+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Officer vs Warrant Officer

  1. #1
    Senior Member tyler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    111

    Default Officer vs Warrant Officer

    I was hoping to get some input from soldiers and the resident Warrant Officer. I'm in ROTC at my school, but I have had conversations about Warrant Officer Candidate School with a friend. Ideally, I want to fly for the US Army, that is my ultimate goal. It's been expressed to me as of late that Army Officers don't exactly have the most leverage in choosing their MOS and, even if I were to be a flyer as a Commissioned Officer, I would eventually be promoted out of the cockpit. While advancement is always great, I think that I would really like to just fly and not worry about being promoted out of the field; that's my main concern. Given that, it was suggested that going the Warrant Officer route after I finish college may be a better option for me to pursue.

    Does anyone have any suggestions, comments, or opinions they may be willing to offer up? I'm assuming that if I did go the WOCS route after school, having my degree and also going through a number of the ROTC classes would be at least a little bit helpful in going before the review board. Again, this is all just pure speculation which is why I come to you all here, especially our recruiter friends that are present.

    Thank you

  2. # ADS
    Google Adsense image
    Join Date
    Just Now
    Location
    In your thoughts
    Posts
    42

  • #2
    Short Timer CWO Sharkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Regular Army
    Posts
    7,820

    Default

    Tyler,

    First of all, Warrant Officers are Officers of the United States Army and the Marine Corps and the Navy. You meant Commissioned Officers (LT-General) versus Warrant Officers. Chief Warrants Officers 2 and higher are Commissioned Warrant Officers and have the same authority and are capable to fill most of the billets of the commissioned ranks.

    Your buddy is correct on the path that you will chose. Remember a Commissioned Officer is a generalist and a Warrant Officer is a technical expert. That is why they usually dont deviate from their career field.

    So if you go as a Warrant to be an aviator; you will be expected to be an expert in your field thus you will fly most of the time unlike a commissioned officer. I know Warrants that fly rotary and fixed wing aircraft. I have seen in theater commissioned officers (a reserve Colonel) take a demotion as a Chief Warrant Officer 4, so he can fly during his tour.

    But if you do want to make more money and get a higher retirement than the commissioned officer route is the way to go.
    Last edited by CWO Sharkey; 01-23-2010 at 12:49 AM.
    Iraq/Afghanistan Veteran (OIF V & OEF X & XIII)
    OIC
    Former Marine/MP/Combat Engineer

  • #3
    Moderator Master Tanker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    GE
    Posts
    646

    Default

    Tyler, you seem to have a good idea of what's going on. Yes, commissioned officers are always in danger of getting 'promoted out' (as you call it) ending up flying a desk, even in combat arms. In fact commissioned officers learn 2 specialties (not MOS, but many call it that). That is because they are viewed more as managers than as doers as they advance. Thus, they can be Armor officers (like me) and also base managers as a 2nd specialty. After all, someone has to to be in charge up there and organize things. Another reason for the promoting out is that there are just not enough command slots in the combat arms. But there is an escape route for them: They can, as commanders, XOs etc. occasionly fly and keep their flight status up even though they don't go out and chase the enemy.

  • #4
    Senior Member tyler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    111

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by warrantofficerlq View Post
    So if you go as a Warrant to be an aviator; you will be expected to be an expert in your field thus you will fly most of the time unlike a commissioned officer. I know Warrants that fly rotary and fixed wing aircraft. I have seen in theater commissioned officers (a reserve Colonel) take a demotion as a Chief Warrant Officer 4, so he can fly during his tour.

    But if you do want to make more money and get a higher retirement than the commissioned officer route is the way to go.
    A retirement plan and good money is at the back of my mind at this point, it would seem irresponsible of me to join with retirement in mind as 20 years is a very long time with any number of obstacles. Given what you and Master Tanker have said, it seems as though the WO route is a more responsible decision. I know I want to fly and Warrant Officer would provide me that opportunity if I were to be selected.

    Now, in your personal opinion, do you think it would help me in the review process to have taken ROTC classes at my University? Or should I just save my money and not worry about paying the extra few hundred bucks for something that may not actually help?

  • #5
    Short Timer CWO Sharkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Regular Army
    Posts
    7,820

    Default

    Its not irresponsible to think of your future 20 years from now. If I was more focused 20 years ago on my retirement plan; I could have been a millionaire lol

    But yes do what makes you happy over financial gain. I do believe in that.

    ROTC is for going the commissioned officer route. If you desire to become a Flight Warrant; then I will save the money. ROTC is not going to give you extra points in WOCS.
    Last edited by CWO Sharkey; 01-23-2010 at 12:36 PM.
    Iraq/Afghanistan Veteran (OIF V & OEF X & XIII)
    OIC
    Former Marine/MP/Combat Engineer

  • #6
    Senior Member tyler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    111

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by warrantofficerlq View Post
    ROTC is for going the commissioned officer route. If you desire to become a Flight Warrant; then I will save the money. ROTC is not going to give you extra points in WOCS.
    Oh, definitely, I wasn't thinking I'd get some kind of boost at WOCS for going through ROTC. Only wondering if, strictly during the selection process, having those ROTC classes on my transcript may make me more appealing to the review board versus another candidate without that "experience" (experience used loosely, of course).

    I appreciate your input, Sir, I've got plenty of thinking and option-weighing to do.

  • #7
    Short Timer CWO Sharkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Regular Army
    Posts
    7,820

    Default

    Remember with flight, you can go straight from high school to flight school and college is not required; so during the board process, your transcripts will be skipped over. They have about 6 minutes to look at each packet so they just want to see the meat and the potatoes of the packet. (e.g. photograph, AFAST scores, resume)
    Iraq/Afghanistan Veteran (OIF V & OEF X & XIII)
    OIC
    Former Marine/MP/Combat Engineer

  • #8
    Moderator MPclk2006's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Fort Drum
    Posts
    3,764

    Default

    Just remember if you go OCS, you run the chance of not getting flight, if you go Warrant for flight, you will get flight and of course the whole not getting promoted out of the job...

  • + Reply to Thread

    Similar Threads

    1. signal warrant officer training
      By amberrcp in forum Training
      Replies: 11
      Last Post: 08-10-2010, 02:52 AM
    2. commissioned officer vs. non- commissioned officer
      By cruisebum in forum General Army Discussion
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: 01-12-2010, 04:36 PM
    3. Warrant Officer Question
      By airman3454 in forum Joining the Army
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: 03-06-2009, 05:18 AM
    4. Replies: 0
      Last Post: 08-29-2008, 11:13 AM
    5. Just went through Warrant Officer School
      By VanMan in forum Introductions
      Replies: 0
      Last Post: 12-08-2007, 01:27 PM

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts