Communications Officer 0602

Communications Officer 0602

U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Quince Bisard

6 min read

The Communications occupational field includes the design, installation, interconnection, operation and defense of networks in support of data systems to provide secure, nonsecure, and coalition information exchange requirements in a tactical or garrison environment. Additional responsibilities include, to operate and perform preventive maintenance on both hardware and software systems; including radio, telephone, cryptographic, network and data systems, which are essential links in the overall functions of communication and command and control. Marines serving in the communications field face the challenge of operating in a technological innovative environment where emerging capabilities and requirements demand highly skilled operators. The opportunity to participate in the Northern Virginia (NOVA) Community College advanced standing credit program in order to achieve a Cybersecurity Associate of Applied Science degree is available in some MOSs within occupational field 0600. Additionally, some MOSs within the 0600 occupational field qualify for apprenticeship or certification credentials provided by the Department of Labor Apprenticeship or the Marine Corps COOL program.

What is an 0602?

Communications Officers command or assist in commanding, a communication unit or element in the MAGTF. They are responsible for all aspects of the planning, installation, operation, displacement and maintenance of network, transmission and data systems to support the command and control of the MAGTF. They are responsible for directing Department of Defense Information Operations and Defensive Cyberspace Operations planning and implementation in support of operations and exercises.

Are there any prerequisites to becoming a Communications Officer

(1) Must be a U.S. Citizen.

(2) Must be eligible for a Top Secret Security Clearance with SCI access eligibility.

Where do I go after TBS?

After TBS, officers must complete the 129 day Basic Communications Officer Course (BCOC) at the Marine Corps Communications-Electronics School (MCCES) aboard MCAGCC Twentynine Palms, CA. The purpose of the course it to provide leadership and technical training in communication and data systems in order to prepare company grade officers for entry level billets at the battalion and squadron level. Primary emphasis is given to the mastery of fundamental techniques and skills required for the planning and employment of Marine Corps communications systems in both the tactical and garrison environment. The course covers the duties and responsibilities of the Communications Platoon Commander and S-6 staff officer to include the preparation of command and control plans and orders used by the MAGTF. This course stresses leading a platoon of communications Marines in the planning, installation, operation and maintenance (PIOM) of communications systems organic to the battalion and squadron units within the Operating Forces. This is accomplished by familiarizing the student with the operational characteristics of communications systems and the techniques for their employment at the battalion and squadron communications platoon level.

What is it like being a Communications Officer?

The support provided by Communications Officers is required aboard every major Marine Corps installation and in units across the MAGTF. A typical first tour assignment for a Communications Officer may be within a Communications Battalion as part of the CE of the MAGTF. There is one Communications Battalion subordinate to each MEF Information Group (MIG): 9th Communications Battalion aboard MCB Camp Pendleton, CA (I MIG); 8th Communications Battalion aboard MCB Camp Lejeune, NC (II MIG); and 7th Communications Battalion aboard MCB Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan (III MIG). Communications Officer in their first tour may serve as either the unit Communications Officer or Assistant Communications Officer (S-6 or S- 6A) or Network Operations Officer within an O-5 (Lieutenant Colonel) level command at either a squadron or battalion.

Additionally, Communications Officers may serve or in a G-6 at a MAW, MARDIV, or MLG or at a MEF-level command in support of a Major or Lieutenant Colonel on a General Officer staff. Communications Officers may also serve within the Marine Wing Communication Squadrons (MWCS) subordinate to each Marine Wing Control Group (MWCG) as part of the ACE of the MAGTF. There is one MWCS within each MAW: MWCS-38 aboard MCAS Miramar, CA (3rd MAW); MWCS-28 aboard MCAS Cherry Point, NC (2nd MAW); MWCS-18 aboard MCAS Futenma, Okinawa, Japan (1st MAW).

The Inevitable: Understanding the Technological Forces that will Shape our Future. Kevin Kelly
Command in War. Martin Van Creveld
Secret and Lies: Digital Security in a Networked World. Bruce Schneier
The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution. Walter Isaacson
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption. Laura Hillenbrand

  • 0602, Communications Officer (I) (LtCol to 2ndLt) PMOS
  • 0603, Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) Communications Planner (I) (LtCol to Capt) NMOS (0602)
  • 0605, Cyber Network Operations Officer (II) (LtCol to Capt) PMOS
  • 0620, Space and Waveform Integration Officer (SWIO) (III) (CWO5 to WO) PMOS
  • 0621, Transmissions System Operator (Sgt to Pvt) PMOS
  • 0623, Troposcatter Transmissions System Operator (Sgt to Pvt) NMOS (0621)
  • 0627, Satellite Transmissions System Operator (Sgt to Pvt) PMOS
  • 0629, Transmissions Chief (GySgt to SSgt) PMOS
  • 0630, Network Engineering Officer (III) (CWO5 to WO) PMOS
  • 0631, Network Administrator (Sgt to Pvt) PMOS
  • 0633, Network Transport Technician (Sgt to Pvt) NMOS (0631)
  • 0639, Network Chief (GySgt to SSgt) PMOS
  • 0640, Strategic Electromagnetic Spectrum Officer (III) (CWO4 to WO) PMOS
  • 0648, Spectrum Manager (MSgt to Sgt) NMOS (0621, 0627, 0629, 0699)
  • 0670, Data Systems Engineering Officer (III) (CWO5 to WO) PMOS
  • 0671, Data Systems Administrator (Sgt to Pvt) PMOS
  • 0673, Applications Developer (GySgt to Sgt) NMOS (0671, 0679)
  • 0679, Data Systems Chief (GySgt to SSgt) PMOS
  • 0681, Information Security Technician (MGySgt to SSgt) PMOS
  • 0688, Defensive Cyberspace Operator (GySgt to Sgt) PMOS
  • 0689, Defensive Cyberspace Chief (MGySgt to MSgt) PMOS
  • 0691, Communications Training Instructor (LtCol to Capt) and (CWO5 to WO) NMOS (0602, 0605, 0620, 0630, 0640, 0670)
  • 0691, Communications Training Instructor (MGySgt to SSgt) NMOS (0629, 0639, 0679, 0681, 0688, 0689, 0699)
  • 0699, Communications Chief (MGySgt to MSgt) PMOS

Sources/Credits: Please note that the information above was derived from and in most cases taken directly from the "Marine Officer MOS Assignment Handbook". The Basic School. Camp Barrett. March 3, 2019. All credit goes to the great staff at TBS for putting this together.

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