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  • Captain Harper

Do I need to have a particular college major to become an officer? Will my MOS be related?

Updated: Jul 22, 2020

From a qualification stand point, it doesn't matter what your major is in. While a STEM degree may be helpful if you are attempting to become a pilot, it is not required to qualify for either aviation or ground programs. The only exception to this are military lawyers. They are required to either be pursing a law degree or already bar certified.

A particular degree doesn't always translate directly to the military anyway. For instance, if you are finance major and want to use your degree to help manage the Marine Corps' finances, you will still have to attend a course to learn how finance works in the military.

Aside from law, the MOS’s available to you are not limited by your degree. There are several factors that go into determining what MOS is assigned to you but your degree is not necessarily one of them.

A review of famous Marine officers will bear this out. Robert Neller, former Commandant of the Marine Corps, has a degree in history. Similarly, Jim Mattis, Marine general and former Secretary of Defense, and Angela Salinas, first Hispanic female Marine general, both have degrees in history. Nathaniel Fick of Generation Kill fame, majored in Classics. Frederick W. Smith, Marine pilot and founder of FedEx, majored in economics. The first black female Marine combat pilot, Vernice Armour, majored in physical education. John Glenn, first Marine astronaut and US Senator, studied chemistry.

A Marine Officer is more than just their college degree; it's a calling. It is a profession that requires women and men of the highest caliber. If you think you meet this standard and want to become an officer in the Marine Corps, check out the website below and request to speak to your local Officer Selection Officer, Captain Chad Harper.



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