Only extraordinary circumstances warrant additional opportunities for officers to attend A&S. As a Special Operations Officer (SOO) candidate, you must understand you have a very limited window to attend A&S and will likely have only one opportunity.
The leadership qualities required for success in MARSOC are in line with those required for successful leadership in any Marine Corps unit. SOO Principles, codified by the Marine Special Operations School, are:
- Own the institution.
- Provide leadership at the point of friction.
- Be able to integrate and combine capabilities.
- Lead planning, bridging top-down requirements with bottom-up solutions.
- Influence higher, adjacent, supporting commands and host nation partners to help achieve the desired end state.
Ideally, this time allows for completion of either resident or non-resident PME. While not mandatory, we recommend officers complete PME prior to starting ITC.
You will return to your original unit and continue your career as an officer in the Marine Corps. If you are not selected, it will not affect your career as a Marine officer. There is no negative paperwork provided.
No. There is no preference for any specific MOS. While the highest total percentage of selectees are in the 03XX MOS, it does not necessarily relate to an increased success rate, but more accurately reflects the disproportionate number of 03XX candidates attending A&S.
The ideal time to submit an application is after career designation selection, with the intent to attend A&S prior to departing your first duty station.
NOTE: Officers not career designated can apply to attend an A&S, but you must be career designated to be assigned orders to Individual Training Course (ITC).
As a First Lieutenant, you must have a minimum of two observed fitness reports (minimum 540 fitness report days) and be in zone for promotion prior to submitting your application. As a Captain, you must begin the Individual Training Course (ITC) with no more than 24 months’ time in grade as a Captain. For First Lieutenants who are in a deployable unit, if you meet the requirements listed above, it is recommended that you attend A&S between your first & second deployment.
MARSOC’s core activities are:
We conduct short strikes and small-scale offensive actions to seize, destroy, capture, recover, or inflict damage in hostile or denied areas.
We acquire information about the capabilities, intentions, and activities of an enemy.
Preparation of the Environment
We collect intelligence and prepare for future operations at the direction of USSOCOM.
Security Force Assistance
We support the security forces of allied foreign governments to achieve operational objectives the U.S. shares.
We prevent, deter, and respond to terrorism.
Foreign Internal Defense
We provide training and other assistance to foreign governments and their militaries to enable them to pro vide for their national security.
In concert with allied governments, we conduct military, paramilitary, political, economic, psychological, and civic action operations to defeat insurgency.
MARSOC conducts missions by direction of the SOCOM Commander. These missions are normally conducted in irregular and unconventional settings. MARSOC Marines receive additional training with Special Operations Equipment and Tactics in order to fulfill these missions. USMC Recon conducts missions as part of the MAGTF in support of conventional operations.
A&S is voluntary, so if you are not selected, you will return to your command. A&S staff will inform you of your eligibility to re-attend if so desired.
Candidates should meet the current Marine Corps intermediate swim qualification for initial screening, and will receive further training at Assessment and Selection Phase I.
Swim Assessment as follows:
- Conduct abandon ship drill from a 6 meter platform (in accordance with CWS- 4).
- Swim 300 meters continuously in utility blouse and trousers without combat equipment (CBE) and boots using the breast stroke or side stroke.
- Tread water in a utility blouse and trousers unassisted for 11 minutes then transition to the survival float using the blouse or trouser for floating for four minutes.
- Must demonstrate confidence in the water and the ability to remain afloat.
For those of you preparing for Assessment and Selection, additional aquatic preparation guidance can be found on page 23 of the 10-week training guide and log (5.3 mb PDF), and videos that focus on proper technique for the breast stroke and side stroke.
MARSOC units have a flexible deployment cycle ranging from 90 days to 8 months
A candidate must have a minimum of 90 days time on contract to attend A&S. Reenlistment is not a requirement, as the MARSOC monitor will work to gain a 60-month obligated time-in-service upon selection.
Operational tempo can vary widely depending on the mission your Marine’s team is performing. A MARSOC Marine trains—sometimes away from home—to prepare for deployment and to ensure mission success. There is no “typical deployment,” but most pre-deployment training is 10-12 months followed by a 6-9 month deployment. After a deployment, time with family is a command priority for MARSOC Marines.
Throughout your Marine’s career at MARSOC he will have the opportunity to break up his operational tempo with schools and non-deployable billets.
MARSOC deploys Special Operators throughout the world as needed. While there are many times in which you will be given the information you need, there will be times when the success of the mission depends upon secrecy even from family members.
MARSOC carefully screens, selects and trains special operators to perform specialized missions throughout the world.
Your Marine will operate in a small, highly-skilled and immaculately-trained team of Marines. MARSOC teams are bound by trust and cohesion and work effortlessly together—giving them an advantage over many military units.
The MARSOF monitor will assign you to one of the operating battalions upon completion of ITC. EFMP members may be able to stay on current station (Pendleton/Lejeune).
If you reenlisted for the OPFOR bonus, you are not eligible to attend assessment and selection for MARSOC. You must meet the requirements of your contract.
An 0372 would have to request a lateral move back out of the MOS to return to the general purpose force upon completion of a 60 month tour.