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Marine officer to NG SF?

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  • Marine officer to NG SF?

    I'm a Marine Captain EAS'ing, and looking into reserve options. What NG specialties would allow me to laterally move within my rank? Is Special Forces as an officer or warrant officer possible?

  • #2
    Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

    There is a user here by the name of "SF Hunter" who can answer your SF questions. The rest of your questions would probably be best answered by another user whose name is "matthew.ritchie". Shoot one/both of them a private message.

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    • #3
      Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

      The Army accepts at face value your USMC officer specialty. Thus, if you are a Marine artillery officer, you could step right into a National Guard artillery slot.

      Special Forces is a whole world unto itself. My recommendation is to get into the Guard in a conventional unit in a State that has SF (not all do), and then pursue SF once established.

      You may find that they don't have much room for captains, so start thinking now how much you're willing to sacrifice. At least consider the possibility that SF may take you, but not as a captain. SF warrant officers take some time to grow, you'd need to serve several years in a group before they'd consider someone for that.

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      • #4
        Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

        Thanks for the info and insight sir. I'm an intelligence officer and have experience working as an advisor with the Border Police in Afghanistan and I always wished I could have done more as far as being more involved with the FID role and I just fell in love with COIN and unconventional warfare and want to pursue that. I'm leaving active duty either way, so the options are wide open to me as far as being a reservist in the USMC, Nat Guard, or USA-R and I would much rather stay somewhat active than go IRR.

        When you are talking about sacrifice and there not being a lot of room for captains, do you mean dropping down to LT is possible, or there not being room for officers in general and being enlisted as the more available option? Thanks again sir.

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        • #5
          Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

          Originally posted by uorbulldog View Post
          When you are talking about sacrifice and there not being a lot of room for captains, do you mean dropping down to LT is possible, or there not being room for officers in general and being enlisted as the more available option? Thanks again sir.
          There is no provision to bring you back to lieutenant. We've got to take you as a captain ... Or as a sergeant. I recommend that you join the Guard as a captain in a conventional unit, then engage with the nearest SF unit. They'll tell you whether they can take you as a captain. Obviously there are more enlisted positions in SF than officer positions. Consider now if you'd resign your commission for SF, so you know how to decide if forced to make a choice.

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          • #6
            Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

            Originally posted by uorbulldog View Post
            I'm a Marine Captain EAS'ing, and looking into reserve options. What NG specialties would allow me to laterally move within my rank? Is Special Forces as an officer or warrant officer possible?
            uorbulldog,

            It will all depend on how long you have been a CPT.
            But just like MAJ Ritchie stated, if you want to pursue SF as an officer, then you will first have to find an available branch slot for MI within a specific state. Preferably within a state that has Special Forces units. Then apply with an SF unit that is considering officer applicants.

            I will forewarn you that right now many SF units in the Guard are only considering officers from Combat Arms Branches (ie Infantry) only.

            Special Forces Warrant Officer (180A) are only available for SF NCOs (E-7) to apply for that have at least 3 years ODA experience.
            Last edited by SF Hunter; October 24th, 2012, 02:05 PM.

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            • #7
              Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

              I'm sure a few thought I was only a disgruntled NJ ARNG member.
              Unprofessional is the better description.

              OP, SF Hunter gave you some good advice, especially where your career is at. I'd recommend you research some of the SOF forums for better answers for your career goals. I'd also suggest you keep in mind your civilian career. While SF maybe described as a part time job, it's still a part time job. What do you want to do on the civilian side?

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              • #8
                Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                The LTC did suggest you might consider resigning your commission in order to have a more viable opportunity with SF. While this always remains an option of some sort, I would consider the long term picture seriously before proceeding.

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                • #9
                  Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                  Ah no worries, gents, I'm learning a lot. I probably know more about the ANA than I do the National Guard so this forum is good. As far as my priorities and resigning my commission and what not, I already know I'm departing active duty, so that decision is made. It's what I do after that make for various opportunities. For now I'm going to concentrate on going to school full time to get a masters degree for the next 12-18 months. The choice is really whether to stay in a drilling reserve position or just go to the IRR for a while. (Obviously I know what the training pipeline is like and I wouldn't be attempting to do any of it while going to school)

                  Additionally, while being a Marine officer has been a great experience and I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world, to be honest, my real interests lay in unconventional warfare, advising, foreign languages and cultures- the best experience I've had as a Marine was being on a 13 man advisor team. Now as a Marine officer the goal is essentially do whatever it takes to be in a position to be a commander at every level, which is not really something that is a big priority to me. I would really consider resigning my commission because I really just enjoy being part of a small team where each person has a role to fill as opposed to trying to be a company commander, bn commander, and so on. And as most of you know there's not a lot of billets at the tactical level for Majors, LtCols, in any service. I could definitely see being part of an ODA as the ideal job in the military, whether it's as the ODA commander, or one of the other billets.
                  Last edited by uorbulldog; July 10th, 2012, 09:57 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                    It is difficult to go from "small Corps" back to "big Corps" huh?


