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#1 WillyB

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 01:09

Thought I would throw up my summary to get some feed back. I have revamped the whole thing from my last submission.

 

"After eight years of service to my country, all I want to do more.  I joined the Military looking for a brotherhood.  A group of people who were there for you on both your worst, and best days.  I was promised a family, and a close knit community of like minded people.  Knowing that, and already feeling a bond with that community, I decided to enlist so that I could take the place of my fellow Americans who were deployed.  I joined the Marine Corps because I wanted to be the best at what I do.  (And obviously the snazzy uniform didn't hurt).

 

When I joined signals intelligence, I had visions of becoming Jason Borne.  However, I ended up serving in Okinawa as top secret help desk, and then Twenty-nine Palms as an instructor to Military leaders.  While I enjoyed my job as an instructor, and excelled in the technical aspect of signals intelligence, I knew there was still more I could do.  And so, in 2014 I switched over to aviation, and subsequently fell in love with flying.  
 

In some aspects, I have had a very rewarding career, especially considering that my one deployment thus far has been humanitarian in nature.  It was during my time in Honduras, followed by my experience in Haiti, that I started to feel led to pursue aviation on a more direct level than that of a crew chief.  Following Hurricane Matthews destruction of Haiti, we were able to deliver thousands of pounds of food and water treatment systems to areas otherwise cut off to aide.  I witnessed a Blackhawk crew performing a rescue mission for one of the local people.  I started to truly see the impact that those pilots were making on the world, and I wanted to be a part of that.  I want to be the one at the controls, and I want to do this for the rest of my career.  

 

I want to be an Army Aviator so that I can have a distinguished career of direct support to the men and women in harms way.  I am prepared to do that through medevac, troop transport, supply runs, direct fire missions, as well as the seemingly mundane tasks that come with being a warrant officer.  I love leading my Marines as an NCO, and I can only imagine I would feel the same way about leading Soldiers, even if that does involve a different type of leadership.

 

 

Now that I have all the beautiful stuff out of the way, I'd like to address my less than stellar fitness reports.  (NCOER)

 

 

I was an NCO when I transitioned from signals intelligence to aviation.  There is a certain level of qualifications that are expected of an NCO, but are impossible to obtain when serving at a reserve squadron.  Due to minimal aircraft, there is not enough maintenance available to get officially qualified in the amount of time I've been serving with this unit.  As fitness reports are a reflection of where you stand amongst your peers, I have consistently been graded on the lower end of the pack, but I can assure you, this is not an accurate representation of my leadership and or technical proficiency on my aircraft.  

 

I understand how my aircraft works, and can not only communicate that, but also apply it when it comes to making decisions regarding both our capabilities and limitations.  Being that I am not the most experienced crew chief, I take the time to listen, and  learn from those who's experience outweighs my own.  I am a teacher to junior Marines, always adapting how I teach to ensure they know how to do their job with efficiency and excellence.  I instill in them how vital their roll is in the success of our mission, and the safety of our crew.  I truly believe in never leaving a fallen comrade, even when most assumed they were a lost cause, and have personally taken "lost causes" and mentored them into outstanding Marines that are excelling in our unit today.

 

My biggest downfall, is my lack of combat experience, and I do my best to remedy that by reading.   I learned from Retired General Mattis, that reading and studying history is essential for those in leadership, being they are the "sentries and coaches for our units."  I don't yet have the combat experience required to make a great warrant officer, and while simply studying Military history doesn't make up for that, I am doing the best I can to make up for my inexperience.  

 

In conclusion, I just have to ask that you take a chance on me.  I have the potential.  I am teachable.  I am confident, yet cautious.    I have the drive.  I have the intellect, physical ability, and the heart.   And I also happen to think I look pretty darn good in aviators.  Pick me!  "

 


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#2 Thedude

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 02:14

Im not an English teacher or professional so these are just my opinions on what would make it flow a little better. You use commas far too often and it disrupts the reader and ruins the message you're trying to convey. Check your spelling, grammar, and punctuation carefully. There are quite a few obvious errors.

Its up to you to decide if the trying to be funny attitude is what you want to present. Meaning the mention of a snazzy uniform, the beautiful stuff, aviator glasses, etc.

Personally, I would omit the entire section about not having deployed and been in combat. Most warrant officer candidates have never been in real combat even if they were deployed in a designated combat zone. Some warrant officers never deployed at all prior to selection. The street to seat civilian selected candidates obviously havent either. Ive never sat on a selection board but it doesnt appear to play into it very much.

EDIT: In an attempt not to look like Im talking out of my ass about punctuation and spelling Id like to point out that the forum will not allow me to add the appropriate apostrophes in some of what I wrote. I dont know if thats because I typed it in a different window and copy/paste it here or what.

#3 PhrogGuy

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 05:18

Good start. There is a fair bit to work with. I can run through this in more detail in the AM for things I might suggest.
Who were/are you with? I was with HMM-774 out of Norfolk.

"Helicopters don't fly, they beat the air into submission."


#4 WillyB

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 06:37

I'm with HMH-772 up in New Jersey. Thank you for any help you can give me.
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#5 stearmann4

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 11:45

That's your summary? Summaries are traditionally a paragraph long, your entire essay should only be 3 paragraphs, 4 if it's concise and well written. Your writing also doesn't conform to any published standard or rules, lots of passive writing, poor punctuation and composition. You're not having a casual conversation with your buddies in the hallway, you're interviewing for a professional flying job.  If I happen to sit on a board and you actually submitted that essay I'd be inclined to send a note as to why you weren't selected. The WO that signed off on your entire packet would also be suspect. It's that bad. 

In the two minutes I look at an application, I base my opinion (and your score) on your photo, resume, essay, and the strongest among your LORs. The essay and LOR are the top two criteria, for me anyway.
 
Don't use the essay as a venue to show your wit or personality. You're putting on paper why you're the best candidate over all your peers. You accomplish that through quantitative elements, demonstrated leadership potential, and correct writing which is a potential indicator as to your overall aptitude. Expressing yourself via the written word is an increasingly important part of maturing as a Warrant Officer. It's also the most powerful first impression you can make, good or bad.
 
Mike-
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#6 Lindsey

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Posted 06 January 2018 - 09:56

Way, way too casual. This reads more like a crossover between a novel and a Tinder profile. Drop the Jason Bourne reference, the aviators reference, and the snazzy uniform stuff. It overall reads as someone who is both immature and full of themselves. Youre not writing a 30 page op-ed on yourself. You are speaking to a board of accomplished Senior Warrant Officers and explaining why you deserve a slot.

It needs to be 1/5 of the length, at most. Theres no way in hell you will fit that on a single page unless youre including a magnifying glass with your packet.

#7 Lindsey

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Posted 06 January 2018 - 09:57

And why in hell does the mobile version of this forum delete all of my punctuation?

#8 WillyB

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Posted 06 January 2018 - 19:47

Thank you all for the input. It has really helped in shaping my essay. I had read before that I should add personality and to answer the question of Why I want to be an Army Aviator.

Thank you again for looking over it and giving me honest opinions.

#9 Lindsey

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Posted 06 January 2018 - 19:49

No problem. I was just about to come in here and delete my comment actually because it was a bit brutal. It is very good that you are receptive to feedback and not taking criticism personally. Demonstrates resilience and maturity. If you can translate that to your essay (while drastically reducing the length), you will be successful.
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#10 WillyB

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Posted 06 January 2018 - 20:39

I am going to be going back and looking at what the sample packet has for the summary section. I plan on condensing my Why I want to be an Army Aviator to just one paragraph and make one about what I bring to the table as well as the last explaining my poor looking fitreps.

#11 WillyB

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 10:31

Here is my updated summary. I attempted to explain any problems in my packet as well as answer why I want to be an Army Aviator. I condensed my ideas and ended up with only one paragraph.

"I went to college as a teenager not knowing what I wanted to do and not valuing my opportunity for education. I realized I wanted to become a part of something greater than myself, so I joined the military. I havent always been driven nor pushing myself to my limits. To be honest, for most of my career, I have put in minimal effort. Though after deploying to Haiti, following hurricane Matthew, I had a wake-up call both personally and professionally. I realized I wanted my time on this earth to matter. I now have an irresistible desire to become the best at what I do and who I am. I chose to apply for Army aviation because Warrant Officers are the masters of their craft. I want to take the time and effort to become the technical and tactical professional that Warrant Officers are known for. I know I have the aptitude to learn aviation principles and mechanics. I have loved flying ever since I became a Crew Chief. I want to continue to experience the joy of flying and to constantly challenge my status quo. If allowed to join the ranks of the Warrant Officer cohort, I will work tirelessly to become the best leader and pilot that I can. Take a chance on this Marine striving to become something better than the best. I will not let you down."

#12 JH11B

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 21:23

Here is my updated summary. I attempted to explain any problems in my packet as well as answer why I want to be an Army Aviator. I condensed my ideas and ended up with only one paragraph.

"I went to college as a teenager not knowing what I wanted to do and not valuing my opportunity for education. I realized I wanted to become a part of something greater than myself, so I joined the military. I havent always been driven nor pushing myself to my limits. To be honest, for most of my career, I have put in minimal effort. Though after deploying to Haiti, following hurricane Matthew, I had a wake-up call both personally and professionally. I realized I wanted my time on this earth to matter. I now have an irresistible desire to become the best at what I do and who I am. I chose to apply for Army aviation because Warrant Officers are the masters of their craft. I want to take the time and effort to become the technical and tactical professional that Warrant Officers are known for. I know I have the aptitude to learn aviation principles and mechanics. I have loved flying ever since I became a Crew Chief. I want to continue to experience the joy of flying and to constantly challenge my status quo. If allowed to join the ranks of the Warrant Officer cohort, I will work tirelessly to become the best leader and pilot that I can. Take a chance on this Marine striving to become something better than the best. I will not let you down."

 

I’ll admit to not being an English major. However, you still need to polish the grammar and syntax. The things that stand out to me the most is a lack of why you're qualified, explain what makes you trainable and ready to be an officer. Not just the motivation you have. Secondly, your last sentence to me is a “turn off” it doesn’t covey anything nor answer the two main points of the summery, why you should be selected and why you want to be. Just my two cents.



#13 mike0331

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Posted 08 January 2018 - 22:35

I wouldn't "be honest" about having been a sucky Marine at one point. Explain your growth, sure, but don't use the space to hilight negatives. Be prepared to answer for the fitreps in an interview, but don't bring them to attention here. I'd be thinking somewhere along the lines of "I wasn't satisfied/fully ready for college so I joined the Marine Corps to serve my country and better myself. After some time in the intelligence community I lat moved to a position as a crew chief where I have developed a deep interest in and passion for aviation, etc." Work in the Haiti deployment there.

As another thought, being a Marine NCO is a great achievement. Mention something about wanting to continue being a leader.

Finally, don't ask them to take a chance on you. That also sounds bad. I'd be thinking more along the lines of emphasizing your desire to continue to serve or gratitude for the opportunity to apply to fly among the best, etc.

You also have a long way to go on punctuation, syntax, structure, etc. I'm sure we can work on that if you are able to come up with something on here with some decent flow to it. You need something with more substance than "I was a shitty Marine who went to Haiti, and now I try harder and I want to be a pilot. Please give me a chance."

Mike
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#14 adriel0491

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Posted 09 January 2018 - 17:57

It is not an autobiography. Try listing accomplishments and not the lack thereof. what do you have to offer? why should you be selected? What makes you a good candidate? plus you need to get their attention right away, given the limited amount of time they have to scan your packet. If I was to board your packet I'll be done with the resume after the first sentence. "Good Army writing is clear, concise, organized, and RIGHT TO
THE POINT ."
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#15 WillyB

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 00:38

Thank you all so much for your critics and suggestions. I wanted to update everyone that I was selected with the January (February) board. I made vast changes for the final copy and went at it with all the advice I received here. 

 

Hope to meet you all in person some day. 


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#16 Jared_A

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 11:34

This might be an odd question but I see you are referring to the essay as the "summary". Is that the same "summary" that is attached to the resume (underneath the sections for military ed., civilian experience, etc.)? Or is the Summary and the "why I want to be an aviator" essay 2 separate writing pieces?

 

I assumed that the resume summary was just that, a 1-2 paragraph summary of your military/career/accomplishments/awards and what not. Then on the other hand the essay is supposed to be a page long and explain why you want to become an aviator, why you're qualified, any experience around aviation, etc..

 

 

I'm currently on deployment (not with the Army) so I'm a little lost here. Any help from someone who is going through the process as well would be appreciated.



#17 Willhp

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 13:09

This might be an odd question but I see you are referring to the essay as the "summary". Is that the same "summary" that is attached to the resume (underneath the sections for military ed., civilian experience, etc.)? Or is the Summary and the "why I want to be an aviator" essay 2 separate writing pieces?
 
I assumed that the resume summary was just that, a 1-2 paragraph summary of your military/career/accomplishments/awards and what not. Then on the other hand the essay is supposed to be a page long and explain why you want to become an aviator, why you're qualified, any experience around aviation, etc..
 
 
I'm currently on deployment (not with the Army) so I'm a little lost here. Any help from someone who is going through the process as well would be appreciated.


For active duty applicants, the summary on the final page of the resume is the space for you to put your resume summary as you stated and your explanation of why you want to be an army aviator. As an active duty application, it is not part of the application checklist to submit a one page essay both typed and hand written. That is a requirement for the civilian application. That is why you use the resume summary for that.

#18 Jared_A

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Posted 06 March 2018 - 12:48

Okay got it, thank makes perfect sense. Thank you for the help.

#19 peterserendenskyjr

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Posted 08 March 2018 - 15:05

Hey not trying to take over your post op. I would love if someone could give me some advice on my summary if anyone had time. Thank you in advance. :) 



 

As a current public school teacher, I instruct, coach, and mentor students who have the potential to become future teachers, army officers, doctors, CEO's, and innovators of our great nation. On a daily basis, I am challenged by these young minds to perform at a high standard by keeping them enthusiastic, optimistic, and engaged with every assignment, project, or life event. During my first year as a new teacher in the school district of Lee County, I received a nomination for the 2017 Gold Apple Award. I also received a rating of "effective" on my administration classroom walk-through. 
     Starting in high school, I became someone with great motivation and drive for the things I wanted to accomplish; this is why I was able to graduate with a high school diploma in three years and with a Bachelors in just another short three, all while serving my country in the U.S Army Reserves as a Combat Engineer. With that being said, I have been extremely blessed, and I am extremely grateful for all of the opportunities, resources, and mentors this country has given me. 
     I want to be an Army Aviator because of the challenge and the opportunity within that field. Army Aviators are an integral part of the combined arms team, and are responsible for not only fighting the enemy but more importantly saving lives. To be an Aviator one must have an ample amount of courage for he/she is risking his/her life to save soldiers in hostile situations; it is that selfless service for which I joined the Army in the first place. Becoming an aviator is a thought that has motivated me to the fullest extent and I will strive until I achieve it. It is this self-drive and motivation, along with my civilian experience as a teacher that qualifies me to become a Warrant Officer Aviator. I am extremely excited that if given the opportunity I will engage in a long, exciting, and fulfilling career as a leader and an asset to the U.S. Army. 


#20 Wolf359

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Posted 09 March 2018 - 18:26

 

Hey not trying to take over your post op. I would love if someone could give me some advice on my summary if anyone had time. Thank you in advance. :) 



 

As a current public school teacher, I instruct, coach, and mentor students who have the potential to become future teachers, army officers, doctors, CEO's, and innovators of our great nation. This seems a little passive to me. What are you doing to make them productive citizens? Designing rigorous curriculum, collaborative projects, etc. On a daily basis, I am challenged by these young minds to perform at a high standard by keeping them enthusiastic, optimistic, and engaged with every assignment, project, or life event. What are you doing specifically to keep them enthusiastic and engaged? You don't necessarily need a lot of detail, but I would give at least an example or two to show that you know what you're doing in your current profession. During my first year as a new teacher in the school district of Lee County, I received a nomination for the 2017 Gold Apple Award. I also received a rating of "effective" on my administration classroom walk-through. Your state might be different, but where I teach, anything less than an effective puts you on a path to probation and termination. A rating of effective to me basically means "Good enough, but not special". If that's different where you work, you might want to clarify because to me effective doesn't set you apart.
     Starting in high school, I became someone with great motivation and drive for the things I wanted to accomplish; this is why I was able to graduate with a high school diploma in three years and with a Bachelors in just another short three, all while serving my country in the U.S Army Reserves as a Combat Engineer. This sentence is long and meandering. The information is all good, but you might want to organize it differently. With that being said, I have been extremely blessed, and I am extremely grateful for all of the opportunities, resources, and mentors this country has given me. I would probably cut this sentence out. It doesn't add a lot, and the board reviewers have a lot of material to process in a short amount of time. Being grateful for opportunities doesn't tell me anything about you. I would also merge this paragraph with the above one. They both describe your general background and qualifications, so they should be grouped together.
     I want to be an Army Aviator because of the challenges and the opportunities within the field. I don't know why, but I don't like using that as a pronoun when you're only talking about one subject. Also, there are manifold challenges and opportunities in Army Aviation!  Army Aviators are an integral part of the combined arms team, and are responsible for not only fighting the enemy but more importantly saving lives. To be an Aviator one must have an ample amount of courage for he/she is risking his/her life to save soldiers in hostile situations; it is that selfless service for which I joined the Army in the first place. Another long sentence. I would revise the first part, especially the wording around the area of "for he/she is risking his/her". It should either be one shorter sentence or two separate sentences. Becoming an aviator is a thought goal that has motivated me to the fullest extent and I will strive until I achieve it. It is this self-drive my drive and motivation, along with my civilian experience as a teacher that qualifies me to become a Warrant Officer Aviator. Being a teacher doesn't qualify you, but some of the experiences that you gained as a teacher (working with a diverse population, problem solving, etc.) do. I am extremely excited that if given the opportunity I will engage in a long, exciting, and fulfilling career as a leader and an asset to the U.S. Army. 

 

 

This post caught my eye because I too am a public school teacher, and I was picked up for WOFT last month! Let's go educators transitioning to aviators!  :) I made my recommended revisions in the quoted text above. I hate putting my writing out for others to dissect, so kudos to you for doing so!






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