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In it for the money...

Discussion in 'Military Dentistry' started by littlefoot1, Dec 20, 2008.

  1. littlefoot1

    2+ Year Member

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    "Now, if you are in this only for the money, then I highly suggest NOT joining the military"

    This is what I constantly hear from people in this forum. I don't understand why that is. I'm going to be honest with you guys. I'm entering the field of dentistry to get paid. I chose dentistry instead of other more profitable careers because I find helping people rewarding. But don't get me wrong. Money is more important to me than all my other reasons put together and at the end of the day, dentistry is stable and my chance of failure is slim.

    Everyone has their sob story and I have mine that I believe warrants my obsession with money. I would tell you guys but I don't want to bore you. Anyway, if you guys are not too put off, would you mind answering my question?

    Everyone probably has seen how the price of dental school has skyrocketed so high that figures from as early as 2004 are not valid anymore. The packet I got from the USC interview states that at the end of 4 years, I would owe 400k (450k with accrued interest). If I choose to pay off the loan over 10 years, I would owe 600k (which the school says some people are able to pull off if they live meagerly). So by joining the military, I am essentially giving up 4 years for 600K. I don't see why that is a bad deal.

    I figure when a dental student graduates he spends his first 2 years as an associate getting paid anywhere between 80k to 100k on average. Then he starts up his own practice and gets paid between 125k to 150k. So that's 500K for 4 years.

    On one hand you have made 500k with a 600k debt but a dental practice all set up....on the other hand you're fresh out of the military ready to set up a practice with no debt, plenty of experience, and around 125k in savings (whats remaining from 2k stipend during 4 years of school plus officers pay during 4 years in the military [2.5k first 2 years as O-1 and 3k last 2 years as O-2]). To me it seems like the military route is the way to go.

    The comparison gets even more skewed toward joining the military if one decides to enter a residency. If you take out a loan, you'll be in even more debt. But in the military, you get to finish your residency free of cost and without having to payback more years (so 4 years payback for dental school and still ONLY 4 years payback for dental school + residency) plus you get paid more during your 4 years of service.

    If I'm totally off the mark, please tell me, but it seems to me that those who are in it for the money should join the military, especially if they want to enter a residency.
     
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  3. Lifetime2Drill

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    EDIT: I decided I would leave these questions to other members and leave my opinion out of it. Disregard.
     
    #2 Lifetime2Drill, Dec 20, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2008
  4. murff05

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    You may not enjoy your time serving in the military if you do it for the money. But I don't know anything about you and what you think about military life.
     
  5. umkcdds

    umkcdds Army OMS
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    right, good luck paying back 400K in 10 years....

    and the army doesn't pay living expenses while in school, so unless you have some other means to pay those, you will still have to take out student loans while in school.

    in regards to the numbers in the 6th paragraph, i don't know what the heck you are talking about. the numbers just don't make any sense, and frankly i don't think you know what you are talking about or have been given mis-information.

    you do have to pay back more years for doing a residency.

    not to sound like a azz here, but you really have a lot of things wrong about what you think you know about an hpsp scholarship.

    depending on what school you go to, the military is a better deal than others. my school didn't cost anywhere near 400K. i don't think anyone in my class had more than 220K in loans - and i just graduated in 2007.

    you also have to factor in losing your freedom to do what you want - both in your dental practice and in your personal time. are you willing to be assigned to an infantry division and be deployed for 12 months, working out of the back of a truck during that time? are you willing to be stuck doing nothing but amalgams and exams for four years - losing skills in other areas? are you willing to be treated like a child when it comes to requesting leave, or wanting to travel out of state for a four day weekend?
     
  6. HStudent

    HStudent Master of the Universe
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    Not to say I agree that it is worth it just for the money... but I think your wrong on a couple points. Maybe dental is different, but I'm pretty sure its the same scholarship, and for the medical HPSP, the army (or AF or navy) gives you a fairly substantial stipend, I believe it will be $2100 per month starting this year... + 45 days at almost 2600 per month (active O-1), or about 25k annually. If you live reasonably frugally you wont have to take out loans to cover living expenses (although saving money during this time, as the OP suggests, is definitely pushing it). And again, I can only speak for medicine, but with medical residencies + HPSP, you do not gain additional time of required service unless it is greater than the amount you already owe. That is, if you're post-graduate training is less that 4 years you accrue no additional commitment (and I believe this is the case with all dental post-graduate programs except MD+OMFS) 4 years school = 4 year commitment. 4 years school +3 years training = still 4 years commitment. (Training time [ ie residency] doesn't count towards or against commitment time or time in grade/ time in service, although it does count towards retirement). Trust me at your own risk... don't make any decisions based on this information... I could have no idea what I'm talking about... disclaimer et cetera. :eek:


