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Officer Candidate School
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 one place where they’re made is Officer Candidate School.
OCS is an intense leadership training ground. It’s physically and mentally challenging, and not everyone is 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. Whether you're a first time soldier or have prior military service, OCS will transform you into an effective leader.
There are three options for attending OCS, as outlined below. 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.
State OCS (Traditional)
Traditional OCS takes place at Fort Custer Training Center, located near Battle Creek in Augusta, MI and is taught by the Regional Training Institute (RTI). Soldiers meet one weekend per month for 18 months plus one two week period each summer. You must be able to complete the course and receive your commission by your 42nd birthday. You must have a minimum of 90 semester hours towards a post secondary degree.
National Guard Accelerated OCS
Accelerated OCS takes place twice a year; once in June at Fort Meade, SD and once in January at Fort McCLellan, AL. It is an intense saturation of training seven days a week for a total of eight weeks. You must be able to complete the course and receive your commission by your 42nd birthday. You must have a minimum of 90 semester hours towards a post secondary degree.
This option takes place at Fort Benning, GA and is 14 weeks long, yearround. You must be able to finish and accept a commission by your 34th birthday and you must have a Bachelor's degree.
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.
- Must be a US Citizen prior to commissioning.
- Must attend Officer Basic Course (OBC) within 18 months of commissioning.
- Must have completed BCT and AIT or other military service equivalent. (AIT can be waived for those Soldiers enlisting into the Army National Guard for the OCS Option. Contact your local recruiter for details on the OCS Enlistment Option).
- GT score of 110 or higher.
- Must have 90 credit hours from an accredited College or University to enroll.
- The minimum age for enrollment is 18 years.
- The maximum age for enrollment is the age that will allow the applicant to complete the program prior to reaching age 42.
- Must pass the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) upon entering the program and again prior to commissioning.
- Must pass a Commissioning Physical prior to Phase I and within 24 months of commissioning.
- Must meet the height weight standards in accordance with AR 600-9.
Commissioned Officers in the Michigan Army National Guard's career fields hold positions of tremendous authority. They are proven leaders, willing to accept challenges, make important decisions and take on great responsibility.
Basic Branch Officers
As a basic branch officer, you'll choose a career in one of the following areas:
- ADJUTANT GENERAL CORPS - Become a human resource manager. You will learn to manage a Soldier’s morale, wellfare and administrative career from day one to retirement.
- CHEMICAL CORPS - Chemical officers are experts in nuclear, biological and radiological defense and warfare, and homeland protection. They also lead chemical units in combat support.
- ENGINEERING - These Soldiers can build structures, develop civil works programs and even provide combat support. There are a few different avenues within Engineering:
Sapper: Emplace demolitions, conduct reconnaissance and support maneuver units with mobility, countermobility and survivability.
Bradley: Destroy, neutralize and suppress the enemy using the Bradley Fighting Vehicle
Construction: Construct roads, buildings, military bases, airfields, etc.
Bridge: Construct, emplace or assemble numerous bridges
Rescue: Perform search and rescue operations
Training: Train the force, write new policy and research alternative engineering technology
- FIELD ARTILLERY - Will train you to provide firepower during combat operations. Learn field artillery systems, communications platforms, electronics, tactics, techniques and procedures for the employment of fire support systems.
- INFANTRY - The foundation of the Army. Infantry Soldiers are experts in combat preparedness. They use small arms, anti-armor or indirect fire weapons during combat missions.
- MILITARY POLICE - Learn law enforcement skills for war, peace, stability, and support operations.
- MILITARY INTELLIGENCE CORPS - Military intelligence officers are always out front, providing essential intelligence and information about the enemy, terrain, and weather conditions.
- ORDNANCE CORPS - Ordnance officers are responsible for ensuring that weapons systems, munitions, vehicles and equipment are ready and in perfect working order at all times.
- QUARTERMASTER - Is where you learn the basics of supplying food, water, petroleum, repair parts, ammunition and other field services for worldwide combat and humanitarian operations.
- SIGNAL CORPS - With information dissemination management and communications technology the new frontier of defense, the Army Signal Corps couldn't be more relevant today. Signal supplies information systems and worldwide networks for the Army, the Department of Defense and allied nations in coalition operations. Soldiers learn the skills to automate, transmit, receive, and maintain voice and data information using the most current technologies.
- TRANSPORTATION CORPS -Is responsible for moving supplies, troops and equipment anywhere on the globe. During war, the Transportation Corps utilizes trucks, boats and airplanes to provide extremely fast support to the combat teams on the front lines.