Soldier with degree?

#1
Hi all,

Am new to this site. Looking for a bit of advice really - have recently graduated and am soon to depart for my travels for the next 6 months. After which, I am hoping to join the army as an officer. However, having done briefing and acquired a dismal category 3, I am considering, if only that, other options. Obviously I'll give MB a real good go and prepare better this time, but planning ahead I should obviously be prepared to look at other - perhaps military - career paths. Is joining as soldier viable or indeed recommended? In which case what areas of the army is this most feasible? I understand signals, engineers etc have graduates in their ranks. Also the Int Corps, however not sure if the less active lifestyle here would suit. Royal marines a good bet?

Further, if there's any tips for MB I'd much appreciate, as hoping to get this done soon!
 
#2
I have heard of a number of people passing MB with very good scores after getting Cat 3's but if that is just forum rumour I do not know, but I would not give up yet on becoming an officer. In fact now I think of it, I think the story goes one of the people who got a Cat 3 ended up getting the sword of honour in the end.

Out of interest what exactly would you say went wrong at your briefing? I found a lot of it was simply you could do it or you could not. For me my Cat 2 was simply because I did not get the 10.2 on the bleep test which I knew I would not do. If it was just physical stuff and some of the math then fine I think you can easily go away and fix those things, but if it was the command tasks and interviews, I think you will struggle as those are more about who you are, and when people do badly at those they usually give them 12 months to gain some "life experience" so something must really have gone wrong?

One thing I have been told by a number of serving officers is that it is a mistake to think you will make a good solider if you fail to become an officer, personally I would not bank on it as an easy alternative.

Also do not think that some regiments are "dumb" and some are super smart, just because someone is in the infantry does not mean he is simple, the absolute reverse is just as likely. You need to go to the regiment you are best suited for and I would say your degree is probably the least important factor in deciding what you are suited for as there are many officers who do not have degrees.
 
#3
No reason that you can't or shouldn't join as a soldier with a degree. You are correct in saying that some corps and regiments have more soldiers with degrees than others. The differences are partly down to the BARB score required to join or in the case of regional regiments the educational norms of that part of the country. In addition I understand that you will always get a few more graduate soldiers drawn to the so called "elite" regiments (read airborne or commando) and the RM.

By way of advice (given that I am a DE officer) if you are going to join up as a soldier by all means do so; however do not try to lord it over others or expect any preferential treatment. By virtue of reaching a higher level of education, you should in theory be a bit brighter than average and so should perform well and get promoted quickly (in practice a soldier with a degree may be no better or worse than any of his peers). If you do decide to join as a soldier, I would consider very carefully which part of the army (or RM?) you want to join and why. From my point if view I would suggest either a technical arm (REME or AAC spring to mind, you could always go flying?) or PARA/RM or something like that, depending what floats your boat, but that's just me...
 
#4
Complete waste of a good education unless it is one of those none degrees from a former Poly.
 
#5
Hi all,

Am new to this site. Looking for a bit of advice really - have recently graduated and am soon to depart for my travels for the next 6 months. After which, I am hoping to join the army as an officer. However, having done briefing and acquired a dismal category 3, I am considering, if only that, other options. Obviously I'll give MB a real good go and prepare better this time, but planning ahead I should obviously be prepared to look at other - perhaps military - career paths. Is joining as soldier viable or indeed recommended? In which case what areas of the army is this most feasible? I understand signals, engineers etc have graduates in their ranks. Also the Int Corps, however not sure if the less active lifestyle here would suit. Royal marines a good bet?

Further, if there's any tips for MB I'd much appreciate, as hoping to get this done soon!
Like any Combat Support arm its as physical as you want to make it. True theres plenty of downgraded wasters lounging around my office at the moment, (before any princesses get defensive I myself am downgraded). We have plenty of juniors sporting Para wings and commando daggers, plenty of sport and phys going on, also we have operators attached at Battle Group and Company level in theatre. Plenty of other warry bits and bobs you can get involved in if you so wish. Have a look in the Int Corps forum if you're interested.
 
#6
James1, the Officer selection criteria for all the Services are similar, however it is as tough, if not tougher, for the Royal Marines as it is the Army. In 20+ years I've known lots of degree qualified soldiers that have done very well, as have lots of them with no GCSEs, so education isn't a fast-pass to success, however you would probably be more suited to more 'technical' trades within Corps such as REME, Int Corps (especially if you have languages), RSigs, Ammo Tech RLC and the Engineers. As others have said, give MB a good go but you may also wish to discuss soldier entry options at the recruiting office, or even have a look on the website.
 
#7
James1, the Officer selection criteria for all the Services are similar, however it is as tough, if not tougher, for the Royal Marines as it is the Army. In 20+ years I've known lots of degree qualified soldiers that have done very well, as have lots of them with no GCSEs, so education isn't a fast-pass to success, however you would probably be more suited to more 'technical' trades within Corps such as REME, Int Corps (especially if you have languages), RSigs, Ammo Tech RLC and the Engineers. As others have said, give MB a good go but you may also wish to discuss soldier entry options at the recruiting office, or even have a look on the website.
What a strange and unqualified remark that is. You do not know what the subject of the degree is.
 
#8
Cheers for your help guys, much obliged.

Have worked hard to obtain degree (2:1 in Business (yes it was a poly - UWE!)) so want to make the right decision. The officer route with its vast managerial and promotional prospects and detailed career advancement is what draws me - along with of course the desire to serve - so this is my top priority. However, as I've no intention to make good money till at least 5 or 6 years down the line, the idea of becoming a soldier and having job satisfaction working with a good bunch of lads is also appealing. Of course there is a wealth of talent at all levels throughout the army, yet I query whether someone who has the aims which I have will necessarily find it a completely satisfying role. I will take one step at a time, see the world first and come back and make up my mind!

As for AOSB, it was down to a number of things. Injury which hampered fitness, few problems at home, general confidence as a result and dire lack of preparation. Notwithstanding my own inadequacies I am sure! Planex was horrendous, did anyone else find that? Interviews I'm confident in, fitness usually good and command tasks I probably could have chipped in more... all in all I wasn't prepared and paid the price! But 'the harder I try, the luckier I get' so next time I will smash it! I hope...
 
#9
One other alternative if officer became a no go would be civvy job and perhaps TA soldier with someone like the Paras... all a long way off though, so just getting people's ideas!
 
#10
If I can help.

If you can qualify for a commission you will be a management trainee.

If you join as a soldier you will be a labourer, simple as that really.
 
#11
What a strange and unqualified remark that is. You do not know what the subject of the degree is.
Maybe so but at least I'm trying to be helpful, unlike your earlier comment, and answer his question. However having a degree indicates that James1 has some capacity to learn and the broad suggestions I have made are that only, and you'll note I further suggested he got advice from an ACIO etc. If you actually had much experience (beyond being a lance-jack Monkey as I recall) you would know it is more common than not for military personnel (less PQOs) to have a degree that is of no relevance whatsoever to the military.
 
#13
Maybe so but at least I'm trying to be helpful, unlike your earlier comment, and answer his question. However having a degree indicates that James1 has some capacity to learn and the broad suggestions I have made are that only, and you'll note I further suggested he got advice from an ACIO etc. If you actually had much experience (beyond being a lance-jack Monkey as I recall) you would know it is more common than not for military personnel (less PQOs) to have a degree that is of no relevance whatsoever to the military.
Are you famous amongst your peers for being full of shite or are you keeping it to yourself?

My comments are meant to be helpful. If he has a genuine degree and realistic prospects they will be wasted by not trying for a commission. If he fails that he should start a career elsewhere at a similar level.

If he has a shite degree, no loss.
 
#16
A degree does not make you officer material. Even I have one, a first no less.