    To the OP:
    As far as I can tell, doing a specialty will put you farther behind from a purely financial basis.
    A general dentist that attends an expensive, private dental-school will come out about even, maybe a little ahead, with 1 yr AEGD + 4 yr commitment.
    [savings in school = plus 350000, greater income during training= +40000, lower income post-training= about -60000x4=-240000: net difference = +60000 for having gone military route]
    A student that goes to a substantially cheaper in-state program, and then continues on to a 6 yr Oral-maxillofacial surgical program, followed by a 6 yr commitment, from a purely financial standpoint, would have done much better (probably in the half-million dollar ballpark) if he had taken out loans.
    [HPSP scholarship value = 200000, extra income in training = 220000, earning difference = -150000 x 6= -900000, net difference is -480000.... almost half-a-million less. Obviously I'm estimating numbers, it would vary from person to person, but these numbers are not especially unreasonable... I'll provide actual statistics + sources if anyone wants]
     
    #5 HStudent, Dec 20, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2008
  7. KOM

    KOM Senior Member
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    You're going to have to deal with other's BS out in the civilian world too whether you choose to join an already established practice or even start up your own.

    My father and grandfather have told me on multiple occasions that a lot of the BS you get in the military is no worse than the crap that comes along with running your own practice....employees, insurance, etc. They both told me that there were far less headaches in the military than out in the civilian world.

    As far as the money goes, if you're at USC and looking at 400K then yes, the military will put you way ahead financially. If you're looking at 200K then yes, the military will more than likely put you ahead financially. If you're looking at debt less than that, then I believe it starts becoming harder to justify joining the military for purely financial reasons.
     
  8. littlefoot1

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    Thanks for your input guys.

    I'm just thrilled that the strongest reason people have against joining the military is the military life because I for one, love it. I been around military personnel all my life, have served in the army, and I love it to death. I feel honored serving the soldiers of US and their family. But I'm at a point in my life where I can't be doing what I want all the time. I have responsibilities I can't deny anymore. I have to settle down and start carrying my load and I just want to do it as quickly and as efficiently (time and cost wise) as I can.

    To umkcdds:
    You're wrong about paying more years for residency years...unless the recruiter lied to my face. After you complete # years of dental school and # of years for residency, they pick the greater of the 2 and that's how many years u serve (Hstudent put it nicely)

    The 400k figure was given by USC itself. I understand its probably inflated since housing costs go in and whatnot but I believe its still close to 300K cutting corners and all.

    So I guess it is everyone's general consensus (so far) that if one plans to attend a private dental school where one will have a debt of over 200k upon graduation, there is no substantial financial loss between the military or civilian route with military route looking much better the more debt you stack up.
     
  9. littlefoot1

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    "are you willing to be stuck doing nothing but amalgams and exams for four years - losing skills in other areas?"

    Umkcdds hit the bulls-eye right here. This is what I'm most worried about. Losing skills in other areas. But I figured if I network enough, if I kiss azz enough, I should be able to do something else even if most of what I'll be doing is amalgams and exams and at least keep my skills from deteriorating.

    **sorry for the double post
     
  10. KDBuff

    KDBuff Senior Member
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    wanted to post a quick reply, not to spend too much time

    you will most likely not get into specialty school right out of school (there are exceptions, but most need to serve a few years before being selected) Therefore, you would serve your time, go to specialty school, then owe the amount of years from residency.

    As far as the money goes, I went to an uber-expensive school (UOP), and have no regrets from a financial point of view. I think what people say is not to take the scholarship ONLY for the money. If someone can't stand the thought of being in the military, being deployed, etc., then it's not worth it just for the money. However, if you can live with that stuff, then it's a good deal. Also, if people decide to stay in, it's not like military dentists are poor. There are guys with 10-15 years in who specialized through the military or did a comp program (2 year gen practice residency), who are making well over $150,000 a year, and never took a pay cut through residency.

    Just do your research, and know what you are getting into. If you do that, I don't think you'll have any regrets
     
  11. I felt I would reply since you were nice enough to quote something I said recently. I had this huge reply that I had typed out on Microsoft Word that I decided I would delete because I can felt it was like beating a dead horse - useless.


    The reason why we say do not take a military scholarship only for the money is that all too often people who do this (physicians and dentists) hate the decision they made in the end because their hearts aren't with the military. Since there can be a ton of BS that you have to put up with at times and sacrifices that you have to make that you wouldn't have to make in the civilian sector, they end up hating their decision. All too often, their frustration and distaste for the military spills out to their job and begins to affect those around them. These individuals can really bring the moral down. The last thing you need to have is one or more individuals who have a poor-poor pitiful me attitude bringing moral down especially during times that we all are having to make sacrifices like being on deployments. I have personally been around quite a few people like this and really wanted to strangle them multiple times. Because of them, I make sure that anyone here who is looking to join the military for the scholarship really looks at this from a perspective other than just for the money. I would much rather work my butt off because we are understaffed than to have to put up with a disgruntled jerk who constantly complains about the bad decision they made taking the HPSP scholarship.

    If a person wants to join for reasons other than just for the money and they are fully aware that they WILL have to make sacrifices from time to time and that life will suck at times and that they really want to serve their country, then I say GO FOR IT!!!! If not, stay the hell away. If a person joins only for the money and they hate their decision in the end, they only have their self to blame and better shut the hell up until their time is up and they get out. That is why I always tell people to not join just for the money. I love the military too much to have another person make my career miserable because they hate their decision.

    Now, if you are the type that is only in it for the money, but can deal with the sacrifices and BS that you may/will have to deal with, then I say join as long as you don't complain. Even though your salary will not be the greatest for the 4 years on active duty, if you consider how much per year you saved from d-school and the stipend received and the interest saved, then you actually will come ahead in the end. Hstudent, were you drunk when you typed that post? It is hard to understand where you got your numbers. I disagree with pretty much every number you posted that I could understand. Please, instead of placing chicken scratch down here, give us a breakdown of how you got your numbers because you aren't even close in your figures. If you take the scholarship for the 4 years and get out after 4 years, even at a cheap school like I go to in Texas, you will come out ahead in the end. I can show anyone how I get this with a full spread sheet with references where I get my figures.
     
  12. littlefoot1

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    This is awesome guys. So I'll have the structured environment of the military without having to sacrifice financially. Basically what you're all saying is that I can have my cake and eat it too. I just hope no one comes in and burst my bubble.

    I understand where you're coming from Navy DDS 2010 and I agree with you a 100%. Although I can't see myself disliking being in the military, I have never been a military dentist, so I'll take my time and carefully think about it, for the sake of myself and those I'll be working with.

    P.S. Yea, I'm kicking myself for naming the thread "In it for the money"
     
  13. umkcdds

    umkcdds Army OMS
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    trust me on the time commitment. i'm an army dentist and will be doing a 4-year OMS residency starting in july. once the residency is over (in four years), i owe four MORE years that i will incur from the OMS residency.

    IF you were to get into a specialty program right out of school, then the time you owe from dental school is served while in the residency, then you owe time that is accrued from the residency, AFTER the residency is completed. IF it were possible to get into endo right out of dental school, then two years of the dental school ADSO would be paid back during the residency, then two more that was incurred from the residency would be paid back concurrently (with the two years left from dental school ADSO) after the residency.

    IF you get right into OMS out of dental school, then your four years from dental school would be paid back during the four year OMS residency, then you would still owe four more years, incurred from the OMS residency, at the end of it.

    if you've been told otherwise, you've been lied to.

    there is no 6-year OMS residency in the military.
     
    #12 umkcdds, Dec 21, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008
  14. jmick101

    jmick101 Kung Fu DDS
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    Pacific is an easy 300k and that is without kids. Throw in a family, like some of my friends who graduated last year, and it is close to 400k. Some of those guys are working until 7pm every night and still only pulling in 90k. It aint always the rosy world we expect it to be I guess, at least not for everyone.

