Torn between RECON and MARSOC as a lat mover

CupCake

Unverified
Joined
Jan 25, 2018
Messages
31
Good morning/afternoon/evening all,

first I have just posted my intro and read a lot of threads before making this one, so if I didnt search hard enough with the search function if my question has been answered I'll retract this thread. I'm looking to make a lat move to either 0321 or 0372 around the beginning of 2020. I was a recon drop from performance (got pneumonia, failed a pft afterwards) and am currently a combat engineer. I've looked extensively at what I could find regarding Battalion and Force RECON as well as MARSOC for PT, missions, etc. and as an E4 potentially E5 when I'm eligible to lat move, what would potentially be a better option? Does RECON get a majority of their guys from contracts now or would I be a potential asset as a NCO but also a "new guy". Whereas MARSOC only has lat movers and we would all be "new guys", though I feel myself leaning more towards RECON partially because I want to go back and crush the course. Any feedback at all would be appreciated and thanks in advance.
 

J.

Verified Military
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Messages
213
Location
Some Beach
A lot of your questions can be answered in the link I attached. It’s an awesome resource.

Also, grammar and some paragraphs go a long way in delivering your question in a professional way. It’s a good skill on here, and in life.

The “better option” isn’t on Shadowspear, it’s in your heart.

Best of success to you.

Notice - Marine Corps Recon and/or MARSOC - Start Here
 

CupCake

Unverified
Joined
Jan 25, 2018
Messages
31
A lot of your questions can be answered in the link I attached. It’s an awesome resource.

Also, grammar and some paragraphs go a long way in delivering your question in a professional way. It’s a good skill on here, and in life.

The “better option” isn’t on Shadowspear, it’s in your heart.

Best of success to you.

Notice - Marine Corps Recon and/or MARSOC - Start Here
Good to go, thanks for your time.
 

The Hate Ape

MARSOC
SOF Support
Joined
Oct 6, 2011
Messages
612
Location
West Coast
Theres a plethora of dudes in both communities who bring an outstanding mindset to their mission because of a different perspective gained in their prior occupational specialties. This includes guys who served time in the civilian world before joining - especially tradesman. Having done time in both communities now, I would caution you to look at the larger picture of how each unit is evolving - the good and bad.

MARSOC has pulled away from its origins as the Det 1 / Force Reconnaissance types of OEF & OIF. While a few of them remain in the higher levels of leadership, much of the mentality/flavor they instilled while they were running their team/s has kind of shape shifted into something a little more complex than straight up sticking it to the enemy. There's a lot more sophisticated agenda awaiting Raider missions now than before in a variety of AOs requiring a much more sophisticated war fighter. A conglomerate of personalities, backgrounds, and skill sets are necessary to remain effective. MARSOC is getting better as a whole - my friends who remain there as well as myself would agree that this is mostly true with all things considered. MARSOC is here to stay because it needs to stay. They do a better job than many of their counterparts in my personal, worthless opinion.

Reconnaissance is another community that has evolved in personnel but without much change to their mission interestingly. This is a common workplace discussion and while some may disagree, I honestly feel a change to that situation is on the horizon. I don't know if it will be good or bad, but I feel the former is more likely. While our guys are all graduates of BRC with specific follow-on training, theres more than a handful of dudes in my own company alone with advanced (graduate level college) degrees in seriously-wtf-are-you-in-the-Marine-Corps-for-disciplines. Really smart guys who bring a lot to the table. Our biggest fight/downfall is retention of personnel and MARSOC takes a lot of spotlight within the ranks. A few jump ship and its understandable. Its hard to preach to the young Marines about the future of Reconnaissance when you're doing lengthy workups to end up on a MEU while hearing of all the amazing work MARSOC is putting in.

HOWEVER...

Some may point to the niche skill set of a Reconnaissance platoon and their limited employment as a weakness. They think the end is near for Reconnaissance - I disagree with that statement.

In my opinion: no unit (not even MARSOC) can replicate the unique effects achieved by a team of Reconnaissance Marines on the ground conducting R&S. They do it every day - rain or shine, it is their bread and butter and I have yet to see anyone, ever, do it better. Still, every one of our guys has an array of follow-on capabilities that can be executed in favor of a desired outcome from the objective as well. I'm not going to run down the gambit of follow-on schools or a capes brief, but its growing. Its growing and it is immediately employable. Other units are starting to jump in but as tag-alongs to our missions, not the other way around.

