United States Navy Semper Fortis

Currently, I am going into Aviation Electronics, otherwise known as Avionics (AV). There are two main groups: Aviation Electrician's Mate (AE) and Aviation Electronics Technician (AT).

However, I want to get into the Nuclear Power Program

The Navy Nuclear Power Program is one of the hardest programs to qualify for, and one of the most desired rates (jobs). The first way to qualify is called auto-qualification, and you can do that by scoring high enough on the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery). I scored 5 points lower than the auto-qualification score, so I had to also take the NAPT (Navy Advanced Programs Test). This test is focused mainly on science and math. Passing the NAPT requires 55/80. I scored 74, which is the highest that they have ever seen. Due to some other reasons, I have not been accepted into the program just yet.

Great Lakes, Illinois

My basic training will take place at Great Lakes, Illinois and will last for 9 weeks. Upon graduation from Boot Camp, I will attend my "A" School. If I get accepted into the Nuclear Power Program, then I will likely be in Charleston, South Carolina for the next 2 years. If not, then I will go to Pensacola, Florida for around 6 months.

Why did i join the navy?

Like most people, I have many different reasons for joining the service. Service runs in my family: My dad was a Marine; my grandfather and his brother were both in the Navy; my brother is in the Air Force; my step-dad was in the Army; his dad was in the Army and the Navy. Among other things, I wanted ways to push myself and better myself in ways I couldn't do alone. I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself. I wanted to travel the world. A year ago, I had absolutely zero intention of joining the service, but over the summer, everything started emerging. I saw opportunities sprout like trees, and I jumped on it before it was too late.

The Nuclear Power Program specifically interests me because of it's difficulty. I want to be able to use my full potential. Because it is so difficult and so desirable to the civilian market, this program grants the biggest re-enlistment bonuses and the fastest rank-advancement. For example, most go into boot camp as an E-1, or Seaman Recruit. Nukes, as they are called, go in as an E-3, or Seaman. After the initial 6-year service contract, they have bonuses up to $100,000, depending on how long you re-enlist for.

How can you get started?

The first step is to get into contact with a local recruiting station. With multiple different services to join, gathering information from them all will help you. You will likely take a practice ASVAB so that they can get an idea of what you can qualify for. After much thought and consideration, make a choice. Once you have decided which branch to join and all of the necessary paperwork is filled out, you will be sent up to MEPS ( Military Entrance Processing Station). MEPS is a two-day process. The first day, you will sign in and get your fingerprints taken. After that, you will either take the full ASVAB or just a confirmation test. Some branches may have you take additional tests to further determine qualification. I had to take the full ASVAB as well as a coding speed test and a mental counter test. When you get back to the hotel, you get your room key and a pass for a free dinner. At 8.15, you meet and watch a short video about what to expect for the next day.

The nearest MEPS is in Portland, Oregon


At 0500 sharp, you will get an automated wake up call. You need to be in the lobby with everything at 0515. You will get a buffet-style breakfast until 0545. You will then load the bus and travel from the hotel to the station.

hurry up and wait

After a while, some important people will show up and you get to go inside. One of the most important things at MEPS is to listen carefully and do everything exactly as they say. After the security screening, you put everything away in a secure room and speak to your service Liaisons. They will give you a packet containing medical records and other medical paper work to be filled out. Then comes more waiting. You will hear "Hurry up and wait" too often.


Medical breifing

This lasts for about 2 hours, and all you do is slowly fill out your paper work while sipping water. Sleeping is absolutely not allowed. If you are caught sleeping, you will have to stand in the back of the room until it is over.

The medical portion of the day lasts around 4 hours. You will go through a thorough physical, as well as other tests including urinalysis, blood test, eyesight, hearing, joint movement, and potentially voice.

be honest

Your recruiter will likely tell you that the staff at MEPS is trying to disqualify you. The doctors and staff say the exact opposite. Personally, I wouldn't risk lying.

Job Selection

Congratulation! You've made it through medical. Now it is time to select your job. Based on your ASVAB score and potentially other tests, you will qualify for different jobs. Some fields might not be open at the time, or there might not be any jobs available at all. If that happens, then they might put you into a filler job and switch you at a later time, or you will go back up again at a later date.

After three trips up to MEPS, I was finally able to swear in and accept my future as a United States Sailor
Swearing in

You get to attend your swear in ceremony. You will recite a creed in front of a small group of friends and family,


Those who are accepted into the Nuclear Power Program have the option to go submariner. They spend a majority of their time in high-tech submarines. As far as I can tell, they do resurface for fresh air and sunlight, but I opted to go aboard the aircraft carriers.

I made three trips up to MEPS. My first time, everything went well until medical. I was immediately disqualified due to an astigmatism. I was informed that it was easy enough to get a waiver for. After lunch, I went to downtown Portland to take the NAPT, which I passed with flying colors. By the time I got back, the two others that were with me were waiting to swear in. I wasn't allowed back in the building because I had already signed out all the way. The following week, I went up and got a Corneal Topography. They wanted to ensure that there was no damage or anything negative. Everything worked out fine and I went home. The week after that, I went up my third and final time. Like usual, I had to wait. Only this time, I had to wait twice as long. At least they let me watch TV. I was able to select my job. In this case, the job that I selected would work as a filler job/backup job. If I get accepted into the Nuclear Power Program, then the job that I had will be given to someone else that was waiting for it. If I don't get accepted, then it is going to be my job to fall back to. Then, in the afternoon of October 6th, 2016, I swore my oath and was accepted into the United States Navy.

Delayed Entry program

Since my enlistment, I have been apart of the delayed entry program, also known as DEP. We have monthly DEP meetings where we discuss terminology, memorize key items, practice movements, and ask questions.

Sailor's Creed

I am a united states sailor

I will support and defend the constitution of the united states of america, and i will obey the orders of those appointed over me

I represent the fighting spirit of the navy and those who have gone before me to defend freedom and democracy around the world

I proudly serve my country's navy combat team with honor, courage, and commitment

i am COMMITTED to excellence and the fair treatment of all

Hooyah Navy!

11 general orders of a sentry
  • To take charge of this post and all government property in view
  • To walk my post in a military manner, keeping always on the alert and observing everything that takes place within sight or hearing
  • To report all violations of orders I am instructed to enforce
  • To repeat all calls from posts more distant from the Guardhouse than my own
  • To quit my post only when properly relieved
  • To receive, obey, and pass on to the sentry that relieves me all orders from the Commanding Officer, Command Duty Officer, Officer of the Deck, and Officers and Petty Officers of the watch only
  • To talk to no one except in the line of duty
  • To give the alarm in case of fire or disorder
  • To call the Officer of the Deck in any case not covered by instructions
  • To salute all Officers and all colors and standards not cased
  • To be especially watchful at night, and during the time for challenging, to challenge all persons on or near post, and to let no one pass without proper authority

As of right now, I am expected to ship out to Basic Training on August 15th, 2017.

Created By
Tyler Blaylock

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