    UMK, did you not recieve a stipend while you were in dental school? Doesnt that count as living expense money? 1900 bucks a month is nothing to shake a stick at.

    Treated like a child for requesting leave? Its the military, everyone gets treated that way. You complain about some of the crap you get when you want to leave the state on a four day weekend, well, the fact that you GET a four day weekend (and tons of three day weekends) is a huge plus. What freshly graduated dentist with school loans, house loans, health insurance, etc is going to take all that time off? The paid time off is often taken for granted it seems. I think it amounts to almost 45 days off, when you factor in leave, holidays, and training holidays. What is that worth?

    To the OP, UMK is a good resource because he seems pissed at the Army for not being what he thought it was. He can show you some of the potentially sucky things about it (like the amalgam/exam line, etc). Which is fine and necessary in making an informed decision but you should know that there are others who feel otherwise. That UMK is doing OS on the Army's dime (congrats by the way) should imply that it can't be as bad as he makes it seem.
     
    #13 jmick101, Dec 21, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008
  15. littlefoot1

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    I think you're right Umkcdds. It wasn't that my recruiter lied to me. I just wasn't paying close enough attention and made assumptions that were uncalled for.

    So basically what you said and what I assumed would be no different if one went into a residency straight out of dental school (with the amount of years in residency not exceeding the years in dental school). But if that does not happen, the years between when I graduated and when I entered a residency would not count for payback right? The payback would start from the time I entered residency with the residency stacking up years itself.

    And, say if I enter a 5 year residency program, 4 years of residency will be used to payback d-school and the remaining year in the residency will not be used to payback for the residency program because payback for that could only start after you complete the program, right?

    This is really a pain. All this worrying could be for nothing. I don't know if I want to specialize (residency may not be an issue). I don't know if I will stay in the military till I retire or move on (payback may not be an issue).

    Jmick101, I'm with you on all points. 45 days off :eek:. I was not told that. A huge plus indeed even if its broken up into weekends.
     
  16. HStudent

    HStudent Master of the Universe
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    As I said in my post, the numbers were quick and rough estimates to show generally that you could come out either ahead or behind depending. They were written in something like chicken scratch, so I wont fault you for misunderstanding them, but had you read more carefully, you would note that where I had the theoretical-individual coming out behind, he was not "getting out after 4 years" like you just said, but after 6 (and BTW, you can do a six year OMS residency in the military, its just not a military residency... civilian deferment; additionally, most OMS residents would end up owing six years, even in a four year program, because usually you wont get into an OMS residency without doing an AEGD/GRE or having a couple years experience...). Still, since you asked, I will provide some sources and figures showing that my original number-conjecturing does in fact reflect the correct general idea, though with some margin of error as to the exact values (I did say there would be in the post...):

    What I said: [HPSP scholarship value = 200000, extra income in training = 220000, earning difference = -150000 x 6= -900000, net difference is -480000...]
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    New, calculations of figures (as opposed to a very quick estimate of figures):

    Value of HPSP scholarship is equal to $25000 (stipend of $2100 per month for 10.5 months + 1.5 months at O1 paygrade w/ 0-2 years in grade, or $2580 per month) x the number of years for which the scholar ship is awarded, plus tuition, books, and fees x the number of years awarded.

    Some sources, though I assume so far, this is well within the bounds of accepted figures:
    Basic description of the program--
    Two notes: It advertises a $20k bonus, but as this has only been offered some years (and I believe generally not to Air Force applicants, at least the first year offered) I've excluded it from calculations. Secondly, this states a stipend of $1900 per month, however, the higher $2100 per month stipend I expect will come into effect(see the second source), and so I used this in calculations... of course, using the $1900 stipend would drop the scholarship value, and only help my claim, that the scholarship is not always financially beneficial.
    http://www.goarmy.com/amedd/hpsp.jsp
    http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=295772

    Now as for getting a scholarship value of $200000:Four year scholarship:
    Stipend/pay: $25000 x 4 = $100000.
    Tuition/books/fees (ie. cost of attendance for Dental-school): Heres a much cheaper instate dental school, as I originally suggested, when I was apparently drunk and incoherent.
    http://dentistry.umc.edu/students/prospective/predoc/fees.html
    Tuition books and fees will come out to well UNDER $15000 per year. Note that that equals $60000, again, lower than the hundred thousand I estimated, and thus again, going with the more accurate figure would only help my claim, though I choose to leave it as is, fully recognizing that this is an unusually cheap dental school, even for instate/cheap state. Now I trust, this is satisfactory evidence of the validity of my first figure: HPSP scholarship value-- $200k (in this theoretical case).

