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Posted: 1/9/2006 12:09:04 PM EDT
Ok, I dont need physical help, I want advice/opinions here.

Background: I want to be a Marine, right now im a freshman in college here in FL. At UCF we only have Army and AirForce ROTC. Ive got my PLC application packet on hand for Marine Corps OCS. For those that dont know of this program, its 6 weeks of OCS during 2 summers, and a commission after i graduate. There are two choices for me; Ground and Air. In PLC, if i go AIR (which is what i originally put in for) then im garuanteed a pilot slot. It is only for Pilots. Then if i go ground, i get my job after I finish OCS and go for the commission. This is my problem!

My dad did this same thing when he was in college, but then got a D and they wouldnt let him in until he fixed the grade, so the Navy took him right away and he went that route. Ended up flying P-3's and is a ret. Lt. Col. Now he is an airline pilot, and has a bunch of military buddies that are pilots, and knows Marine Corps pilots from the airlines.

Here's my problem, I love guns. I wanted to enlist after highschool and go infantry, but my dad convinced me to try college; so i did. Which isnt bad, im doing pretty well and enjoying it. But i still want to be a Marine, more than anything. I told him i wanted to go infantry, and really wanted to do Force Recon.

Now he's got his pilot buddies calling me and telling me not to drop my pilot slot, and its a much better life to be a pilot, and you'll shoot enough guns and what not. I do like flying, ive got 20 hours towards my private pilots license and did my solo my senior year in High School.

But I love guns, using them, working with them, and doing ground work. I know it's not the best life, but I feel like it's just for me. I dont want a bunch of "things." I'd rather have a ful-filling life, and cant stand 9-5 jobs. I want something with excitement that wont be the same daily routine. And seeing as that were in a War right now, and will be for many years to come, I could really see myself enjoying a working in a Force Recon unit. From the military books ive read that my dad gave me, and talking to Marines, i think I would really benefit the Marine Corps.

I know that going Force Recon right out of OCS is nearly impossible, and if I did go ground, i'd probably go into an Infantry unit and gain experience and then hopefully get into a recon unit.
Here are some reasons i'd like to go ground:
Enjoy physical training, and pushing myself until i hurt.
Enjoy working with my hands, in the dirt, and live out in the wilderness, be it cold, wet, dry or hot.
Would like to see things first hand.
Would like to fight/kill terrorists(9/11 related)
I've grown up on military bases, and idolize soldiers, and have wanted to be one all my life, Ive done JROTC, Civil Air Patrol in High School, and in each I was given great respect and held positions of responsibility.
Guns and weapons are my life. I dont want a nice house, nice cars, etc. I want a extensive collection of firearms and knoweladge of them, that only the Marine Corps can give me. I feel this country may take some changes, and that other things wont matter then anyways.
I love this country and am willing to fight/die for it.
I enjoy history, escpecially middle eastern culture, learning about it, their language and past, and would like to see things first hand.


But I also must think of my future after the Marine Corps, I thought about Black Water or something like that, it appeals to me greatly. And i'm sure I could get a job at the CIA/FBI/ATF with the background I have described. Especially if im fluent in an arab language(which im trying to learn here at school)


My mind is reall leaning toward ground. I only really put in for Air because the people in the office said it was a better physical(which i passed anyways). I want to go to my first OCS this summer and must turn in my app. soon, and this will be a life long changing decision.

So please, I'd like to talk to some ground officers, Infantry and special forces if there are any on this board. Pilots chime in too with your .02!

I dont mean to be pushy, but if anyone out there that thinks they could help me(or talk some sense into me) that would be willing to hold a conversation on the phone, that would be great.

Right now, although i told my dad i'd putting in for Air, I want to go Infantry.

Either way, thanks for listening.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:14:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Right now, although i told my dad i'd putting in for Air, I want to go Infantry.




Be a man and follow your heart, not your fathers.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:18:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By junker46:

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Right now, although i told my dad i'd putting in for Air, I want to go Infantry.




Be a man and follow your heart, not your fathers.



