There are almost 1.5 million people serving in the United States military today. For such large organizations such as the US Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and Air Force to be able to function efficiently and effectively, a highly-trained and elite group of leaders is needed to oversee operations. This enormous task falls on the shoulders of the officers of each branch.
These military officers are among the top leaders of the world. Each of them endured a grueling training process that amplified their leadership abilities and honed their technical skills. These men and women are cabable of collectively responding to the highly dynamic combat environment presented to United States soldiers today.
There are several paths you can take to becoming an officer in the US military:
The Reserve Officer’s Training Corps is a training program designed for 4-year college students. While attending a university to earn their degree, these student leaders participate in leadership training that gets them ready to enter the military upon graduation. This training regimen involves a variety of exercises including weekly afternoon labs, semesterly field training exercises located at a nearly military installation, and regular physical training (PT) drills. Although rigorous, this program is worth the sacrifice; cadets are eligible for scholarships, living stipends, and other benefits.
Visit ROTC.com for more info.
OFFICER CANDIDATE SCHOOL
If you enlisted in the military but are now eligible to become an officer (such as by earning a college degree) then you can apply for your branch’s officer selection course. These programs include the Army’s Officer Candidate School at Ft. Benning, Georgia, the Navy’s OCS in Newport, Rhode Island, and the Air Force’s Officer Training School. These courses last around 12 weeks and test each candidate’s physical and mental limits, preparing them for the stress of leading others in combat.
Whether you participate on ROTC or attend an officer training course, once you receive your officer rank you will be among the best of the best.