                    Since we are on the topic of NCO vs Officer in the ANG SF, here is my dilemma:
                    I am a prior service Marine, 10 years, E-6, Infantry back ground, 3 years time in grade, obtaining my B.A. in January.
                    I want to be an Officer but I also want to be a SF Operator.

                    Can I become an ANG officer and when illegible go through the process to become a SF Operator?
                    OR
                    Should I begin the process to become a SF Operator as a NCO?
                    My ultimate goal is to be a SF Operator.

                    I understand that there are 6 Officer for each NCO applying and that the competition is steep. To me that is a great thing, it means that the officers elected will more than likely be top notch. I would be a brand new 2LT coming in with the objective of becoming a SF Operator.

                    SF Hunter, what advice would you give me?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                      Spartukus,

                      I personally do not recommend the officer path. But if that is the way you want to pursue, then you would have to enlist under a OCS contract (09S), complete OCS, then branch training, then attain the rank of 1LT or CPT and meet all the officer requirements "before" you could apply for SF. We DO NOT accept brand new commissioned 2LTs, even prior enlisted ones. Also, I recommend Combat Arms Officer Branches, such as Infantry, Armor and Artillery.

                      Just FYI:
                      ARNG = Army National Guard
                      ANG = Air National Guard
                      Last edited by SF Hunter; February 4th, 2014, 02:39 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                        SF Hunter,

                        I am looking at all my options before I make a decision.
                        I suppose that if I were to go the Officer route, by the time I done with all the requirements I should be a 2LT (p). I understand that promotions in the ARNG (thanks for that FYI) maybe/is a bit slower than active duty.
                        How about the MI field, is that an asset SF look for in candidates or is it better to come from the Infantry, Armor, or Artillery.

                        It is looking better and better to just apply as a NCO.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                          MI branch is very difficult to get into. Even though MI can give you a lot of skill sets, SF prefers combat arms experience and liberal use of the Military Decision Making Process (MDMP)

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                          • #14
                            Re: Marine officer to NG SF?


                            Training and Time-line

                            1. Special Forces Readiness Evaluation or Assessment Drill (SFRE/SFAD) 2-3 days; Local SF unit “try-out”
                            2. Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS) – 3 weeks, Ft. Bragg, NC
                            3. Airborne School (if not Airborne Qualified) – 3 weeks, Ft. Benning, GA
                            4. Special Operations Captains Career Course - 12 weeks, Ft. Bragg, NC

                            5. Special Forces Qualification Course (SFQC), Ft. Bragg, NC
                            Phase I: SF Orientation – 7 weeks [SF Core Missions, SF History, Negotiation and Mediation]
                            Phase II: Language and Culture* – CAT I & II - 18 Weeks (Spanish,French,Indonesian); CAT III & IV - 24 Weeks (Arabic, Chinese, Mandarin, Tagalog, Russian, Persian, Farsi, Korean and Thai)
                            Phase III: SF Tactical Combat Skills – 13 weeks [SUT, Urban/Mounted tactics, Advanced Marksmanship, Land Nav and SERE-C]
                            Phase IV: SF Detachment Officer Qualification (SFDOQ)(18A) Training – 14 weeks
                            Phase V: SF UW Cumulative Exercise (Robin Sage) – 4 weeks World's foremost Unconventional Warfare Cumulative Exercise.
                            Phase VI: Graduation – 1 week
                            According to the sticky thread of the SF Training Timeline, officers will attend the Special Operations Captains Career Course. Is this a recent change? I think that in the past, those who were selected would attend the MCCC at Fort Benning instead. Does the Special Operations Captains Career Course replace the MCCC or does a Detachment Commander who eventually transitions back to a basic branch still need to complete the MCCC?

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                            • #15
                              Re: Marine officer to NG SF?

                              Originally posted by uorbulldog View Post
                              For now I'm going to concentrate on going to school full time to get a masters degree for the next 12-18 months. The choice is really whether to stay in a drilling reserve position or just go to the IRR for a while.
                              Based on what you've told us, I recommend going into the Guard in your current career field. You'll have no special training requirements, because you're already considered qualified for the Army's equivalent career field. Spend a year in a conventional unit, to get accustomed to your new way of life, and to draw educational benefits. Then, after completing your degree, you have a decision point of whether to continue as a commissioned officer in the conventional forces, or as a sergeant in Special Forces.

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