MOS Selection, Family Life, & OCS
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  1. #1

    MOS Selection, Family Life, & OCS

    Hi all,

    I'm currently a college student getting ready to sign up to head to OCS in the fall of 2018 (ideally).

    First, I have some questions. I'm needing some help choosing an MOS. I have no problem being in the field and seeing combat, but I don't necessarily want to go looking for it. I'm not a full-time desk worker, whether that be in civilian life or my potential military life. I enjoy getting out in the field, which is why my current civilian career is in construction project management; you get the best of both worlds. I would like to come out of the Marines with skills that pertain to the civilian world. Now, don't get me wrong; I'm not above desk work, or any work for that matter. I have no problem having to work my way up ladders, I actually like it. However, my end goal would be a career that gets me some trigger time but will also give me opportunities to learn a lot. I have friends that are on all different spectrums of the Corps, from AAV to Infantry, all the way to flight crew members on an Osprey.

    So far I've looked heavily into a few things: Combat Engineering, AAV, Flight Crews (gunner, etc.), and HUMINT. HUMINT seems the most interesting to me. It seems to be a healthy balance between interacting with locals and their culture and lugging an M4 around "just in case". What can you tell me about either of those specialties? I will be married before I leave for OCS, and will likely have a child at some point during my service; so, that gives me a family to think about that will depend on me coming home. That is a major reason that infantry is not for me. Please do not misunderstand my specific desires as a weakness; I assure you that isn't the case.

    Also, what can you tell me about family life in the Corps? How do you balance it or how do you get over being away from your wife for the first time (for me, this would likely be OCS)? How do you help your wife not feel alone for the months your gone or help ease her worry?

    What can you tell me about OCS? I know it's tough both mentally and physically, but what tips would you have for me?

    Lastly, what other MOS's could you suggest? I'm really up for anything as long as I'm given good information by whoever replies and as long as it's a healthy balance between field and technical work.

    I realize I'm asking a lot, but for the sake of time I'd rather ask all my questions at once, rather than in a bunch of separate threads. Also, if my profile isn't complete, I apologize. I filled out some info in hopes that I was doing it right, but from what I understand a lot of others have this issue as well.

    Thank y'all who respond and thank y'all for your service.

    Similar Threads:

  2. #2
    Will add a few random thoughts, for what they're worth.

    Never went through OCS but did spend some time at Quantico VA. We ran the narrow dirt trails and ridgelines (where the trees are cut along the powerlines) out at OCS. It is not flat land and is comparable to running cross country - you need to incorporate that type of running into your training regimen. That type of terrain also means lots of twisted ankles. Other common overuse injuries from running are shin splints and stress fractures. Fall is the best time to be in Quantico - summers are blazing hot/humid and winters are really cold.

    You don't mention anything about your OSO but, being a college student means you should have one. They need to explain to you how the MOS assignments work for officers (different than for enlisteds). If you don't go in as a JAG or aviator, I'm pretty sure your MOS is based on your class standing out of OCS but could be wrong. At any rate, I don't think you get to choose and the USMC will choose for you. Again, check with your OSO about how that works. The MOS's you mentioned sound like enlisted MOS's. Officers are not flight crew on Ospreys and are not gunners (officers will be the pilot and copilot only). Not exactly sure what officers do with AAV's but I know they don't drive them or fix them (not much more to do). Intel officers also have different roles when it comes to HUMINT (they're not out there with an M4 interacting with the locals).

    Family life in the USMC depends a lot on your MOS, billet, and unit/command. You can be assigned to a base unit that is nondeployable, or a deployable unit with the Fleet Marine Force (FMF). Currently, the deployment schedule is 7 months work-up, 7 months deployed, 7 months dwell time at home, start the cycle all over again. Of course, this is subject to change depending on what operations are going on around the world (the president has not decided if he is going to send more troops back to Afghanistan).

    As far as being separated from your wife, everyone deals with that in their own way - some are better with it than others. There are support groups and resources for spouses and family members (each deploying unit has a Family Readiness Officer that is the liaison between them and the unit). How your wife deals with the separations will largely depend on her maturity and self-reliance. If she is immature, clingy, jealous, and needs you to do everything, she will have a difficult time. If she is independent, employed, can balance the checkbook/pay the bills on time, not run up your debt, can maintain the family vehicles, has a hobby (to keep busy) etc, then she should be OK.

    I realize you're brand new to this, hence the questions. But, you don't have a firm grasp on what it means to be an officer of Marines yet which is understandable. You need to be talking to officers, not enlisted Marines. There are only a couple who drop by here occasionally but hopefully they will (one is an aviator). And, you need to be having these discussions with your Officer Selection Officer (OSO).

    Read the similar threads about family life under your post as well. Good luck.

  3. #3
    djj34 is a Captain of Marines and offers excellent advice to officer wannabes here on this page. Send him a private message and ask for his comments regarding your concerns.

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