I know, it's not like its a total secret feeling ive kept from him. I think ive just come to the conclusion that i should go ground. I want to see what other Marines thought of my reasons before i send in my app. Im not afraid to tell him what im doing, even though he said if i drop out of school to enlist, he'd hunt me down LOL.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:21:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/9/2006 12:33:52 PM EDT by CFII]
My father is an 0-6 in the USMC. He flew fighters for 20 years. I cannot fathom a cooler career in the military.

That being said. Do what you want. I envy your postition. I have wanted to be a fighter pilot my entire life. I, however, have 20/250 vision. My dreams were dashed, and it still hurts to this day. Yes, I fly civilian, but its not the same.

You could fly Cobras. You will work very closely with ground troops, get to shoot alot of ordinance, and get sand in your teeth.

I say go air.

A very good friend of mine went gungho in the Army, and he is now a Lt. in the Rangers. He has been to Iraq, lived in the sand, shot people, and now wants to be a pilot.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:27:18 PM EDT
Don't feel too rushed with your application, the next board doesn't meet until Feb. 3rd. I went into the office the 1st day of college, Aug. 26th, had to spend 2 1/2 months getting shit together, which meant walking 30 minutes both ways to the office 4 times a week, (mainly medical stuff cleared for MEPS) and applied November 28th. I've wanted to do this since elementary school, so I feel you there. Probably won't know if I'm in or not until mid Feb

On your dilema, I had the same problem. As one of my enlsited friends said, "The Marine Corps is about the ground. What the fuck is the air?" The Marines are centered around the ground. While we also have excellent pilots and have proved that since WWII, there's no better place to experience the Marine Corps than the ground. If that's what you want to do, follow your gut.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:33:31 PM EDT
You have a few more years of schooling to go so keep your pilot slot option open.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:35:45 PM EDT
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:45:34 PM EDT
Yep...I wouldn't have given my left nut to fly fighters...I would have given both. Flying for the airlines now, but I would have loved a shot at A-10's, F-18, Apache, about anything that flys and shoots.

One thing I learned when teaching a bunch of ex-military guys to fly for the airlines....the Marine pilots and Army guys, were very jealous of the Air Force and Navy guys when it came to accommodations in the Storm. Sand in your underwear for 6 months sucks. My advice...stay dry and fly. Very few guys get the opportunity for the ultimate ride. You will see things up there that many folks will never see.

Anarki
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 12:46:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.



How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:08:35 PM EDT
Swing With The Wing
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:14:59 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.



How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks



I think he's saying that's there's alot more shit than shooting guns in the Corps. Dealing with inept superiors bullshit orders, caring for your men (counseling, training, etc.), and most of all, doing what the Corps tell you. Recon comes looking for you, you don't look for Recon. Recon can only be obtained through doing the best you can, plus some, and then gaining recognition and reccomendation from superiors/Recon for the Recon indoctrination.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:22:19 PM EDT
On another note, buy yourself a copy of One Bullet Away. I got it for Christmas and couldn't put it down. It's the story of a kid attending Dartmouth who wanted more in life then an ordinary lifestyle. He became an infantry officer, went to Afghanistan, was selected for Recon, and went to Iraq with Recon. His experiences and observations provided me with tons of knowledge for being an officer of Marines.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:25:43 PM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:34:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By walrus:
On another note, buy yourself a copy of One Bullet Away. I got it for Christmas and couldn't put it down. It's the story of a kid attending Dartmouth who wanted more in life then an ordinary lifestyle. He became an infantry officer, went to Afghanistan, was selected for Recon, and went to Iraq with Recon. His experiences and observations provided me with tons of knowledge for being an officer of Marines.



I definately will, thank you!

Thats pretty much what I was trying to say in my original post, I want more than an ordinary lifestyle.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:39:32 PM EDT
My son is a Marine Infantry Officer. He shoves off for Iraq in a few days-his second tour. You have a long way yet to go-two years for OCS, then the Basic School after you graduate, and then IOC. Hopefully, by three years from now, we will be out of Iraq,but who knows what might happen in the meantime? It is actually fairly tough to get an Infantry slot. Those "03" guys are rightfully the heart and soul of the Corps. By the time you are in TBS,you will have a pretty good idea of what you really want. Good luck with whatever you decide.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:45:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.



