This site is for mothers of kids in the U.S. Navy and for Moms who have questions about Navy life for their kids.



Choose your Username.  For the privacy and safety of you and/or your sailor, NO LAST NAMES ARE ALLOWED, even if your last name differs from that of your sailor (please make sure your URL address does not include your last name either).  Also, please do not include your email address in your user name. Go to "Settings" above to set your Username.  While there, complete your Profile so you can post and share photos and videos of your Sailor and share stories with other moms!

Make sure to read our Community Guidelines and this Navy Operations Security (OPSEC) checklist - loose lips sink ships!

Join groups!  Browse for groups for your PIR date, your sailor's occupational specialty, "A" school, assigned ship, homeport city, your own city or state, and a myriad of other interests. Jump in and introduce yourself!  Start making friends that can last a lifetime.

Link to Navy Speak - Navy Terms & Acronyms: Navy Speak

All Hands Magazine's full length documentary "Making a Sailor": This video follows four recruits through Boot Camp in the spring of 2018 who were assigned to DIV 229, an integrated division, which had PIR on 05/25/2018. 

Boot Camp: Making a Sailor (Full Length Documentary - 2018)

Boot Camp: Behind the Scenes at RTC

...and visit - America's Navy and also Navy Live - The Official Blog of the Navy to learn more.

OPSEC - Navy Operations Security

Always keep Navy Operations Security in mind.  In the Navy, it's essential to remember that "loose lips sink ships."  OPSEC is everyone's responsibility. 

DON'T post critical information including future destinations or ports of call; future operations, exercises or missions; deployment or homecoming dates.  

DO be smart, use your head, always think OPSEC when using texts, email, phone, and social media, and watch this video: "Importance of Navy OPSEC."

Follow this link for OPSEC Guidelines:



**UPDATE 4/26/2022** Effective with the May 6, 2022 PIR 4 guests will be allowed.  Still must be fully vaccinated to attend.

**UPDATE as of 11/10/2022 PIR vaccination is no longer required.

**UPDATE 7/29/2021** You now must be fully vaccinated in order to attend PIR:

In light of observed changes and impact of the Coronavirus Delta Variant and out of an abundance of caution for our recruits, Sailors, staff, and guests, Recruit Training Command is restricting Pass-in-Review (recruit graduation) to ONLY fully immunized guests (14-days post final COVID vaccination dose).  


RTC Graduation

**UPDATE 8/25/2022 - MASK MANDATE IS LIFTED.  Vaccinations still required.

**UPDATE 11/10/22 PIR - Vaccinations no longer required.


Please note! Changes to this guide happened in October 2017. Tickets are now issued for all guests, and all guests must have a ticket to enter base. A separate parking pass is no longer needed to drive on to base for parking.

Please see changes to attending PIR in the PAGES column. The PAGES are located under the member icons on the right side.

Format Downloads:

Navy Speak

Click here to learn common Navy terms and acronyms!  (Hint:  When you can speak an entire sentence using only acronyms and one verb, you're truly a Navy mom.)

N4M Merchandise

Shirts, caps, mugs and more can be found at CafePress.

Please note: Profits generated in the production of this merchandise are not being awarded to the Navy or any of its suppliers. Any profit made is retained by CafePress. Para Familias

Visite esta página para explorar en su idioma las oportunidades de educación y carreras para sus hijos en el Navy.




Grad & Go Info

A place to ask questions or give answers to those who have recruits that are a G&G or who may be a G&G

Members: 144
Latest Activity: Aug 16, 2023

When I heard my son may be a Grad & Go, I had a ton of questions. The first one was: What the heck is a Grad & Go?? Now that I've experienced it, I wanted a place for N4M users to come and post questions and hopefully get some answers. Every recruits experience will be slightly different, but there are lots of "norms" that we can share with you that will answer a lot of questions. Remember, there are no stupid questions!

So, what is a G&G? It's a recruit that leaves boot camp before PIR weekend is over to travel to their A-School. They usually fly out on a Saturday, but occasionally on a Friday. This means a limited time to visit with them when you come out for their graduation. Some G&G's are just moving across the street because their A-School will be at GL (Great Lakes). If they are required to move over before PIR weekend ends, they are called a G&G. These two types of G&G's can be quite different, each with it's Pro's and Con's. If they have A-School in GL, but don't move over until after Sunday, they are not considered a G&G.

How do we plan our travel if we don't know? I can only share what others have shared with me. Most everyone made plans as if their recruit was not a G&G. That's what my family did too, and we loved our decision. We flew out Thursday, flew back late Sunday. We enjoyed our Sailor until he flew out Saturday afternoon, then we went and checked out the Chicago area on our own. If you are driving, it's a little easier to change hotel plans a few days before, but flight changes cost $$.

Can we meet them at the airport? YES! The Navy uses all three local airports (O'Hare, Midway and Milwaukee) to transport new sailors to their A-School city. You are allowed to meet your new sailor at the airport and visit with them there. You can even request a special pass from the ticket counter so you can go through security with your sailor and sit with them at the gate! "Most" airlines allow this and they do this free of charge for military families/friends, as long as you have an ID and if your sailor is there with you. You can have a lot of fun at an airport (great food too)!

What if they tell us they are on a Chartered Flight? The charter flights are cheaper for the Navy to use than commercial airlines, so they may be using them more and more. The cost of the flight is pre-determined by the exact weight of everyone and everything onboard. This includes the recruits' seabags. If the parents were to meet the recruits to hand off laptops and other items, now the weight of everything aboard has changed and that may not allowed. Because it's a chartered flight, obviously no one is allowed to go out to the plane to meet their recruits as the plane is not at a regular gate. I know it sucks for the families, but the transportation is all about cost efficiency and isn't concerned about families unable to meet the recruits. This made sound harsh, but the Navy is like other departments in the goverment and needs to keep costs down. New Sailors are not allowed leave and do not have to be granted liberty after bootcamp. Yes, it is customary to receive Liberty after bc, but just know that it's not a right, it's earned.


Can we give them their cell phones? That depends. If you are meeting them at the airport (whether you pass security gate or stay in front lobby), then YES, you can give them cell phone, ipod and even their laptops (don't forget to pack all the chargers/cords!). As long as they can carry it onboard the plane, they can take and keep these items with them at A-School. They "check" their big 55lbs sea bags in with the airlines, so they have no carry on except their manilla envelope (their orders). If you had too much fun shopping at Gurnee Mills Mall that weekend, they are allowed to have a small backpack or gym style bag - but be sure it's a solid dark color (Black or Navy Blue), free from adornment if possible. If they are a G&G over to Great Lakes for A-School, they can have these items AFTER they are processed into that base. In other words, once they call you to pick them up after moving over, then you can give them their "toys". I don't want to get anyone's hopes up, but it has been noted by many recent N4M members that those who are a G&G to Great Lakes ONLY, and that move over to A-School on that Friday right after PIR, only those families they are allowed to keep their new sailor with them all weekend. Once they have actually completed the move on Friday (takes 5-7 hrs), you can pick them up and have them overnight for the entire weekend!!! They may have to muster (roll call/check in) over the weekend, but otherwise they have liberty. There is NO OTHER situation that I am aware of that allows a new sailor to stay away overnight after PIR. Those who are G&G's that are flying out that weekend are NOT allowed to stay overnight with their family, they must go back to RTC (boot camp) that Friday night.

The HARD FAST RULE IS: Your new Sailors can't bring anything back with them to boot camp. They are considered to be in bc while they remain on the RTC (Recruit Training Command) side, even if they have already graduated. Handing them money or a debit/credit card is okay, because they are allowed to have their wallets at boot camp, but you can't give them their cell phones or anything else if they have to report back to boot camp that night. Wait until you see them at the airport!

Discussion Forum

Formal Navy Portraits - info, prices

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by lemonelephant Oct 28, 2013. 6 Replies

Here are the packages, prices and important things to know as of 8/26/10: Your recruits picture will be taken in their Navy Blue uniform and these are very nice, professional portraits.  No order…Continue

USO locations at local airports

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by MomOfFutureAM (Ship12Div387) Oct 2, 2013. 2 Replies

Only O'Hare (ORD) and Midway (MDW) have USO centers, the airport in Milwaukee (MKE) does not. The USO at O'Hare is located OUTSIDE of the secured area in Terminal 2 above the Delta Airlines Ticket…Continue

Phases of Liberty at A-School

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by MomOfFutureAM (Ship12Div387) Oct 2, 2013. 19 Replies

Liberty is different than Leave.  Leave is similiar to requesting time off for vacation at work, they must submit a chit and have it approved.  Liberty basically means that they have "liberty" to…Continue

G&G questions to send your recruit!

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by JessicaB-Sailor Mom Apr 14, 2011. 6 Replies

This was put together by gigi65 (thanks!).  These are the items you will want to mail to your recruit NOW so they can hand you the answers on PIR day.  They will not know the exact answers until 1-3…Continue

Grad and Go to A School at Great Lakes, Illinois right after P.I.R.

Started by chew92. Last reply by chew92 Jan 26, 2011. 3 Replies

After PIR 1/21/11 my son moved over to his A school at Great Lakes.  He was able to call me to pick him up after he was processed into his new quarters and I met him at the Visitors Center next to…Continue

PIR 09-02 - and GnG Lydias story...

Started by Lydia (For B - The Sea is Ours). Last reply by momofcurtis Sep 20, 2010. 3 Replies

Okay - My son is 818 Spec Ops was grad n go.... Here is how it went down... ****foot note on PIR**** - can you say TRAFFIC!!! geeze - I am sooo glad we took the rental car and not the shuttle... we…Continue

Chartered Flight, what to expect....

