Entry Age

Discussion in 'Officers' started by wschpp, Dec 8, 2005.

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  1. Apologies in advance if this has already been covered; my search didn't turn up anything.

    I'm twenty-two now and it has been my hope to enter in about a year on the conclusion of a masters degree I'm undertaking. However, I've recently received an offer from an investment bank in the city and I'm considering accepting. It would run for two, maybe three years, after which I'd hope to enter Sandhurst. I think it would be no harm for later career options and personal development to have a couple of years in the banking sector under my belt and it would only delay the original plan by two or three years. My worry is that entering at twenty-five or twenty-six might be a bit late. I know that it's within the rules, but is it wise to delay entry until that age? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I expect to be sponsored by the Int Corps, for what it's worth.
  2. In the end the decision is up to you. As you have mentioned, you would still be withing the age limit. I know people who are going to Sandhurst and that are at Sandhurst that are 26/27 as they decided to do the same as you (post degree employment for some life experience) and they have had no problems regarding their age. You've got to remember that the average age of entrants to Sandhurst is 24 so you wouldn't be too bad.

    I'm sure some other users will have more info though.

  3. cpunk

    cpunk LE Moderator

    I don't think it would be disastrous, but the reality is that it gives you a little less time to make an impression before you start hitting the timelines for promotion. It's your choice: if you're a strong candidate, you will get picked up for promotions however old you are, otherwise you have to work at it to make it in time to give yourself a reasonable career.
  4. I thought those timelines for promotion were now all based on 'length of service' instead of the old way of looking at your age??? Or is there still an unofficial look at your age?

  5. Go to the city, get some contacts. Go to the army, get some experience. Leave army after SSC. With degree, experience and contacts, bluff your way into mega bucks job and laugh at all other army leavers who didn't get ducks in a line. keep fit to avoid heart attack brought on by weight gain and stress :lol:
  6. I recently applied for RMAS and I'll be 26 in August. I'm an International Relations grad, and made "starts" (some with initial promise) in several different careers until one day sitting at my desk I was overwhelmed by an almighty urge to join the army. Frankly, I'll be p****d off if I don't get in, but in all seriousness this is something I KNOW I want to do, and something I'm convinced I'd be a success at. The way i see it is it's got to be 100% or else don't bother. You should do what you really want to do right now. Sounds like you've got a good opportunity in the city. If you give it a go your circumstances, and accordingly your views on a career in the army, might change quite quickly. I had a big plan once, and was convinced it was the way forward. It turned out that the plan wasn't what I really wanted after all, but that was something I only found out after time and experience. That experience was priceless and I believe has given me the skills and the qualities to make me a much better officer than i could have at 21/22. And time is something you've got in abundance. Tough to be made choices, though. Mr Punk, I know you're an oracle of army info, and I most definitely am not but, when you say "a reasonable career" what exactly do you mean. Obviously. not everyone is going to get to Brigadier or General and then call it a day, but then not everyone will want to. I haven't exactly mapped out my entire life plan, but as a young bloke I want to join because I think ten years or so spent in the army would be a unique and incredibly rewarding experience. To leave as a Capt or a Major in your mid-late thirties would be a pretty good career for me. Being an officer is what I want to do. It will be a life in itself, i.e my life will be the army, but I won't be joing the army for "life". Obviously you don't want people joining for the short term, but with regards to the "Qualities not Qualifications" drive being targetted directly at my demographic, surely there must be an awareness that those like me might see their service in the army as a career within the context of their entire adult life. What a ramble. I'd better go for a run and cool off.
  7. cpunk

    cpunk LE Moderator

    In theory, maybe, but I shall look forward with interest to a 46 year old with 18 years' service being given command of a regular infantry battalion.

    Definitely not an oracle, but a modest amount of acquired experience... I wouldn't disagree with you about ten years or so in the army etc etc, but I think the key is knowing when to leave. In my view, a 'reasonable career' is one that you enjoy and which gives you fulfilment, which will be different for everybody. I have a strng suspicion though, that the later you start, particularly in the combat and combat support arms, the less seriously you will be taken, and the less chance you will have to find fulfilment in the army, despite the current take on terms of service.
  8. a handy thing for the both of you (wschpp and chappy) is that you will have seen an alternative life to the army. Not having a career mind set in the army, enjoying what you are doing and having chosen it, being committed to it will probably make you the sort of rounded officer that will do well. If it all goes t*ts up, you go have your escape route.

    The only problem you will face up the line provided you don't drop b0llocks is hostility/small mindedness from those who have committed to a career in the army, who have no other option and haven't made the pink or beige list at the right percentile. you risk never being seen as professional soldiers by those who life has given no other choice to.

    go on i dare you, one of you make general :lol:
  9. Thanks to all for some very helpful comments. It's much appreciated.
  10. Don't let age be a reason. I am at the extreme upper age limit (with special dispensation) and I am coping better than I would have at 22. You are more mature, keen to learn and have a better resilience, both physical and mental. The only thing you have to watch is that you take longer to heal if injured. A few years life experience is no bad thing and would allow you to stash a few quid in the bank, which is always handy as a young subbie.
  11. Just a small point, but working in the City I've met a fair few people who came to work; "Only for a couple of years, to get some cash behind me..." and who are still here 20 years later! I don't know what drives you, but the money that the City offers can be seductive: can you honestly see yourself dropping X thousands of pounds, the life style it brings and the comfort-zone? I know a couple of ex-Officers in my firm, each has joined us with no prior banking experience so it's not essential to make City contacts or establish a reputation in preparation for your second career.