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Old 01-10-2014, 06:30 PM   #1
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Default Life on a ship

So I'm wondering about the day to day while on a ship or sub, I watched "carrier" and it seemed like the Nukes were separate from the restof the ship, so that's my question, are there some seperate barracks close to the reactor for Nukes? Do you go to the mess hall like normal? Is there anything different or is life very similar to other sailors?
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Old 01-11-2014, 11:27 AM   #2
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Yes, you all work in your own Nuke Cave apart from the rest of us. As for everything else you are asking I am not sure.
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Old 01-11-2014, 12:03 PM   #3
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Question same question

The recruiters are pushing/leaning my son towards nuke do to his scores.. Me being a mother and very concerned with other things that may not be brought up ahead of time to dissuade from taking the position. I have heard that they are pretty much alienated from the rest of the crew and on the small confines of a sub I worry stress and close confines being new to the whole deployment thing... or am i just be an overwrought overbearing mother.. if you can help settle my nerves in any way it would be greatly appreciated... BTW he hasn't picked his job yet so the field is wide open... he scored really well so they say he can have his pick... i swear i think it would be less stressful if he had less choices... thanks in advance for any help/ advice you can offer.
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Old 01-11-2014, 12:51 PM   #4
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Well, I started Carrier and never finished it awhile ago, and I haven't lived on ships yet but didn't it focus mostly on junior enlisted, officers and some of the leadership?

The great majority of Nukes are going to be petty officers by the time they hit the fleet, which may explain why you didn't see many of them. As far as I know there aren't separate barracks for different rates, although they might try to put you close to where you work during the day.
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:09 PM   #5
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The recruiters are pushing/leaning my son towards nuke do to his scores.. Me being a mother and very concerned with other things that may not be brought up ahead of time to dissuade from taking the position. I have heard that they are pretty much alienated from the rest of the crew and on the small confines of a sub I worry stress and close confines being new to the whole deployment thing... or am i just be an overwrought overbearing mother.. if you can help settle my nerves in any way it would be greatly appreciated... BTW he hasn't picked his job yet so the field is wide open... he scored really well so they say he can have his pick... i swear i think it would be less stressful if he had less choices... thanks in advance for any help/ advice you can offer.
I think you should encourage your son to go Nuke. It's one of the best career paths the Navy has to offer. Whether your son will be alienated from the rest of the crew will depend entirely on how social he is. He will naturally fall into a brotherhood with his Nuke buddies at the very least.
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:33 PM   #6
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I think you should encourage your son to go Nuke. It's one of the best career paths the Navy has to offer.
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:00 PM   #7
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I think you should encourage your son to go Nuke. It's one of the best career paths the Navy has to offer. Whether your son will be alienated from the rest of the crew will depend entirely on how social he is. He will naturally fall into a brotherhood with his Nuke buddies at the very least.
Ehhhh.....


He should go nuke if it something he is truly interested in.
Recruiters push nuke on EVERYONE who has decent scores, because the dropout rate is so high, they always need more people.
Nuke school is hard, and nukes work very long hours. It's something you need to be truly interested in to be successful.
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Old 01-11-2014, 06:54 PM   #8
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He should go nuke if it something he is truly interested in..
absolutely! I thought added that tidbit... been chasing 2 toddlers around all day/evening.
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Old 01-12-2014, 01:04 PM   #9
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As a mother of a sailor that went nuke...I truly wish he had not gone that direction. Yes now that he is done with his time in the navy and in the civilian world, it has done him VERY well, he makes the big bucks now. HOWEVER, it was VERY hard on him...5 sailors in his department of nuke tried to commit suicide and sad to say, so did my son. This happened while on deployment. My son's best friend went nuke as well, and his roommate at Power School did commit suicide while he was away for a weekend, came back to find the guy..very sad. The program is hard, and very stressful. Nukes are always the first on the ship, and last off. They work long hard hours, and on deployment it was not unusual to work 12 to 24 hours at a time. My son did his entire enlistment, and even re-enlisted, however he did not finish his second..but did get a full Honorable discharge and has all the benefits. My son originally wanted the medical field, and was talked into nuke..his original goal was to be a doctor and was even accepted at Iowa State in pre-med. Sadly he no longer wants that and is working as the plant mechanic for Owens/Corning in Texas, and is going to school to get his Engineering degree.
As a mom, you really dont have a lot to say about your son's choice..however, ask your son what his LONG term goals are, what does he see himself doing in 8 years. Does he want to be a nuclear mechanic or nuclear electrician? Does he want to be a plant mechanic in the civilian world later? I know my son originally wanted to make it a career and become an officer. His evals were so good he was recommended for STA-21 program, TWICE, and written that MUST promote, but after 6 years in..things changed. (the reason he got a straight up Honorable discharge as his discharge went all the way to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs who approved his Honorable)
If you have questions, I can ask my son for you..he refuses to come on here, as he is way to busy with work and school. Just dont let the recruiter talk your son into the nuke field by waving the big $$ enlistment bonus at him...
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:40 PM   #10
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I was wondering if the Nukes have separate barracks because I thought I saw that somewhere could you ask about that?
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Old 01-12-2014, 03:32 PM   #11
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I was wondering if the Nukes have separate barracks because I thought I saw that somewhere could you ask about that?
You'll probably have a different berthing but that is typical of most ships. They put the same rates together or by division/department.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:23 PM   #12
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My son said on his ship the nukes were all in the same birthing area close to the reactor department so they were close to their jobs. He was on a carrier..the Nimitz. He also said there was lots of noise from when they launched the jets...
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Old 01-13-2014, 05:43 AM   #13
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There are two main theories on how berthings are divided.
1) you live with people who have the same job
2) different jobs are spread evenly through the different berthings.

