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Officers are the Army’s leaders. They plan training and lead Soldiers all over the world. Rising through the ranks, commissioned officers become managers and problem-solvers. They maintain a commitment to excellence, make critical decisions, lead every mission and guide Army Soldiers by the thousands. They take responsibility for the safety and freedom of Americans all over the world. Their training encourages the development of leadership and problem-solving skills that make them sought after by civilian employers. And the place where they’re made is Officer Candidate School.
Michigan offers candidates 12 different branches to choose from for their career:
OCS is an intense leadership training ground. It’s physically and mentally challenging, and not everyone’s cut out for it. But those who are accepted, and make it through, agree it’s one of the most rewarding experiences of their lives.
You’ve got options. There are two options for attending OCS, as outlined in this brochure. After speaking with a recruiter, you’ll choose the best one for you based on your specific circumstances, such as your work and family commitments.
Accelerated OCS Takes place at Fort McClellan, AL. Soldiers attend eight weeks straight, seven days a week. Accelerated OCS takes place twice a year; January through March and June through August. Both classes are 57 day courses.
Traditional OCS takes place at Fort Custer Training Center and is taught by the Regional Training Institute (RTI). Soldiers meet on weekends only, between 14-16 months, plus 2 two-week periods.
Before starting the OCS application process, please take a moment to read the prerequisite list. This will help you avoid delays and problems when filing your application.
Becoming a Soldier in the Army National Guard comes with its benefits. As an officer, you receive many of the same benefits, to include:
Guard Soldiers may be exempt from ROTC Basic Course (MS I & II) because of military training and experience. Instead, Guard Soldiers may qualify to enroll directly into Advanced ROTC (MS III & IV). During the school week, SMP Cadets participate in all ROTC classes, labs and field training exercises. On training weekends, SMP Cadets are mentored in their assigned unit. During these weekends, Cadets wear their ROTC designation and carry out duties of new 2LTs in a supervised, on-the-job training environment.
The next step is to be accepted and attend a college or university offering Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) courses.
Once this is accomplished:
After completion of Military Science III (Junior year), SMP Cadets attend a six-week ROTC Advanced Camp at Fort Lewis, WA instead of AT.
Once classes are complete, SMP Cadets can apply for graduation and receive their commission as Second Lieutenants (2LT) in the Army National Guard or United States Army.
Traditionally, ROTC consists of three phases: Basic Course, Advanced Course & Advanced Camp.
Basic Course refers to freshman and sophomore level ROTC classes; Military Science (MS) I and II. These classes cover subjects like military history, traditions and organizations, and national defense. A strong emphasis on leadership development is prevalent the first two years. This offers a unique opportunity for students to gain hands-on leadership skills while in college.
This final phase consists of the last two years of the ROTC program, MS III and IV. The curriculum focuses on preparation for the challenges of military leadership. To enter this course, you must have already completed one of the following:
During your Junior year, you will combine classroom instruction and practical application focusing on land navigation, military tactics and how to prepare and present operation orders.
Your Senior year focuses on Cadet leadership positions, leadership challenges and preparation to become a 2LT. You will also be responsible for training and evaluating Cadets currently going through MS I & II.
This segment of a Cadet’s training provides one-third of the evaluation for accession and branch selection at commissioning. Here you will train to Army standards, refine leadership skills, and evaluate officer potential.
This phase is intentionally tough and stressful. The days are long with considerable night training. Throughout, a Cadet encounters physical and mental obstacles, challenging him/her as a person, Soldier, and leader. Training: