Best Degree for Intelligence

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by Coinshot, Jul 29, 2018.

  1. Coinshot

    Coinshot New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2018
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    9
    Hello,

    I am currently a Plebe and was wondering what the best major to getting a job in Military Intelligence would be. I think that Deck/Logistics and Security would be good, but maybe Engine/Systems would be better? Are there any clubs that would be beneficial for me to join? In short how do I maximize my chances of getting into the Air Force/ Army Intelligence? I've talked with my mentor and I'll be meeting with the Air Force recruiter next time he's on campus.

    Plebe ******
    Class of 2022
    United States Merchant Marine Academy
     
  2. Physicsguru

    Physicsguru 5-Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    242
    Likes Received:
    130
    I'm not an intel, but considering all the briefings, papers, presentations, and reading done I'd say English majors. You'd be surprised on how much critical thinking is developed in the humanities, especially when you have to interpret HUMINT sources. Not to mention how many analysis papers you'll end up authoring.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  3. Mr.2021

    Mr.2021 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2016
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    25
    Coming from a current 3/C, your major doesn’t matter when you go AD... they look at your GPA, test scores, evals, ETC... My advice: join army or marine ops, stay in shape, and do well in your classes. It’s way too early to take my action right now. Slow down and smell the flowers. Good luck.
     
    Coinshot and KP2020Dad like this.
  4. KPEngineer

    KPEngineer Eternal Father ... 5-Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    1,017
    Likes Received:
    487
    Documented sustained superior performance is your surest path to selection in most military disciplines, including intel. The only time your choice of major will matter is if applying for medical/legal/supply/engineering career paths.
     
    azmilmom, Coinshot and cmakin like this.
  5. THParent

    THParent Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,047
    Likes Received:
    1,490
    I for one, am surprised that you have access to the Internet.
     
  6. KP2020Dad

    KP2020Dad DS - USMMA '20

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2015
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    156
    Your question is too broad. Military Intelligence is a general category for everything from cyber and cryptology (which a degree in engineering would be beneficial) to all-source analysis and counterintelligence (which courses in security might help). You first need to research the type of "military intelligence" job you want. The USAF website tells you the requirements for a career in USAF Intelligence. (I'm sure the Army is the same) Just within USAF Intelligence you could do all-source analysis, intel collection, mission planning, targeting, GEOINT, SIGINT, CI, etc. (I'm more familiar with Navy intel -- 20 years active and 10 as a civilian supporting DOD intel, so this is just a general answer). Navy intel officers have a wide range of degrees. If you are unsure, look the the two degree paths and choose based on the classes you'd enjoy taking. If you hate math and science, it would make no sense to go the engineering route. Plan for a career at sea with the Merchant Marine. You might change your mind after sea year. After a couple of years at KP, if you still want to go "military intel," I'm sure you'll still be able to. (the Navy has never been picky about specific college degrees...I've worked with guys that had degrees in history, English, PolSci, Int'l Relations, and even Anthropology.) Good luck.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  7. BBQ-Devil

    BBQ-Devil Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    30
    I have a History Degree and am working my 3rd CIO job. It doesn't always matter what you major in, it matters that you excel and stand out in what you do.
     
    azmilmom, WI-Dad20/21 and Coinshot like this.
  8. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc Teufel Doc

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2018
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    437
    "Best Degree For Intelligence"

    Intelligence is actually a capacity to learn, solve problems, and an innate gift of memory. College degrees will not do that for you.

    To your actual question as you intend, as others have stated, it probably does not matter. Intell work for the most part is information gathering and analysis. Intell bubbas also give weather reports. I love the study of weather but come on, picture yourself telling war stories about reporting weather.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
    Old Navy BGO and Coinshot like this.
  9. KP2020Dad

    KP2020Dad DS - USMMA '20

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2015
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    156
    While weather is part of an intel brief, intel officers don't actually do the weather forecasting. Each service have meteorological / weather officers that do that.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  10. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc Teufel Doc

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2018
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    437
    Um hmmm, I didn't write they did the forecasting. I said they give weather reports. I've received many from S-2/G-2.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  11. KP2020Dad

    KP2020Dad DS - USMMA '20

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2015
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    156
    And...I just wanted the midshipman to understand that they won't be doing the forecasting. I just want him/her to make an informed decision based on facts not opinions.
     
    Coinshot and Devil Doc like this.
  12. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc Teufel Doc

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2018
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    437
    I understand. My post was based on operational experience and not opinion.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  13. KP2020Dad

    KP2020Dad DS - USMMA '20

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2015
    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    156
    Doc, We'll have to agree to disagree. Your "operational experience" is irrelevant. That's like me saying, "based on my operational experience, Navy Corpsman take vital signs and hand out Motrin...for the most part."