The thought behing 1 is that if you need the engineers for a middle of the night casualty, you only have to wake up one berthing. The idea behind 2 is that if the ship is attacked and a berthing is wiped out, you don't loose all the engineers, or all the combat systems operators at the same time.
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Old 01-13-2014, 01:36 PM   #14
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As a mother of a sailor that went nuke...
Thanks for the perspective!
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Old 01-17-2014, 07:13 PM   #15
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Coming from experience as being in the Nuclear Field. I would strongly recommend against the program. Don't get me wrong this program will set you up for success if you can handle it. I've been here a couple of months and i've seen 3 suicides. You lose a lot of happiness that you have coming here and personally I would strongly recommend telling your son to do what he is passionate about. Don't let the money and advancement persuade him. It's extremely easy to get E3 in bootcamp so it won't be any different and if he's got a good work ethic and being an intelligent guy he will do very well in any field.
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:00 PM   #16
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Coming from experience as being in the Nuclear Field. I would strongly recommend against the program. Don't get me wrong this program will set you up for success if you can handle it. I've been here a couple of months and i've seen 3 suicides. You lose a lot of happiness that you have coming here and personally I would strongly recommend telling your son to do what he is passionate about. Don't let the money and advancement persuade him. It's extremely easy to get E3 in bootcamp so it won't be any different and if he's got a good work ethic and being an intelligent guy he will do very well in any field.

Good advise!
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Old 01-18-2014, 03:13 PM   #17
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I agree with Sweet. I'm Depping for Mineman right now, I turned down NUKE and HM (both sought after rates). I turned them down, not only because of stress, but because I dont see myself in those fields after 8 years. Think about having a job you hate (most jobs), now think about being legally tied to that job for almost a decade.

Money is great and all, but prosperity is much more valuble.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:39 PM   #18
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My intention is to address the fact that everyone keeps bringing up suicide.

It's not that the program/pipeline causes people to become suicidal. It's that the program is only available to a certain type of people (Those who have high scores) and those are the kind of people that are generally more introverted, socially awkward, depressive, and prone to suicidal tendencies. You can disagree with me if you'd like, but I am in the pipeline. 99% of the people here are genuinely happy. True, the workload can be tough and the days can be long, but there is a sense of community here like nowhere else. When we pass a hard test we go out and celebrate. If a shipmate is struggling with some aspect of the schooling, we will all get together to help them. There are so many opportunities to relax and have fun here and in the fleet that those who don't take advantage are only harming themselves.

I hate the negative stigma that those few people who do decide to do something drastic like end their lives brings to the program. There are 3000+ students on base at any given time, and one or two people killing themselves is not indicative of the program (statistically), but more so of their individual personality types.

What you don't hear is that the people who go to these extremes tends to be those who have been masted or punished and are depressed about that, not "overwhelmed by the stress of the program". Just saying.

So my advice to any of those thinking about going in to the nuclear field is to not let the actions of a few troubled people dissuade you from a good opportunity. If it interests you, look more in to it. If it doesn't interest you, do something else. But don't let these 'horror stories' be the thing that turns you off of the program.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:42 PM   #19
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My intention is to address the fact that everyone keeps bringing up suicide.

It's not that the program/pipeline causes people to become suicidal. It's that the program is only available to a certain type of people (Those who have high scores) and those are the kind of people that are generally more introverted, socially awkward, depressive, and prone to suicidal tendencies. You can disagree with me if you'd like, but I am in the pipeline. 99% of the people here are genuinely happy. True, the workload can be tough and the days can be long, but there is a sense of community here like nowhere else. When we pass a hard test we go out and celebrate. If a shipmate is struggling with some aspect of the schooling, we will all get together to help them. There are so many opportunities to relax and have fun here and in the fleet that those who don't take advantage are only harming themselves.

I hate the negative stigma that those few people who do decide to do something drastic like end their lives brings to the program. There are 3000+ students on base at any given time, and one or two people killing themselves is not indicative of the program (statistically), but more so of their individual personality types.

What you don't hear is that the people who go to these extremes tends to be those who have been masted or punished and are depressed about that, not "overwhelmed by the stress of the program". Just saying.

So my advice to any of those thinking about going in to the nuclear field is to not let the actions of a few troubled people dissuade you from a good opportunity. If it interests you, look more in to it. If it doesn't interest you, do something else. But don't let these 'horror stories' be the thing that turns you off of the program.
Hear hear. It's nice to hear that perspective on it.
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Old 02-16-2014, 12:35 PM   #20
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I will say this again..if you love the prospect of having a career in the nuclear field and that has been your goal in life, and you are great in the physics and math..then by all means take a nuke contract. BUT if you were talked into it and the signing bonus is what swayed you, as this was NOT on your list of jobs in the navy to begin with...do not think your life will be easy going this way....yes it is a great career, but it is not for most people.

For those of you that are already in that pipeline and in training now..come back in a few years and tell me again how great it is....for some it will be, for others not so.
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Old 02-16-2014, 04:49 PM   #21
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For those of you that are already in that pipeline and in training now..come back in a few years and tell me again how great it is....for some it will be, for others not so.
But, respectfully, you could argue that point about any job in the Navy. I know people from just about every rate that have either loved or hated their jobs. I know Yeoman that can't stand the sight of paperwork and many aviation rates that are very jaded because of what they've experienced on a flight deck. There are pro's and con's to all jobs in the Military, that's a given.

You seem a bit biased because your son was an MM (understandable as MM is the most hands-on and physically demanding of the nuclear field rates), just try not to make too many statements based off of the fact that your son may have had a poor experience while he was serving. (I'm only assuming, as he finished his enlistment as a second class when the majority of nukes reach first class / close to chief in that amount of time)

I maintain (as does any instructor at NNPTC) that if you can qualify for nuke, you can succeed as a nuke. It all relies on your motivation -- And for some people that motivation is the money, and they are all the more successful for that.

Thanks.
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Old 02-16-2014, 07:25 PM   #22
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You seem a bit biased because your son was an MM (understandable as MM is the most hands-on and physically demanding of the nuclear field rates), just try not to make too many statements based off of the fact that your son may have had a poor experience while he was serving. (I'm only assuming, as he finished his enlistment as a second class when the majority of nukes reach first class / close to chief in that amount of time)
Thanks.
My son and his friend were nukes..they went the buddy program...my son loved his job and excelled at it greatly..and does mostly the same thing now in the civilian world...it wasnt his job so to speak...but the many things that happen later and while on deployments. His evals were almost all 5's on each one...I still have them...always in the written part, "Must Promote" and recommend STA-21...much of the other crap started after the change of command while on deployment...your command can make or break a person.

Along with my son and his friend from high school being nukes...so is another families 3 sons all nukes..their mom is one of my friends and is a teacher here at our school...so I have a very good insight to the nuke pipeline. Of those 3 young men, 2 hated it, 1 loved it and is still in the navy. Plus my cousin was a nuke on a sub.
You will find on this site we do not and will not sugar coat anything, give you all the bad as well as the good points...like I said, it takes a very special type of person to handle being a nuke in the navy for long.
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Old 02-16-2014, 07:30 PM   #23
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My son and his friend were nukes..they went the buddy program...my son loved his job and excelled at it greatly..and does mostly the same thing now in the civilian world...it wasnt his job so to speak...but the many things that happen later and while on deployments. His evals were almost all 5's on each one...I still have them...always in the written part, "Must Promote" and recommend STA-21...much of the other crap started after the change of command while on deployment...your command can make or break a person.
That's not unique to the nuclear community.
I agree you need to really want to be a nuke to do well and be happy as a nuke, but it is not the only community where people struggle.
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Old 02-16-2014, 08:43 PM   #24
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:37 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nasant View Post
My intention is to address the fact that everyone keeps bringing up suicide.

