Posted on Oct 12, 2017
Kaitlyn A.
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I'm interested in joining the army as an officer and I have a bachelor's in business administration, but my GPA was quite low at 2.6. I understand that is not considered competitive, but I would simply like to know my odds of getting in with that GPA. My GPA declined my last year in college and this was due in part to working full time, participating in pitch competitions, and being in an on campus organization. I'm not excusing it, but trying to provide some background info. I am currently working in a field related to my degree and major as a project manager at a market research firm. I know that I would have to score extremely well with my PT score and I'm working with a trainer to improve that and I would also have to do well on the ASVAB. I normally test well and I'm also studying to prepare for that. I currently have four letters of recommendation: 2 from former employers, 1 from a former E9 in the navy, and 1 from a former O5 in the army. I'm also planning on getting one from the CEO/President of my current company. I know that my GPA works against me, but I would simply like some up to date odds on the likelihood of being able to join as an officer.

***UPDATE, 11/9/17: I requested information from all branches about joining as an officer and I've got serious interest from a Navy recruiter despite my GPA. He's pushing me to take the ASTB/OAR and get started on a packet. I will continue to update as this progresses.***

***UPDATE 5/11/18: I was waiting on my medical records to get info regarding an accident I had been in and I guess it took too long because now my recruiter won't answer my messages. I've reached out to the Navy for another recruiter. Hopefully I won't have to redo all the paperwork I've already done. I was told I wouldn't be forwarded to another recruiter until there was no contact for 6 months, but I'd rather not wait that long.***
Edited 4 mo ago
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CPT Corporate Buyer
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Your GPA is not that big of a deal. You need a degree, that's about it. Now your PT score on the other hand is a big deal. That needs to be good. The ASVAB is important also. But no need to worry about your GPA.
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MAJ Contracting Officer
MAJ (Join to see)
11 mo
In ROTC land it's a good way to get no select for active and forced into a reserve commission.
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LT Regional Practice Manager, Hwsl
LT (Join to see)
11 mo
My only concern would be later in your career, when you try to pursue that graduate/masters degree... In most cases, from what I've seen, it is nearly impossible to pass O4 with a BA/BS...
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SGM Erik Marquez
SGM Erik Marquez
4 mo
MAJ (Join to see) - My experience was otherwise sir.
Ranking overall in the region as a cadet
Leadership School ranking, and report
APFT score
GPA may be a decision factor someplace in the process but from 3 years as the MS3 Instructor / Advisor and the Ops guy, Oregon State University ......at least in Western Region , GPA seemed to be the last thing considered not a major thing.
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MAJ Contracting Officer
MAJ (Join to see)
4 mo
SGM Erik Marquez The values fluctuate over time, but GPA is usually the highest ranking factor on the ROTC Order of Merit List. It was 50% of the value in 2006.
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LtCol Robert Quinter
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I noted you talked with a "recruiter" who said your GPA would be a problem. Not demeaning recruiters, but ask the Marine Corps recruiter to put you in touch with the Marine Officer Selection Officer (OSO) and talk with him. Even if you are set on the Army, an OSO will know the requirements for all the services. Be careful though, they are good at what they do and might convince you of the error in your thinking which wouldn't be all bad since the Marine Corps has better looking uniforms and they don't change as often. (By the way, I was put out of college on academic probation and ended up going to OCS, then Navy Flight training where I was competing with mostly college grads from any university/college you could think of; you can get whatever you shoot for)
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SR Chris Leyda
SR Chris Leyda
1 mo
I am looking into Naval careers with a similar GPA to the original poster. This post is focused on Army, do you have any advice on dealing with the Navy OCS selection process with a sub par GPA?
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LtCol Robert Quinter
LtCol Robert Quinter
1 mo
SR Chris Leyda - As I recommended to Kaitlyn, the needs of the service are what determine qualifications sought after for enlistees and officer programs. Talk with the Officer Selection Officer in your District, or, if you are currently in school, your local recruiting office should be able to put you in touch with the appropriate people. There are all sorts of traits that indicate a qualified person for officer programs.
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MAJ Contracting Officer
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Edited 11 mo ago
Two thoughts which depend on how you want to serve, the Army Reserve is almost always willing to take any new 2lt's with a pulse, if you are interested in commissioning and staying at Fort Carson at your current job the reserves or National Guard can get you a commission without any issues. If you are only considering active duty (Reserves are great by the way) OCS or ROTC (masters degree) are the only real options for you. You can talk to a recruiter to see if you meet the OCS eligibility requirements, you'll go to basic then to an Officer Candidate School (OCS) and commission as a 2LT within a few months. If you are not eligible for ROTC or unable to do ROTC as part of a masters degree you may enlist as a SPC for a few years then submit an OCS packet and commission. My recommendation is to talk to all three recruiters (Active, Reserve and National Guard) and see what options you currently have.

Or you could always commission in the reserves and submit a packet for the Call to Active Duty program that they've had for the last year or two and take your chances.

Best of luck and thank you for your willingness to serve.
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Kaitlyn A.
Kaitlyn A.
11 mo
I would like to go active duty and I believe I meet the eligibility requirements, but have been told by recruiters that because my GPA is low I won't be accepted. I know I'll have to go through OCS and I would prefer to avoid having to do a Master's at this time.
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LTC Nick Bozick
LTC Nick Bozick
11 mo
I went in the Army in 65 with a year of college. On my second tour in Vietnam as an 11F, I was sent to Benning School for Boys (only men in the program there) and after 6-months was commissioned Infantry with a ticket right back to RVN. The Army was more interested in leaders than college degrees then. Later as a Captain the Army paid for my BS Degree. For you, I think there are five things to be cognitive of: Character, Appearance (not pushing the weight-height limits), Physical Attributes (near ability to max the PT test), Attitude, and the ASVAB (have seen quite a few college grads, many with 3+ GPA, that did not score well on the OCT portion).
Any one of these would be a killer especially the Appearance. I have seen many officers that, although they met the height-weight requirement, looked like Deputy-Dog. This is your first chance at a career job. Sell yourself; and try another Army recruiter office... they do have quotas for certain MOS's and try to push them instead of doing their job. Good luck.
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SSG Recruiter
SSG (Join to see)
11 mo
MAJ (Join to see) Pretty spot on with your advice sir. Right now it's fairly easy to get an OCS spot for Active. Also Active and Reserves are the same recruiter.
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