    Bottom line: Coinshot, do your research on how Army and Air Force intel differ. Look at their primary mission. That will help you understand what your job as an Intel O will entail. You can earn any of the degrees offered at KP and can go the intel route. If you're good with science and math, you can never go wrong with an engineering degree. If science and math are not your strong suits, go Deck. Good luck.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  14. KPEngineer

    KPEngineer Eternal Father ... 5-Year Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    1,017
    Likes Received:
    487
    I know both deck and engine Kings Pointers who have successfully transitioned to Intelligence careers. They are not looking for you to either maintain/design an engine, nor navigate a vessel. Either will serve you just as well, what matters is what you do with either.
     
    Coinshot and KP2020Dad like this.
  15. FMHS-79

    FMHS-79 Parent

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2017
    Messages:
    385
    Likes Received:
    342
    I was wondering the same... surprised that a Plebe had access on 07/20 to setup a SAF account and then again yesterday to start the thread.
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  16. THParent

    THParent Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,047
    Likes Received:
    1,490
    Well, @Coinshot , I can tell you from my own operational experience (that's for you, @KP2020Dad ;)) in military intelligence, that the term is an oxymoron. :D

    Also, I think the degree is important depending on what sort of "intelligence" field you're planning on getting into. It's pretty nebulous saying you want to get into Intel.

    If you want to find out who set off the bomb, based on what you find in and out of the crater, then a degree in Chemistry can be a pretty good idea.
    If you want look at photos from U-2s or satellites - Geography and Geology backgrounds help you to know what you're looking at.
    If you want to decode signals intelligence, then a background in CyberWarfare, Foreign Language, and Math is important.

    I could go on and on and on.
     
  17. KP Eng

    KP Eng Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2015
    Messages:
    114
    Likes Received:
    156
    This young man reported 2 weeks ago and somehow he is on the internet and evaluating which curriculum would best suit his desire for a career in MI???? Square away your room, shine your shoes and brass, wear your uniform properly, study your plebe knowledge, maintain/improve your fitness level, get the best possible grades in the core courses you will be taking for the next few months, and learn as much as you can about what the Marine Engineering and Marine Transportation curriculum are all about. After you do those things for a few months come back here and ask the question again. NOW GET OFF MY LAWN!!!!!!
     
  18. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc Teufel Doc

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2018
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    437
    "Intell work for the most part is information gathering and analysis. Intell bubbas also give weather reports."

    Hi Dad. This is what I wrote in post #8 above. I'm not sure what you disagree with. Plus, you are misquoting me to prove I'm wrong.

    And, why is operational experience irrelevant compared to what you or anybody else wrote?

    Also, what operational experience do you have with Navy Corpsmen?
     
    Coinshot likes this.
  19. Coinshot

    Coinshot New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2018
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    9
    Thank you everybody.

    This has been very informative and helpful. I want to clear some things up before going any further.
    1: When I said Intelligence Officer I was referring to an 14NX Intelligence Officer. From there I'll try to go into counter intelligence, because according to a mentor from high school who works CI for the Army, it's highly selective and near impossible to get into directly. Also I thought Geospacial, Language Analysts, etc were enlisted careers, not officer.
    2: The government will tell me what to make a report on. Please don't argue about it. Remember that were here so that I, and through me my shipmates, can be the most informed when choosing our majors. That way nobody has problems getting where they want to.
    3: We're allowed to get on the internet to research academic pursuits. And I'm pretty sure our future mapped out, and how to get there most effectively, counts as an academic pursuit.
    4: One thing they hammered into our heads during Indoc, is to have your dream ready. Have a light to get you through the suck. I wasn't sure if my dream was possible (i.e. the military CAN commission you, but only as a logistics officer if you got a Log and Security major) and that caused me anxiety, which wasted both time and motivation. Thanks why all your replies mean so much. Thank you again.
    5: The reason I'm asking this out now is, first of all, initiative. If you don't know something don't be afraid to ask questions. That way you can go from uneducated to educated and help others from there. Second of all we're not studying for midterms or finals right now. I've been told time tightens up near the end of the tri. Times already tight now, I'd rather not have to stress about my future on top of my seven finals.
    Once again thank you to everyone who replied. I've got to get back to studying.


    Plebe ******
    Class of 2022
    United States Merchant Marine Academy
     
  20. Devil Doc

    Devil Doc Teufel Doc

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2018
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    437
    I just awarded your first like.
     
    Coinshot likes this.