How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks



Quick example, PLC Air does not quarantee you a pilot slot, just the opportunity to take a shot a pilot training. However, TBS comes first, and if you can't cut it there the Corps will grant you an administrative seperation.

Also, if you attrite in flight training the Corps will place you in an MOS where they need you most.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:52:30 PM EDT
My son said called those guys who didn't make it through flight training "Fallen Angels"
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:52:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/9/2006 2:02:21 PM EDT by mmx1]
I'll jump in with my thoughts after I've read this all, but here's a thread you might find interesting:

www.airwarriors.com/forum/showthread.php?t=14338

Now, it's a bit biased, seeing as how it's an aviation site, but there's some guys with similar sentiments to yours.

My suggestion: ask your OSO if you can drop your air contract at TBS and go into general selection. I believe this to be true but find that out yourself. The aviation guarantee is a damn good deal and a tough one to pass up. I wouldn't give it up now, before you've seen the Corps. By TBS, as another poster pointed out, you'll have a good idea of how you'd do, and your platoon commander will also be able to tell you if he thinks you're a good fit for infantry. It would suck to give up aviation and walk away from TBS as a logistics guy (not ripping on the MLG, but it's clear that 1BMF wants to be tip of the spear). Infantry is not all about guns; that's just a tiny part of being infantry. If you like roughing it out in the wilderness it may be a good fit, but you definitely shouldn't go into it just because you want to play with firearms.

And, as an aviation officer, you'll get your turn to play grunt as a Foward Air Controller. It's one of the possible B-billets you get between squadron assignments. So instead of teaching pilots, recruiting officers, or other stateside stuff, you get attached to an infantry unit and are responsible for coordinating air support.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 2:10:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/9/2006 2:12:35 PM EDT by SlimHazy]
ETA: It took me forever to type all this crap so MMX already said some of it:

Originally Posted By walrus:

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.

How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks

I think he's saying that's there's alot more shit than shooting guns in the Corps. Dealing with inept superiors bullshit orders, caring for your men (counseling, training, etc.), and most of all, doing what the Corps tell you. Recon comes looking for you, you don't look for Recon. Recon can only be obtained through doing the best you can, plus some, and then gaining recognition and reccomendation from superiors/Recon for the Recon indoctrination.

They're right, 1BMF. You need to have an "adult" conversation with your dad, some of his buddies, and any Marine officers you can find to ask questions. Serious stuff, not just them telling you about how cool it is. You don't want to get into this with any misconceptions. (e.g. your dad was either a P-3 pilot, or a LtCol, but probably not both.)

"Ground" encompasses a lot of MOSs in the USMC than Infanty (0302), so figure out what else you might end up with after TBS, which is where that will be determined unless you have a guaranteed slot like Pilot, NFO or Law. There are no guarantees for Infantry, Recon, or Force Recon.

As a pilot, you'll only be flying a few hours a day. The rest of the time you'll be, yep, on the ground. Or maybe at sea. Plus Pilots/NFOs do "ground" tours where they can spend time as FAC/JTAC running around in the dirt. Find someone to explain all this stuff to you.

And start PTing now. Look up the PFT procedure and score tables online, and start working on those specific exercises as part of an all-around fitness program.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 2:14:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SlimHazy:
(e.g. your dad was either a P-3 pilot, or a LtCol, but probably not both.)




Damn, good pickup. Didn't even notice that.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 2:46:04 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SlimHazy:
ETA: It took me forever to type all this crap so MMX already said some of it:

Originally Posted By walrus:

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.

How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks

I think he's saying that's there's alot more shit than shooting guns in the Corps. Dealing with inept superiors bullshit orders, caring for your men (counseling, training, etc.), and most of all, doing what the Corps tell you. Recon comes looking for you, you don't look for Recon. Recon can only be obtained through doing the best you can, plus some, and then gaining recognition and reccomendation from superiors/Recon for the Recon indoctrination.

They're right, 1BMF. You need to have an "adult" conversation with your dad, some of his buddies, and any Marine officers you can find to ask questions. Serious stuff, not just them telling you about how cool it is. You don't want to get into this with any misconceptions. (e.g. your dad was either a P-3 pilot, or a LtCol, but probably not both.)

"Ground" encompasses a lot of MOSs in the USMC than Infanty (0302), so figure out what else you might end up with after TBS, which is where that will be determined unless you have a guaranteed slot like Pilot, NFO or Law. There are no guarantees for Infantry, Recon, or Force Recon.

As a pilot, you'll only be flying a few hours a day. The rest of the time you'll be, yep, on the ground. Or maybe at sea. Plus Pilots/NFOs do "ground" tours where they can spend time as FAC/JTAC running around in the dirt. Find someone to explain all this stuff to you.

And start PTing now. Look up the PFT procedure and score tables online, and start working on those specific exercises as part of an all-around fitness program.



+1 to all of the above. You have a lot to understand yet about what being an officer really means and entails. Even at Force, it's not all about running around in the woods shooting guns and being dirty. Far from it in fact.

Stick to your current path for now until you gain a better understanding of the above. There is plenty of opportunity for you to drop it later. Two of my buddies at IOC were Pilot Contracts who were allowed to attend, filling two open seats at IOC while waiting to go to flight school. At the end, one was able to drop his Pilot Contract and switch to Infantry aftter we dropped an 03 apirant.

S/F,
SSeric02, Captain, USMCR
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 2:51:35 PM EDT
If your Dad went Navy he is NOT a Lt. Col. The Navy doesn't have Colonels, they have Commanders instead.

shooter
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 3:49:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SSeric02:

Originally Posted By SlimHazy:
ETA: It took me forever to type all this crap so MMX already said some of it:

Originally Posted By walrus:

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.

How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks

I think he's saying that's there's alot more shit than shooting guns in the Corps. Dealing with inept superiors bullshit orders, caring for your men (counseling, training, etc.), and most of all, doing what the Corps tell you. Recon comes looking for you, you don't look for Recon. Recon can only be obtained through doing the best you can, plus some, and then gaining recognition and reccomendation from superiors/Recon for the Recon indoctrination.

They're right, 1BMF. You need to have an "adult" conversation with your dad, some of his buddies, and any Marine officers you can find to ask questions. Serious stuff, not just them telling you about how cool it is. You don't want to get into this with any misconceptions. (e.g. your dad was either a P-3 pilot, or a LtCol, but probably not both.)

"Ground" encompasses a lot of MOSs in the USMC than Infanty (0302), so figure out what else you might end up with after TBS, which is where that will be determined unless you have a guaranteed slot like Pilot, NFO or Law. There are no guarantees for Infantry, Recon, or Force Recon.

As a pilot, you'll only be flying a few hours a day. The rest of the time you'll be, yep, on the ground. Or maybe at sea. Plus Pilots/NFOs do "ground" tours where they can spend time as FAC/JTAC running around in the dirt. Find someone to explain all this stuff to you.

And start PTing now. Look up the PFT procedure and score tables online, and start working on those specific exercises as part of an all-around fitness program.



+1 to all of the above. You have a lot to understand yet about what being an officer really means and entails. Even at Force, it's not all about running around in the woods shooting guns and being dirty. Far from it in fact.

Stick to your current path for now until you gain a better understanding of the above. There is plenty of opportunity for you to drop it later. Two of my buddies at IOC were Pilot Contracts who were allowed to attend, filling two open seats at IOC while waiting to go to flight school. At the end, one was able to drop his Pilot Contract and switch to Infantry aftter we dropped an 03 apirant.

S/F,
SSeric02, Captain, USMCR



I have had serious talks with a bunch of guys. They told me about being a Forward Air Controller, and all the different billets possible. Ive spent alot of time in the OSO office, and the things you guys mention i know, because they've told me about it already. Ive been getting this app. ready for the last 6 months and know what im getting into as far as the Air contract goes, but I dont really know anyone from an infantry unit to talk to. The reason im worried about dropping my contract later vs. now is that they told me that if i were to drop my air contract after ocs, there'd be less of a chance i'd get my choice in ground.

That said, I am PT'ing now. And hard.

And shooter you were right, I meant Commander, not Col.

