hammockhead said:Personally, I have no problems with a NE being classed as a JR and using the JR's mess until he/she has passes Dartmouth and receives their commission. This period gives future officers a valuable insight into life as a JR which can be vital experience in their development as an officer.
The separation of Officer Candidate NEs from the JRs Mess is treating the symptoms of the problem rather than the root cause - if these people piss off the existing JRs then perhaps the policy ought to be looking more at why they cause problems rather than separating them from the JRs - in my experience, the NEs who pissed off ratings did so as a result of their attitudes and went on to become abysmal officers.
I'm not sure there was anything wrong with them as individuals, but the word I get from those trying to run the JR's mess is that it is very disheartening to get people constantly passing through the mess who have no intention of staying.
Given that the NE course is about a year long I don't regard NEs as "transient" members - a year is more than long enough for any NE, officer candidate or otherwise, to get involved in the mess and make a success of their time as mess members. Why should the fact that someone is going to be in a mess "only a year" affect the way the mess is run? Personally, I'd be glad of a couple of extra people in any mess for a month or two as long as they contribute to mess life. I can think of several examples from my own RNR career where people have joined a mess and it has been apparent that they would not be staying in the mess for too long - e.g. transfer from another unit ready in all respects for second hook which will arrive in 6 months time - how is this different from a NE who wants to join the wardroom?
Another point to consider; NE Bloggs joins as an officer candidate, wears white tabs, completes Raleigh and is a member of the wardroom. For one reason or another NE Bloggs fails the AIB - what happens then?
I still think its better for the direct entry officer candidiates to experience the JRs mess and also would permit people with a less than satisfactory AIB to continue in the RNR without too much difficulty or embarassment.