between Thanksgiving & about this time in January is traditionally the slowest time for Recruiting & Recruiters can handle each person a lot easier & spend more time on the individual recruit. Waivers can be easier to be approved if the Recruiting District hasn't met their recruiting mission.

Good luck to your son. I hope he can enlist soon. By the fact that they didn't say an outright no means that there's a chance unlike the USAF & USN. Let us know what happens.

KsMom1
Offline
Joined: 01/14/2015
MSG Glenn

Thanks so much for taking the time to answer my concerns. As for ADHD, it WAS a disqualifying condition years ago, but now they base it on a case by case basis. For many, if they have been off the meds for more than 1-2 years and are functioning well off the meds, they have a good chance at getting in. The tree nut allergy was actually the biggest problem he had with the Air Force. If it was just the ADHD, he most likely would have gotten in. The Navy followed suit, which I heard was common (they usually rule in agreement with the Air Force).

Thanks also for your input on the issue of reserve vs active duty. I know sometimes they take "less desirables" in the reserve, but for my son, that is not an option. It is either active duty or he will continue working/plugging away at college and forget the military as an option. Me, I'd be just as happy (or more so) if he follows that route, but hubby wants the military for him. :) Will keep you posted. Thanks again!

MSG Glenn
Online
Joined: 08/31/2010
@ KsMom1

I really hope he can fulfill his dreams of being a Military Man. My son followed me in the Army shortly after I retired "to keep the strain going". He had a Recruiter that really wasn't working for him very hard. My son wanted an Airborne Ranger contract & he was constantly put off. He had to wait a half a year to get that contract but he got it with his insistence. I had to invoke the Old Boy's network for that to happen. I hated going over the Recruiter's head but my son was all ready to accept a Cavalry Scout contract. He went on to distinguish himself as a Ranger in the 75th Ranger regiment with 6 deployments & remains in the Army Reserve after he got off of active duty. He's now a Milwaukee Police Officer.

I never forced him to enlist & didn't care if he did or didn't. It was his own decision. I couldn't be prouder.

taeho2424
Offline
Joined: 04/27/2015
what does separation code JKA mean

I have been trying to re-enlist for the last five years, with no success. What does the separation code JKA mean? Can anyone help me please???

MSG Glenn
Online
Joined: 08/31/2010
@ taeho2424

The Army separation code JKA means "Discreditable Incidents - Civilian or Military". More importantly - what is the RE code? If it an RE 3 or 4 then I'd say it's a no-go. If it says "RE 2 JKA" I'd say you have a chance.

Always check with a Recruiter. Policy on RE codes & waivers changes often depending on the needs of the Army. Do this soon before it gets any closer to school graduations. Recruiters are very busy through the summer with them.