    Now, continuing onto my second figure: extra income in training = 220000.

    Lets say that the stipend for a civilian AEGD program is $35000; this varies, both higher and lower, but I'm choosing this figure because it was the first one that came I clicked on (googled AEGD stipend). Source: http://www.dent.umich.edu/depts/crse/AEGD_FAQ.php

    In the military, pay during AEGD as far as I can tell, is O3 pay:
    Basic Pay: $40,888 + 2400 BAS+ $18936 BAH ($1578 per month) = $62224
    I chose to calculate the housing allowance for Anchorage, Alaska,... something of a tribute to AFDDS-- Elmendorf, AFB AEGD Residency Director :)
    Anyways, figures are all available on GOarmy.com, should you wish to check them yourself.
    http://forums.studentdoctor.net/archive/index.php/t-486365.html suggests $70000 as a general estimate during AEGD

    This makes the net difference for PGY1 + PGY2, between civilian and military pay, be ([(62224-35000) $/yr]x2 yr= $54448, net in favor of the military.

    For PGY 3-6, I again used the first program for which I could find figures, discarding 6 year programs: http://www.dentistry.umn.edu/programs_admissions/advanced_programs/grad_oral_surg/Additional_OMS/home.html

    Year 1: $45,744
    Year 2: $46,918
    Year 3: $48,532
    Year 4: $50,516

    As far as the military pay goes (I'm not 100% sure of this...) you should receive the same pay as during AEGD, except that in OMS year 2 (PGY4) you're time in grade will pop your basic pay up to $54547, or around $75883 depending on housing.


    Combining these for four year net:

    ($62224 - $45744) + ($62224 - $46918) + ($75883 - $ 48532) + ($75883 - $50516) = $87504.

    Therefore, the 6 year earning difference during training (original estimate: 'extra income in training = 220000), comes out to be: $54448 (PGY1 + PGY2) + $87504 (PGY3 + PGY4 + PGY5 + PGY6) = $141952,

    well under my estimate, therefore, favoring my original conclusion that for a specialty the military can put you well behind financially.


    Continuing onto my 3rd 'totally absurd' figure: 6 year earning difference during 'pay-back' time: 900000 more of the civ. Now this is the one figure I admit to having been a little overly enthusiastic on the civilian side, and unfortunately, it is also the one with the least usable, readily-available data to look at. However, let us assume, for the civilian OMS, a starting salary of $150,000. Two years experience, $175000; three, $200000; four, $225000; five, $250000; six, $275000. These are very reasonable figures-- check any average for OMS in private, non-academic practice, and you will find these to be right in the middle figure set 50%. An ambitious OMS, doing less fun work, and more hours, could pull in quite a bit more. Heres one SDN source: http://forums.studentdoctor.net/archive/index.php/t-143644.html

    Now, for our militaristic-indentured dentist ;D :
    Salaries vary by rank, location, specialty pays, et cetera... but as an average over the six years, you will be about $22000 above your rank pay (Basic pay + BAS+ BAH et cetera).


    http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/special-pay/special-pay-for-dental-officers
    If someone just needs the year by year breakdown, respond and I'll add it, but I don't really feel like it, and military pay for dentists should be a widely enough understood topic, that if this number is grossly wrong, swarms of angered posts will attack me for it soon enough. (Do remember, that during these six years you will not get any retention bonus:Thus pay will be $50000 or so less than you might expect to see). To estimate basic pay, I took the average of O3 with over 6 years in grade-- $57156 -- and O5 with over 12 years in grade -- $75888, this being what I estimate would be the first and last years basic pay on average. This yields $66552. Adding in our Anchorage BAH, BAS, and my $22000 dental-bonuses estimate, I figure a net annual average income of the 6 years of post-residency commitment to be $109888.
    Taking the average of the civilian pay estimate previously suggested, equates to $212500. This is of course, $102612 more per year on average than the military pay, for a net salary difference of $615672. (Which, I confess, is quite a bit short of my $900000 guess, though as a percentage no farther off than the amount less the scholarship was actually worth, or the pay difference in training... still, $280k is a lot of money).

