Getting your top branch pick

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by SF1775, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. SF1775

    SF1775 Member

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    At USMA, how do they determine who gets what branch for commissioning? I know that the cadets put down their top 5 branch choices, and that some sort of "cadet score" is used to decide who gets certain choices, but how does it work exactly? Thanks.
     
  2. BigBear

    BigBear Class of 2015

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    There is an Order of Merit List (OML) based on Academic, Military, and Physical performance. Every cadet ranks all 16 branches 1-16, then they fill the available branch slots in order of class rank. So the #1 cadet gets their #1 ranked branch, etc. As they go down the list, branches start to fill. Once a branch is full (all available slots taken), they go to a cadet's #2 ranked branch. For example:
    -Cadets ranked #500 and #501 both put Aviation as their top choice, Armor as second. Cadet #500 takes the 200th and final available Aviation slot. Cadet #501 now cannot get aviation, so he gets Armor.

    Now, there are a whole mess of other options (BRADSO, etc.), but this is the basic idea. They also have started to move to a system that matches a few cadets to certain branches based on skills not accounted for by the OML - i.e- an electrical engineering major can get a signal corps slot even if his rank is not high enough. The classic example is the rugby team captain who couldn't get an infantry slot. Based on what I've heard, this system did not play a major role in branching this year.
     
  3. Jwmiller6

    Jwmiller6 Member

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    Does anyone know how many people are allowed to go Infantry? And if the slots are usually filled?
     
  4. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

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    The past 4 years Infantry has had a little over 200 slots. This year, they had 220 plus 25 slots for people from select donor branches detailing in (this means they will serve the first 3 years as Infantry officers but then go back to their true branches). Infantry always fills out and, along with aviation, is one of the most highly sought branches.

    This year Infantry went out at 658/975 (with/without ADSO*) out of a class of 1067. As the war winds down, I predict the demand of Infantry to slowly go down as people start wanting to go into the more technical branches.

    *ADSO means you add 3 years of active duty to your commitment in exchange to be "bumped up" on the OML. The top 75% of each branch is filled with OML and the bottom is filled with people who opted to ADSO.
     
  5. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    AF, for those of us who have watched your journey the last 4+ years, do you mind sharing what you branched?
     
  6. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

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    I branched Infantry. :smile: It's hard to believe it's been that long sometimes.
     
  7. SF1775

    SF1775 Member

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    Thanks, great info. I know you can do MIAD training the summer before your cow year (I think), so lets say you were lucky enough to complete SFAS training (Special Forces). Does this mean you'll have an exception in order to get infantry? Or will it boost your military score so that you get infantry? Thanks.
     
  8. BigBear

    BigBear Class of 2015

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    No. You do not have to branch Infantry to go SF-they allow officers from all branches to submit a packet and try out. With that being said, it is doubtful that you will get an SFAS slot with a class rank that is too low to get an Infantry slot.
     

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