I'm sure I've heard of an "officer" who served on ops while on his GYC, though I think a lot of them end up doing pretty menial jobs.
Mixed reactions from the subbies I've met as to how worthwhile it is.
I know one gyc officer who alternates on a 2weekly basis between watch keeping and exercise out at cyprus... he really loves it sitting in a crab air base twiddling his thumbs for min of 8hours per day 'on ops'
We had a GYC in our unit aboulte arrse!!! Wants to act like a cadet but then make people call him sir and show him respect when drinking in the cadets mess! The guy should cop on and get a life if being a cadet is below him he should act like an officer or if he wants to be a cadet he should hand in his temp commission as hes supposed to
I think I can clear this up for everyone having had GYCs serve in the Battalion. GYCs come straight from their month course at Sandhurst having learnt very little in the way of tactics and nothing in their special to arm training. They are only taught the principles of leadership and quite rightly so. Afterall, we are not expecting them to be Generals.
I think this is where the problem lies as they are qualified FOR NOTHING but still hold the rank of a 2LT. Therefore all the soldiers instantly assume that this is another officer who has been through the factory and is ready to command a Pl/Tp, etc. This is about as far from the truth as possible but all credit to these guys as they will take on a Pl/Tp and make best what they can. Here, the soldiers aren't at fault as they won't know a GYC from a brand new officer and likewise, the GYC has not recieved enough training or is qualified enough to do what he/she does but they do! Again some do this very well but others don't so it is not really fair to criticise them as they are technically being put into a middle management job fresh off the street with one months preparation. I know I couldn't have done that when I was two stone wet through!!
So to summarise
1. GYCs cannot deploy on operations or conduct aspects of training (notably planning live firing!) because they are not qualified.
2. They are punching above their weight so give them some slack.
3. They have been selected by the Army Board for their leadership abilities as they feel they have what is required and THE POTENTIAL TO BE DEVELOPED OVER A PERIOD OF TIME. They will not get everything right first time and more often than not will need guidance in thier behaviour. Bear this in mind as it is a big step in responsibility from Officer Cadet to Officer and takes some getting used to!
Hope that is useful. Not all GYC's will be great but they have time to change if need be so give them a chance and don't gob off about them. Give them a hand
P.S. I was never a GYC but I can see some merit in the system
Yeah, fair one. I'd pretty much agree with the above. Like TheLittleMan I never GYC'd either, (though I wish I had), but have known a few.
They tend to either go one way or the other - straight into a comd appt, or straight onto the bus with the Regimental Skiing/Sailing/Ping Pong team to spend the rest of the year swanning around the Continent.
The best ones are invariably the former - indeed some were very good indeed - and they do deserve credit. None of the ones I knew who were Tp Comds were ever cut any slack from either their boss or their blokes. They wrote CRs for their blokes, they went to court with them, kicked the RAO's office door in on their behalf etc etc. Chances are the guys won't, as the previous post says, cotton on to exactly who their new troopie is, and therefore in the formative first few months will expect just as much of him as any 'normal' subbie.
They do lack formal quals, but, and I think I have said this somewhere else, they are nevertheless expected to muck in with everything they can do. OTC guys tend to have something of a fixation with 'Sandbags', as they call it, and often tend not to realise that it is the guy who makes sure all his guys are on the right courses, and who looks after their welfare, who is seen as a good bloke. Surprisingly often, it's more what you do on the shop floor which counts, as opposed to how long you were in training.
As for getting to an OTC, of course some GYCs will come across as tools. However, for many it can be a difficult transition. Those who were troopies/Pl Comds go from having responsibility for 30 odd blokes, possibly a load of vehicles and eqpt, and basically having the best job in the world, to having to mix with what must often seem like a bunch of hopeless army mad adolescents with zero skills and with zero responsibility. Not to mention they have to deal with the jealousy of that tragic species, the OTC 'long-timer' who takes the whole thing too seriously... Not mentioning any names.
Oh, and as for ops, it's CO's discretion isn't it? Kosovo, Cyprus, poss Bos all OK, downtown Basra definitely not.
Having done a gap year commission and having had a great experience i think that they are brilliant. I had no previous military experience before turning up at sandhurst and the 3 and a half weeks we spent there was a complete eye opener.
I didnt have a troop to command myself but throughout the year i had various possitions of responsibility, acting as a troop 2ic and leading a few exercises, as well as some great weeks of adventurous training!
More than having gained a top gap year i have also gained valuble insight into the way the army works. Even if i dont end up joining now i will always look favorably upon the army and i enthusiasticly speak to anyone who is considering joining about my experiences.
They are not supposed to/allowed to deploy on ops - but in some circumstances (ie. Cyprus) it is possible. In this case because they can go and stay on the sovereign base areas and be 'non-operational'. They also are not intended to be given troops to look after but it happens all the time because of shortages...
Having seen a lot of them in action I will say that they are more often than not very eager to please (!) and while I wouldn't trust them to put their boots on the right feet I love that they are so puppylike!!
I have never met a 2Lt yet (GYC or no) who I would assume is ready to command a Pl. Every single one of them should acknowledge that they know FA and wait for the Tp Staffy to tell them when it's their turn.
Some learn quickly, some do not but never fall into the trap of believing that having the rank entitles you to be in charge. If you watch and learn, the authority (and respect) will come soon enough.