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  1. #1
    Forum Member Moediaz's Avatar
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    Default Joining the PJ's, Thoughts?

    Anybody have any thoughts on signing up for the PJ's ( Pararescue ).
    I here the testing is harder then seals and any other operations, and more intense, is that true?
    If I do pass all the tests, and become a PJ, will it have to be a permanent caareer?


  2. #2
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    I have thought about it, but it would be insane. Basically a SEAL super medic guy lol, but has to be super rewarding.

  3. #3
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    It takes a very special person both physically and mentally to be a Pararescueman. The training is intense and very long. The approximate total pipeline length is 63.5 weeks. Pararescue indoctrination is the hardest DOD school based on attrition rates. The current attrition rates are 80-90%. They do not call it "superman school" for nothing.

    Another factor to consider is family. Although many PJ's have families, the career field is known as a "single mans job." This is due to the insanely high deployment rates that PJ's endure. It is not uncommon for a PJ to be deployed, or away from his home station, for more than 300 days in a year.

    With that said, I would advise you to do extensive research to see if Pararescue is really for (you). There are excellent websites that will give you detailed information on all of the schools in the pipeline and the career field in general. An excellent website is http://specialtactics.com/.

    If you would so happen to make it through the pipeline and become a PJ, you would be a jack-of-all-trades. Airborne, military freefall and combat diver are just a few of the certifications one would obtain. Not to mention, you would be trained to the level of a NREMT-Paramedic. Civilian opportunities after the military for PJ's are endless.

    My advice is to make sure it is for you before you embark on the journey. The simple fact is most do not make it. When this happens, you will be put into another job in the Air Force. You could get lucky and get a great career field like Fire Protection, or you could be like most and get Security Forces. Therefore, research intensely before you make a decision you will regret. I wish you the best of luck in all of your future endeavors.
    Last edited by medic3433; 12-07-2007 at 11:41 PM.

  4. #4
    Forum Member DennisTheMenace's Avatar
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    You do not "Join" any of the Special Forces. You MIGHT get the opportunity to essentially "try out". The tryouts last 12-36 months, depending on training schedules and school openings, for each of the services, Navy SEALS, Marine Force Recon, USAF PJ's, and Army Green Beret's; with the Marines and Army having some serious pre-req's. Marine Recon is the only one were you would not have the opportunity to become NREMT-Paramedic. No one should try out for any of these with any intention of doing anything but improveing themself and a man and serving their country. Doing it because you think it will give you marketable skills after discharge is not the attitude to have. The only reason that PJ's training seems to be longer than the others is that the others usually have much of the training before hand that the PJ's don't. Green Beret's will already have been through survival training and jump school, and the medics will already be fully trained, essentailly it takes a full enlistment or two before you will even get the chance to try out. Corpman in the SEALS will already have completed their medical training before they begin the six months of BUD/S which is followed by 18 months of additional training probationary time before they pin on the Trident. Recon Marines will already have been through Jump School, Dive School, and likely survival training before they get to a Force Recon Bn. and continue their training.

    Getting into the PJ's is not any harder than getting into the other Special Ops teams, it is just different. Air Force Special Ops consists of Air Force Combat Controllers, Pararescue Jumpers, Special Operations Weathermen and JTACs (Joint Terminal Attack Controllers) so you have many different routes to try if you must go AirForce, sort of like the Army has Airborne, the Rangers, and Green Berets(although those are more like different steping stones rather than different fields) and the Navy has the SEALs, the SEAL Delivery Teams, and the Special Boat Teams.

    The Air Force and the Navy are the only two services that allow a fresh recruit to sign up to go directly from boot camp to a special operations program, BUD/S or . Army you can now sign up to go Airborne with a direct path after jump school to Ranger School, but you can't go right to the Green Berets. You can be picked from USMC School of Infantry to go to a Recon Company, but will have to make that first stop before you can try for Force Recon.

    If you choose to "try out" for the PJ's make sure that you are willing to do which ever MOS in the Air Force is the least desireable to you before sign the papers just in case you are one of the 80% who don't get through the first 9 weeks of indoctrination, or the following 60 weeks actual training.
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  5. #5
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    The Air Force and the Navy are the only two services that allow a fresh recruit to sign up to go directly from boot camp to a special operations program, BUD/S or . Army you can now sign up to go Airborne with a direct path after jump school to Ranger School, but you can't go right to the Green Berets. You can be picked from USMC School of Infantry to go to a Recon Company, but will have to make that first stop before you can try for Force Recon.

    Not true. The army for about the last 3 years has been running the 18X program which will guarantee a tryout in the SF program but not one specific skill set such as medic or engineer. Usually though if you volunteer for medic an have the test scores to qualify they will take you. You also have the path of PSYOP which is psychological operations and to describe what they do would take more room than I have here but within the job you can do just about any kind of job that is in the army from medical to computers to tactical to embasy work. Look it up if that is somethign that interests you. It's what I did when i was in and was the most amazing job I've ever had. loved every minute of it. Plus you have the ability not to move every 2 years like the rest of the military because they are only stationed at Ft.Bragg. A good point for people with kids in school.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennisTheMenace View Post
    Green Beret's will already have been through survival training and jump school, and the medics will already be fully trained, essentailly it takes a full enlistment or two before you will even get the chance to try out.
    This is not necessarily true. While some may have attended SERE or Airborne school prior to SFQC I assure you that none have the medic skills to get out of attending the 18D (SF Medic) course. Case in point, We had an emergency medicine doc as our Battalion MD. He was going to be left out of a deployment in which he wanted to go on. He resigned his comission to become a SF medic so he could deploy. He was still required to go to the 18D course because there are blocks of instruction that he needed such as Vet Medicine. I know this to be fact as I am a former 18D and the Doc was a friend of mine. He was later KIA'ed while we were downrange.

  7. #7
    FLA1786
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    Moe my fellow FDNY wanna be,

    I didn't see that you posted this...I'm pretty sure I've told you that thats what I wanna do. Be a PJ then FDNY. If you still are thinking about it or have any questions let me know and I'll speed you up on it all.

  8. #8
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    If you were to make it as a PJ it wouldn't have to be a career but you can expect to do a a few years with them.

    The training spans so many disciplines it can be difficult, you go from medic to soldier to rescue tech to the man to call in air strikes. As a PJ you would basically know it all and be expected to perform what ever is asked of you in a second.

    There are some great websites out there that outline "the pipeline" as it is known to CCTs and PJs which takes you from pre-training to indoc to your actual schools from basic airborne to paramedic.

    If you decide to pick this you will work with the best people the military has to offer and follow a very proud lineage of men.

    Good luck with your decision man.

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