Your Marine Corps

These 10 jobs offer Marines an instant shot at promotion

Marines stuck Stuck in slow-promoting fields with few job that has re-up and re-enlistment opportunities can now make a  A lateral move into one of 10 jobs that military occupational specialties now offers a quick stripe and the chance to stay in uniform.

The Marine Corps is offering hundreds of qualified first-termers a chance to pick up rank in order to fill some of its most in-demand military occupational specialties. It's part of the Marine Corps' Intended MOS Promotions program for 2017, which starts Oct. 1. Lance corporals, corporals and sergeants can move into one of the jobs, which were outlined in the Manpower officials announced the program in Marine administrative message 376/16, dated July 20. 

The Marine Corps needs noncommissioned officers in the following MOSs:

  • Counterintelligence/human intelligence specialist
  • Imagery analysis specialist
  • Marine squad leader
  • Critical skills operator
  • Cyber security technician
  • Explosive ordnance disposal technician
  • Contingency contract specialist
  • Marine Corps community services
  • Career planner
  • Criminal investigator Criminal Investigation Division agent
Staff Sgt. Joshua K. Crabtree, explosive ordnance disposal technician, 3rd EOD, 9th Engineer Support Battalion, performs a sweep with a metal detector during a post-blast analysis training scenario at Emerson Lake training area, Sept. 19, 2015. While aboard the Combat Center, EOD technicians received experience in working with a wider variety of ordnance than is usually available to the unit. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Levi Schultz/Released)
Staff Sgt. Joshua K. Crabtree, explosive ordnance disposal technician, 3rd EOD, 9th Engineer Support Battalion, performs a sweep with a metal detector during a post-blast analysis training scenario at Emerson Lake training area, Sept. 19, 2015. While aboard the Combat Center, EOD technicians received experience in working with a wider variety of ordnance than is usually available to the unit. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Levi Schultz/Released)

Staff Sgt. Joshua Crabtree, an explosive ordnance disposal technician, performs a sweep with a metal detector during a post-blast analysis training scenario.

Photo Credit: Lance Cpl. Levi Schultz/Marine Corps

Manpower officials They did not immediately identify how many boat spaces were available in each MOS. Last year, the Corps offered the deal was offered to 514 Marines across nine MOSs.

Most of the MOSs start eligibility at the grade of sergeant. Lower-ranking Marines who want to move into one of those MOSs could be promoted noncompetitively to that grade, according to the MARADMIN.

This year, lat moves are needed to fill the following 10 MOSs: Counterintelligence/Human Intelligence Specialist, Imagery Analysis Specialist, Marine Squad Leader, Critical Skills Operator, Cyber Security Technician, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician, Contingency Contract Specialist, Marine Corps Community Services, Career Planner, and Criminal Investigator CID Agent.

Participants get to pin on their new rank the first day of the month after re-enlistment, as long as they have 12 months time-in-grade. If not, the promotion will be effective the first day of the month after meeting that requirement. In fiscal 2017, This year, Marines approved for a lateral move to the 0365 Marinesquad leader MOS can get a four-month time-in-gradeTIG waiver for promotion to sergeant.

U.S. Marine Sgt. Zachary Kapinus, a platoon Sgt. With 1st platoon, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 2d Marine Regiment, pins rank insignia on the newly promoted Sgt. George Lynch Jr., a squad leader, aboard Patrol Base Boldak in Helmand province, Afghanistan on August 2, 2014. Promotion ceremonies are held to acknowledge the advancement in a Marine's career. (Official U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John A. Martinez Jr. / Released)
U.S. Marine Sgt. Zachary Kapinus, a platoon Sgt. With 1st platoon, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 2d Marine Regiment, pins rank insignia on the newly promoted Sgt. George Lynch Jr., a squad leader, aboard Patrol Base Boldak in Helmand province, Afghanistan on August 2, 2014. Promotion ceremonies are held to acknowledge the advancement in a Marine's career. (Official U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John A. Martinez Jr. / Released)

Sgt. Zachary Kapinus pins rank insignia on the newly promoted Sgt. George Lynch Jr., a squad leader, aboard Patrol Base Boldak in Afghanistan's Helmand province in 2014.

Photo Credit: Cpl. John Martinez/Marine Corps

There are a few catches, though. What’s the catch? There are a few:

  • All required professional military education must be current before the package is submitted.
  • The Marine must meet MOS-specific requirements. For example, 0211 counter intelligence/human intelligence specialists must be U.S. citizens able to obtain a top-secret security clearance. Only riflemen, machine gunners, mortarmen, infantry assault Marines and anti-tank missile gunners are eligible to become squad leaders an 0365 Marine Squad Leader.
  • There will be some paperwork. After re-enlistment, the command must forward a request for promotion authority to Manpower and Reserve Affairs to get the Marine's noncompetitive promotion finalized Manpower and Reserve Affairs.
  • A Marine who fails to complete MOS school will be administratively reduced back to his previous rank. That's important to keep bear in mind when considering particularly difficult schools with high washout rates, such as Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

Time is of the essence. The offer is first-come, first-served, and ends once each MOS quota is filled. That means so those tired of being a "terminal lance" should act fast.

The benefits could be significant for Marines willing to make the switch. Though a lat move is not eligible for existing retention bonuses, Marines could he will be the next time around — and those bonuses can be big. Eight of the IMOSs rank among the top for in the top 10 selective retention bonuses for Zone B sergeants and above this year, and offer payouts that range from $18,000 to $53,750.

Additionally, jobs like those in MARSOC or counter intel may require foreign language proficiency that can result in additional payouts. The lowest payout for foreign language proficiency is $100 a month. Those with a high-level proficiency in multiple languages can take home up to an extra $1,000 each month. Up to $500 can be earned for a single language.

Another advantage of moving into a high-demand, low-density job — particularly one in the intelligence and cyber fields — is the possibility of lucrative civilian employment after the Marine Corps. That's one reason the service has struggled to retain Marines in the intel and cyber specialties — the lure of six-figure jobs in the private sector, where companies are eager to protect their assets and networks from foreign and domestic hacking attacks.

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