My ASVAB results were in, my knee surgery waiver was approved. What next? Certification of my Kenyan school certificates. If your high school diploma and college certificates are not from the US, Certification is required to see how they compare with the US education standards.
The recruiter referred me to the agency that is certified in Houston for certification purposes. I scanned and sent in my school certificates. It would take 2 weeks for the results to come back. It cost about $280 for that. It was quite straight forward. The certified copies were in my mail about 2 weeks later. I submitted those to my recruiter and I thought I was good to go. Wrong.
I still had a 20 page application form to fill out. My residence for the past 7 years. If you are from Kenya you know we don’t have street addresses per se. I had to fill in all that info and someone who knows me from those addresses and their contact number. Hard was an understatement. My siblings, parents details, any criminal background, previous work supervisors and their contacts. More questions about your medical background. It was so thorough that it had questions such as bed-wetting since age 12, history of harming yourself (slitting your wrists), have you ever shop lifted, how many beers i take a week (why is the military interested in how often I enjoy my drink) and of course the marijuana question. If you answer ‘yes’ to any of the questions, documentation is required. There were questions that didn’t make sense in there but I guess they have a reason to ask all the questions. I guess they are related to addictions and underlying psychological problems. Most of those are disqualifying reasons.
The recruiter went through all the paper work and made changes as necessary. I was booked for Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) a couple of times but for different reasons all the dates never materialized. Finally after a couple of weeks I got a date and was relieved it was finally happening..NOPE. They could not read the scanned copy of my birth certificate. They bumped me off. I was bummed to say the least.
I took my original birth certificate to the recruiter and he rescanned and sent in my papers again, luckily the second time they were accepted and I was all set for MEPS.
To say I was disappointed at times would be an understatement. Luckily they were all temporary setbacks. MEPS came to pass.