This considered and the fact that MARSOC has completely excelled beyond serving the Marine Corps component, you have no other organization at your fingertips as a commander to produce the effects that Reconnaissance has refined & continues to perfect. Additionally, a lot of the guys who didn't jump over to Det 1 back in the day with nearly identical experience levels have returned from their instructor billets long ago and still remain in the Battalions. While MARSOC personnel end up farmed out to a lot of other specialized roles in organizations with different names and abbreviations, a lot of our guys park in the parking lot I park in, drink the same shitty coffee, and sit at the same lunch table. Their experiences are irreplaceable and will likely be called upon when the time is right. For MARSOC I swear theres a CSO Factory deep in Gifford hall running dudes out of a conveyor belt. You can easily spend 5+ years at the unit and never see someone you graduated your initial schools with again until you retire out of there or bump into them at a local bar.

I say this for you to absorb and learn from it. Your decision can be easily made: choose MARSOC and you'll likely end up in the crazy tree of varying possibilities from a long list of types of deployments to an even longer list of specialties within your specialties. You'll form bonds with brothers who you'll see come and go throughout the years. You'll never return the Marine Corps either. You'll go to a lot of really cool schools and you'll becoming a walking Encyclopedia of varying skill sets, but your days of leading Marines in the traditional sense is completely over. To some guys, this is genuinely appealing and to others, not so much.

If you have an agenda to go up the food chain into more specialized units following this phase of your life however, I would tell you to stop considering anything and immediately choose MARSOC.

In Reconnaissance you'll probably be pushed into a leadership role much more quickly, you'll bond with your team (fire team) and platoon, and you'll probably be with the same guys for years. It is still very much the Marine Corps - your personality and how you fit in will largely dictate how much you enjoy that situation. You will not have the newest equipment or much funding and you will become victim to the Marine Corps Planning Process. You will not go to nearly the same amount of specialized schools as MARSOC. MARSOC has a few hundred specialized schools ranging in 1 to 8 months in length whereas Reconnaissance has a list much smaller and shorter than that, like a few hundred less to be exact. Your time will be very valuable to you, you will wear uniforms and deal with silliness but if your biggest positive takeaway from the Marine Corps is being in the Marine Corps, I couldn't think of a better decision for you to make than to return to BRC as a lateral mover.

Hope this helps and best of luck in your decision.


H/A
 

CupCake

Unverified
Joined
Jan 25, 2018
Messages
31
Theres a plethora of dudes in both communities who bring an outstanding mindset to their mission because of a different perspective gained in their prior occupational specialties. This includes guys who served time in the civilian world before joining - especially tradesman. Having done time in both communities now, I would caution you to look at the larger picture of how each unit is evolving - the good and bad.

MARSOC has pulled away from its origins as the Det 1 / Force Reconnaissance types of OEF & OIF. While a few of them remain in the higher levels of leadership, much of the mentality/flavor they instilled while they were running their team/s has kind of shape shifted into something a little more complex than straight up sticking it to the enemy. There's a lot more sophisticated agenda awaiting Raider missions now than before in a variety of AOs requiring a much more sophisticated war fighter. A conglomerate of personalities, backgrounds, and skill sets are necessary to remain effective. MARSOC is getting better as a whole - my friends who remain there as well as myself would agree that this is mostly true with all things considered. MARSOC is here to stay because it needs to stay. They do a better job than many of their counterparts in my personal, worthless opinion.

Reconnaissance is another community that has evolved in personnel but without much change to their mission interestingly. This is a common workplace discussion and while some may disagree, I honestly feel a change to that situation is on the horizon. I don't know if it will be good or bad, but I feel the former is more likely. While our guys are all graduates of BRC with specific follow-on training, theres more than a handful of dudes in my own company alone with advanced (graduate level college) degrees in seriously-wtf-are-you-in-the-Marine-Corps-for-disciplines. Really smart guys who bring a lot to the table. Our biggest fight/downfall is retention of personnel and MARSOC takes a lot of spotlight within the ranks. A few jump ship and its understandable. Its hard to preach to the young Marines about the future of Reconnaissance when you're doing lengthy workups to end up on a MEU while hearing of all the amazing work MARSOC is putting in.

HOWEVER...

