cavaor

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I assume I would get this information when I do ARMY OBC, but I do not do that until June 06 and am hoping to get some stuff taken care of before then. Can anyone provide a list of uniform items and any other required items that we will be expected to have? As of now, the only information I have is:

***get your military ID, and dependent ID if appropriate, at a local base. Have orders or your commissioning papers with you and call ahead.
 

DrBloodmoney

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I would strongly, strongly suggest getting BDU's before you go to OBC. Strongly. The first four days of my OBC experience consisted almost entirely of getting the right patches sewn on (I had them prior to getting there, too, just without patches). The folks who had to buy them, then get them altered and patched... well, it was a time-consuming, frustrating process. Just get your military ID and go to a MCSS before you go.
 

delicatefade

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Good advice. All the info is in the HPSP handbook. When you go to your local Army base to get your uniforms you should be able to get everything sewn on while you are they. I, too, have heard this will save you lots of time and waiting at OBC.
 
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cavaor

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Thank you for the advice. Unfortunately, I do not have a military base locally, so it looks like I now know what I will be doing for spring break. Even the ROTC office sends cadets a couple of hrs away to get IDs, etc.

As for the website link, how do you obtain a logon? All of my paperwork is "still processing" so I have no information. I only have an oath of office form at this point. Will that be enough to get my IDs?
 

MoosePilot

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If you take boots, you might shine them first. They'll teach you to do it the right way, but boots are really easy. Just brush on some black wax onto a clean boot, then buff with the brush. Don't put on too much wax at any given time. The goal is just for them to be all black and somewhat shiny.
 

grumbo

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I went to OBC last year so I'll throw my thoughts out there. First of all, go to the OBC website (http://www.cs.amedd.army.mil/obc/) and poke around for a while. The website gets updated every so often and has some good advice to prep you. Everyone says get your uniforms and boots in order before you go, and that's great advice, but it seemed like 90% of the people last year weren't able to do that. If you don't live near a base, then getting your ID and uniforms before you get to Ft. Sam could be more of a hassle than getting them with everyone else.

If you find a convenient way to get your stuff before hand, here's what I'd get:
Uniforms
2 sets of BDU's with patches (medical service corps, 2LT, your name, army, medical service shoulder sleeve insignia(USUHS patch for USUHS students), u.s. flag), 4 sets of pin on rank (2 subdued and 2 shiny), one pair of boots (I got two pair because they suggested it, but I've never used the second pair even at USUHS), 1 field cap, 1 berret (you'll probably need help shaping this), 2 sets of PT uniform (no jacket or pants needed, but the pants are very comfortable for normal wear)

Other stuff
shoe shine kit, running shoes, old pair or shoes (combatives in the mud can mess up shoes in a hurry), an all black backpack (no logos), a medium sized camelback, a little pocket notebook and pens, 20 copies of oath of office and orders, a laptop (helpful but not necessary), your car (you'll want it).

Random advice. OBC was pretty fun last year, but the first week is a bunch of hurry up and wait with very little time for sleep. You should show up in decent shape since they have a PT test that first week you show up. After that, you get into a routine where you just go to classes all day, and hang out at night/weekends. You'll probably have a lot of time to do fun stuff; someone brought their XBox, others brought golf clubs, I went to the movies. When you first get there, you'll likely try to stock up your mini-fridge with stuff, which is a good idea, but most people way over bought and had to throw stuff out at the end. The FTX (field training exercise) was dirty, tiring, and hot, but mostly fun. Part of the reason for joining the army was to do some of that stuff. We zeroed our M16's, qualified on our M9's, learned basic medic skills, and competed for the longest snot string coming out of the gas chamber. Most of your classmates will never know those joys. Some things were hard, some things didn't make sense, but it was a good experience. All in all, it was a fun time where I got to know a bunch of the people I will be working with for a good part of my life. I did hear that OBC was supposed to be getting harder, but I guess you'll see about that. About the only thing you can do now is read the OBC website, and maybe pick up a copy of the Army Officer's Guide.

p.s.
It's funny, I always seem to spend more time on this site when I have tests coming up. If I don't look at the notes, maybe the class will just go away.
 

BabyHuey

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Yo dude....thanks for the information. It's really comprehensive and great, since I'll be going there this summer. Hey, my big problem is trying to get up to speed, no pun intended, with regards to running. I've never been a runner and it's so hard to get up to that minimum 16:30 time. Anyway, any suggestions??? The push ups/situps are no prob. I'm actually looking forward to OBC, I've heard from other sources that it's pretty cool. Oh, and do you stay in your own hotel room?? And how much money do you get for food, etc?

Thanks for the feedback!!!
 

grumbo

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I'm sure other people can add or edit the advice I posted. As far as running is concerned, I suck at it so I can't give advice there. You just have to do it. At OBC we had organized runs 2 times a week and that helped me. I'm competitve and I couldn't let myself fall out of the running formation when most everyone is still going. Also, if you fall out, it's not like they're going to let you just stop. You have to finish the run sometime so you might as well try to keep up so you don't feel tired AND stupid. To put it into perspective, Ft. Sam also has AIT (advanced individual training) for enlisted soldiers right out of basic. One morning while we were lazily stretching, a couple hundred enlisted soldiers went running by finishing up a very long run, and at the end of the column, a couple of soldiers stopped and puked. They wiped their mouths, and kept going. No one stopped to coddle them and see if they were alright, they were expected to just suck it up and drive on; they were soldiers. Needless to say, our exercise seemed easier after watching that. What can I say? Running sucks, but you have to do it.

You will be staying in the BOQ (basic officer's quarters), which is basically a hotel room with a little kitchenette. You will be eating mostly at the dinning facility. I believe HPSP students had their meals free at the dining facility and USUHS students had to pay, but got reimbursed later.

{inner monologue..... Crap! I can't tell someone to suck it up and just run when I'm avoiding my own working out by hiding on SDN. Man...now I have to go run. ......... leaves to go run}
 

CodeBlueMD

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Thanks for the info grumbo - I've heard the rumor that we have to max out on pull ups in addition to situps/push ups. Did you have to do that last year?

Also, I can't find exact directions for patch placement on the BDUs, even in the huge 670-1. Advice for my laundry lady?

Thanks again.
 

spc213

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A few responses to various posts:

1) If you are not going to OBC until 2006 I would highly suggest you wait until this time next year or later to purchase your uniforms because of the introduction of the new Army Combat Uniform (ACU). It should be available in the clothing sales around this time next year -- right now it's going to deploying troops. grumbo's packing list is a good one to follow. If you go to OBC this summer, you may be S.O.L. and face buying both the current uniform and the ACU.

2) Patches go 1/4 inch below the shoulder seam of the bdu blouse sleeve. Make sure you (or your seamstress) knows which way is up -- some patches are confusing. I have seen people with patches both 90 and 180 degrees off. Also remember to get the reverse US Flag patch for your right shoulder.

3) Advice on the run: Get a good pair of running shoes. Go to a store that specializes in fitting runners and bite the bullet for a pair that fits your gait, running style, and foot peculiarities. After you get good shoes, break them in by ensuring you can do two miles. Work up to it if you need to. One of the best methods I have found to get the time down is doing "interval training." Do a series of sprints/fast runs from 100m, 200m, 400m, etc. and this will dramatically reduce your 2 mile time. If you work intervals into your workout once every one to two weeks, assuming you run at least 2 to 3 times per week, you should have no problem reaching the 60% point on the run. Ease into it and don't overdo it. Disclaimer: Consult your physician before undertaking any exercise program. ;)

Good luck!
 

CodeBlueMD

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Thanks for the advice/suggestions. How about the collar insignia ... do you most people just use the pin on or should I try and figure how to sew them on in the correct place? Again, I can't find a diagram/instructions on exactly where they belong.
 

grumbo

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CodeBlueMD said:
Thanks for the advice/suggestions. How about the collar insignia ... do you most people just use the pin on or should I try and figure how to sew them on in the correct place? Again, I can't find a diagram/instructions on exactly where they belong.
The subdued pin on stuff is authorized, but almost no one uses it. Other than dress uniforms (which we never used at OBC), most people only use pins for their berret/field cap. The easiest way to get your stuff sewn on right is to have the alteration shop at the base where you bought it sew it on. They know where things go and can hook you up so you don't look too foolish when you first put that puppy on.