Marines or Finance out of Undergrad?

Hi,

Rising sophomore in undergrad. Studying Finance.

I have been planning on breaking into IB out of school. I recently have developed a strong desire to join the marines (as an officer, out of school. Not doing ROTC). I would likely only be in for four years.

My question is should I do a year or two stint in finance, grind my ass off for OCS, and do whatever comes next after my time served? Or should I join the marines straight out of school, and go from there?

Leaning towards the first option, but not sure about its plausibility.Β 

Thank you

Comments (58)

4mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

What do you want to do in the Marine Corps?

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Most Helpful
4mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

theman77

Could you be more specific please? Not sure I understand

There are different jobs within the Marine Corps.Β 

https://veteran.com/usmc-mos-codes/

Here are the different occupational fields for Marine Corps officers:

  • 01 – Manpower Officer

Manpower officers provide human resource and administrative support and would be responsible for ensuring the right people are in the right jobs.

  • 02 – Intelligence Officer

Intelligence officers are trained in one of the following intel disciplines: ground, human source, signals or air intelligence. Once they are promoted to major, all the areas merge, and they become Marine air ground task force (MAGTF) intel officers.

  • 03 – Infantry Officer

Marine infantry officers are responsible for training Marines in various ground combat missions, gathering and evaluating intel on enemy forces, developing battle plans and commanding your unit's use of weapons and equipment.

  • 04 – Logistics Officer

This job is critical in planning strategies for units at all levels. You would coordinate the movement of troops and equipment from ship to shore and onto forward operating bases.

  • 06 – Communications Officer

The communications officer is the mainstay for command and control of Marine forces. Their job would be to oversee the planning, installation, operation and maintenance of telecommunications and computer systems. They have to quickly establish communications capabilities on the battlefield.

  • 08 – Field Artillery Officer

Field artillery officers are responsible for leading Marines in tactics, gunnery and gunline drills. They provide close-fire support for infantry, armored reconnaissance and tank units.

  • 13 – Combat Engineer Officer

Combat engineer officers lead Marines in demolition, mine and countermine warfare; obstacle placement; breaching and construction. They work in one of four categories of engineering: \Mmobility, counter mobility, survivability and general engineering.

  • 17 – Cyberspace Officer

Cyberspace officers command or assist in commanding a cyberspace operations unit or element. They supervise, direct and provide guidance on all aspects of the employment of cyberspace personnel and systems.Β 

  • 18 – Amphibious Assault Vehicle Officer

Amphibious assault vehicle officers would command assault amphibian units and direct AA units on maneuvers, tactical problems and in combat.

  • 30 – Ground Supply Officer

Ground supply officers lead and train troops in coordinating equipment and supplies for missions. They supervise the buying and contracting of supplies, manage budgets and develop spending plans.

  • 34 – Financial Management Officer

Financial management officers are in charge of all financial issues. These issues include managing budgets and disbursing actions. Their job will be to coordinate military pay and travel, budgeting, accounting and directing internal reviews.

  • 44 – Judge Advocate

Marine Corps judge advocates are responsible for advising Marines on legal issues. They need law degrees and would need to be accepted into the judge advocate general's (JAG) corps program.

  • 45 – Communication Strategy and Operations Officer

Communication strategy and operations (CommStrat) officers develop communications plans for national and international audiences. They also advise commanders regarding communication strategy.

  • 58 – Military Police Officer

Military police officers provide support to your commanders in all areas of law enforcement. They may provide security and law enforcement support on-base or on deployment.

  • 60 – Aviation Maintenance Officer

Aviation maintenance officers oversee Marines who maintain aircraft and aviation equipment. Their job is to make sure all aircraft are ready to fly to support any mission.

  • 66 – Aviation Supply Officer

Aviation supply officers make essential decisions about budget, inventory management, deployment, personnel and other support matters. They work in the aviation supply department in one of the Marine Aviation Logistics Squadrons (MALS).

  • 72 – Aviation Command and Control Officer

Aviation command and control officers serve in one of these three jobs: Air support control officer, air defense control officer or air traffic control officer. Their main duties would include directing the interception of hostile aircraft, directing the employment of surface-to-air missiles, coordinating air support missions and leading activities associated with air traffic control and airspace management.

  • 75 – Pilots and Naval Flight Officers

Pilot and naval flight officers (NFO) fly or operate the weapons and electronic systems on board F/A-18 Hornets, EA-6B Prowlers and other assigned aircraft. The pilot focuses on flying the aircraft, and the NFO focuses on the weapons systems.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 10
4mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Also, if you sign up now for the Marine Corps, they might be able to pay your last 3 years of school.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

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4mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

theman77

What would that entail?

I think you have to dress up once per week for ROTC and also go on training activities in the summer.Β 

"Annually, the Marine Corps awards the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) Marine Scholarship to an allotted number of students each year. It pays the full college tuition, including $750 per academic year for text books and a monthly subsistence allowance."

https://www.9thmcd.marines.mil/News/News-Article-Display/Article/994498/paying-for-college-nrotc-marine-scholarship/#:~:text=Annually%2C%20the%20Marine%20Corps%20awards,and%20a%20monthly%20subsistence%20allowance.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 2
4mo
theman77, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Do you think the difference between joining at 22 vs 24/25 is huge? I imagine the largest obstacle would just be having the time to exercise with a time consuming job

4mo
Lifestyle123, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I got out at 27. I felt great at 23. In my last year, I would feel like shit in the mornings afterΒ  miles of rucking/patrolling with 70lbs+. In your early twenties basically every year you have been getting stronger and more athletic naturally. Things change when you get closer to 30. You do not recover as well and you start having nagging injuries. Unless you plan on doing 20 and retiring, I would recommend doing your years as early in your life as possible.

4mo
CRE Finance, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I did ROTC with the Army, and decided to commission into the Reserve so I could begin my civilian career in Commercial real estate. I'm not sure if you have this option through OCS Marine Corps, but I'll tell you this: I met a few old ROTC buddies at a bar a few weeks ago. They never commissioned through ROTC - they dropped straight into OCS following graduation and are now officers in the Marine Corps ( you probably understand that's a very prestigious career for an officer in the U.S. Armed Forces. Marine officers are top of the line). They've never been happier and they're having a great time.Β 
Β 

lots of folks have done this, and the exit ops to Finance, three-letter agencies, top MBA programs are endless.Β 
Β 

On the other hand, I did ROTC and am in the Army part-time with my civilian career in finance, and I'm having a great time. But sometimes, I wish I realized life is longer than you think and I realized that 4 years of AD wouldn't have hurt my career.Β 
Β 

really a question you have to dig deep and try to figure out what you want. Feel free to PM if you'd like.Β 

β€œBestow pardon for many things; seek pardon for none.”
  • 2
4mo
macroboxing, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I can speak to the second option. I am actually joining later this year to Army OCS, active duty taking military leave from my current role in finance. I am in my late 20s and have been working in the industry since I left undergrad. I had thought about going to one of the academies in high school and the decision not to stuck with me. It was now or never for me.Β 

If you end up getting a job at a major bank, they will have a very generous military leave policy if you do decide to serve. Most major US companies will offer a differential pay, where they will cover your base salary - army pay for up to 5 years. I actually didn't know about this until after I made the decision to apply. Your job is protected for up to 5 years by federal law. If you have any stock compensation that will vest as per schedule too.Β 

The only thing I would be aware of is that your life might change after you graduate. Your desire might not be as strong in a few years or you might get comfortable with your life. You might meet someone. My circumstances made it much easier, I am single (most important) and don't have any other obligations other than to myself. My parents are supportive as well. I feel like I got the most out of civilian life in my 20s and don't have FOMO, etc.Β 

4mo
theman77, what's your opinion? Comment below:

So you're saying if I graduate, work in finance, make a load of money, then join the marines, I'll get paid what I got paid at my job in finance during the military? That seems great.

Thanks for the response btw.

4mo
macroboxing, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You will get your base salary (no bonus) which is still a considerable amount of money. So let's say you join when you are a 3rd year Analyst or Associate (2-3 years of working) assuming street base salary is now 150k. The 2LT base salary is about 40k. Your company would pay you (150k-40k=110k) each year while you are away. You are also entitled to any promotions or salary raises you would have accumulated while you were away when you return.Β 

4mo
tucci, what's your opinion? Comment below:
macroboxing

I can speak to the second option. I am actually joining later this year to Army OCS, active duty taking military leave from my current role in finance. I am in my late 20s and have been working in the industry since I left undergrad. I had thought about going to one of the academies in high school and the decision not to stuck with me. It was now or never for me.Β 

If you end up getting a job at a major bank, they will have a very generous military leave policy if you do decide to serve. Most major US companies will offer a differential pay, where they will cover your base salary - army pay for up to 5 years. I actually didn't know about this until after I made the decision to apply. Your job is protected for up to 5 years by federal law. If you have any stock compensation that will vest as per schedule too.Β 

The only thing I would be aware of is that your life might change after you graduate. Your desire might not be as strong in a few years or you might get comfortable with your life. You might meet someone. My circumstances made it much easier, I am single (most important) and don't have any other obligations other than to myself. My parents are supportive as well. I feel like I got the most out of civilian life in my 20s and don't have FOMO, etc.Β 

Do you have a list of major banks/EBs that have such a pilicy. Or how does one find out this information?

4mo
macroboxing, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You will have to search to confirm. I'm fairly certain it's a pretty standard practice across the major US banks (GS, JPM, MS, BoFA, Citi). They have entire pages dedicated to their support of the military and veterans. Big tech is similar, I know FB, Google, and Netflix offer the same. EBs might be iffy given their size. By federal law, companies are only required to protect your job not pay you, its out of their own generosity.Β 

4mo
Whateverlooksgood, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Both good options but both have toxic cultures lol. My bf was in the marine corps for 5 years and I see the trauma every day but I also deal with a lot of unhealthy patterns from my banking years. USMC really does a great job covering the best benefits for marines and even after you leave you're still well covered for life. There are lots of perks and privileges that will help you and your future family that you won't get in IB. Free tickets, random discounts, preboarding, tax free stuff on base, lower mortgage rates, no down payment, better insurance, etc. i mean I'm not even naming 5% of the perks. Also some IB like to recruit people with military background too.

2mo
Macrolevel, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Prefer to recruit prior enlisted too (assuming relevant degree)? Or are they mainly interested in former officers

4mo
Howlin' Jim, what's your opinion? Comment below:

In the words of Rachel Jeantel,

"That's real retarded, sir."

The time to join the military was the day after you graduated high school. Going officer straight out of college without going in as a lifer means you'll spend your few years of service being clueless and ineffective at your job, while also being universally despised. And at the end of your inital service commitment, you'll be getting out as soon as you start to grow into a capable leader that maybe peple don't hate so much. Your end result is trading ~4 years of IB pay and experience (don't trust anything but the Military Pay Tables for comp; The Servicemen's Civil Relief Act is nice, but it ain't "IB pay + stock comp for everybody" nice) for a world of low-paying suck that doesn't make you better at anything but sucking.

It might look good on a B-school application, but that's about it. Especially at this point, it's nowhere near the heartache. Just hit an IB desk and, shit, idk, play airsoft on the weekends?

4mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:
Howlin' Jim

In the words of Rachel Jeantel,

"That's real retarded, sir."

The time to join the military was the day after you graduated high school. Going officer straight out of college without going in as a lifer means you'll spend your few years of service being clueless and ineffective at your job, while also being universally despised. And at the end of your inital service commitment, you'll be getting out as soon as you start to grow into a capable leader that maybe peple don't hate so much. Your end result is trading ~4 years of IB pay and experience (don't trust anything but the Military Pay Tables for comp; The Servicemen's Civil Relief Act is nice, but it ain't "IB pay + stock comp for everybody" nice) for a world of low-paying suck that doesn't make you better at anything but sucking.

It might look good on a B-school application, but that's about it. Especially at this point, it's nowhere near the heartache. Just hit an IB desk and, shit, idk, play airsoft on the weekends?

The military is a great experience. These points are bogus. Also, if he signs now he can possibly get undergrad tuition for free and a free MBA as well, and then go into IB after the MBA.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • 1
4mo
theman77, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You don't think I'll gain anything from it?

Instead of looking at the skills I gain as a waste because I'm leaving, I'd rather look at it as skills I'll have for the rest of my life. Leadership, discipline, how to fight, etc. Plus I do want to join the marines. If I wanted just money then I'd do IB for eternity. Thank you for the perspective though.

4mo
Howlin' Jim, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The problem with that is that the military doesn't teach you discipline, especially not as an officer.

It's a screener for those things, yeah, but if you're commissioning you'll already be expected to know how to not shit the bed.

On the leadership front, with the timeline you're talking about, you're not going to get a meaningful amount of organizational leadership experience within the 4 years you want to commit.

The fighting thing is a (marginally) okay point, but are you going to use it? Unless you're going infantry/aviation/etc. (doesn't give you any real transferrable skills), you won't really be taught how to wage war in any capacity, and if you do go that route to learn those things, why use the military for school / white collar job after?

Now, don't think that I'm just negative on the military as a whole because of this, but please understand that the process you're talking about (Finishing college, taking 4 years to almost get good at being an officer in whatever intel / vehicle operations / facilities / payroll slot you get, stopping being an officer, going back to being a [4-year-older and just as inexperienced] civilian and THEN breaking into IB) doesn't make sense when you're already in a position to just, you know, get into IB.

Sure, the military benefits sound nice, but a solid white collar job is already like right there, you can just have it.

That being said, if it's truly about the learning to fight and experience and transferrable skills and all that, just sack up and enlist, no degree required. You'll get the 100% full-blown military experience you want and you'll be made completely and disgustingly aware of exactly how awful of an idea this is.

4mo
TheBusinessAdministrationMajor, what's your opinion? Comment below:

When I was in school there was a program where you could do bootcamp without formally joining. I suspect that they know that your success in the bootcamp, the comradaryΒ  and peer pressure will make you enlist either way.

If you're on the edge you should look into that program. You'll basically join unless you really hate it. Many people have successful careers after serving in the armed services. I you join now, you can cross both items off your bucket list.

4mo
theman77, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Is it the PLC program? I have been looking into it.

Went to a recruitment building, and they told me PLC was only for reserve marines (trying to get me to enlist in college, skip a semester, and go to OCS through PLC).

Spoke with the head OSO and I think he slipped up and told me I could do it without enlisting.

When I googled it, everything popped up telling me that any student could join. If you have any info please let me know. I'd understand if they twisted the truth, but flat out lying about the program to get me to enlist during school is wild to me

4mo
GeorgeSorosFinanceMaster, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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4mo
Ehmerica, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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Only two sources I trust, Glenn Beck and singing woodland creatures.
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