Marine Corps Reserves - A Path to Success
by U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Brennan J. Beauton
The Marine Corps Reserves has stood at the
ready since 1916 ... to strengthen active forces
in peacetime and in time of war. It also serves to provide support
during national emergencies or lead community service efforts.
The reserves has many benefits, including, being stationed near
home or school, guaranteed military occupational specialty at the
time of enlistment, advanced MOS training and leadership
opportunities, the same recruit training and formal schools as
active-duty Marines, and even educational financial assistance. It
can be used as a stepping stone to propel an individual’s career
Left to right - Donovan Smith, a U.S. Marine Corps poolee,
U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Samantha Phipps, a bulk fuel
specialist with Bulk Fuel Company Charlie, and U.S. Marine
Corps 2nd Lt. Jonathan Bromley, a temporary officer
selection officer with Recruiting Station Phoenix in Arizona. This
image shows the progression of individuals, who plan to become a Marine Officer by joining the Delayed Entry Program, earning the title then commissioning
... all through the Reserves. (U.S. Marine Corps photo illustration by Sgt. Brennan J. Beauton
- October 20, 2022)
Donovan Smith, a U.S. Marine Corps poolee,
joined the Delayed Entry Program as a reservist in July 2021. The
Avondale, Arizona, native, joined the reserves to continue his
education with bigger goals in mind.
“I wanted to go to
school specifically, so I can eventually commission as a Marine
officer and become a pilot,” said Smith, a senior at Agua Fria High
School. “The reason why I want to become a pilot is because I want
enough flight hours to essentially qualify for any requirements
needed to become an astronaut.”
After Smith earns the title of U.S. Marine, he
will work with the officer selection officer to take the necessary
steps toward commissioning as a Marine Corps officer through the
Platoon Leaders Course.
Reservists do not have to commission
as an officer, nor do they have to go active duty once serving.
Though, it does make the transition, to either active duty or
officer, much smoother.
Lance Cpl. Samantha Phipps, a bulk
fuel specialist with Bulk Fuel Company Charlie, enlisted into the
Marine Corps as a reservist with her sights set on becoming a Marine
“Joining the reserves was a part of the plan to
recreate myself into becoming a Marine Corps officer,” said Phipps,
a native of Surprise, Arizona. “Many mentors, both enlisted and
commissioned, recommended becoming a Marine and being a part of the
enlisted culture before leading. I wanted to go active duty but
needed time to multitask in college, and the reserves was the middle
She explained why commissioning is important to her.
“Growing up, I’ve always wanted to fly aircraft, like my
grandfather,” she said. “My father in 1987, while he was in ‘A’
school, bought a Naval Leadership book, by the Navy Press, and
decades later gave it to me, when I was in middle school. The
opportunity to commission will allow me to develop my skills of
managing missions and assessing deficiencies with solutions. The
goal is to do 20 years and take all my experiences and apply them to
the civilian world as a CEO.”
Phipps is set to attend Officer
Candidate School, and upon graduation, she will serve among a group
of just 21,000 Marine Corps officers.
2nd Lt. John Bromley,
an officer selection officer with the Officer Selection Team
Phoenix, recently made the transition from enlisted reservist, to a
Marine Corps officer.
“I wanted to join the reserves to gain
some experience in the Marine Corps, first hand, not only through
the initial active-duty training, but also through being surrounded
by experienced Marines throughout my time in college and the
reserves,” said Bromley, a native of Peoria, Arizona. “I knew the
end goal was commissioning, but I knew through this way, I would
gain experience being enlisted first.”
Bromley explains how
the path is not easy, but it can be rewarding.
difficult portion taking the route of enlisting in the reserves and
then commissioning as an officer, is staying focused after the
initial active-duty training,” he said. “Switching right back into
school after the training can lead to distractions, but if you
remember your end goal, it is not hard. Many who enlist in the
reserves originally do so in order to eventually commission, but
they end up not joining the Marine Officer Program. Some Marines
change their goals, which is completely fine. However, for those
Marines who still want to commission, after their initial training
and upon starting college, contact the OSO right away. You can even
contact the OSO as soon as you start Marine Combat Training.”
From the Delayed Entry Program, to a commissioned Marine
officer, the reserves is a path that young men and women can use to
pursue their dreams. Smith, Phipps and Bromley are prime examples of
that journey toward success.
To find out more about the
Marine Corps reserves and all it has to offer, contact your local
Marine Corps recruiter to see if the Reserves is the fit for you!
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