Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by 2ndLTgray, Dec 5, 2010.
Does anybody know when's the earliest you can apply for ranger school after your graduate WP?
I'm currently reading a book called Absolutely American: Four Years at West Point that was written in the 90's. A graduate from West Point that branched Infantry went to Ranger School pretty much right out of graduation. However, I don't know if SF training is available that quickly to cadets today. I remember reading a post from Scout Pilot on here that SF training isn't available to cadets right away, but I don't know if that comment applied to Ranger School.
I've been wondering this myself, as I'm considering branching Infantry and going to Ranger School. Anyone's clarification on this would be great.
The book I'm reading is great btw
If you branch infantry then you will get a shot at ranger school after you finish the infantry officer basic course(im not sure of the exact name). That course is bascially like AIT for officers from what I understand.
If you branch something besides infantry then I'm not sure how ranger school slots work, but I know they usually aren't a guarantee and they are very competitive. A lot of it also depends upon the needs of the army at that time.
I'm reading the book too. I thought he only took a pre course and I thought he mentioned not getting a tab.
There was a discussion about it a while back. Scroll down a little bit. http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showthread.php?t=9762&highlight=ranger+school
I think it sounds like you can only take a precursor. Though I'm sure someone else may be able to update or confirm.
I'm not sure about the precourse thing but you're correct about him not receiving the tab. I was just mentioning how he had the opportunity to get the tab and train for Rangers.
Kenn- two different animals. If you are an Infantry officer- you will be highly motivated (ie... "voluntold") to go to Ranger school right out of the basic course. It's branch immaterial but the vast majority of officers going are combat arms officers and the expectation for Infantry Officers is that they will get Ranger qualified. Getting the tab is not the same as being assigned to the Ranger regiment which is not offered to 2Lts until after they have Platoon Ldr experience in a conventional unit (however for an officer- having the tab is a requirement to go to the Regiment). SF and SFQC is a totally different deal- SF is a branch and it is not open as an accession branch. To go to the Qualification course you first have to make it thru assessment then SFQC then when you graduate you will be branch transferred to SF.
Not to hijack the forum (ok that is exactly what I am doing), but how do you guys like "Absolutely American"? It is currently sitting in my amazon cart, just wanted someones viewpoint on it. Thanks!
I read Absolutely American for the first time a couple of years ago and I'm in the process of re-reading it. While it is dated at points (i.e. the book starts with cadets thinking they'll go to Kosovo and ends with the immediate effects of 9/11) it does give great insight into daily cadet life. It describes things like relationships between cadets and how cadets balance being active duty military while being a college student. You can tell that the writer fell in love with West Point during the time he wrote the book and he does a great job of analyzing cadets' motivations for going to USMA and for staying at USMA.
Our whole family is in the process of reading "Absolutely American" and "Duty First". I'd highly recommend both, as they provide two similar perspectives from very different viewpoints of USMA during the same period.
Many of the traditions, approaches, etc that we have picked up as still being in effect are explained. And while we knew USMA had changed it's leadership development approach, the books helped us understand and see why it works so well.
While we started with library books, I found both "like new" from Amazon sellers for $4.50-8.00, so ordered a copy of each.
I was especially curious, as my wife & I both perceived a very different relationship between plebes and upperclassmen at USMA than we did at USNA. In discussing with DS after his overnight visit he had picked up on the same thing. Not that the uppers were not strict, they were. But at USMA they appeared to be more vested in the success of the plebes and there was respect more than fear for the firsties.
While I'm sure things have changed, we are wondering how accurate the traditions & plebe development examples are. Some clearly are the same, but it's not clear if others are still used outside of BEAST. Ex: Are table duties in effect for plebes year round? DS did not see any indication they were on his overnight visit, etc. Also, one of the books mentions an attempt in 2004 or so to bring back "pinging", etc.
Plebe development will be what it will be, no worries there. We are more curious than anything else. DS is sort-of enjoying the read, while at the same time taking the position to make any assumptions as things could have changed!
It is a great book. I'm almost done. It is great to see what USMA was like in the pre 9/11 world and it is interesting reading about the development of the characters. I mean, some of the stuff they do is a bit far fetched.
Thank you everyone for your opinions on the book. It has solidified it's place in my cart and will be next in queue after Red Badge of Courage. Just another way to help pass time in the 'Stan.
The Red Badge of Courage happens to be next on my list.
I downloaded it on my dad's kindle when he asked me to test out his new toy .
How do you like it?
I'm still on Once an Eagle, after that is Red Badge, then Absolutely American haha! I have a Kindle too, maybe I should start putting these books on there...
RBC is amazing. Crane is a classic Civil War fiction author, RBC is considered by many to be his best.
More good mil hist books- http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showthread.php?t=11427
Back to the Ranger School conversation: Could a MI branch detail to IN get a shot at Rngr school?
Theoretically, anyone can get a slot to Ranger School. You just have to get a slot. Ranger School is simply a leadership school. The best one in the Army, matter of fact. Completion does not make one a Ranger, merely Ranger qualified. Service in the 75th makes one a Ranger.
A chance to attend Ranger school will be completely driven by your branch managers (the HRC types) and your unit. Slots come down on an obviously limited basis, and the chance to attend requires not only that your unit have a slot (be it your schoolhouse unit such as IOBC or your actual unit of assignment thereafter), but that you meet all the requirements for attendance and that your personal timeline permits it.
It is, generally, rare for officers to attend once they've been sent to their unit of assignment. At that point, you are expected to put your duties first (being a platoon leader, a staff officer, etc.). Most commanders are reluctant to let an officer walk out the door for 3 months (Pre-Ranger, Ranger, plus a likely recycle) to go get another badge.
There are cases where it happens, but the vast, vast majority receive their Ranger slot immediately following their OBC assignment, prior to signing in to their first unit. That also requires, of course, that your orders permit it. You may have a slot, but if your unit is set to go somewhere your orders may not allow you time to do a school enroute to your first duty assignment.
It is possible for branch detailed officers to attend, but they are not given priority. Also, remember that there is often a hold for Ranger school, and you might burn 6 or 7 months of your short 3 years as an Infantry officer simply waiting for and attending the Ranger course. When you count in your OBC time, you could lose a year or more of your 3 years in the infantry simply sitting at Benning. These days, many elect to go join the fight and maximize their unit time before reverting to their non-combat branch.
I'm bad on my acronyms. What does OBC mean?
Edit: Never mind, I looked it up
Separate names with a comma.