Service Selection Class of 2020 is Today

Big Ugly

Member
Yes. I stand corrected.

Latest inside report says there are a lot of nervous Firsties on the yard.
81% are going to get their first choice; approximately 100 will be drafted SWO.

(These threads may only rise to the level of rumors but it shall remain a sleepless night for many 1/C's.)
 

BDHuff09

5-Year Member
Yes. I stand corrected.

Latest inside report says there are a lot of nervous Firsties on the yard.
81% are going to get their first choice; approximately 100 will be drafted SWO.

(These threads may only rise to the level of rumors but it shall remain a sleepless night for many 1/C's.)
Based on what information? You didn't even know what the correct date of the event was.

There really isn't a swo "draft". It's somewhat of the "default" service selection, for lack of a better term. While there are certainly those that truly desire to be SWOs, many end up picking it because they aren't qualified/aren't very interested in anything else. You can get out in five years and there aren't any special tests or trainings you have to do to qualify for it. I find the idea that 100 people getting swo who didn't put it first to be very suspect.
 
in recent years, there has been a nuke draft , both Subs and SWO(N) - for ex., class of '17 has 40 drafted Subs and 19 drafted SWO(N). for those drafted SWO(N) 8 came from SWO, 7 from pilot, and 4 from USMC

class of '19 was short 6 of the goal for SWO, but nobody was drafted. 23 were sub drafted and 1 was SWO(N) drafted

there may very well be some who are drafted subs and swo(n) again this year, but 100 for swo would be extraordinary

'17 had 86% get first choice and 9% second choice, '19 had 87% and 8% respectively
 
Based on what information? You didn't even know what the correct date of the event was.

There really isn't a swo "draft". It's somewhat of the "default" service selection, for lack of a better term. While there are certainly those that truly desire to be SWOs, many end up picking it because they aren't qualified/aren't very interested in anything else. You can get out in five years and there aren't any special tests or trainings you have to do to qualify for it. I find the idea that 100 people getting swo who didn't put it first to be very suspect.
I find this disrespectful to the SWO community. The origins and main focus of the Navy is ships. To say it is a default is a slap in the face to those who desire to serve in that community. My mid is thankful for the opportunity to be at USNA and is happy and willing to serve in whatever community they are assigned to. And my mid qualified for every community/choice. No selection is a default or lower than another. They are all commissioning as officers and leaders.
 

Kierkegaard

Member
Based on what information? You didn't even know what the correct date of the event was.

There really isn't a swo "draft". It's somewhat of the "default" service selection, for lack of a better term. While there are certainly those that truly desire to be SWOs, many end up picking it because they aren't qualified/aren't very interested in anything else. You can get out in five years and there aren't any special tests or trainings you have to do to qualify for it. I find the idea that 100 people getting swo who didn't put it first to be very suspect.
Big Ugly is right about the 81% figure; the Commandant said as much last week.

Not sure about the 100 SWO “drafts” but it certainly seems within the realm of possibility. There’s a rough quota for how many SWOs need to be produced annually, and it’s rarely a popular first choice. The Class of 2020 has lost a significant number of mids and is projected to graduate less than 1,000 officers which will be the first time that’s happened in years. USMC doesn’t have a quota, in fact there’s an upper limit of 25% of the graduating class getting it, and it’s always a very popular choice. So quite a few Marine hopefuls get sent to the surface or sub fleet.
 

SaltiDawg

Member
I don't think anyone meant to denigrate Surface Warfare. However, there are no special requirements that I am aware of - one needs good vision and be physically qualified. As far as I know, no minimum class standing required either.

And if you have decided Navy Life is not your cup of tea, it is a way to do your obligated service in a minimum number of years.
 

NavyHoops

Super Moderator
5-Year Member
I guess I just disagree with the fact that if someone put Marines down first and doesn’t get it and gets SWO, that isn’t SWO drafted. That means they got a service assignment on their list, which wasn’t their first pick.
 

Kierkegaard

Member
I guess I just disagree with the fact that if someone put Marines down first and doesn’t get it and gets SWO, that isn’t SWO drafted. That means they got a service assignment on their list, which wasn’t their first pick.
This is a good point. Important to remember that anyone who puts USMC is evaluated by a board of Marines on the Yard that discusses their record and whether they’d be a good fit. Not everyone necessarily gets selected, even in cases where the Corps has room and there are already enough SWOs.
 
getting your 2nd or 3rd choice isn't the same as getting drafted.

getting selected for USMC (or pilot, etc) as your first choice, then getting pulled out of USMC via SARB, and moved to SWO (even if it's your second choice) is getting drafted. it means you were actually picked for your first choice then pulled out.

people are picked for SARB (service assignment review board) AFTER all the mids are slotted. once that is done, and they see where they have gaps, they pull from other communities to fill those gaps.
 

BDHuff09

5-Year Member
I find this disrespectful to the SWO community. The origins and main focus of the Navy is ships. To say it is a default is a slap in the face to those who desire to serve in that community. My mid is thankful for the opportunity to be at USNA and is happy and willing to serve in whatever community they are assigned to. And my mid qualified for every community/choice. No selection is a default or lower than another. They are all commissioning as officers and leaders.
I have friends that graduated in the top 100 that went SWO, I'm not saying that everybody that picks it is a poor midshipman.

You cannot, however, deny that it is the "default" service selection. The reality is that if you had a midshipman that went through the academy and showed zero professional initiative, skating by with a 2.0, getting a C on all his PRTs, doing nothing but the generic summer trainings, and assuming he was physically qualified, that midshipman would end up as a SWO.

It maybe harsh but how else would the system run? Subs has to be selective in regards to academics, or else the people they would send to nuke school would flunk out. Aviation has to be selective based on aptitude (ASTB, PFP, academics to a lesser degree) or else the people they would send would fail out of flight school. Marines, NSW, EOD have to be selective based on temperament and physical fitness otherwise those people would fail out of their follow on trainings(and likely hurt themselves or others in the process). Where does that leave SWO? It is not a physically demanding job. BDOC is not rocket science, I've only ever heard of one person failing it. Nothing about the job requires the same level of motor skill or split second decision making that is involved with flying a plane.

It is unfortunate that the SWO community sometimes gets the lowest common denominator of midshipman. But midshipmen similar to what I described above do exist, and if they have met what the powers that be describe as the minimum standard necessary to receive a commission, then they have to go serve somewhere when they graduate. That place is often the SWO community.

Selectivity is not the same as worth. I can say that the community is not selective (objectively it is not), but that does not mean that I am saying it is less valuable a warfare community. This is the Navy, it should go without saying that the surface force is an integral component of our branch.

I had many friends that when SWO, a number of whom that had a higher OOM than I did. Many of those were incredibly passionate about their service selection and selected it when qualified for other communities. They have certainly gotten more opportunity to go out and see the world and get immediate experience leading sailors than I have had in flight school.
 

OldRetSWO

USNA 78/parent 11/BGO for >25yrs
5-Year Member
Aviation has to be selective based on aptitude (ASTB, PFP, academics to a lesser degree) or else the people they would send would fail out of flight school.
While I do not disagree that SWO is a default of sorts, Aviation is not far behind. Having observed Service Selection for well over 40 years, I've seen very few who wanted Aviation not be able to get it. In my class, I saw plenty of Aviators come out of the last groups to service select and actually, NFO slots lasted almost to the end. Same with the classes in front of me and behind me.
 

Old Navy BGO

5-Year Member
I find this disrespectful to the SWO community. The origins and main focus of the Navy is ships. To say it is a default is a slap in the face to those who desire to serve in that community.They are all commissioning as officers and leaders.
I really didn't view the comment as "disrespectful" as much as a statement of harsh reality. Back in the days of "service selection", which was done purely on Class Rank, there were always SWO billets left to be filled, and the bottom of the class generally got the less desirable billets . This doesn't mean that SWO is less desirable, and plenty of people at the top of the class went SWO--it's simply a recognition of the fact that there were more billets to fill than their were people to fill them, while most of the other conmmunities had limits on accessions . As OldRetSWO says, aviation often went pretty deep (because there were alof billets), and sometimes they didn't even fill the USMC quota. NFO actually went pretty quick in my day, when we had a lot of aircraft carrying NFO's (P3, E2, A6, EA6B and variety of special mission aircraft) and limited billets.

The fact that the end of the Class often went SWO should not denigrate the SWO community, or those that graduated at the end of the Class. The anchorman graduates with the same rank as the valedictorian, and once you get the commission and go tot he Fleet, your academic performance at USNA doesn't count anymore. Plenty of classmates who graduated lower in the Class served honorably and effectively as SWO's for 20+ years.

I would be curious, and perhaps a current Midshipman or more recent graduate can comment; One of the advantages of the Service Assignment (v. Service Selection ) process is that it give the community some opportunity to evaluate aptitude and fit for that particular community. What happens if NONE of the communities wants a particular Midshipman ? I presume there is a Aptitude evaluation program to identify the person who somehow slipped by the Admissions process and got admitted, and most are separated (voluntarily or involuntarily) before they get to Service Assignment, but what happens to the Midshipman who is not bad enough to separate but nobody wants him/her ?
 

BDHuff09

5-Year Member
I would be curious, and perhaps a current Midshipman or more recent graduate can comment; One of the advantages of the Service Assignment (v. Service Selection ) process is that it give the community some opportunity to evaluate aptitude and fit for that particular community. What happens if NONE of the communities wants a particular Midshipman ? I presume there is a Aptitude evaluation program to identify the person who somehow slipped by the Admissions process and got admitted, and most are separated (voluntarily or involuntarily) before they get to Service Assignment, but what happens to the Midshipman who is not bad enough to separate but nobody wants him/her ?
Oh, don't get me started on the Aptitude System...

We could fill up an entire thread talking about its shortcomings(of which there are many, not just pertaining the topic at hand), but yes, there does exist an aptitude system. There have been several efforts to reform the system, and a current midshipman can speak to whether or not those reforms have been implemented, but below is a rough explanation of how it worked from circa 2018.

Essentially, every semester, the midshipman are ranked within their specific class within their company (so usually 1-40) based on aptitude. This ranking is a composite of several things but mostly the amalgamation of Company Officer ranking, Peer Ranking, and Upperclass ranking (underclassmen do not rank upperclassmen). Out of the final ranking, the first 8 or so people will receive an "A" in aptitude, the large group in the middle will receive a "B", and the last few members of each class will receive a "C". A grade of "D" in aptitude is reserved for those who commit major/6K conduct violations, regardless of what their ranking is within the company. It is possible to go to an Aptitude Board for having multiple semesters with a C or below in aptitude, but unless you've committed a very serious conduct violation, or have a history of several serious ones, these boards almost never result in separation. What this means is that a midshipman could consistently receive a low aptitude grade, which would call into question that individuals suitability for commissioning, but unless they break a serious rule, or have a pattern of physical/academic failure, it is highly unlikely that they will be separated.
 
I really didn't view the comment as "disrespectful" as much as a statement of harsh reality. Back in the days of "service selection", which was done purely on Class Rank, there were always SWO billets left to be filled, and the bottom of the class generally got the less desirable billets . This doesn't mean that SWO is less desirable, and plenty of people at the top of the class went SWO--it's simply a recognition of the fact that there were more billets to fill than their were people to fill them, while most of the other conmmunities had limits on accessions . As OldRetSWO says, aviation often went pretty deep (because there were alof billets), and sometimes they didn't even fill the USMC quota. NFO actually went pretty quick in my day, when we had a lot of aircraft carrying NFO's (P3, E2, A6, EA6B and variety of special mission aircraft) and limited billets.

The fact that the end of the Class often went SWO should not denigrate the SWO community, or those that graduated at the end of the Class. The anchorman graduates with the same rank as the valedictorian, and once you get the commission and go tot he Fleet, your academic performance at USNA doesn't count anymore. Plenty of classmates who graduated lower in the Class served honorably and effectively as SWO's for 20+ years.

I would be curious, and perhaps a current Midshipman or more recent graduate can comment; One of the advantages of the Service Assignment (v. Service Selection ) process is that it give the community some opportunity to evaluate aptitude and fit for that particular community. What happens if NONE of the communities wants a particular Midshipman ? I presume there is a Aptitude evaluation program to identify the person who somehow slipped by the Admissions process and got admitted, and most are separated (voluntarily or involuntarily) before they get to Service Assignment, but what happens to the Midshipman who is not bad enough to separate but nobody wants him/her ?
Here’s a question for those on here with actual experience/knowledge: how common is it for a midshipman who has maxed every PRT and is smack in the middle of the class in terms of OOM to get their fifth choice of service selection?
 

Just Dad

Member
Just a Data Point. According to DD (a 1C), the number of mids who didn't get their 1st choice was significantly higher than previous classes.

Don't know this to be true, but its the word going around.
 
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