Tour before Sandhurst?

Discussion in 'Officers' started by fraudstar, Jan 14, 2009.

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  1. Firstly, I apologise in advance of expected incoming verbal mortars. I have posted in the advice thread stickie to no avail nor has searching the forums thrown up any specifc answers. If anyone knows where this has been answered before then please point me in the right direction and delete this thread.

    I'm currently a private in a TA inf. battalion whilst at university. I'm hoping to go regular officer after I finish (summer 2009) but elements of my capbadge will be going out to Afghan in 2010.

    My question is this, career-wise, how much sense is there in going out in 2010 as a tom to then go to Sandhurst?

    Whilst it would be a great experience, I know of people for whom it has backfired and at Sandhurst have been told that they're too old, not acting/thinking like an officer and so forth. If I were to go on tour I'd be 26 before I got to battalion, but I would have operational experience with a unit I feel great loyalty to (and one which is very competitive to comission into)

    Ultimately I know it is my decision and I need to do what will make me happy, not what other's think however I would appreciate your advice as to what would/wouldn't benefit a career.

  2. Fraudstar, as you say it is about what will make you happy. However, if you intend to have a career as an officer, get to Sandhurst ASAP and get it done. You will have ample opportunities for tours in the future.

    The longer you wait, the older you are (obvious I know) but this will affect your career and employment opportunities.
  3. Cheers BM, what you say confirms what I suspected.

    I would love to go on tour as a tom and be at the sharp end. As you rightly point out tho, I would no doubt do it as an officer.

    I'd also like to say "I'm not a complete crow" when I ended up at my first posting, but that's mainly because I'm a complete mong and need all the extra training I can get.
  4. I thought there had been a change to officers' terms of service and that they are now length of service based rather than agaed based. If so, do a couple of years make any difference.

    That said, I fully agree that you will have ample opportunities to deploy in the future and so yes, get yourselve to Sandhurst sooner rather than later.
  5. Are you suggesting that having a medal would help you to stand out against fellow newbie officers?
  6. Thanks Ash shows what an old duffer I am, not being aware of the new terms of service.
    Having said that Fraudstar, I had done national service in the SA army and 2 years in the ranks (including an NI tour) before Sandhurst and still had to gain the trust of my Jocks before they'd blindly follow me.

    So a tour may help you do better in the basic soldiering skills but as an officer you are the new boy all over again, regardless.
  7. Skintboymike, it's not a case of wanting to turn up anywhere to gob off about "life on ops" or something like that (I would after all be hoping to comission into who I went away with). Rather I'd be hoping to turn up and have some grasp of what it is I'd supposed to be doing (aside from following plt. sgt's advice). Although whether a tour would help me suddenly attain a grasp on reality and purge mongness remains to be seen
  8. Fraudstar, im in the same position and a year older then you. In my opinion while a tour would be good fun and useful re your mil skills everybody i have spoken to suggests getting to RMAS should be a priority.

    Also consider that having come back from a high tempo operational tour where the mission is the priority you might find it a bit jarring to rock up to RMAS and find yourself getting screamed at for not having rolled your socks up the correct way.
  9. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Depending who you are with that may be an issue, albeit less so in these days of large Regts rather than single Bn Regts. If you serve with a unit as a Pte soldier, they are often keen to avoid you returning as a commissioned officer for the first few years at least.

    If you are currently in the SCOTS (TA) for instance, and deployed with 1 SCOTS, you may find yourself being directed towards a commission in one of the other Bns. Not a huge issue unless you have a particular desire to serve in that Bn for family reasons.

    Straight to RMAS for you would be my advice - if a tour fitted in nicely before RMAS then all to the good, but do not delay applying just to do one first.
  10. I'm also in the same position (albeit a few years behind). I would like to do a tour with my TA unit before I commisioned, but in the end it's probably more sensible to commision first. Especially if it's not looked on favourably at RMAS.
  11. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Read my post again - if you can fit it in within your timeline without delaying your commission too much, why not?

    I am not sure anyone said that it was looked on unfavourably at RMAS - people may have been picked up for their behaviour but was it directly linked to their tour, or just their previous service?
  12. How long is the process from stepping into the AFCO and turning up at RMAS roughly? It seems unlikely due to admin etc but it would be good if you could fit a tour in then. :?
  13. As I understand it those I know were picked up for the behaviour they'd acquired whilst spending six months as a regular private. Doing an FTRS would no doubt have similar consequences. As was being treated like a child, as V0jink said.

    Thanks for the advice everyone. Really appreciated.
  14. For me, it will be over two years, but thats only because of several hickups by the recruiting office I originally went to.

    When I got around this, I arranged an interview in October 2008, Breifing was booked for Jan 2009, Main board will be March 2009 and if passed
    should be possible to enter RMAS in May 2009.

    From what I understand, breifings are usually fully booked 2-4 months in advance, main board is roughly 6 weeks after breifing (assuming Cat 1).
  15. That's some interesting time travel Mr_C