    So, combining all of this (to get my final conclusion that it puts you financially behind to go the military route given the limitations of going to a cheap public school and choose a high-pay, time consuming specialty): Using the (actual, not my original estimates[ie-- 160k, not 200 for scholarship value et cetera...]) and rounding to the nearest thousand to calculate, the actual net difference at the end of military commitment is *drumroll*... (160k + 142k - 616k = -314k) a net loss of about three-hundred and fourteen thousand dollars; not quite my four-hundred and eighty-thousand dollar guesstimate, but still a substantial amount.

    PS:

    Sorry this was really long... and sort of pointless. :smuggrin:
     
    #15 HStudent, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
  17. trickybenny

    trickybenny Junior Member
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    My 2 cents.

    I really think that the intangibles are just as important as the tangibles were for my decision to take an HPSP.
    Tangibles: finances, serving your country, adventure, traveling, training/continuing education, 45 days off a year, guaranteed debt free after 4yrs.
    Intangibles: MENTAL freedom of knowing that financially you will be taken care of. HPSP eliminates guesswork

    The intangible for me was a dealbreaker is the fact that I don't mentally do well with debt. That is just my personality, $250,000 in loans in a weak economy would worry me. It would affect vacations/eating out and the loans would be on my mind. The debt was going to be substantial for dental school. It is even more substantial since our tuition has gone up 19% since the first year and with budget constraints will certainly continue to rise.

    We can hammer out calculations for whether the civillian route would be more financially advantageous than the military route ( i definitely think the military route is advantageous in most situations). But, the reality is that there are inherent assumptions and guesswork that you have to take for the civillian route... I have friends that recently graduated that are starting at 80K and friends starting at 160K (Charlotte, NC), Tuition increases, Cars break down.. etc. There are so many variables that one cannot guarantee being debt-free in four years. With the economy being what it is, the MENTAL freedom to not have to worry about finding a job and getting a serious debt management plan is worth alot to me. That said, I agree with everyone that financial reasons alone are not worth joining, but certainly were a big consideration in probably everyone's decision to take the HPSP.
     
  18. umkcdds

    umkcdds Army OMS
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    my stipend was only about $1200/month. covered rent and a couple utilities. there was no bonus.

    i've got over 10 years of military service. the army isn't anything i thought i would not be. i knew what i was getting into.

    i don't regret my time in the army, or my decision to do it. i just think dentists get screwed a lot and are underappreciated. i still would make the same decision to join if i had to do it all over again. it's just not for everyone. there are a lot of BS policies that you have to put up with, "just because."

    my whole point is, that if you take an army HPSP scholarship just to get your dental school paid for, you will regret it.

    the topic of how leave and travel passes are used and given is a topic for a different thread (unless someone wants to hear about it here). it's ridiculous. who cares if you have a four-day weekend, if you can't travel farther than 100 miles from post without requesting a mileage travel pass, and can't go farther than 450 miles without burning leave during that four-day weekend that you would otherwise have off?

    i don't like being some 18 year-old private with a GED.

    and, i'm not really doing OMS on the army's dime. i'm paying for it by working for four years at about 1/6 the income i could make in a private practice.

    hstudent - i think some of your numbers in that long post are a bit of "wishful thinking" and they sound like they've been twisted a little by HRC or by a recruiter. the proof is in the pudding, and those numbers aren't reality.
     
    #17 umkcdds, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
  19. desert rat

    desert rat general dentist
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    You all did not factor in something important, retirement. If you can make it in the military for 20-30 years you will have a nice retirement for life even if you live to 120 years. The down side is if you die early the cash is not given to your kin.

    Yesterday I looked up how much I would be making yearly in retirement as an 06 with 21 years service had I not had a dissability discharge early (10 years). That is a nice chunk of money and equals to having several million in the retirement fun (harder to do than most realize). Now go to 30 years of service and the retirement pay is awsome.
     
  20. umkcdds

    umkcdds Army OMS
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    the last time i looked at the retirement pay, it takes 40 years of service at O-6 to get 100%, 30 years and O-6 to get 75% retirement. it's something like 40% at 20 years and O-6.

    and those are the numbers that you max out at - 30 years AFTER retirement. it is substantially less immediately after retirement, then goes up each year until you reach the maximum % at 30 years after retirement.

    this is for anyone who entered service after 1986.

    and that is just base pay - does not include BAH, BAS, bonuses, specialty pay, dental pay, etc....
     
    #19 umkcdds, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
  21. At 20 years, with the High 3, that most of you would calculate your retirement, you receive 50% of base pay starting the day you retire. You are not paid any bonuses or special pays during retirement. It does scale each year with the economy (about 3.5% average lately). For each year you serve after 20 your retirement pay increases by 2.5%. So, at 30 years you would receive 75% of your base pay for the rest of your life. There are calculators available that take into account the pay increases, your time in service and year retired available through dfas.mil. If you really think you can do the full 20 years then you may want to look at the benefits of doing 24-30 years by punching in the numbers. The stress put on a family makes it hard to stay in until retirement but sometimes there is a guaranteed pot of gold at the end of the muck-covered rainbow.
     
  22. AFDDS

    5+ Year Member

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    I should have some info on retirement pay. I'll try to post some of it from a ppt presentation. a 20 year Col retires with the equivalent of either 1.4 or 1.6 million in the bank + major medical + Commissary and BX privileges (more of a benefit in certain areas like AK) + COL increases.

    I've lived both lives. Granted, I was in private practice when I was the poorest and I grossed as much money then (10+ years ago) as I do now, but the AF life is the life for me. The amount of money I made when I first came in was enough to live comfortably. I wasn't rich and I didn't drive a "Beemer", but I wasn't hurting either. I got paid to go to 2 years of residency and now you get to keep your ASP. As a program director, I get to see stats from the ADA on all residencies across the U.S. Military AEGD-1 residents get paid more than any other resident in the country, with the exception of one OMS programs 4th year residents. If you wait to train until you've been in a while, no one will make more money while in training. On top of that, the training you receive is some of the best in the world.

    I get to treat AF, Army, CG, Guard and Reserves here and I say I treat some of the most deserving patients in the world. Don't get wrapped up in $$. I'd much rather be happy and enjoy what I do than to make more money and be miserable.
     
  23. jmick101

    jmick101 Kung Fu DDS
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    Only 1200 a month? Still nothing to complain about. That it is 1900 should get the Army some credit. I agree that if you join the military solely for the financial reasons you will be disappointed.

    As far as leave goes, I believe that the same rules apply for the 18 year old with the GED as the Brigade Commander 0-6 with a Masters. Rules are rules and everyone has to play by them, that's just Army. I really couldn't care less anyhow since I am something of a homebody and if I am going to fly out somewhere, I am going to stay for a bit longer than a long weekend.

    And sorry, but you are going to get paid like a king during your residency. You are right that you will pay for your residency with time, but cmon, an 0-3 with 10 years? Shoot that is almost 100k a year. There isn't a residency anywhere that pays that well. So yes, you are not exactly doing this entirely on the Army's dime, but you might as well be.

    Do you really think that you will be making 660K fresh out of residency? I doubt it, at least for the first few years anyways.
     
  24. HStudent

    HStudent Master of the Universe
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    Out of curiosity, which numbers did you think were off-- there was a lot of numbers-- and what do you think is an accurate figure? Considering that your saying they are 'twisted by a recruiter,' I assume you think one (or more) of the military values are high? As this would only support my point, would it be fair to say that you don't disagree that from a purely financial perspective, for someone going to a state dental school and then planning on entering a lucrative specialty (Ortho/OMS/etc.) it is better to take out loans than to take the HPSP? If I read you right, your in a military OMS program, so it would be great to hear if you agree or not.
     
  25. DrReo

    DrReo "Thread Necromancer"
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    Hey NAVY, would you mind posting this? Please

    Thanks!
     
  26. penguinteeth

    penguinteeth Member
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    Now with this economy, I am glad with my decision.

    However, I still would not recommend anyone to join military for money.

    I am in a state school but I still joined Navy for different life style.

    I was not sure if I am going to be happy with staying in my own bungalow rest of my life.

    I don't mind being deployed or working in aircraft carrier. Actually, I love overseas duty. For me, joining Navy is for broadening the width of my life experiences. Plus, if you don't like it? you can still quit it after 3-4 years.

    Go Navy :thumbup:
     

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