Jul 22, 2017

How would you characterize your experience in the military?

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Understanding Military Culture


SOCW 6400: Military CultureFinal Project Guidelines
For your Final Project due in Week 10, you will be interviewing a member of the military and writing a paper based on the interview. Review the following guidelines for the Final Project so that you can schedule your time on task appropriately.
Note: If you serve, or have served, as a member of the military, you will write about your own experience with military culture (refer to the section “For those with military service” below).
Your paper should be approximately 7-8 pages in length. In your paper, include your interview questions and a summary of your interviewee’s responses to the questions. Then, write a reflection on your findings.
Part I: Interview an individual who is active military or separated from the military.
Note: You may need to adapt the following questions based on whether your interviewee is active military or separated from the military.
• Can you please identify your affiliation: branch, rank, and job?
• Can you please summarize your permanent change of station (PCS) and deployment experience?
• Why did you join the military?
• Why did you separate?
• How would you characterize your experience in the military?
• How did/does your military experience affect your family?
• Identify some positive and negative aspects of your military experience.
• How would you describe military culture in general?
• What are some memorable experiences about your military life?
• How did your experience in the military help form or influence your identity?
• Consider someone who wants to work in a professional capacity with military personnel, active, retired, or reserves. What is especially important for this individual to know about military culture? Why is this especially important?
• How can professionals help support military personnel and their families?
As a helping professional, you need to engage in conversations with others. How you ask and what you ask is crucial in the development of any helping relationship.


Therefore, think beyond the provided questions to enhance your interview. In addition to using the questions provided, you must craft at least 5 additional questions to ask your interviewee.
Note: Throughout this course, you and your colleagues will be posting ideas for additional interview questions in a wiki. Use the wiki contributions to develop additional questions.
Part II: Reflection
• What information did you gain as a result of this interview?
• What information might be missing?
• How does the information you have gathered inform your professional role?
• Did this interview change your perspective on military culture? If so, how?
• Did you learn anything about yourself through this interview? What misconceptions did you discover? What stood out for you in terms of military culture? Provide specific examples.
• What skills or sensitivities do you think you might need to expand upon? Why are these skills or sensitivities especially relevant to your work with military personnel and their families?
***For those with military service:
• Write a paper reflecting on your experience with military culture.
• Explain the strengths and limitations of the culture.
• Explain how military culture informed your identity.
• Explain what helping professionals who want to work with military personnel should know about military culture.
• Suggest ways for helping professionals to advocate for and provide support to military personnel and their families.

Understanding Military CultureName:Institution:Part I: InterviewCan you please identify your affiliation: branch, rank, and job?I began serving in the military as a reserve component. I have worked in the military for the last 11 years based in the Georgia’s National Guard branch. My rank before being separated was W-3 under the warrant ranks and was assigned to the explosives team. My job involves manufacture and operating the explosive related weapon.Can you please summarize your permanent change of station (PCS) and deployment experience?I have had no permanent change of station (PCS). My deployment experience was challenging. It involved protecting my buddy, keeping my weapon ready and following orders. The orders were easy to understand unlike outside here where rules are too many to understand.Why did you join the military?Because of passion of being an army and the love of my country. When I was a young boy in my neighbour, there used to be one guy who used to be in the army. He would come home clothed in full combat. I used to admire that soldier that I decided to pursue military as a career.How would you characterize your military experiences?Good. I have had an opportunity to know many places in the country and other countries. Being in the army has also given me a rare opportunity to meet and make many great friends from within the country and outside.How does your military experience affect your family?In military when you are assigned a duty, you must respond immediately without asking questions no matter where you are. During my years of service, I was detached from family for long periods due to the multiple deployments I encountered. This experience caused anxiety to my wife and children and other close relatives. It also caused me stress and loneliness being separated from my family for long.Can you identify some positive and negative aspects of your military experience?The positive aspect is that military is a prestigious career that gives an individual the opportunity to visit many places and meet wonderful people and make many friends.The negative is that the commitment and dedication to the service denies a person the opportunity to develop in other areas in life because they lack the time to do so.How would you describe military culture in general?The military culture is unique and composed of a traditional model and an evolving model aimed at equipping and training the forces. The military culture in general is constituted of Beliefs that include: Defence of Democracy, Trust in the leadership, Distrust of civilian and Role clarity. It is also composed of Value Systems that include:Leave no one behind, “The Group” is a ‘family system’, Top Cover-defence & support the boss and Violence. It also has Rules and Norms that include: Formal & informal conduct,Stigma of PTSD and other mental health illnesses, Top Cover (Cover of the boss) and Back-logging trauma.What are some memora...

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