Best time to join? E.g. After college/ uni (If at all)

Hi, I finished high school this year with about four Scottish Highers and one Advanced Higher.(I say "about" because results of three are still to arrive.)

These qualifications are:
Higher German: B
Higher Music: B
Still to come:
Higher Modern Studies (hopeful of an a/b - turned out really to be my thing)
Higher English (probably a B)
Advanced higher Music (not at all sure to be honest probably C)

Highers are considered slightly lower than A levels I think, but almost equivalent.
I also have modules in computing. And an A in media studies at Int 2 level (slightly higher than GCSE)

Now after all that rambling on (sorry) here's my question:
I go to college to study an HNC (eq. 1st year uni) in Social Sciences, and am interested in doing something in this area, but I also consider the British army a good option as I get to do all the things I consider worthwhile; helping others, keeping fit, seeing the world and never stop learning. After that I want to go to University to study something like History And Politics or Social Policy. Would I be best to attempt to join after uni or just go straight ahead after college? Also, should I try for an Officer or a regular soldier? I am interested in something like Intelligence corps, would this be a good option? And lastly, is it worth joining at all at the moment, or has the bad began to outweigh the good recently?

Thanks for reading my extensive question, any advice will be welcome and taken into consideration.
One thing I forgot to mention is that I have a very low Maths qualification at the moment Standard Grade foundation level, I'm not sure what this is equivalent to, but it is low. In college I think there is opportunity t o get equivalent Adult Numeracy Level 2, and if not I may take the qualification privately as a friend has offered to tutor me, and I think I will manage to get an appropriate level, but surely this will hinder my selectability.
See the stickies in the Int Corps forum. General guidance is 5 GCSEs including English and Maths. Looking at your posts I'd take the time and do further education first.


Book Reviewer
Do: go and see a recruiting office and get some sound, current advice.

Don't: get put off by the whinging on arrse and in the press about the state of the army. Being an officer in any of the armed forces (even the RAF) is still one of the most exciting and interesting jobs you'll ever do.

All right, maybe not the RAF.
Bouillabaisse is right, whatever the cuts there will still be a requirement for smart, keen, fit young men & women to serve as Privates (& equivalent) and 2Lts. It's just the longer career side which is more restricted, but do well & you will make a career. Bear in mind the competition will be harder, though!
Oh ok, good man! Sounds quite a bit like International Relations...

To answer your original question:

I'm at uni currently and have my place at RMAS having passed AOSB in November. In my view the sensible thing to do is to go to university for three key reasons:

1) At your age you don't know how your life is going to turn out - whether you will pass AOSB, whether you will remain in the Army for your career and so on. A degree stays with you for life and will dramatically help you when applying for jobs. Plus you say you enjoy your subject, which I'm glad to hear.

2) You have the time - you're only young and you can become an officer right up to 26. Enjoy university, enjoy your last few years of youth and develop as a man.

3) The Army will like you having a degree, especially in a relevant area like History or Politics. And they like the experience (and more importantly chance to prove yourself) it gives you. Few schoolboys are mature or impressive enough to pass AOSB straight away, most get given a delay at the briefing stage (at least in my group they were) whereas university give you the chance to develop leadership skills (through sport or OTC) and gives your CV some weight.

That's my two cents. I was fairly sure I wanted to join the Army but went to uni because luckily I'm a fairly clever chap and also wanted to progress my sport. And its easy to apply while you're studying - now I have my place I can just sit back and relax while all my mates spend their summers slaving away with internships and fretting about getting a job. I was the youngest on my briefing and main board but my experience at university enabled me to hold my own.

With degrees costing £9000 us poor English have a decision to make whether that's worthwhile but you get it free you lucky sod so even more reason to go! Plus you could get a Army bursary which is better than a kick in the balls.

Whether the Army is still worthwhile, only you can decide. For me it 100% is, especially for a young, single man looking to use it as a stepping stone to greater things. Upon completion of my SSC I'll have a degree in Military History, a masters in Strategy and Security and hopefully 6 or so years in the Princess of Wales' Royal Reg.



ps. I'm God awful at maths, I wouldn't worry about it. Bit of practice and you'll be right as rain!
Whether the Army is still worthwhile, only you can decide. For me it 100% is, especially for a young, single man looking to use it as a stepping stone to greater things.
Your names not Cub Grylls is it?:)
I would not be the least bit suprised, good solid name Marmaduke, very character building when mixed with a comprehensive school upbringing!
That is the best answer I could have hoped for! And I almost forgot about the OTC! Thank you very much! Turns out my college course has a unit of maths in it which would hopefully bring me up to the right level. Thanks again for everyone's replies
That could actually be true. Not that I have any experience, but from what I've heard they get to sit far away from balltezones in cozy environments as they organise bombing runs too far away for anyone to see the results...
Not that I really care BUT...... here we go anyways.

I know the RAF are ******* embarrassing on a regular basis; however, your assessment of them is a little harsh.

I've bumped into loads of RAF coppers who are embedded with patrols on the front line. RAF Medics are fricking everywhere and do deploy forward. I've met dozens of RAF officers and other ranks working within the stabilisation and support teams who are out on the ground regularly. RAF helicopter crews (Chinook's in this example) are ******* fearless and i've seen them fly into some really shitty places to get lads out.

The thing that a lot of people seem to forget about the RAF is that they are an Airforce and not an Army. Simple's right? Their job is to bomb shit from afar!

However, if when my R&R flights delayed then my assessment of them completely changes 'Mongy ******* fobbit crab cnuts!'

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