When I think back to my military service, I can’t help but smile. You see, my time in the military had many challenges, but it was also a lot of fun. I had the opportunity to do amazing things and learned a lot about myself.
If you are looking for a way to challenge yourself, joining the military might be for you. It never ceases to amaze me that my military service changed me into the person I am today. It also prepared me to be prepared to deploy to Afghanistan and live to tell the tale. These are the top 5 things that come to mind when I reflect back on my military service.
Surviving Boot Camp
The Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC) version of boot camp is typically held the summer between your sophomore and junior year. It is a four-week sort of basic training that is called Field Training. The purpose of this training is to help weed out people before joining the officer corps. It also helps prepare you to be a leader. In reality, I didn’t think I could do it. But I knew I had to do it. If I wanted my dream of becoming an officer in the USAF to come true, I had to complete Field Training. By pure grit, a lot of hard work and extra determination I made it through. These four weeks were probably the hardest when I think over my military career. I don’t thrive in an environment of negative feedback.
Graduating College/Getting my Professional Engineering license
My military career technically began in college while doing ROTC. When I joined ROTC I decided to switch my degree from math to engineering. Therefore, graduating with a Civil Engineering degree is something I attribute to joining the military. It opened a lot of doors for me. While I was in the military I went on to receive my Professional Engineering license. Although I have left engineering behind in my past life. I am still very proud of the work I did to obtain those titles. And who knows where life will go.
I had no problem deploying where ever the Air Force needed me to go. Was I excited that when my name came up for a deployment and it had me in Afghanistan on an Army mission? Nope. It wasn’t the type of deployment I was hoping for. But off I went because that was what the military asked of me. In the end, I made some great friends. And I was able to do something very few people get to experience. Interacting with the people of Afghanistan has truly changed my life.
My Overall Experience in the Air Force
As a Civil Engineer in the Air Force, I had the chance to get out from behind a desk. I was able to oversee multiple construction projects being built. Projects I helped make happen. No day at the office was ever the same. My deployment also took me off base and into the villages of Afghanistan. In Afghanistan, we were in charge of various construction projects. It had its challenges as we attempted to explain things like sustainment and new technologies. And finally, at my last assignment in Ohio. I was helping the Air Force save energy in the biggest energy hog Major Command. We tackled so many different issues. I also learned about the behind the scenes work that is required to make things happen. My experience in the Air Force left me well prepared for a new career.
Being part of something greater – military service
The best part of being in the military is getting to meet amazing people. The men and women I worked with knew we were all part of something greater than ourselves. The projects I was able to work on and the work I did overseas made a small ripple in the overall mission of the Air Force. I am proud to have been able to be a part of this.
Have you served in the military? What is the thing you are most proud of from your military service?
And if you haven’t served in the military, I still want to know something you are proud of. People often say they couldn’t have done what I did. But I am just an ordinary girl. A girl that with the help of the military was able to do something I didn’t even know I could do. What are you proud of accomplishing?