At TBS there is going to be an “MOS Mixer”, which is basically where a bunch of Captains talk about their Marine Occupational Specialties then you go to the bar and talk to them over beers. It is a great experience that will give real insight into what being an officer in a certain MOS means.
The UAV Officer MOS is a brand new officer MOS and no one knows anything about it. Here’s is some basic gouge about the UAV MOS that came up during the mixer.
- UAV Officers work with a team of two or three Marines operating a UAV from a FOB.
- The UAV Officer is the mission commander who directs the operation of the UAV, gathers intelligence from the feed, and supervises the coordination of that intelligence with the S-2 and whatever unit on the ground the UAV is supporting
- In the future, the Marine Corps will be arming UAVs. When that happens, officers will begin directly operating them, as enlisted personnel are not allowed to operate craft that can drop ordinance.
- This is a growing industry. It’s the only growing field in the Marine Corps at the time
- Marines who get selected for UAVs will go to several Air Force schools. You’ll get your basic pilot’s license flying a Cessna, then focus on UAV material. Similarly to flight school, training will take a few years.
- Currently, Marines selected for UAVs have only a 55% pass rate through UAV schools. This is an Air Force school that is heavily academic, and Marines coming out of TBS tend not to be prepared because TBS doesn’t teach you any skills relevant to operating a UAV. On the other hand, Air Force LTs show up with a thorough understanding of how the aircraft works.
- Marine UAV operators are extremely successful once they get to the fleet. Since TBS teaches infantry tactics, how to coordinate with infantry, and how to call for fire, Marine UAV operators are effective as forward observers for fire support.
Some thoughts on MOS selection
If you want infantry, you’re probably going to get it. People are getting dropped and DOR-ing from IOC at a pretty incredible rate right now, which is leaving a lot of openings. Some classes have over 50 infantry slots! Some people who DON’T want infantry are probably going to get it. When you take away reservists, flight contacts, and females (not sure how the new regulations will impact numbers), 1 in every 4 male active duty Lieutenants will get infantry.