Navy/Marines questions

Discussion in 'Military Medicine' started by Red tail, Apr 1, 2012.

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  1. Red tail

    Red tail

    Feb 3, 2012
    I am looking for some current information.

    How difficult is it to get a Navy surgical internship?

    I have searched for information on Marine GMOs and have found where someone said that it is harder to get assigned to a combat platform than a support platform. Is this still true?

    If you were assigned to just a support platform, would you have less of an opportunity to go to such schools such as Airborne or cold weather survival medicine?

    Anyone been assigned to a Marine Expeditionary Unit? What what was that like and how difficult is it to be assigned to one of those units?

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  3. Gastrapathy

    Gastrapathy no longer apathetic Lifetime Donor 10+ Year Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    Odds of a green-side GMO tour if desired approach 100%. You will deploy. Whether you get to go to summer camp at Bridgeport will depend on your unit.
  4. numberwunn

    numberwunn 5+ Year Member

    Mar 27, 2011
    Admit to not knowing med side as well, but coming from the green side... Marines get very, very few billets at Airborne. (Support units, like some of the logistics types, probably have more jump billets because it is in their mission. Combat units, with the exception of ANGLICO, Recon, or Mar Soc get very few/none). And they are highly sought after. Few units get any at all, and those that do will probably not send their GMO. Not saying impossible, but very hard. If you have an aching desire to jump out of an airplane, best bet is to pay to do it. Second best bet is to join the Army, where they give those billets out like candy.

    Bridgeport (mountain/cold weather training) - more likely if stationed on the West coast, I think. But a crap-shoot - depends mostly if your unit is going.

    Again, didn't go on a MEU (went OEF), but know lots of guys who did. Some had great experiences - did some cool training ops and hit every libo port in the Med (read - drank their way through the Mediterranean, returning broke but with some great stories). Others do no cool ops and cut "gator squares" in the middle of the gulf for six months (read - you stay on ship the entire time. No cool operations or ports. As GMO, you would probably see a couple of patients in sick call, but can't imagine that many. Do some training. Go to the gym. Take a nap. Go to chow. Take a nap. PT some more. etc - gets very boring). Those units have long workups, so before you even go overseas you have six months of training where you are gone a lot. Then you are gone for seven months. I doubt it's the most cush job. And sometimes they don't even go on ship - they just get sent straight to Afghanistan or Iraq.

    I believe that amphibious ships (which carry MEUs) have their own GMOs - at least the large decks, which have relatively extensive medical capabilities. As far as getting assigned to a Marine Battalion (Infantry, Combat Logistics Battalion, or Squadron) which is going on a MEU - may not be impossible, but don't set your heart on it - who gets sent is always liable to change. I'm guessing, however, that if you went to the detailer and said, "I want to deploy!" - they would make it happen. Then again, when I volunteered to deploy again, I didn't get sent...
  5. NavyFP

    NavyFP Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 18, 2006
    Manning a Cubicle
    It is not very hard to get a GS internship, but being a good student will help.

    It is not hard to get an Infantry Batallion as a GMO, but airborne and cold weather training is not very likely these days. most training is focused on hot dry environments.

    MEUs are an almagamation of units. If you are the doc assigned, you go. What you would actually do is highly variable and denpends on world events.
  6. pgg

    pgg Laugh at me, will they? SDN Moderator 10+ Year Member

    Dec 14, 2005
    Home Again
    Agree with all the above posters.

    If you ask the detailer for Marine infantry, he'll probably have your orders cut before you get off the phone, lest you change your mind. :)

    (That's assuming you're male - women don't go to Division.)

    In my GMO days, after a month at 29 Palms for CAX one January (which was pretty cold), I was abruptly volunteered for some extended training at Bridgeport. It was freakishly cold.

    Typical last-minute training cluster****. The guy who ran the mountain / cold weather medicine course I was supposed to take there was TAD to Alaska. (Nobody thought to call ahead to see if the critical training I was going to get was actually being offered at that time.) They handed me a CD with some powerpoints, and I went camping with the Marines for a couple days instead. The night we spent on the ridge herding a bunch of $*(&!#[email protected]! pack mules was the coldest night of my life. If the Marines had been carrying live ammo I'm sure every single one of those miserable animals would've been shot.
  7. Red tail

    Red tail

    Feb 3, 2012
    Thank you all for the replies. Exactly what I wanted to know.

    I don't necessarily want to go to Airborne school, but it would be awesome if I could. Previous posts made it sound almost a sure thing, but it makes more since that it would be unlikely.

    I may be a little different, but cold weather medicine sounds like a cool experience. Would there be other kinds of training that you could do while a GMO?
  8. AnotherNavyDoc


    Apr 9, 2012
    Going to do cool training is based on several things:

    Getting someone to cover your job while you are gone. No other GMO is going to be flown in to cover your work, you will need to find a way to "spread the joy".

    More importantly your cammand needs to pay for it. Training is very expensive. If your unit is getting cold weather training easy enough, the budget will be there. But to get it outside of what your unit does requires $ and that is in very short supply right now.

    Better plan: during med school or internship do an elective at that base offering the training. It is all paper money so if there they can usually roll you right into an empty seat.

    As far as delpoying that is very unit specific - I am with a unit that is not going anywhere. But a GMO at the batallion below us just came back from a tour in Afghansistan. He asked the detailer for a billet to stay with his wife a new kid and got deployed. I ask for a deployable billet and was assured I would go off in weeks after I landed.

    Getting what you want involves being in the right place at the right time more than processing requests.
  9. Red tail

    Red tail

    Feb 3, 2012
    Thank you very much for the reply. Seems like good advice.
  10. libo1369

    libo1369 mmm beer 10+ Year Member

    Aug 4, 2005
    Jacksonville FL
    I can't talk about the GMO tour as a GMO officer yet but I will tell you about what I saw our GMO do when I was an enlisted grunt. Some of the cool things you get to do are go to multiple ranges and shoot different weapon systems like my beloved mod deuce and MK19 automatic grenade launcher. You can proabably get some trigger time with a 240 golf and countless rounds of saw and m16 ammo you can get qualled on the m16 and m9 pistol to wear some pretty ribbons on the uniform.

    While the first mission is to train the units it is still often possible to get behind several of the weapon systems and it relieves one of the Corpsman of duty there. You can also get a chance to fly on some helo's ride on several different vehicles to include LCAC's LAV's and Humvees. Go get gassed it's pretty fun!

    Jump school spots are going to be a no go for all the reasons said previously. most GMO's that went green said they really loved it. It is also an interesting look into a warrior culture and I will tell you that there is nothing more motivating than seeing a GMO on a hump and willing to take a .50 cal even if it is only for a half a mile haha.
  11. Red tail

    Red tail

    Feb 3, 2012
    So do GMO's go on hikes and participate in field excercises as well?

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