Int corps officer entry

#1
Hi there, I’m currently in my second year at uni studying physics. I would like to spend 4-5 years in the army as an officer before gettig bogged down in a lifelong city career. I’ve chose the int corps due to transferable skills in civvy life but have a few questions. What is day to day life like as an offcier and how involed are you in actual intelligence work on and off operations? Do you choose which MI battalion you join?

Cheers
 
#2
I think you’ll find that it’s more about Int Corps choosing you once you’ve expressed an interest in them. They take a tiny number of DE entrants from Sandhurst and there’s a lot of competition.

You could look at joining one of the reserve MI units if you believe you have transferable skills while you’re studying. This would give you a good idea.
 
#3
I would like to spend 4-5 years in the army as an officer before gettig bogged down in a lifelong city career.
Be sure to mention that in interview. Knowing the Corps will invest lots of money and training in you, then lose you when you've started to become truly useful, will certainly help to streamline the selection process.
 
#4
Hi there, I’m currently in my second year at uni studying physics. I would like to spend 4-5 years in the army as an officer before gettig bogged down in a lifelong city career. I’ve chose the int corps due to transferable skills in civvy life but have a few questions. What is day to day life like as an offcier and how involed are you in actual intelligence work on and off operations? Do you choose which MI battalion you join?

Cheers
I’d also suggest that Int Corps would require more attention to detail than the typos in your post demonstrate.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#5
Hi there, I’m currently in my second year at uni studying physics. I would like to spend 4-5 years in the army as an officer before gettig bogged down in a lifelong city career. I’ve chose the int corps due to transferable skills in civvy life but have a few questions. What is day to day life like as an offcier and how involed are you in actual intelligence work on and off operations? Do you choose which MI battalion you join?

Cheers
Yeah, as people have pointed out I'd suggest a slight attitude and accuracy adjustment.

One, you aren't choosing anything in Army officer recruitment, you are competing while at RMAS for limited places in your preferred arm.

Two, there is absolutely nothing wrong with planning to spend 4-5 years in before leaving, it is what the majority of people do. It is, however, not smart to say so openly, for the reasons @CRmeansCeilingReached said, as well as just plain people skills. "I'm only here until I go do something proper" is occasionally something you hear from Sandhurst cadets or prospective officers. It's not the strongest pitch, is it?

Three, despite what everyone will tell you on here, you can get quite involved in the actual intelligence work. However, bear in mind that your primary responsibilities and job will be other things, and so you will have to balance the two. If you can work hard and fast, and are capable at the intelligence bit (any decent officer should be, it's not magic), then within your own unit of course you can do it. But your first responsibility will be everything else.

Four, like Sandhurst, you submit a preference for what job / unit / battalion you want to join, and then they post you where they want you to go. There may be some coordination between those two things. Often there is not. Mostly what happens is that you say: I would like A. They then say: we only have B available, so put that down as your preference. There is then about a 50% chance that you get B and a 50% chance that you get C. For officers, I'd suggest that at maximum one out of four posts you get is what you actually wanted at the start of the process. That's a lot lower if you want a specific and gucci post (which are obviously the ones that the most people want). Mostly it is a matter of working out what the least unsatisfactory options are from a limited list which doesn't include exactly what you want to do, and hoping you get one of those. That is the system throughout the Army, however.
 
#7
Yeah, as people have pointed out I'd suggest a slight attitude and accuracy adjustment.

One, you aren't choosing anything in Army officer recruitment, you are competing while at RMAS for limited places in your preferred arm.

Two, there is absolutely nothing wrong with planning to spend 4-5 years in before leaving, it is what the majority of people do. It is, however, not smart to say so openly, for the reasons @CRmeansCeilingReached said, as well as just plain people skills. "I'm only here until I go do something proper" is occasionally something you hear from Sandhurst cadets or prospective officers. It's not the strongest pitch, is it?

Three, despite what everyone will tell you on here, you can get quite involved in the actual intelligence work. However, bear in mind that your primary responsibilities and job will be other things, and so you will have to balance the two. If you can work hard and fast, and are capable at the intelligence bit (any decent officer should be, it's not magic), then within your own unit of course you can do it. But your first responsibility will be everything else.

Four, like Sandhurst, you submit a preference for what job / unit / battalion you want to join, and then they post you where they want you to go. There may be some coordination between those two things. Often there is not. Mostly what happens is that you say: I would like A. They then say: we only have B available, so put that down as your preference. There is then about a 50% chance that you get B and a 50% chance that you get C. For officers, I'd suggest that at maximum one out of four posts you get is what you actually wanted at the start of the process. That's a lot lower if you want a specific and gucci post (which are obviously the ones that the most people want). Mostly it is a matter of working out what the least unsatisfactory options are from a limited list which doesn't include exactly what you want to do, and hoping you get one of those. That is the system throughout the Army, however.
Thankyou! Your response has cleared up alot.
 
#8
Hi there, I’m currently in my second year at uni studying physics. I would like to spend 4-5 years in the army as an officer before gettig bogged down in a lifelong city career. I’ve chose the int corps due to transferable skills in civvy life but have a few questions. What is day to day life like as an offcier and how involed are you in actual intelligence work on and off operations? Do you choose which MI battalion you join?

Cheers
Why are you doing Physics? Surely, that would make you more employable in Signals?
 
#9
Why are you doing Physics? Surely, that would make you more employable in Signals?
I suppose signals would reqire skills in the electronic aspects of physics, which is not my forte. I’m better at the more ‘maths heavy’ problems. Although I’m still considering signals aswell as RE for that matter.
 
#10
I suppose signals would reqire skills in the electronic aspects of physics, which is not my forte. I’m better at the more ‘maths heavy’ problems. Although I’m still considering signals aswell as RE for that matter.
I met a RE officer who had a degree in Classics from Cambridge - he was a first rate officer who did his thing for a few years and is now pulling down the bucks in the City. I worked for a RSignals major who I now see occasionally in the town I police - he sacked it all at 16 years, bought two run down houses and now has a portfolio that is 'very nice thank you'. Officers come in all shapes and sizes - some are good, some are sh1t. Be what you want to be, be the best you can be and keep an open mind. If you find that being the troop commander of an RLC truck troop appeals then do it - ignore all those who take the pi$$ out of the RLC - they won't be mocking when you bring up the rations/water/ammo/bus home/bus full of nurses.
 
#11
I met a RE officer who had a degree in Classics from Cambridge - he was a first rate officer who did his thing for a few years and is now pulling down the bucks in the City. I worked for a RSignals major who I now see occasionally in the town I police - he sacked it all at 16 years, bought two run down houses and now has a portfolio that is 'very nice thank you'. Officers come in all shapes and sizes - some are good, some are sh1t. Be what you want to be, be the best you can be and keep an open mind. If you find that being the troop commander of an RLC truck troop appeals then do it - ignore all those who take the pi$$ out of the RLC - they won't be mocking when you bring up the rations/water/ammo/bus home/bus full of nurses.
Cheers will keep that in mind.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#12
I suppose signals would reqire skills in the electronic aspects of physics, which is not my forte. I’m better at the more ‘maths heavy’ problems. Although I’m still considering signals aswell as RE for that matter.
The Signals require skills in basically nothing at all from their officers; the Int Corps in basically nothing at all plus bluffing to make it seem like something; and in the RE it helps if you have a passing understanding of engineering, but it's not a required qualification and being good at rugby will also do fine.

Actually, the MI world could badly use some more people who are capable with 'maths heavy' problems, but you may find the prevailing culture of data illiteracy to be somewhat frustrating.
 
#13
My Dear Chap,
I've noticed that most of these Johnnys have failed to answer your question of what it is actually like. Well once you have finished your training you will be woken up by a mess steward at about 7.30am with a nice cup of tea. After your ablutions a hearty breakfast will await you in the Mess. Following that a quick check on the chaps then back to the Mess for an extended coffee break. The just enough time to ensure a SNCO has it all in hand and back to the Mess for lunch. That's the working day for over the summer (Summer Hours).
A game of volleyball in the Mess grounds punctuated with Pimms. Quick shower then dinner in the Mess and some heavy drinking. Repeat except over the weekend when you get up later and drink more heavily.
Well that what I recall from Germany in the '80s unless you were in Northern Ireland or on exercise which was about 90% of the time.
Regards
Chimp
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#14
* Experiences may vary.
 
#15
My Dear Chap,
I've noticed that most of these Johnnys have failed to answer your question of what it is actually like. Well once you have finished your training you will be woken up by a mess steward at about 7.30am with a nice cup of tea. After your ablutions a hearty breakfast will await you in the Mess. Following that a quick check on the chaps then back to the Mess for an extended coffee break. The just enough time to ensure a SNCO has it all in hand and back to the Mess for lunch. That's the working day for over the summer (Summer Hours).
A game of volleyball in the Mess grounds punctuated with Pimms. Quick shower then dinner in the Mess and some heavy drinking. Repeat except over the weekend when you get up later and drink more heavily.
Well that what I recall from Germany in the '80s unless you were in Northern Ireland or on exercise which was about 90% of the time.
Regards
Chimp
Cheers, if its anything like that I’ll be grand.
 
#16
Actually, the MI world could badly use some more people who are capable with 'maths heavy' problems, but you may find the prevailing culture of data illiteracy to be somewhat frustrating.
Hear hear. This, absolutely.
 

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