I think every military story in unique but here is mine… (Rachelle W. is a Senior Mentor with Tutor.com and has been with Tutor.com since August 2005. She tutors mid-level math, algebra 1 & 11 and geometry.)
I grew up near Montgomery, Alabama and although my family wasn’t tied to the military in any way, we knew lots of military people because Maxwell Air Force Base and its Gunter annex are both large bases in Montgomery. Also, Columbus, Georgia with the army base Ft. Benning is only about an hour away and I had friends who lived near Columbus.
My first real connection to the military was when my then boyfriend joined the Army National Guard in 1985. He was away at Basic Training and his first skills training during my senior year in high school and then we married during my first year of college. He was a weekend soldier so we weren’t really “military” minded until he was deployed for 9 months in Desert Storm. During the deployment, I had to learn a lot about the military and the bases and I decided that it was something beneficial for me. We used the bases after his deployment but not a great deal. During this time, I had a career in computer design and analysis and probably one-third of the people I worked with had been in the Air Force and stationed in Montgomery.
As the Guard was utilized more around the world, our benefits and base privileges grew as well. As they grew, I took advantage of that. Most of the time, Tom would tell me about the changes as he heard about them at drill. When he was deployed to Iraq in 2004, my children and I started using base doctors and since we were out there we started using other things as well, like the libraries, stores, and movie theaters. When he returned, we were able to stay on military health insurance so we have kept going to base. I am on an FRG (Family Resource Group) email list now and get most of my updates and information from them as soon as I get them from Tom. We also get information from a couple of websites and magazines that we receive. During his deployments, I was involved in FRG myself but I have not remained involved when he has been at home.
Another tie that I have with military families is through homeschooling. A good portion of military families homeschool because it avoids “changing” schools so frequently. I homeschool as well but I also teach upper level math in a homeschool co-op. This year my numbers are down but I have 22 students and of those at least 9 are either active duty, retired, and Guard/Reserves. In addition to tutoring with Tutor.com, I also receive calls for tutoring from other military families based on referrals from other military homeschool families. What I have observed is that the families who have recently moved to town don’t have a family network here to locate tutors so they rely on a military network.
I think the Department of Defense providing Tutor.com to military families is a great benefit. In the simplest of terms, it means that when one parent is deployed and the other is doing all the taxi and home work there is one less place that students have to be taxied to because they can receive help at home.
U.S. military families around the world now have unlimited access to Tutor.com, provided by the Department of Defense. For more information, access and eligibility, please visit our site.
Tutoring with Tutor.com is a great opportunity for military spouses and subject experts looking for rewarding work with students who need help. For more information on becoming a tutor, please visit www.tutor.com/apply