What it takes to become a Marine Officer
Each candidate has an Officer Selection Officer who is charged with not only helping them through the application process but also is responsible for leading them and for teaching them and mentoring them in what it means to be a Marine Officer.
The role of the Officer Selection Officer in the Marine Corps is to find mentally, physically and morally qualified personnel and find them a place in the Marine Corps.
So it's their job predominantly to get them ready for Officer Candidates School, make sure they show up here ready, motivated and that they're ready to step into training and succeed.
We have officers who are looking for future officers. They are looking for people much like themselves.
We also look for their letters of recommendation, so to speak, from their professors, from their employers, see what kind of character this person has, do they show up to work, are they a go-getter.
Sometimes, you see something in that young man or woman that they might not realize about themselves, that they have the potential to be a Marine Corps Officer. So, that is definitely a part of the job that you can't teach.
I can tell them about my learning experiences and how I grew as a Marine and as a Marine Officer. But what maybe I joined the Marine Corps for is maybe not the same reason that they're joining. What I do as an Officer Recruiter in turn is I teach them how to manage those expectations, how to be able to say, "Ok, you're gonna fail at some things, you're gonna succeed at some things. But you need to be open and honest about why you wanna do this."
A lot of students wanna become Marine Corps Officers for one: it's different than anything else, it's an opportunity for them to serve, to answer a higher calling.
We are looking for these individuals who have the potential to be the bearers of our nation's protection and that's why it's so important.
When I've spoken to parents about the decision that their children have to make to go to Officer Candidates School, I basically describe it as a win-win situation. If they do four years in the Marine Corps, they're gonna have leadership abilities far ahead of their peers.
You'll be required to lead Marines whether it's in a combat scenario or in a courtroom as a lawyer or piloting a 54 million dollar aircraft. There is gonna be responsibility that resides right there on those two shoulders and you have to be able to handle that and the training that you're gonna get here at OCS is the foundation for that.
We make leaders of the best young men and women in the world and it just doesn't get any better. I sincerely mean it; I am doing this job simply because I wanted to and I love it.