Posted on Jul 12, 2018
2LT Aviation Officer
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I am a potential recruit that is going for MEPS round two tomorrow. Hopefully, I will clear and swear in tomorrow as a 09S candidate. Shouldn't be an issue. My question is regarding further in my career when I am getting towards the end of OCS, and am preparing to list my preferred branches in order. My number one goal has always been to branch Infantry. However, I am a civil engineer on the civilian side of things. How much of a role do you think me being a civil engineer will play into where the National Guard decides for me to branch? I will put Engineer Officer in my top 5, but number one and two will definitely be Infantry and Armor, respectively. If I continually max my APFT, do well on my exams and peer reviews, and am pretty high on the OML, do y'all think I will have any issue branching Infantry instead of Engineer?
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CPT Corporate Buyer
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You need to see what slots are open in your state. Call the units and talk to them. They'll know more about what will be open down the road also. I talked to a couple of different units before making my decision. Both had slots and both were willing to add me. But one was closer to home and was the quickest path to company command. If you can meet with them and they want you, they can pull some strings to get you.
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CPT Lawrence Cable
CPT Lawrence Cable
3 y
MAJ (Join to see) As an opinion of someone that switched and ended up in a old style Divisional Combat Engineer, in general even Sapper Companies suck at tactics and don't talk the same language as the Manuever guys, who are generally clueless about how to use Engineers. I found it relatively easy to pick up Sapper stuff, the real Engineering at the Advanced School was much harder.
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MAJ Milan George
MAJ Milan George
3 y
To backtrack, if you're enlisting in the Guard, I wasn't aware they had an OCS option. Things do change but normally, you'd enlist, complete training, go back to your unit, then apply for OCS.
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2LT Aviation Officer
2LT (Join to see)
3 y
MAJ Milan George - They have an enlistment option called 09S, in which you enlist as an "Officer Candidate." You go to basic, and then immediately attend either traditional, federal, or accelerated OCS.
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MAJ Milan George
MAJ Milan George
3 y
2LT (Join to see) - Good deal. Are you going the States OCS or to Benning.
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CPT Lawrence Cable
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A quick look at the units in the NYANG says you probably won't have any issues getting Infantry. You have 42nd. Div Headquarters and a full Brigade Combat Team, plus and Aviation Battalion, so there should be slots AND opportunity to promote, at least through the company grade Officers. OTOH, there seems to be only one Battalion of Engineers, so slots and promotions may be harder since the numbers are very large. Looks to be a Heavy unit, so real construction instead of Sapper Work.
I enlisted Infantry and Commissioned Infantry, then Branch Transferred to the Combat Engineers when I moved to Kentucky. I'll always be a Grunt at heart, but I had a couple of position as a Combat Engineer that were the best jobs I had in the Army, Active or National Guard (Sapper Company Commander and Assistant Brigade Engineer). At the time I made that switch, Kentucky had two full Battalions of Engineers, a Corp level (Heavy Engineers) and a Divisional Combat Engineer unit that supported the 35th Division and also 3rd ID Europe when they were short handed on big exercises. Had I went back to Ohio with it's large National Guard Infantry unit, 73rd Brigade (Air Assault) Sep. when I was living there, I would have probably stated a Grunt. If you are looking at it as a career, find a branch that is large enough on the State level to promote and that you want to do for awhile.
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CPT Lawrence Cable
CPT Lawrence Cable
3 y
Sorry, meant to send this too. http://dmna.ny.gov/units/
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2LT Aviation Officer
2LT (Join to see)
3 y
CPT Lawrence Cable - I had looked at that web page and had similar thoughts. Good to know that I was on the right thought process. How does it work when you branch transfer? Are you required to attend EBOLC upon being assigned to the Engineering unit?
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CPT Lawrence Cable
CPT Lawrence Cable
3 y
2LT (Join to see) - No, if you already have a basic course, they would send you to what used to be called the Advanced Course. In the National Guard and Reserves, you can do that course as mixed learning, two shorter active sections and then either correspondence in my day or some kind of distance learning today. If you are on the Guard side and want to branch transfer to another Guard unit, it's usually not a big pain in the ass if they have a slot for you in the new Branch
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2LT Aviation Officer
2LT (Join to see)
3 y
CPT Lawrence Cable - That's good to know. I didn't realize it wasn't a big deal. Thanks for the info.
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1LT Executive Officer
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Good morning! I just graduated OCS a few days ago so I'll try to offer as much fresh insight as I can. As a NG officer you will receive your branch from your state, based upon their respective units' vacancies. The only folks that create their top 20 choices for branching are active duty candidates. If your state doesn't have infantry units, you would have to join into the NG of a state that does. Same goes with engineer. Ask your recruiter what those vacancies look like.
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2LT Aviation Officer
2LT (Join to see)
3 y
Thank you!
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