If you have what it takes to be an officer in the Army, then show it.
 
#17
I heard a dit about a bootneck who had just told his OC that he was planning to leave, and when asked 'do you have anything in mind for what you'll do with yourself?' said 'well, I was thinking of going into teaching - I've got a first in Maths!' They're out there for sure, but if you've got the brains to be an officer it's probably more worth fixing what went wrong with that - and if you've got the brain then you can certainly fix anything else - than giving up and going for soldier entry.

EDIT: well, point proven, there's one above me
 
#18
Qualify that. Or are you just another person with an over inflated view of yourself?
We could start with you qualifying your very simplistic and extremely unrepresentative assertion that soldiers are labourers. However as you probably lack the vocabulary or reasoning skills, I'll qualify mine.

I was in the army for 30 years and left 2 and a half years ago. I was promoted at the first opportunity through all the ranks up to WO2. WO1 came at some point later and after commissioning I eventually retired as a Major in a technical speciality. My spread of posting types was everything from a small isolated detachment to a 4* HQ and almost everything (except independent troop) in between. From day 1 of my phase 2 training I perceived that we were all being treated as junior management trainees, and subsequent postings and courses only served to reinforce that perception. In the Royal Signals, soldiers are not treated as labourers at all, and from what I have seen this doesn't apply elsewhere in the army. Of course when it is time to muck in, everybody does; officer, WO, SNCO, JNCO or tom. You have obviously gleaned your opinion from Soldier Soldier and other factual TV documentaries. Junior officers, apart from living in the mess and never getting charged for offences, are not treated much differently from the soldiers. They are all expected to be professional, exercise their judgement and complete their task/mission to the best of their ability.

I have a BSc Eng, a 2.1 admittedly, and certainly as a SNCO and WO was expected to behave that way. Senior officers listened to me, took my advice (sometimes) and valued my opinion on those aspects of the job where they recognised I knew more than them. This was mutual; I perfectly understood that they were the commanders and if they chose a different course of action they did so after balancing the pros and cons.

Ergo your assertion is incorrect and you are in fact a ********!
 
#19
Complete waste of a good education unless it is one of those none degrees from a former Poly.
This kind of degree snobbery usually comes from thickoes that scraped a third at some obscure redbrick, however I think the nearest you have come to a university (or poly for that matter) is cleaning the shithouses, twat.

( B.Sc. Mathematics, Nottingham Polytechnic)
 
#20
We could start with you qualifying your very simplistic and extremely unrepresentative assertion that soldiers are labourers. However as you probably lack the vocabulary or reasoning skills, I'll qualify mine.

I was in the army for 30 years and left 2 and a half years ago. I was promoted at the first opportunity through all the ranks up to WO2. WO1 came at some point later and after commissioning I eventually retired as a Major in a technical speciality. My spread of posting types was everything from a small isolated detachment to a 4* HQ and almost everything (except independent troop) in between. From day 1 of my phase 2 training I perceived that we were all being treated as junior management trainees, and subsequent postings and courses only served to reinforce that perception. In the Royal Signals, soldiers are not treated as labourers at all, and from what I have seen this doesn't apply elsewhere in the army. Of course when it is time to muck in, everybody does; officer, WO, SNCO, JNCO or tom. You have obviously gleaned your opinion from Soldier Soldier and other factual TV documentaries. Junior officers, apart from living in the mess and never getting charged for offences, are not treated much differently from the soldiers. They are all expected to be professional, exercise their judgement and complete their task/mission to the best of their ability.

I have a BSc Eng, a 2.1 admittedly, and certainly as a SNCO and WO was expected to behave that way. Senior officers listened to me, took my advice (sometimes) and valued my opinion on those aspects of the job where they recognised I knew more than them. This was mutual; I perfectly understood that they were the commanders and if they chose a different course of action they did so after balancing the pros and cons.

Ergo your assertion is incorrect and you are in fact a ********!
You're a FofS and up your own arse.
 

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