05/22/2019 | By Chief Warrant Officer Edward Salazar Command Chief Warrant Officer, 108th Training Command (IET)
From the Command Chief Warrant Officer
As a team of Soldiers, we create a command and only by working together can we fill our ranks with qualified Soldiers. The Warrant Officer positions in the command are like any other position, they serve a purpose and require Soldiers to fulfill that purpose. Growing your warrant officers from within the command not only helps the Army’s Warrant Officer recruiting mission, but provides the command with a future Chief Warrant Officer that will provide the command with a myriad of expertise.
What qualifications are needed to become a Warrant Officer? Every Soldier starts out with everything they need to become a Warrant Officer, except for a few key ingredients. From the Warrant Officer Recruiting site (https://www.goarmy.com/careers-and-jobs/current-and-prior-service/advance-your-career/warrant-officer.html) applicants for the Warrant Officer Candidate School (WOCS) and Warrant Officer Flight Training (WOFT) program must:
- Have a high school diploma.
- Be at least 18 years old at the time of enlistment and not have passed their 33rd birthday at the time of selection (for aviators) or their 46th birthday for all other specialties. Age waivers are considered on a case-by-case basis.
- Be a citizen of the United States.
- For WOFT Candidates only: Achieve a qualifying score on the Selection Instrument for Flight Training (SIFT). SIFT test results are valid indefinitely, as long as verifiable official records exist. No waivers are available for failure to meet the minimum SIFT score.
- Earn a General Technical score of 110 or higher on the Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB).
- Have at least 12 months remaining on their enlistment contract.
- Meet the Army’s screening height and weight standards and pass the standard three-event Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) not more than six months before their application packet is boarded.
- Take a physical exam and meet entry medical fitness standards as determined by military medical authorities no more than 24 months prior to the date of application. Aviation applicants must also undergo a Class 1A Flight Physical Examination and have results approved by Flight Surgeons at Fort Rucker, Alabama, prior to the selection board. The Flight Physical must be less than 18 months old.
Additional Requirements for Technical Specialties
- Must complete MOS training.
- Must complete appropriate Noncommissioned Officer Education System (NCOES) Leadership Courses.
- Must have documented proficiency in specialty area.
- Must meet prerequisite standards for specialty area.
Becoming a Warrant Officer seems like an insurmountable task, and when a Soldier enlists in the Army, they only have completing basic training on their mind. However, many have taken up the challenge of the Warrant Officer cohort and are now Warrant Officers. For most Soldiers that yearn for more responsibility, more rank, more money, the Warrant Officer path may be for them. In my own experience, I wanted to be more to the military and the Warrant Officer seemed like a great way to show my worth to my commander and my fellow Marines (by the way I came to the Army Reserve from the United States Marine Corps, which had its own set of challenges). Now that I have reached Chief Warrant Officer-5, I can truly say that becoming an Army Warrant Officer is worth the time and energy it took to get here.
Do you want to have more responsibility? An enlisted Army Reserve Soldier already has a responsibility to the Army, their Commander and their fellow Soldiers. As a Warrant Officer you also have the responsibility to continually learn how to take your Military Occupational Specialty to the limit, and possibly provide new techniques to enhance that specialty. You will be provided with the opportunity to be the subject matter expert every time you do your Army job, and continue to be an expert at the common core tasks as well.
Have you seen an enlisted Soldiers that always excels, the Soldier that raises a hand to volunteer, while others remain still? Right now, there is an enlisted Soldier with the potential to become a Warrant Officer that wants to be challenged. Both commanders and senior enlisted know where the vacant Warrant Officer positions are, and can tell which Soldiers have the potential to become a Warrant Officer. Granted, not all enlisted Soldiers that apply will make it through the Warrant Officer selection, and those selected will be challenged to their limits during the Warrant Officer Candidate School. I quote the Honorable Colin Powell (65th United States Secretary of State and 12th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), on achieving your goals, “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.” As the Command Chief Warrant Officer of the 108th Training Command (IET), I work to identify, motivate, and mentor enlisted Soldiers to become Warrant Officer Candidates. Those new Warrant Officers in your ranks are my best advertisement for the vacant Warrant Officer positions in your commands.
First in Training!