Im just torn between everything right now, and I know alot of military guys are on here that wont BS me. This is one damn tough decision.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 3:58:49 PM EDT
tag. Might have made the same thread myself, not shure about the corps yet and I think im going to wait until summer between soph-jr year if I decide to go.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 6:00:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BuckeyeRifleman:
tag. Might have made the same thread myself, not shure about the corps yet and I think im going to wait until summer between soph-jr year if I decide to go.



I'd try it this summer if you're in decent shape. Juniors(the first 6-week component) isn't too hard and is a good taste of how things'll be in training. There's no commitment, and it makes your start date for computing pay, a year earlier. Little downside (unless you have a job offer with Boeing or smthing) and the upside's not bad.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 6:16:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By mmx1:

Originally Posted By BuckeyeRifleman:
tag. Might have made the same thread myself, not shure about the corps yet and I think im going to wait until summer between soph-jr year if I decide to go.



I'd try it this summer if you're in decent shape. Juniors(the first 6-week component) isn't too hard and is a good taste of how things'll be in training. There's no commitment, and it makes your start date for computing pay, a year earlier. Little downside (unless you have a job offer with Boeing or smthing) and the upside's not bad.



Big +1 on starting early. That's the main reason why I'm doing PLC. You get more years added on to your pay starting date, giving you more money per year when you're commissioned, and also allowing for earlier retirement if you're going for the 20 year pension.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:07:23 PM EDT
I will be ready when it comes, im working hard to meete the reqs. Im not in bad shape, i worked out more in a gym rather run, now i do both more than ever. I'll be ready.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:29:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 1BMF:
I will be ready when it comes, im working hard to meete the reqs. Im not in bad shape, i worked out more in a gym rather run, now i do both more than ever. I'll be ready.



Pull-ups, pull-ups, and more pull-ups. Can't afford to get any less than 20. Max them with crunches and you're golden.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:44:06 PM EDT

Originally Posted By walrus:

Originally Posted By mmx1:

Originally Posted By BuckeyeRifleman:
tag. Might have made the same thread myself, not shure about the corps yet and I think im going to wait until summer between soph-jr year if I decide to go.



I'd try it this summer if you're in decent shape. Juniors(the first 6-week component) isn't too hard and is a good taste of how things'll be in training. There's no commitment, and it makes your start date for computing pay, a year earlier. Little downside (unless you have a job offer with Boeing or smthing) and the upside's not bad.



Big +1 on starting early. That's the main reason why I'm doing PLC. You get more years added on to your pay starting date, giving you more money per year when you're commissioned, and also allowing for earlier retirement if you're going for the 20 year pension.



True, I know I would be taking a bit of a pay cut if I wait a year(im a freshman), but im not doing this for the $ anyway. Like I said im not 100% set on doing this yet and I wanted to take some time to think and reflect on the decision. Im not in bad shape by any means but ive never been into running and wanted to plenty of time to get in tip top cariovascular shape. If I dont go to the corps I want to do medic/fire stuff and was going to work on getting my EMT-B this summer so I can volunteer when im at school.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:51:06 PM EDT
No warrior more deadly. None more fierce than a Marine Corps fighter pilot.


"I am Santini, the Great Santini.
I come from behind the moon, out of the dark, unannounced.
Watch out!"

Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:55:20 PM EDT
Lt. Col = Commander
Col. = Captain

For your evaluation, you may want to consider your desire to do night time traps on carrier deployment. If that excites you, go pilot. If the opposite, go ground.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 7:56:26 PM EDT
Go infantry a few years and then switch over. You'll have a better understanding in the long run of what the guys on the ground are going through when there calling for your (air support)
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 8:05:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By zusmc:
Go infantry a few years and then switch over. You'll have a better understanding in the long run of what the guys on the ground are going through when there calling for your (air support)



The field accessions board only picks a couple of guys a year.

If you want fly get a flight contract you don't want to risk going through field accessions board. You need to talk to your OSO about the method we use to get our MOSs at TBS, the only way to guarantee your first choice is to be number one in your class, failing that you may get your first choice or you last choice.

I suggest that if you think you may want to be an 03, go to TBS and find out. You don't know how many guys start TBS saying they want to be 03s and end up wanting to be an adjutant or supply officer.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 8:22:35 PM EDT
Navy type here but as one who was in the flight pipeline until arrival+about 48 hours at Pensacola, and having some manpower planning projection planning experience, I might shed a little light as to a few other things you might want to look at.

