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Questions about OCS, SF, Ranger School, Airborne

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  • Questions about OCS, SF, Ranger School, Airborne

    I'm currently 30 years old, in excellent health, with no prior service and I've decided that I want to serve in the National Guard. (Presently I live in SC but I'm willing and able to relocate, more on that in a moment). I've chosen the Guard because I am a business owner so I'd prefer not to go in full-time, though I have no problem being away for months at a time for training and/or deployments. That being said I have a few questions. First, how difficult is it to get into OCS? I will soon have the 90 credits required, but I've been hearing various reports about the competitiveness of getting in and I'm curious what the current needs are like. For example will I be able to get in with 90 credits or will I have to complete my degree first?

    My second question is about the special schools such as Ranger, Airborne, and SF. If I do this then I really want a chance to go to these schools and I'm willing to put out 100% to do it. I've been doing a ton of reading and research on the subject and it seems like your chances of going depend greatly on what state you live in. I'd actually be willing to relocate myself if that was what I needed in order to be able to get in. I've also read that Airborne can be put into your contract but Ranger and SF can not. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    -The Mentor
    Last edited by TheMentor; February 24th, 2014, 02:49 AM.

  • #2
    Your questions have been asked by others many many times before. Please search through the forums for the answers to the questions.

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    • #3
      Sorry, I should have mentioned that I've been reading the forums for the past few weeks, including a number of helpful posts by yourself, SF Hunter.

      That said, I'm still looking for straight answers on a few things, but let me be more specific.

      1. What are the current (2013/2014) needs and/or level of competition as far as getting into OCS? Is 90 credits enough? My recruiter says that getting into OCS will be "no problem at all" as long as as qualify because many people don't qualify for it, but recruiters are known for making things appear more rosy than they actually are. Any input on this?

      2. I REALLY want to go to Ranger school. I also know from reading the threads here that it's hard to get in through the NG route and it depends on your state, unit, etc. I'm willing to relocate if that's what it takes, any recommendations on where to go? I read that the 143rd out of Austin, TX has a lot of Rangers but is also hard to get into, anyone know about that? Any other recommended units?

      3. Give it to me straight: if the special schools are a must-have for me, should I forget about the NG and go Active Duty? Can one still own a business when in Active Duty? What exactly does an 11B do all day long when not deployed or training?
      Last edited by TheMentor; February 24th, 2014, 12:31 PM.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by TheMentor View Post
        Sorry, I should have mentioned that I've been reading the forums for the past few weeks, including a number of helpful posts by yourself, SF Hunter.

        That said, I'm still looking for straight answers on a few things, but let me be more specific.

        1. What are the current (2013/2014) needs and/or level of competition as far as getting into OCS? Is 90 credits enough? My recruiter says that getting into OCS will be "no problem at all" as long as as qualify because many people don't qualify for it, but recruiters are known for making things appear more rosy than they actually are. Any input on this?

        I really cant put any light on specific state requirements or needs for officer candidates (09S).

        2. I REALLY want to go to Ranger school. I also know from reading the threads here that it's hard to get in through the NG route and it depends on your state, unit, etc. I'm willing to relocate if that's what it takes, any recommendations on where to go? I read that the 143rd out of Austin, TX has a lot of Rangers but is also hard to get into, anyone know about that? Any other recommended units?
        The 143rd would be the most likely unit to have the best chance for Airborne and Ranger School, assuming you become an Infantry Officer after OCS.

        3. Give it to me straight: if the special schools are a must-have for me, should I forget about the NG and go Active Duty? Can one still own a business when in Active Duty? What exactly does an 11B do all day long when not deployed or training?

        If all the "cool guy" schools are a must for you, then I recommend you pursue active duty service. An Infantry Officer on active duty will have a much higher chance at Airborne and Ranger School. As for owning a business, sure its possible as long as it doesn't require "your" full time attention. Because when you are serving with active duty that is your full time job and 1st priority, at least in the eyes of the Army.
        ANSWERS IN BOLD ABOVE
        Last edited by SF Hunter; February 24th, 2014, 03:32 PM.

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        • #5
          I know Soldiers that are involved in part-time endeavors while on active-duty (e.g. network marketing, working on weekends to make extra money with permission from command) but I do not know the nature of your business and while on active, you may be not co-located with your business due to moves and training rotations; unless your business is mobile. Air Assault and Airborne are probably something achievable while in the Guard but a Ranger school commitment is not as easy. You need to do some real soul searching. I have many years of active service and on active-duty now and there are many challenges with juggling extra stuff not related to Army life. All because you want a tab and extra accouterments on the uniform for creds is not always the best decision; especially at your age.
          Last edited by Chief Kemosabe; February 24th, 2014, 03:23 PM.

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