Some may point to the niche skill set of a Reconnaissance platoon and their limited employment as a weakness. They think the end is near for Reconnaissance - I disagree with that statement.

In my opinion: no unit (not even MARSOC) can replicate the unique effects achieved by a team of Reconnaissance Marines on the ground conducting R&S. They do it every day - rain or shine, it is their bread and butter and I have yet to see anyone, ever, do it better. Still, every one of our guys has an array of follow-on capabilities that can be executed in favor of a desired outcome from the objective as well. I'm not going to run down the gambit of follow-on schools or a capes brief, but its growing. Its growing and it is immediately employable. Other units are starting to jump in but as tag-alongs to our missions, not the other way around.

This considered and the fact that MARSOC has completely excelled beyond serving the Marine Corps component, you have no other organization at your fingertips as a commander to produce the effects that Reconnaissance has refined & continues to perfect. Additionally, a lot of the guys who didn't jump over to Det 1 back in the day with nearly identical experience levels have returned from their instructor billets long ago and still remain in the Battalions. While MARSOC personnel end up farmed out to a lot of other specialized roles in organizations with different names and abbreviations, a lot of our guys park in the parking lot I park in, drink the same shitty coffee, and sit at the same lunch table. Their experiences are irreplaceable and will likely be called upon when the time is right. For MARSOC I swear theres a CSO Factory deep in Gifford hall running dudes out of a conveyor belt. You can easily spend 5+ years at the unit and never see someone you graduated your initial schools with again until you retire out of there or bump into them at a local bar.

I say this for you to absorb and learn from it. Your decision can be easily made: choose MARSOC and you'll likely end up in the crazy tree of varying possibilities from a long list of types of deployments to an even longer list of specialties within your specialties. You'll form bonds with brothers who you'll see come and go throughout the years. You'll never return the Marine Corps either. You'll go to a lot of really cool schools and you'll becoming a walking Encyclopedia of varying skill sets, but your days of leading Marines in the traditional sense is completely over. To some guys, this is genuinely appealing and to others, not so much.

If you have an agenda to go up the food chain into more specialized units following this phase of your life however, I would tell you to stop considering anything and immediately choose MARSOC.

In Reconnaissance you'll probably be pushed into a leadership role much more quickly, you'll bond with your team (fire team) and platoon, and you'll probably be with the same guys for years. It is still very much the Marine Corps - your personality and how you fit in will largely dictate how much you enjoy that situation. You will not have the newest equipment or much funding and you will become victim to the Marine Corps Planning Process. You will not go to nearly the same amount of specialized schools as MARSOC. MARSOC has a few hundred specialized schools ranging in 1 to 8 months in length whereas Reconnaissance has a list much smaller and shorter than that, like a few hundred less to be exact. Your time will be very valuable to you, you will wear uniforms and deal with silliness but if your biggest positive takeaway from the Marine Corps is being in the Marine Corps, I couldn't think of a better decision for you to make than to return to BRC as a lateral mover.

Hope this helps and best of luck in your decision.


H/A
Thank you for all of the info H/A. That is something I've considered, I like the aspect of being a Marine and hoped that whichever path I chose I was more Marine than anything. I dont have a lot of wishes for schools, I want to jump, dive, patrol, and know CAS, maybe scout sniper if the time is right.

I've heard complaints of doing nothing but MEUs from BN guys but I'm still told Force is on another level in terms of what mission set they have. I know its internal at the BN level who goes there but I feel like the Force Companies are the last bastion of the old school hardcore Marine everyone thinks of, at least from what I've seen and heard.

I think I've made up my mind, because I know RECON is hurting for candidates more than MARSOC as well and I truly want to be part of something greater than just myself. I feel like knowing I could potentially help revamp a Force Reconnaissance Company if I play my cards right makes me want to run faster and fin harder.

What if any difference is going on between BN and Force levels as of current? As far as mission profiles go. I want to jump into the ocean, ruck to shore, patrol and spy on enemies for 10 days then get a helicopter out of there. That's what gets me pumped for the future.
 

The Hate Ape

MARSOC
SOF Support
Joined
Oct 6, 2011
Messages
612
Location
West Coast
Stop talking and drop the Force Company assumptions. There is no difference currently and your ideal “mission” made me throw up in my mouth a little to be perfectly honest.

Just doing your job correctly contributes more than enough to the community so start and finish with that.

H/A
 
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