Look at manpower projections for the next few years. Will the Corps be looking for a lot of Infantry Officers? Or is another combat arm going to expand? What are we learning in Iraq? I think we are going to be looking at a lot of Infantry positions, but I wouldn't be surprised if we don't see a push for more mobility LAVs and Stryker. Are there plans to adjust the Air side of things? Being in the last Harrier class would bode ill for long term career path.

Try and get a REAL flight physical as soon as possible. My arrival physical at P'cola, was a little more involved. First time I went to the seat measurements, knee length was the max, sitting height was max and hip width was within 1/4" off too wide (they squeeze on this one the others are straight line) And I was a skosh over 6"3". So you need to find out if they still require everybody to fit in the ejector seats, even if you want to fly helos and will never see an ejection seat. (I was crazy in my younger days, wanted to fly little helos off little ships and then fight fires for LA County Fire after my eyes were passing all the test with flying colors) Saw several guys get really disappointed had always dreamed of being fighter jocks and never made it into Aviation Indoctrination except as Ass't Instructors and then off to Surface Warfare School. If you look at being an Intrepid Birdman as a bonus, then you won't be too disappointed with going back to the real Navy or real Corps. Guys that didn't like ships or marching were pretty heartbroken. The big killer was EYES, they really ran them through the ringer. The next biggest disqualifier was size, tall guys were hitting the bricks fast. I got knocked out for an ear problem. That frankly a little more attention to detail should have kept me out of ROTC and definitely should have been picked up at my first 2 flight physicals.

In other words find out if flight is a no-go as early as possible, if you can't fly, then the parental disappointment is there but you aren't going to be the target of pressure or disappointment when you don't opt to fly

Also if you know how many openings are available for Infantry you know where you need to target for in your class. (At least the Corps competes for slots, imagine your chances using the Navy Class Standing model, if there were 6 Infantry slots and the top 5 honormen at the Naval Academy wanted them. Then you would be competing with all the rest of the Naval Academy Grads, the West Point grads that opted for the Marines, and all the NROTC and all the OCS guys for 1 billet)

Keep an open mind for as long as possible.

My son always wanted to be a tanker or LAV driver, but was too tall when he got out of high school.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 8:29:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By STLRN:

Originally Posted By zusmc:
Go infantry a few years and then switch over. You'll have a better understanding in the long run of what the guys on the ground are going through when there calling for your (air support)



The field accessions board only picks a couple of guys a year.

If you want fly get a flight contract you don't want to risk going through field accessions board. You need to talk to your OSO about the method we use to get our MOSs at TBS, the only way to guarantee your first choice is to be number one in your class, failing that you may get your first choice or you last choice.

I suggest that if you think you may want to be an 03, go to TBS and find out. You don't know how many guys start TBS saying they want to be 03s and end up wanting to be an adjutant or supply officer.



As it stands now, to be eligible for a field accession board you need to have no more than five years active service. You'll spend close to a year before you graduate IOC, say two years in the fleet (any less and why the hell would you go ground?), that means you only get two chances to apply. In the last few years anywhere from 0-7 slots have been available. It's a total crapshoot.

If the odds were better, I'd jump at the chance to lead grunts for five years or so and then switch to flight school once I start getting staff positions(I'm just young enough to get away with it timingwise), but it ain't going to happen.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 8:34:23 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PaDanby:
Navy type here but as one who was in the flight pipeline until arrival+about 48 hours at Pensacola, and having some manpower planning projection planning experience, I might shed a little light as to a few other things you might want to look at.

Look at manpower projections for the next few years. Will the Corps be looking for a lot of Infantry Officers? Or is another combat arm going to expand? What are we learning in Iraq? I think we are going to be looking at a lot of Infantry positions, but I wouldn't be surprised if we don't see a push for more mobility LAVs and Stryker. Are there plans to adjust the Air side of things? Being in the last Harrier class would bode ill for long term career path.

