Joining UOTC - turning a blind eye...

Discussion in 'OTC and ACF' started by magister, Feb 5, 2006.

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  1. Hi,

    I’m a student in the Republic of Ireland and I plan to study for a post-grad in Queens University, Belfast next year.

    When there, I’d like to join QUOTC. However, there are two potential problems; Firstly, as the degree is one year only, will I be allowed join for such a short period?

    Second problem is a bit trickier. I’m currently in the Irish Army reserves, and I wonder would it be possible to be in the OTC at the same time? Or asking in another way, could a blind eye be turned to this? I hope this isn’t as ridiculous as it sounds. Belfast is as far from my home as possible and so I’ll be effectively a non-member of the Reserves until I return from NI. I would resign, except the Reserves only accept recruits, and if I left and rejoined at a later stage I would start again at the bottom. All promotion, including to officer, is effectively based on seniority so I would be discarding 7 years of service if I did that. Realistically, I see myself having a long term future in the South, so I’d be wary of walking away from the reserves. Ethically, we are all on the same side so a year in the UK reserves shouldn’t be a problem from that POV. Any thoughts?


    Cheers,

    Magister.
     
  2. Don't bother with the OTC - it's only a drinking club
     
  3. I’ve a couple of reasons for joining – I want to experience the Brit way of doing things and the OTC seems like a good social circle in a city I don’t know very well. Also, I presume the TA recruitment process is pretty long – interviews and fitness checks etc, while the OTC seems to be more “turn up and start”. Welcome any advice tho.
     
  4. Would it be possible to 'transfer' or go on attachment to a TA unit for the duration of your degree?
    I'm not sure how that might work and i'm really just thinking out loud. Maybe someone with more knowledge of such matters will have more info.

    I am aware of a few cases of guys joining the OTC while studying over in the UK for a year coming on attachment from the US ROTC.
     
  5. Doubt it. Still some pretty old-fashioned attitudes in the Army down here. Nice idea tho.
     
  6. woopert

    woopert LE Moderator

    To join the OTC you need to be an undergraduate, under 25, British or Commonwealth citizen and on a course lasting 3 years or longer.
     
  7. It's alot easier to get into the normal TA (as a soldier) than the OTC, OTC you have to do selection weekends and the like with the rest of the students.

    One of the stipulations of joining the OTC is that you have at least 2 years left on your degree.
     
  8. That all depends on the UOTC.
     
  9. indeed, this is a factor where quite often a "blind eye" is given. I dont remember at any point when i was signing up for OTC was I asked directly if i still had more than a year left.

    You could always say that you're going to do postgrad/doctorate or another degree or whatever. Which reminds me, i know people in OTC that arent even enlisted on a degree, but are in fact "taking a year out" which may last for longer than a year.

    QUOTC can find it difficult to recruit the numbers theyd like, and ive heard unofficially that they also recruit upper-6th year students from nearby schools. Queens i imagine would be very flexible in this respect, so go for it!
     
  10. They may turn a blind eye to you only being there for one year ( I certainly did this many times when I was doing the recruiting for one of the OTCs). However, they will not be able to turn a blind eye to the Irish Army Reserves. You cannot be a serving member of two armies!! No point trying to pretend you are not in either - it will come out during the vetting checks. Best option is to investigate an attachment with the Irish Army paying you. This may be feasible with a bit of forward planning.

    Best of luck
     
  11. Alrite mate, im a b coy JUO at queens and there is one of our new b coy recruits who is from the south and in the reserves. I will see if i can find out more from him on wed and get back to ya.
     
  12. Queens have got tough in respect to people pretending to be students this year, so they may not be quite so easy, although a one year course may be OK.

    There is no assessment period to join Queens because recruitment is difficult for obvious reasons, although is really improving.
     
  13. A good friend of mine joined the TUOTC from the Republic and had been in the Free Clothes Association prior to joining (but not whilst I might add). His prior service in the FCA wasn't a problem and he was open about it from the start. My advice about it would be to sack the FCA if it came to a choice. The OTC and TA will blow your mind in comparison to the FCA (I'm not meaning to deride the Irish Reserve Forces but the gap in funding and equipment is phenominal). You'll never look back.
     
  14. I'd agree entirely with that. On the other hand, if you are seriously thinking of making a hobby/part-time career out of the FCA, and aim at getting a commission eventually, resigning to spend a year in the Belfast UOTC won't go down too well. Especially if you come back swaggering and talking down to the NCOs, telling them everything from their method of section attack to the way they do press-ups is wrong.

    Having been in the British (regular) Army, I could never ever re-join the FCA. Once you've been in the UK forces, you realise that the FCA is just the scouts with occasional access to rifles.

    Personally I'd recommend you just stay in the FCA, as I don't think a year in the UOTC would be worth giving up your FCA career. But either way Magister, the last thing you should think about doing is joining the UOTC on the sly while you're still in the FCA - serious integrity issues there.
     
  15. Sparky he was in the FCA but he had resigned by the time he got to us...so i remember being told, same with the bloke that was irish civil defence

    as for the sixth form bit.......for the UOTC you need to meet the age level while in full time eduction to get in.....sixth form planning to go to uni counts as this.