It's not that the program/pipeline causes people to become suicidal. It's that the program is only available to a certain type of people (Those who have high scores) and those are the kind of people that are generally more introverted, socially awkward, depressive, and prone to suicidal tendencies. You can disagree with me if you'd like, but I am in the pipeline. 99% of the people here are genuinely happy. True, the workload can be tough and the days can be long, but there is a sense of community here like nowhere else. When we pass a hard test we go out and celebrate. If a shipmate is struggling with some aspect of the schooling, we will all get together to help them. There are so many opportunities to relax and have fun here and in the fleet that those who don't take advantage are only harming themselves.

I hate the negative stigma that those few people who do decide to do something drastic like end their lives brings to the program. There are 3000+ students on base at any given time, and one or two people killing themselves is not indicative of the program (statistically), but more so of their individual personality types.

What you don't hear is that the people who go to these extremes tends to be those who have been masted or punished and are depressed about that, not "overwhelmed by the stress of the program". Just saying.

So my advice to any of those thinking about going in to the nuclear field is to not let the actions of a few troubled people dissuade you from a good opportunity. If it interests you, look more in to it. If it doesn't interest you, do something else. But don't let these 'horror stories' be the thing that turns you off of the program.
Thank you for posting this. I'm going AC and have heard so many things about how stressful the job is, and how people commit suicide because they can't handle it. It honestly scared me at first to the point where I wanted to switch rates. But my recruiter got in touch with a couple AC's he knew and I got to sit down one on one with them, and that made me really excited to do this rate.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:52 AM   #26
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Nasant - Keep us updated, starting the NF pipeline in August after RTC. We all appreciate the finer details.
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Old 02-17-2014, 12:30 PM   #27
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Thank you for posting this. I'm going AC and have heard so many things about how stressful the job is, and how people commit suicide because they can't handle it. It honestly scared me at first to the point where I wanted to switch rates. But my recruiter got in touch with a couple AC's he knew and I got to sit down one on one with them, and that made me really excited to do this rate.
I think a lot of this suicide rate is blown out of proportion to scare people. In 2013 the Navy had 38 suicides, 60 the previous year and 2011 53. Now yes that's a good amount of people but a lot of people join that have mental issues and then the stress of the job gets to them. But a lot of people who do it have other issues like financial, relationship, etc. It can be any rate not just Nuke or AC. Many people don't realize what they are getting into. Every job is demanding in the Navy and can break people. They do a lot of training to help with signs and reporting people who may have issues. If things get tough there is plenty of help that the Navy provides.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:46 AM   #28
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I think a lot of this suicide rate is blown out of proportion to scare people. In 2013 the Navy had 38 suicides, 60 the previous year and 2011 53. Now yes that's a good amount of people but a lot of people join that have mental issues and then the stress of the job gets to them. But a lot of people who do it have other issues like financial, relationship, etc. It can be any rate not just Nuke or AC. Many people don't realize what they are getting into. Every job is demanding in the Navy and can break people. They do a lot of training to help with signs and reporting people who may have issues. If things get tough there is plenty of help that the Navy provides.
Yes it is true that it happens in any rating..and it ia very sad the numbers that do commit suicide..however..what is NOT reported in this is the number of attempted suicides...it is much much higher.
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Old 07-08-2014, 07:05 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Atom_breaker View Post
So I'm wondering about the day to day while on a ship or sub, I watched "carrier" and it seemed like the Nukes were separate from the restof the ship, so that's my question, are there some seperate barracks close to the reactor for Nukes? Do you go to the mess hall like normal? Is there anything different or is life very similar to other sailors?
They do stay in there own berthing, I spoke with a chief wire biter today. I actually found out what deck and side of the ship they are on, but I don't think I'm going to share that publicly for SEC reasons. Wouldn't want anyone to know where to aim missiles..
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