Started by Lala Ribbon Queen PIR Ribbons. Last reply by momofcurtis Sep 4, 2010. 34 Replies

I wanted to to try and help the families of those who are grad and go with a charted flight. This is a new area and I guess the Navy doesn't charter flights very often. In fact the nice man at the…Continue

Grad and Go

Started by bethe Aug 1, 2010. 0 Replies

Oh Lala, I feel your pain!  I cried when I read your posting because we went through the same thing!  My younger son and I walked all over that entire airport hoping to find my son.  Finally at 0700…Continue

Ratings & Ranks Info

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy Jul 28, 2010. 2 Replies

This was cut and pasted from the Navy's own site (see Hoppi's discussion on this groups page). The word "rate" is used in two ways within the structure. First, rate is a paygrade. Enlisted navy…Continue

CNN video on BS-21

Started by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy. Last reply by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy Jul 8, 2010. 1 Reply

Trying to paste the CNN video about BS-21, hope this works! <object width="640" height="385"><param name="movie" value="…Continue

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Grad & Go Info to add comments!

Comment by Lala Ribbon Queen PIR Ribbons on June 20, 2010 at 9:38am
My daughter is a grad and go, PIR 7-23. A-school in Pensacola. I have mixed feelings about her being a G&G. I wanted to send the whole weekend with her but I am also glad I can meet her and give her her cell phone so we can stay in touch on her way to Fl. I don't understand why they are G&G heading to Pensacola when they are so far behind there and who knows when their A-school will actually start.
Comment by TheRightThing on June 20, 2010 at 9:29am
Here's some Chicago/airport/Navy Pier USO phone numbers, etc. that might be helpful:

Good going Sobe....hi to jgoody....and welcome everyone!
Comment by Pam on June 20, 2010 at 9:25am
My son stayed at Great Lakes, but he was not considered Grad & Go because they did not have availability until the Wed. after PIR. So, I'm guessing that to be a true Grad & Go at Great Lakes just means that they have rooms available and they can move their stuff over after PIR. This only takes a couple hours of processing so the weekend Liberty should not be a problem. And, in my opinion, being a grad & go is much better than hanging out at RTC any longer than they have to. Until they actually move to their next station, they have to play by the rules of bootcamp. Hope this helps!
Comment by jgoody/new Nuke mom on June 20, 2010 at 9:20am
Of course I'm here for you Sobe! You finally found a way to get me typing again. My sailor also went to Charleston, so I can't say for sure about GL either.
One question that I remember going around a lot in the weeks before our PIR was people wondering whether or not their sailor would be G&G. My son was aware of it at least 3 weeks before his PIR; so ask your sailor to let you know as soon as he has any info at all. I'm sure it makes a difference in how you schedule your trip.
Comment by TheRightThing on June 20, 2010 at 8:38am
Hi Sobe! My son was a G&G from Great Lakes to Charleston, SC. So, sorry, I can't help with A school G&G'S. BUT>>>>>>>we did have a great G&G experience.
Comment by Always "Incognito" on June 20, 2010 at 4:41am
Youre really addicted to N4M when you join a group at 3:36 in the morning just because you've been invited. ROFL! But its cool, I am sure I can learn something new here and maybe at some point, pass that info along or direct a mom here when its its ALL good! :)

PS. So why cant I sleep? Thinking about my SR of course! ;)
Comment by BunkerQB on June 20, 2010 at 4:13am
Hello night owl sisters, my son didn't go through G&G but I think this group will help a lot. Sobe, check out the information under the G&G discussion group in the New Moms Stop Here group. You could copy and paste here or ask Angie to bring it over. Also when you send out a private message, include the link in the message

if you are including it in a comment (in groups, blogs or forum), then make the link -
type "Grad & Go Info" highlight it, click on the link icon, then in the box type the
"" I do a lot of cut and paste with links.
If this does not make sense.I'll try again tomorrow tonight.
Comment by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy on June 20, 2010 at 3:35am
Awe, thanks! I'm a night owl - and it's only 12:32am on the West Coast where I live! I just sent out an SOS to my N4M buddies, I'm sure someone can help us - but they are smarter than you and I - they have all gone to BED!!! And now so shall I, yak at you tomorrow Cheryl.
Comment by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy on June 20, 2010 at 3:14am
Hi Cheryl - Grad & Go's can be those just going "across the street". If they have told him he IS a G&G, then at some point on Friday (maybe Saturday) he will move his things over to his new barracks. I have heard that some do this immediately after PIR is over (yes, you can hug him first!) and it does take several hours, but then they are released for liberty. What I don't know is if he needs permission from his commanders at A-school to have liberty the rest of the weekend. Great - my first question and I can't completely answer it!!! lol.... but I will put some feelers out there and get you an answer!! Thanks
Comment by SOBE,PIR 6/4/10 IT Mom, Italy on June 20, 2010 at 2:25am
It took a lot of guts to create a group, but I know how important it was to me to find answers when I first heard my son was a G&G (Grad & Go). I have asked my many N4M friends to join this group and add their valuable and timeless advice to help make this a useful tool for everyone, while sharing some laughs at the same time!

Members (144)


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