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Alright I've revised it a couple times... A couple last reviews would be helpful as my board is in less than a week. I've done the searches, reviewed the information but if anyone has the time, a bit more of a tailored review would help. My recruiter's first language isn't English and I'm in a non-English speaking country so this is really my only resource apart from some Marines I went to HS with and I can't read corrections written in Crayon. Thanks in advance.

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  • 4 weeks later...

First thing right out of the gate is that it is too long. I would cut some of the history lesson in the beginning. You could also shave some with the submission of a resume instead of spelling out the credentials in the essay. I would cut some of that but leave in the family tradition, work in tanzania, and drive to be successful in challenging environments. I personally like the closing as well.

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Hey Man I read it. I'm no expert and its strictly my opinion but you sound like a politician in some of those sentences. Its kind of long as well. I like the rugby references and the sports credentials you listed. I would shorten it though.

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Hey Man I read it. I'm no expert and its strictly my opinion but you sound like a politician in some of those sentences. Its kind of long as well. I like the rugby references and the sports credentials you listed. I would shorten it though.

I kind of felt that way as well after some of the feedback... I'm taking an entirely new angle and rewriting the whole thing with a more genuine tone. It did seem generic so I'm going to do something that represents me more. I can hear the politicians "humble roots" speech now.

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The fact you are willing to accept advise from strangers at this late date and are willing to revamp it speaks highly of your character. Frankly, it's tough to take advise from others and act on it. Good job.

Better to find out it's not up to snuff rather than give the board garbage.

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Round Two. Again, open to constructive criticism.

 

Edit: Altered a couple things after I submitted this earlier. Also, thought it'd be cool to post the photo of my great grandfather in his plane in WWI (one I mentioned in the essay). No reason behind it, just kind of cool history.

 

Thanks again.

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Josh,

 

Not to be a downer, but that essay violates so many grammatical, composition, and format rules, Its almost a wash. A few weeks back I posted somewhere on here basically how to write your essay, what a board member is looking for, and how to make your accomplishments stand out. I even included links to military writing references.

 

As a general rule, I highly recommend candidates refrain from using any cliché' sentences like "I've always dreamed of being a pilot", or "I love to fly", etc. It doesn't add any points to your essay, and we assume that's the case for every applicant.

 

Mike-

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I read the past posts and I checked out your links a while back. I actually just got a hold of the AAOSWG so I'll reformat it closer to that.

 

Also meant to tell you your 2nd link is the same as your 1st link, 3rd worked fine though.

"2. Army Action Officers Staff Writing Guide; This guide will help you write concisely, it's a military reference, but you're writing a document for Army folks to read. http://www.thewriter...bility-checker/"

I found this by googling the title:

 

http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/plainlanguage/ActionOfficer_StaffWriting.pdf

Thanks for the feedback sir.

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To be honest, your essay seemed extremely arrogant. I realize you're trying to highlight your best traits and such, but I kept seeing Nick Cage in a 64 in the back of my mind. It's a difficult task trying to walk the fine line of telling the board why you'd make a great Army Aviator and not sounding like you're God's gift to the world, but maybe try reapproaching it with that in mind. I can promise you that you are not an expert in prioritization in an aviation sense--flying civilian is just not the same. Yes you are single pilot but you aren't flying at terrain flight altitudes while navigating on a paper map, listening/talking on four separate radios, communicating with multiple crewmembers, etc etc. I'm no expert--I'd say the only expert here on that could be Mike, and even then I know him well enough that he'd probably say he's got more to learn, too. Being humble is important.

 

Try stating your love for aviation and that you pursued and earned your CPL in pursuit of that dream...or something. Let the board draw some conclusions of their own. Not every accomplishment needs a "I did this so therefore that makes me really good at this."

 

Your Tanzania accomplishments are very noteworthy. I am impressed with your project--seriously, that is very, very cool. But it was slightly overshadowed by the "me me me" tone I got overall.

 

Finally, the title of the essay is WHY you want to be an Army Aviator, and I feel this only got addressed in the last few sentences.

 

Hope this helps.

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Yeah I sent it to my buddies and they said I sounded like a jacka**. I agree. I couldn't even watch five minutes of that movie by the way, just terrible.

I sound nothing like that in real life. I had the wrong idea in regards to balancing notable accomplishments with why I want to be an Army Aviator that ended up making me sound like Kenny Powers or some kind of 80's montage describing my 11 purple hearts, 18 medals of honour and a Christy Yamaguchi Lifetime Achievement Award. As for the prioritisation bit, way too much fluff in that. I view aviation expertise as a lifetime progression, as in most things, there will always be a day to get better until you're not here to get any better.

 

I think Round 3 of this essay will be much better after having read more of the feedback, the Army Officer Staff Writing Guide and being roasted a bit.

 

As always, thanks for your help. Your guide and posts have been super valuable in helping me through this unusually long process.



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Keep it simple man. Open up on maybe why you like aviation for a sentence or two. Then state a few credentials and tie that in to being a soldier. They don't need history lessons, or a huge list of accomplishments. Just try to sound genuine and connect to the reader. Use an example of how your leadership made a positive impact and tie into army values and being a soldier. Keep it simple. Who knows how many essays they read so you want to grab their attention yet humble state your position.

 

Once again, thats just my opinion though. lol

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Yeah I sent it to my buddies and they said I sounded like a jacka**. I agree. I couldn't even watch five minutes of that movie by the way, just terrible.

 

I sound nothing like that in real life. I had the wrong idea in regards to balancing notable accomplishments with why I want to be an Army Aviator that ended up making me sound like Kenny Powers or some kind of 80's montage describing my 11 purple hearts, 18 medals of honour and a Christy Yamaguchi Lifetime Achievement Award. As for the prioritisation bit, way too much fluff in that. I view aviation expertise as a lifetime progression, as in most things, there will always be a day to get better until you're not here to get any better.

 

As for Africa, it's actually pretty comedic: They kept trying to rob me in the slums until they realised I too was broke so after having gotten bored of trying to rob me they invited me in for lunch everyday instead. I had stones thrown at me at a mosque because the women next to me weren't covered up and we had to escape in a random passing car as a large angry crowd formed. Had machetes pulled on me, took over a local taxi van's route dropping all the locals off in their villages because the driver drank too much local gin - - like 30 people in one little van. Got kidnapped by the Masaai during their circumcision ceremonies because they were all high and warlike on a local narcotic and was bought by a local passerby who paid them to let me go (I'm not worth much it turns out). Went dirt biking in the jungle and got robbed by little monkeys. Those are the things that would be fun to write about.

 

I think Round 3 of this essay will be much better after having read more of the feedback, the Army Officer Staff Writing Guide and being roasted a bit.

 

As always, thanks for your help. Your guide and posts have been super valuable in helping me through this unusually long process.

 

 

 

 

I would wrap up the entire Africa portion with something as concise and brief as "My diverse and challenging experiences in Africa have provided a mature perspective on global conflict, and a sincere appreciation of service as an American citizen and Soldier...etc, etc.."

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Just read V3, through all those words, you didn't articulate why you want to be an Army Aviator. There was some compelling reasons why you might be better than your peer candidates, but little describing why you want to be an Army officer, and aviator, other than family lineage.

 

The piece also still has several grammar and format errors. Passive language, repetitive words and so on. I found two in the first two sentences. It could easily be cleaned up, present the same information, and only consist of 3 or 4 brief paragraphs. That's what I want to read, especially hand written, after the first 2 or 3 lines, I'd just go to the end hoping you had a strong conclusion.

 

Rather than making minor adjustments, Id recommend starting from scratch with all the guidance and references you have, and write a new document. use the online readability test, it'll tell you exactly what's wrong with it.

 

If I were to review that letter on the next selection board, it would be a detriment to the overall score for your package.

 

There's a lot of pieces and work that goes into submitting an application, but the real money makers are your resume, essay, and LORs. Those documents are how a board member makes a determination of your potential as a solider, officer, and aviator.The rest (PFT, SIFT scores, etc) are just discriminators.

 

Mike-

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Just read V3, through all those words, you didn't articulate why you want to be an Army Aviator. There was some compelling reasons why you might be better than your peer candidates, but little describing why you want to be an Army officer, and aviator, other than family lineage.

 

The piece also still has several grammar and format errors. Passive language, repetitive words and so on. I found two in the first two sentences. It could easily be cleaned up, present the same information, and only consist of 3 or 4 brief paragraphs. That's what I want to read, especially hand written, after the first 2 or 3 lines, I'd just go to the end hoping you had a strong conclusion.

 

Rather than making minor adjustments, Id recommend starting from scratch with all the guidance and references you have, and write a new document. use the online readability test, it'll tell you exactly what's wrong with it.

 

If I were to review that letter on the next selection board, it would be a detriment to the overall score for your package.

 

There's a lot of pieces and work that goes into submitting an application, but the real money makers are your resume, essay, and LORs. Those documents are how a board member makes a determination of your potential as a solider, officer, and aviator.The rest (PFT, SIFT scores, etc) are just discriminators.

 

Mike-

Roger that. Appreciate the feedback sir.

 

Edit: I think it just clicked. Will have V4 out today (I'm 8 or 9 hours ahead so your morning/afternoon.

 

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<iframe src="//giphy.com/embed/s2mRTo81XrJDy?html5=true" width="480" height="245" frameBorder="0" class="giphy-embed" allowFullScreen></iframe><p><a href="http://giphy.com/gifs/reactiongifs-s2mRTo81XrJDy">viaGIPHY</a></p>

 

Again, grammar errors. Lots of them.

 

For my college classes, any big paper I drop off I give to tutor.com to review and point out my mistakes. While they are expensive if your college does not pay for their services, they would be extremely helpful to you once you have the core piece of the paper and will not be making major revisions. You'll have the paper back in a day and can keep re-submitting until satisfied.

 

As for the rest of the paper that talks about why you want to be an army aviator - I can't offer any advice.

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