Need advice

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by Hugh_Jardon, Jan 7, 2007.

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  1. Hey guys, need a bit of help deciding what to do. I've just become eligible to serve in the TA, and I want to get in ASAP, but I also am thinking of applying for a commission, which means I'll have to wait 'til I'm old enough. I want to get commissioned into the regs after Uni, but thats a good 5 or more years away. I've just come out of being a cadet for four years, and I really enjoyed that. I've got fairly good grades and all the academic stuff, but I want to know if I can join now as a soldier, apply for my TA commission whenever, then come out after Uni and join up in the regulars. What will the time requirements be, bearing in mind I'm in college 5 days a week? Basically, before I go visit my local unit, I'd like more of an idea what I can actually do. Thanking you in advance

  2. I was in the same Boat as you I went to my unit and told them that I wanted a commission after Uni and that I wanted to be a Tom until then. They had no dramas with all that, and said that they didn't mind at all. In the end I love it as a Tom, so I haven't even started applying for sandhurst yet

    Also, if you pass RCB then you can still go for a TA commission... If you do the TA version you'll have to do RCB when you go to the Regs.

    Hope this helps.

    T C

    Edit for retard typing
  3. I`m sure when you`ve reached the heady heights of 2LT you can transfer straight in, usually through the old boy net work, or straight after an Op tour you are offered the option to change your terms of service to regular as a NCO and OR, I am not sure if this applies to Offr`s. A nd of course the current recruiting requirement.

    Regardless once you are commisioned you will never be enlisted in to the regular army as a tom.

    Most preople that chose to gain experience in the TA before embarking on a career as a regular Officer apply for a commision on the move from TA to Regular. Speak to your local AFCIO as well as this is not an uncommon way of entering the Regular army.

    Good Luck
  4. This is slightly different but may be a warning to all who think this is the best track.

    A good friend of mine wanted to become an officer but was unsuccessfull, he was advised to join the army anyway and then try for PO's Course.

    This he did, he was a bloody good soldier and got his first tape in no time and got on PO's in no time and sailed it, however he then went to next stage and was rejected, the reason ? He was too "soldier-like"his time in the other ranks had made him too squaddiefied, they actually made comments along the lines of his hair was too short, his turnout was too smart and he conducted himself in a too military like fashion. He wasn't the only one, there was an AAC full screw who failed for the same reasons. You see they didn't want soldiers to be re-trained to be officers, but young men and women they could mould into anything they liked.

    This is one case with one board and a good 15 or so years ago, but it still happened
  5. Hugh,

    You have a number of options open to you.

    Firstly, important but boring bit first - go to uni/college, enjoy it and try and get a good degree. You can always fall back on it should you wish to ever leave the Army or it does not work out. If you are really keen on joining the Army, why waste 3 or 4 good years at uni/college doing something you are going to do for the rest of your career?

    While there, you could join the UOTC. This will give you an idea of what being an officer is about, they would also mentor you through the RCB process. At the same time you could join the TA instead of the UOTC. Unless you have no access to an UOTC, I personally would advise against this course of action – whilst you may be able to gain an insight into your future arm from a Tom’s perspective, this would take a considerable amount of time and would question its worth.

    Best of luck,

  6. Despite your hilarious screen name, Hugh-Jardon, I'll treat your query properly!

    The answer to 'can I become a soldier, commission, and then go into the Regs', is yes. Provided you pass all the tests and jump through all the hoops.

    However ...

    The best course to take will depend on exactly what you want to get out of pre-reg service. Importantly, take note that despite your best efforts and meticulously planned approaches to a TA career, you'll probably find that the TA takes longer to train you up than you'd previously anticipated.

    If you want to be a TA Officer (which, if you're going into the regs a couple of years after you commission, may not be the best course of action), then it's probably best that you touch base with your local unit. They'll either put you on a Direct Entry scheme (DETAPO) or you'll start by doing Basic training, and then later be put onto Officer Training.

    If you want to be groomed for an Officer career, then I'd agree with Drop_Short, that the UOTC would be a good course of action. The training you receive in UOTCs is generally very good preparation. In fact, I really can't stress enough what Drop_Short has said about not compromising your free time or grades with reserve service, if you're going onto Regular Service a few years on, anyway.

    If you just want to run around muddy fields and do warry stuff, then great, be a TA Tom.

    It's great to hear someone like you is continuing in the Forces, I wish more cadets would continue into the TA. Your cadet training will be invaluable experience if you're going to be TA, your confidence will let you shine out, but it won't let you bypass any training. You'll still need to be formally trained like any other recruit - you'll still need to do the same weekends and courses.

    Time requirements ... well, you need to do 27 days a year. However, as a recruit, be prepared initially to do one midweek night a week (e.g. Tues/Weds/Thurs 1900-2100), seven weekends across a time of 3 or 4 months, and then a fortnight long camp. After this initial training (again it'll depend on who you're joining) you should do the same drill night every week, one or two weekends a month, and the annual fortnightlong camp. You should be able to fit the TA and sixthform/coll/uni both in. BUT ... if you're in Sixth Form or College then you'll need to be blooody organised and motivated to do your coursework around both - and be prepared to be sore and tired on a few monday mornings. I certainly would make sure you're not compromising your A level grades for an extra year in the TA ... especially if you're applying to uni.

    Having just written half a page, it's probably best if you speak to the recruiting team of whoever you want to join. You sound like a clever lad (or lass??) and so, should be able to elicit all the salient information from them.

    Where do you live at the moment? Which university do you want to/are you going to? What are you hoping to study? Who do you want to commission with in the regs?
  7. Ignore INT?QRM as he clearly has not the slightest idea what he is talking about.

    Norfolk has given you clear and simple (and even fairly accurate) advice.

    Again I stress Drop short's points, have a look at OTC but don't get into the mindset that it is the only way to get a regular commission after uni, it isn't and in fact you may become a more rounded candidate at Westbury if you have a taste of life from a broader cross section of the community that you will meet as a Tom.

    BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY keep your priorities straight - Uni comes first second and third, followed by TA.

  8. just something to add this may seem wrong feel free to throw things at me.

    when i was just starting my degree (many moons ago) i tried for a commission in the ta as i could not go to an uotc or otc (too far away). and i signed all the things filled in the forms and i was told all i had to do was phase one then it would be considered. so i did the phase one and enjoyed it, then i was told i needed CIC and i tried to get on it and found no CIC take place during university half terms or end of terms. i was later told to wait until i was a l/cpl before trying (they said about 3 years). as it happened i got onto one cic and ended up getting med rtu'd (shame i was enjoying it). just make sure if your going for a commission this doesnt happen to you. make sure your on the right track. i ended up trying to take up a trade and gave up trying to get a commision turns out cant do trade courses without cic. (such is life)

    the advantage of a uotc is that the courses are designed to fit around your degree.

    my story above isnt an attempt at a rant sorry if it is. its just a warning of what to look out for or maybe the way to go. feel free to tell me to delete it and i will if its not beneficial

    also as is said above uni comes first despite what people will tell you in the ta like they did to me many times uni first afterall its your future
  9. My old boss joined as a tom and then got commisioned to Wobert all while studying law at uni. It took a bit of time and commitment, three weeks at Sandhurst for one thing, but it can be done.

    You will still have to jump through hoops to get a regular commision though, unless you get in a tour with and they like you enough to stay. Like any other rank I believe.

    Failing that do three years as a tom and then go for a regular commision. Atleast you'll have some idea of the shite side of being one of the ORs.
  10. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator