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Ask An Army Spouse: Graduation from Army Training

See our other articles about graduation ceremonies, how to dress and my other graduation tips.

Planning Travel & Graduation Dates

I just got my husband’s graduation and family day dates. I want to book my flight as soon as I can so I can get the cheapest flight possible. My question is, how long should I wait until I book my tickets? How big is the chance that his graduation date will be moved? As of right now, he is suppose to be graduating on the 28 of January. Should I wait or am I worrying for no reason? Any response will be helpful. Thanks in advance 🙂

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Anything is possible with the Army but I would say the chance of dates changing are very slim.

Ft Benning Graduation

I have lots of questions about graduation, its a coupe weeks away and I still haven’t received anything in the mail about it. I am going up alone and traveling by greyhound for over day so I just want to make sure i get everything right. I should be arriving in Columbus, Ga at about 8:00am. I dont know what time the family day ceremony is. If I’m a little late will they still let me in? Will I be able to take a taxi into the fort? If so I heard that sometime there is a wait to drive in, which would really drive my fare up, is this true?

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There shouldn’t be a problem with meeting him for family day if you are a little late getting to post. As far as taking a taxi, there can be a line to get on post simply because they are checking IDs, etc. at the gate. Be prepared for that possibility.

Here’s some additional information for you:

Ft Benning Basic Training Graduation

Break After Graduation

My boyfriend is graduating from BCT in May in Fort Leonard Wood, that weekend is Memorial weekend. I am wondering if he is going to get a weekend off or if he has to stay in the base. His parents are going to the graduation.

Thank you!!

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It depends on where his AIT is going to be located. Normally, if his AIT location is at a different post, he will have to leave just after basic training to travel to the next post. If his AIT is at the same post, it is possible that he will be given the weekend off after he has processed into the next school. It is hard to say for sure as every AIT is different and the instructors all handle things differently.

I know some who have had the weekend off and some who were given no time at all. I’m sorry I can’t give you a more definite answer. As it gets closer to time for graduation, he should have a better idea of what to expect after it is over.

Signing Out Soldier After Graduation

My fiance left for BCT at Fort Jackson earlier this week. I heard a rumor that only immediate family and/or spouses can sign out their soldier after graduation. It will only be me and my mom going along to his graduation because his parents cannot afford the plane ticket along with all the costs. Will I be able to check him out for the day, or will we have to stay on base?

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This can vary from one drill sergeant to the next and one post to the next. Many times, even if this rule is in place, most have been able to get around it. Worse case scenario is that you spend your time on post with him that day. As graduation gets closer, he should have more detailed information about the check-out procedures for that day.

Seeing Soldier for First Time at Graduation

I will see my boyfriend at his bootcamp graduation for the first time in 2 months. I can’t be the only one to have felt extreme nervousness about it. Up until now (the half way point) the thought of seeing him has made me so happy I could cry. Now I feel anxious, like what if I get there and he changed?

I am most likely just letting my imagination get the best of me but it would be nice to hear someone else who has gone through it say the same thing. Nothing on my end has changed, except maybe loving him even more. I get letters for almost everyday he is there, but there is still (obviously) that disconnection.

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I think what you are describing is completely normal. For one, we often have way too much time on our hands to think when they are gone. There is too much free time to analyze every aspect of the relationship. Rest assured that he will be different. Basic training does change them but I’ve yet to talk to anyone who feels like the change is negative.

They do a lot of maturing during training and you will see a much more professional and self-assured person when you arrive at graduation. You will be able to see that sense of accomplishment on his face.

I’m sure it will all be fine. As soon as you are able to talk to him and spend time together again, you will see that even though he has changed, he is also still the same person that you knew before he left. I think the initial nervous feeling is always there whether its reuniting after a long training or deployment. But it doesn’t take long to get back into the old swing of things. It will soon be like you were never apart.

So resume being excited! 🙂

Basic Graduation Picture Package

My husband left for basic at Fort Leonard Wood 5 weeks ago. A couple of weeks ago he told me that during processing he purchased the graduation photo package and a t-shirt with his photo on it for me. Will he be able to send it to me or will I have to wait until graduation (July 29th) If he can send it to me, about how long does it take to get them?
Thank you in advance!!

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My guess would be that you will be able to get it when you see him. Of course, that is only a guess. If anyone reading has had a different experience, please leave a comment! 🙂

Pinning at Graduation

Hi I’m a new army wife and my husbands graduation and stuff is next month. I was wondering how many people get to go on stage when they get to pin their soldier. Because my husbands parents and I don’t get along and I seriously don’t want to be up there with them. lol

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I had to laugh out loud with this one!

When my husband graduated, most soldiers had several people there with them for the pinning. There really wasn’t a limit. Of course, there’s nothing to say that one graduation will be exactly like the next.

When he graduated from OSUT, I put his cord on him while his parents also stood there (and took pictures). We he graduated from Airborne, my cousin (who was also Airborne) pinned his wings on him while I took pictures. When he graduated from RIP, I pinned his scroll on him. At all three of those experiences, they never said only one person can participate.

Good luck with dealing with the in-laws!

19 thoughts on “Ask An Army Spouse: Graduation from Army Training”

  1. My son just graduated basic training today. His father & I were not able to attend. Is there a way to get discounted air fare? We would love to attend his
    A I T graduation. It is in Fort Lee Virginia about 900 miles from us. Flying would make it easier.

    1. There aren’t military discounts on airfare that I’m aware of. Everyone seems to have their tricks of the trade to get lower fares but I have found that booking on a Tuesday/Wednesday seems to be the best bet (at least to the places I fly to on a regular basis for work). If you can have a Saturday stayover, that typically helps as well. Good luck!

  2. My husband left for BCT August 3 to Fort Sill. When will he graduate? How will his personality change? I have read some horror stories from people that once training is completed, the spouse in the military does not have feelings for their spouse anymore. How true is this?

  3. My boyfriend is leaving for boot camp on October 18th and after his AIT training our goal is to get married as soon as possible so i can Go with him. Is the army gonna give us a hard time or will it be a relatively easy process?

  4. I have a question, my boyfriend is graduating this week and he doesn’t know that I am going for sure but I am, for the turning blue is there a way to notify him that I’m there and can put the cord on him? His company doesn’t allow them to call all the time.

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