- Officer Candidate School (U.S. Navy)
The United States Navy's Officer Candidate School, currently located at Naval Station Newport, Rhode Island, provides training to become a commissioned officer. Attendance is one possible way for civilian college graduates (bachelor's degree or higher) with no military experience to earn a commission as a U.S. Navy officer. Additionally, the Navy also enrolls a significant number of candidates with current or prior enlisted experience in the military. In this way, OCS serves as a path to commissioned status for high-performing enlisted personnel. Alternatives include the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps, Officer Development School (ODS), and graduation from the United States Naval Academy.
OCS classes are designated by the fiscal year of their graduation (e.g., 28-09 was the twenty-eighth class to graduate in fiscal year 2009; 01-10 was the first class to graduate in fiscal year 2010). Upon completion of the 12-week course the candidate is commissioned an Ensign (O-1) in the United States Navy (formerly in the Naval Reserve, or USNR). In previous years, Naval OCS was a 16-week curriculum.
Officer candidates are mustered in at the paygrade of E5 but hold a special title known as Officer Candidate. This title is held from the beginning of week 2 through the middle of week 9 when an Officer Candidate completes the "Victory Run" and earns the title Candidate Officer; Officer Candidates are regarded as basic recruits. As training progresses, Officer Candidates obtain more responsibility and are eventually given command authority over other Officer Candidates through use of a series of "positional ranks" denoted with small gold bars worn on the collar (typically referred to as "railroad tracks"). These positional ranks include "Regimental Commander", "Regimental Sub-Commander", "Regimental Adjutant" and other responsibilities. All positional rank assignments are competitively awarded from among the entire regiment. It is considered a significant honor to be selected to serve in any of the top leadership positions while enrolled at OCS. As training progresses over 12 weeks, individuals gradually move from Indoctrination Candidates, or "Indocs," to Officer Candidates, to Candidate Officers, or "Candios." The latter being a position of authority over less senior candidates.
Officer Candidates are assigned to battalions within a single regiment and are either quartered at Nimitz Hall or at King Hall at Naval Station Newport. Over the 12 weeks they are immersed in Leadership, Physical and Military training as well as Academics ranging from Navigation to Shipboard Engineering and Damage Control. Their every action is scrutinized and any shortcoming rigorously corrected. There is a strict Code of Honor that is expected; violators are removed.
The Navy previously operated two officer candidate programs, OCS at Newport, Rhode Island and Aviation Officer Candidate School (AOCS) at NAS Pensacola, Florida. AOCS trained prospective Naval Aviators, Naval Flight Officers, Aviation Maintenance Duty Officers, and Air Intelligence Officers, while OCS trained all other Officer communities. The original US Navy OCS in Newport, Rhode Island began operation in 1951 and was closed down in April 1994 when the programs were merged as a single OCS at NAS Pensacola. Subsequently, in 2007 the consolidated Navy OCS curriculum was relocated back to Newport by direction of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission of 2005. A difference in class numbering between OCs and AOCS was that AOCS classes were numbered by graduation date in the calendar year vice fiscal (for example, the first glass to graduate in January would be Class 01-YY as opposed to the first calss in the fiscal year (October)).
In AOCS, all basic military training was administered by enlisted drill instructors from the United States Marine Corps. This facet of the training (origin of the slogan "Navy owned, Marine Corps trained") at AOCS in Pensacola was considered a point of pride and mark of distinction by graduates of AOCS that separated themselves from the graduates of OCS in Newport. When the single OCS was established in Pensacola, the program retained both the Marine DIs of AOCS and the US Navy CPOs of Newport. Newport OCS now has both.
- Jeremy Michael Boorda, ADM USN Dec (1962), Surface Warfare Officer; Chief of Naval Operations, 1994-1996
- Vern Clark, ADM USN Ret (1968), Surface Warfare Officer; Chief of Naval Operations, 2000-2005
- Michael P. Murphy, LT USN Dec (2000), United States Navy SEAL; awarded the Medal of Honor
- William E. Gortney, VADM USN (1977), Naval Aviator; Director of the Joint Staff, 2010-Present
- Gregory C. Johnson, CAPT USN Ret (1977), Naval Aviator; Astronaut
- Robert L. Rasmussen, CAPT USN Ret (1952), Naval Aviator; Director, National Museum of Naval Aviation; Artist
An Officer and a Gentleman (1982) focuses around a main character who is appointed an Aviation Officer Candidate at AOCS, albeit at a fictional naval air station in Washington state, and must deal with personal and social issues to be commissioned as an Ensign.
Commander-in-chief: President of the United States · Secretary of Defense · Deputy Secretary of Defense · Joint Chiefs of Staff (Chairman) · United States Congress: Committees on Armed Services: (Senate · House) · Active duty four-star officers · Highest ranking officers in history · National Security Act of 1947 · Goldwater–Nichols Act
OrganizationBranchesReserve components Structure Operations and history PersonnelTrainingOther
Oath: (Enlistment · Office) · Creeds & Codes: (Code of Conduct · NCO · A · MC · N · AF · CG) · Service numbers: (A · MC · N · AF · CG) · Military Occupational Specialty/Rating/Air Force Specialty Code · Pay · Uniform Code of Military Justice · Judge Advocate General's Corps · Military Health System/TRICARE · Separation · Veterans Affairs · Conscription · Chiefs of Chaplains: (A · MC · N · AF · CG)
EquipmentLandSeaAirOther Legend: A = Army, MC = Marine Corps, N = Navy, AF = Air Force, CG = Coast Guard, PHS = Public Health Service, NOAA = National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, MSC = Military Sealift Command
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