Officer or Commando?

Night Fighter

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Hi lads, in a bit of a dilemma right now with choosing the officer or commando route. Looking to join in 2022 no matter which pathway I end up choosing but my situation is quite unique to most of the other lads looking to join. I moved to Australia from England six years ago and have wanted to join as an officer since 2016, where i watched young officer Bertie Kerr lead in Afghanistan on the RM documentary. However, receiving my results for my Year 12 VCE exams, I haven't obtained the necessary equivalent marks for officer entry. I have looked into fast track A levels and other further education, but from what I’ve gathered on this forum an officer is more of a overseeing management role rather than being the first man through the door (which i originally thought it would mainly consist of). Therefore, would the commando route of rising through the ranks and say working towards a sergeant role have more opportunity to get more into the action? Also, i know a lot of guys wanting to join act all gung ho and think they want a crazy action movie like career. However, this is not my approach even though the whole reason I am joining is to get stuck in. Personally, I don’t want to get the qualifications for an officer, when i could have had a couple of extra years as a commando instead of being in an office more than actually doing what i wanted to do in the first place, gaining experience as a marine in the field. Apologies for the long post, any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

Sprint0205

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Not a trained rank so I can't comment on how much action officers get. I just want to point out that officers are still commandos and have to go through the same tests and training as other ranks, at a higher standard as well.
 

Night Fighter

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I understand training is harder and longer for commando officers, but what I am not sure on is what a lengthy career looks like.
 

SCOTTY6

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There’s loads of threads on here debating officer vs rating so have a good search through older ones. Lengthy career as an officer will definitely have a lot less field time and more time managing. Longer career down in steerage with the peasants like us, the further up the chain you go, you manage men on a more close up level. A troop commander is in charge of the troops, and what they do in the job and a troop sgt deals with the welfare of the men. And it works like that the higher up you get.
 

Chelonian

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...in a bit of a dilemma right now with choosing the officer or commando route.
I'll make some general observations.

Anyone considering a service career should have a fundamental understanding of Other Rank and Officer roles. One is not intrinsically better than the other but they are different. Understanding the difference will help making an informed decision.

Adequate academic qualifications merely open the very first door to Officer application. If a Careers Adviser suggests an academically qualified candidate consider Officer don't be flattered. He or she is doing the job, not paying a compliment.

On the other hand many educational institutes and parents consider Officer entry to be some sort of gold standard. It isn't. They are just painfully, badly informed with limited, inherited 1950s' mindsets. This is why candidates must do their own research to decide what career outcome is most desirous to them.

In the context of Royal Marines a Young Officer might be fortunate (assuming it's what he wants) to get a command appointment at a fighting unit. Let's take an example: Tarquin.

After Pass Out Tarquin might be in similar roles for several years but will then climb the promotion ladder. For example, he might become 2IC for a Company. He might specialise; he might attend career development courses. The probability is that as promotion advances the opportunities to 'kick down doors' will be offered to younger Officers who are less experienced but much fitter than he now is. We all age and become slower; trust me on that. Tarquin's gained experience is better deployed in a 'management' role. The service does not exist to make his dreams come true. The clue is in the word 'service'.

Tarquin was commissioned at age twenty-two. After six years he has met a 'significant other'. He and Fenella want a more settled family life as they now have two children: Hugo and Allegra and Winston, a black Labrador.
Tarquin's window on the world is very different to what it was when he joined. Approaching his thirties he sees opportunities in other employment fields outside the service where the portable skills he has gained promise development and financial incentives.

My somewhat tongue-in-cheek example is meant to convey the notion that everyone's career aspirations evolve as life goes on and circumstances change.
 

SCOTTY6

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If tarquin had specialised as ML his black Labrador would have been called Marlow...
 

R

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@Night Fighter mate, search the forum there are several really good threads on this topic. Long story short if you think you have the aptitude for a commission go for it! Better pay, different opportunities, to the O/R route. Do some serious research on the career routes. Good Luck!
 

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