Try and get a REAL flight physical as soon as possible. My arrival physical at P'cola, was a little more involved. First time I went to the seat measurements, knee length was the max, sitting height was max and hip width was within 1/4" off too wide (they squeeze on this one the others are straight line) And I was a skosh over 6"3". So you need to find out if they still require everybody to fit in the ejector seats, even if you want to fly helos and will never see an ejection seat. (I was crazy in my younger days, wanted to fly little helos off little ships and then fight fires for LA County Fire after my eyes were passing all the test with flying colors) Saw several guys get really disappointed had always dreamed of being fighter jocks and never made it into Aviation Indoctrination except as Ass't Instructors and then off to Surface Warfare School. If you look at being an Intrepid Birdman as a bonus, then you won't be too disappointed with going back to the real Navy or real Corps. Guys that didn't like ships or marching were pretty heartbroken. The big killer was EYES, they really ran them through the ringer. The next biggest disqualifier was size, tall guys were hitting the bricks fast. I got knocked out for an ear problem. That frankly a little more attention to detail should have kept me out of ROTC and definitely should have been picked up at my first 2 flight physicals.

In other words find out if flight is a no-go as early as possible, if you can't fly, then the parental disappointment is there but you aren't going to be the target of pressure or disappointment when you don't opt to fly

Also if you know how many openings are available for Infantry you know where you need to target for in your class. (At least the Corps competes for slots, imagine your chances using the Navy Class Standing model, if there were 6 Infantry slots and the top 5 honormen at the Naval Academy wanted them. Then you would be competing with all the rest of the Naval Academy Grads, the West Point grads that opted for the Marines, and all the NROTC and all the OCS guys for 1 billet)

Keep an open mind for as long as possible.

My son always wanted to be a tanker or LAV driver, but was too tall when he got out of high school.



I did take my flight physical. All the things you described, hieght, eyes, ears I have all been tested for. I have already taken my flight physical at NAS Jax in Sept. Passed no problem, thats why I'm soo torn between the two because its such a hard decision. I passed the flight physical, but i think i want to do infantry more. I just dont know, im dead in the middle. Thats why it's soo hard.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 4:02:20 AM EDT
1BMF, you said you're a freshman in college, so I'm assuming you're going into your second semester. I'm a senior and I'll be graduating in a year and I'm also trying to go into the Marines after I graduate and get a pilot slot.

If theres any way that you can hold onto the pilot slot and still be able to back out of it later, then there's no reason to drop the pilot slot now. Leaving your options open is the best plan. College ends up changing you in ways you never expect. When it comes to the end of the semester, look back at what you were like when you started your first semester, then try to realize how much you've changed in that short amount of time. When I started college 3 years ago the Marines weren't anywhere in my "plans". Those plans have most definitely been changed (not bad) in ways I never would have expected.

My point is that you should keep your options open. Don't lock yourself into any one plan right now cause you still have 3.5 YEARS and you never know what is going to happen in that time or what kind of man you will become.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:39:17 AM EDT
Havi is absolutely right.

I was in NROTC my freshman year of college and dropped it because it was too much of a commitment as I had enough on my plate as it was. I was thinking of moving to PLC, but decided against it for the same reasons.

I am now in my junior year, things have changed a great deal in my life, however my strategic goal has always been the same. Lead Marines. The operational and tactical aspects of accomplishing it have changed repeatedly, but that's okay. I keep all of my options open.

Example: When I was a high school senior, I did not know what I wanted to major in. In all of my college apps, I sought admittance in the programs with the most stringent requirements. IE - Business School required 3.3gpa, Arts and Sciences required 3.1gpa. = Apply to business. I did this because it would be easier to transfer "down" than it would be to transfer "up". Keep that in mind.

Sign the air contract and if you wash, you can go infantry. If you don't, you'll eventually be a FAC. All Marine officers are infantry leaders first, anyway.

As for your love of weapons, it is probably the LEAST important aspect of being an officer, infantry or otherwise. Your primary concern should be seeing to the welfare of your men.

Good luck.
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:47:32 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SSeric02:

Originally Posted By SlimHazy:
ETA: It took me forever to type all this crap so MMX already said some of it:

Originally Posted By walrus:

Originally Posted By 1BMF:

Originally Posted By SF1058:
1BMF, You seem to have some misconceptions about the officer career path. The best thing you can do is talk to your local OSO about your career options. Good luck.

How so? From my post it might seem that way, but ive been talking to them since august, and its to much to explain everything. I know how things work, it's been explained to me by many different people.

Please, explain what you mean.Thanks

I think he's saying that's there's alot more shit than shooting guns in the Corps. Dealing with inept superiors bullshit orders, caring for your men (counseling, training, etc.), and most of all, doing what the Corps tell you. Recon comes looking for you, you don't look for Recon. Recon can only be obtained through doing the best you can, plus some, and then gaining recognition and reccomendation from superiors/Recon for the Recon indoctrination.

They're right, 1BMF. You need to have an "adult" conversation with your dad, some of his buddies, and any Marine officers you can find to ask questions. Serious stuff, not just them telling you about how cool it is. You don't want to get into this with any misconceptions. (e.g. your dad was either a P-3 pilot, or a LtCol, but probably not both.)

"Ground" encompasses a lot of MOSs in the USMC than Infanty (0302), so figure out what else you might end up with after TBS, which is where that will be determined unless you have a guaranteed slot like Pilot, NFO or Law. There are no guarantees for Infantry, Recon, or Force Recon.

As a pilot, you'll only be flying a few hours a day. The rest of the time you'll be, yep, on the ground. Or maybe at sea. Plus Pilots/NFOs do "ground" tours where they can spend time as FAC/JTAC running around in the dirt. Find someone to explain all this stuff to you.

And start PTing now. Look up the PFT procedure and score tables online, and start working on those specific exercises as part of an all-around fitness program.



+1 to all of the above. You have a lot to understand yet about what being an officer really means and entails. Even at Force, it's not all about running around in the woods shooting guns and being dirty. Far from it in fact.

Stick to your current path for now until you gain a better understanding of the above. There is plenty of opportunity for you to drop it later. Two of my buddies at IOC were Pilot Contracts who were allowed to attend, filling two open seats at IOC while waiting to go to flight school. At the end, one was able to drop his Pilot Contract and switch to Infantry aftter we dropped an 03 apirant.

S/F,
SSeric02, Captain, USMCR



+1
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 9:48:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SpecialOperator:
Havi is absolutely right.

I was in NROTC my freshman year of college and dropped it because it was too much of a commitment as I had enough on my plate as it was. I was thinking of moving to PLC, but decided against it for the same reasons.

I am now in my junior year, things have changed a great deal in my life, however my strategic goal has always been the same. Lead Marines. The operational and tactical aspects of accomplishing it have changed repeatedly, but that's okay. I keep all of my options open.

Example: When I was a high school senior, I did not know what I wanted to major in. In all of my college apps, I sought admittance in the programs with the most stringent requirements. IE - Business School required 3.3gpa, Arts and Sciences required 3.1gpa. = Apply to business. I did this because it would be easier to transfer "down" than it would be to transfer "up". Keep that in mind.

Sign the air contract and if you wash, you can go infantry. If you don't, you'll eventually be a FAC. All Marine officers are infantry leaders first, anyway.

As for your love of weapons, it is probably the LEAST important aspect of being an officer, infantry or otherwise. Your primary concern should be seeing to the welfare of your men.

Good luck.



+2
Link Posted: 1/10/2006 10:04:58 AM EDT
0302 Infantry Captain here, active duty, deployed to Iraq.

Sounds like you are a prime candidate for PLC. It's the way to go. Trust me. Sounds like you will be ready for the challenge.

If you sign air contract and something happens...I guarantee you that you will NOT be an infantry Officer. Being a grunt is actually somewhat difficult to get at The Basic School. If you wash out of the air program for one reason or another...you will be put where the USMC needs you...ie, a support job. I have many friends that this happened to; and are not adjutants, suppy, logistics and etc....not where they want to be. Remember, everything evolves around the Marine Riflemen on the ground....everything else is support.

Go Infantry....you won't be disappointed. I have had a very rewarding career thus far and am almost 1/2 way to retirement, which I will do at the young age of 42. Everything else will be gravy.

PS: Not all Marine Officers are infantry leaders first. I see this everyday....

Good luck and Semper Fi...
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