A Special Forces Soldier applying camo face paint A Special Forces Soldier applying camo face paint

Special Forces

As a Green Beret, you’re a guerrilla warfare expert and use unconventional tactics to fight terrorists abroad.

Take On Enemies in Specialized Missions

Special Forces Soldiers are legendary for taking on the most sensitive Army missions after rigorous training and a highly selective evaluation.

2 Special Forces Soldiers in combat gear discussing a mission 2 Special Forces Soldiers in combat gear discussing a mission

SMALL, TACTICAL TEAMS WITH EXPERT SKILLS

From sabotaging enemy communications and supply lines to infiltrating enemy lines through quiet, guerrilla war-style tactics, you'll do what it takes to defeat enemies as a Special Forces Soldier.

As part of the elite Special Operations Forces, you'll work in a focused, small-team operational structure, leveraging the most advanced technology, weapons, and gear.

2 Special Forces Soldiers in combat gear training for a mission 2 Special Forces Soldiers in combat gear training for a mission

MASTER THE ELEMENT OF SURPRISE

Special Forces Soldiers are the toughest of tough. You’ll encounter a variety of missions with a primary focus on preventing terrorism through conducting surveillance and developing defense capabilities.

INTENSE TRAINING TO BECOME A SPECIAL FORCES SOLDIER

Thrive with more initiative, self-reliance, maturity, and resourcefulness when you become a Green Beret.

Special Forces Soldiers wearing a ghillie suit on a specialized mission Special Forces Soldiers wearing a ghillie suit on a specialized mission

Special Forces Requirements

Depending on which path you take, there are different requirements you’ll need to meet in order to become part of Special Forces.

Common Questions

Do I need to attend Basic Training to become a Special Forces Soldier?

Yes. In addition to Basic Combat Training, Soldiers must have completed Advanced Individual Training (AIT) and U.S. Army Airborne School to be eligible to begin Special Forces training.

What happens if I’m not selected to Special Forces during training?

If you are not ultimately selected to join Special Forces during training, you will be assigned to a unit as a qualified specialist based on Army needs. In most cases, you’ll work in the Army job you performed prior to applying to Special Forces—called Military Occupational Specialty (MOS).

What equipment, weapons, and gear do Special Forces Soldiers use?

Special Forces Soldiers carry the most advanced equipment in order to complete the most sensitive missions. While the gear and weapons vary based on the mission and team, Special Forces Soldiers use equipment such as: the lightweight all-terrain Ground Mobility Vehicle, the 7.62mm x 45mm shoulder-fired, gas-operated MK17 SCAR select fire modular weapon system with a free-floating barrel, the advanced ram air parachute specially designed for severe environmental conditions, night vision technology, the Re-Breather underwater breathing device to navigate rivers and streams unnoticed, the M-4 Carbine rifle, and the Nett Warrior situational awareness system for use during combat operations.

What language could I be assigned to learn as part of Special Forces training?

Assigned languages include French, Indonesian-Bahasa, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese-Mandarin, Korean, Persian-Farsi, Russian, Tagalog, Thai, Levantine, and Arabic (Egyptian).

Do Special Forces Soldiers receive extra pay?

Special Forces Soldiers receive special duty assignment pay, language pay, parachute pay, and special-skills pay such as military free-fall, combat diver, or demolition pay. Their total benefits package includes more than $50,000 toward education, 30 days of vacation yearly, complete medical and dental care, initial entry and reenlistment bonuses, and more.

What is the history of the Special Forces?

The first Special Forces unit was officially established during the 1950s, after several notable operational successes during World War II. However, unconventional warfare, a staple of small-unit operations, has its roots since before the Revolutionary War.

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Here's What Happens Next

  1. You'll receive an email confirming your request

  2. We'll provide additional information about next steps

  3. You'll work with us to decide whether the Army is right for you

Questions you may have right now

Who will reach out to me?

One of our recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

Who will reach out to me?

One of our ROTC recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

What will you ask me?

Our conversation will likely begin with some basic qualifying questions, like your age and education level. From there, the conversation will be about getting to know you and your goals for the future. Expect us to ask about your interests and skills so we can suggest Army jobs that might interest you.

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How can the Army help me pay for college?

Do I have to go to Basic Training?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How can the Army help me pay for college?

What is the time commitment for part-time service?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Can the Army help me pay for medical school?

Do I have to go to Basic Training?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How do I apply for ROTC scholarships?

How do I join ROTC at the college I want to attend?

Will I be expected to join if I talk to someone?

No. Our goal is to answer your questions and help you decide if the Army is a good option for you. We understand you may not be ready to join yet, or that we may not be the right fit, and that's fine. There's no obligation for talking to us.

Thanks for reaching out,

Here's What Happens Next

  1. You'll receive an email confirming your request

  2. We'll provide additional information about next steps

  3. You'll work with us to decide whether the Army is right for you

Questions you may have right now

Who will reach out to me?

One of our recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

What will you ask me?

Our conversation will likely begin with some basic qualifying questions, like your age and education level. From there, the conversation will be about getting to know you and your goals for the future. Expect us to ask about your interests and skills so we can suggest Army jobs that might interest you.

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Do I qualify to join the Army?

Can I join as an Officer?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Do I qualify to join the Army?

Can I join as an Officer?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

What type of health care jobs are available in the Army?

Can the Army help me pay for medical school?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Can I join ROTC at my age

Can I join as an Officer?

Will I be expected to join if I talk to someone?

No. Our goal is to answer your questions and help you decide if the Army is a good option for you. We understand you may not be ready to join yet, or that we may not be the right fit, and that's fine. There's no obligation for talking to us.

Thanks for reaching out, .

We admire you for considering such a big career decision at your age. Unfortunately, we're unable to directly reach out to you until you are at least sixteen years old and a junior in high school. However, the following ROTC info is something that may interest you now.

Questions you may have right now

How old do I have to be to serve in the Army full-time?

To become an enlisted Soldier, you must be 17 years old. To become an Army Officer, you must be at least 18 years old and have a college degree obtained either through ROTC, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, or from another college or university program. Learn more about Army Eligibility Requirements and how to receive Officer training while in college.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you

How do I apply for ROTC Scholarships?

Army ROTC has several scholarships available for college-bound high school students. Review your options at ROTC Scholarships, or immediately apply by creating an account at my.goarmy.com to get started.

How old do I have to be to serve in the Army part-time?

To become an enlisted Soldier, you must be 17 years old. To become an Army Officer, you must be at least 18 years old and have a college degree obtained either through ROTC, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, or from another college or university program. Learn more about Army Eligibility Requirements and how to receive Officer training while in college.

What are the ways to serve part-time?

You can serve part-time as a Soldier in the Army Reserve or the Army National Guard. By serving part-time, you are able to continue your college education or work a civilian job, while earning an extra paycheck and maintaining many of the benefits of military service.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you.

How do I become a health care provider in the Army?

You can serve part-time or full-time as you train in our health care program. Upon graduation of the program, you will enter the Army health care team as a Commissioned Officer.

What types of medical careers are available in the Army?

There are numerous health care careers available through the Army Medical Education Deparment (AMEDD), including physicians, dentists, nurses, veterinarians, and many more. View your career options.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you.

What are the benefits of joining ROTC?

ROTC makes it possible to achieve your ambitions. Become a leader and serve your country in one of the nation's top leadership training programs. You can do this while maintaining your college curriculum and earning up to 100% tuition coverage. Upon graduation, you're guaranteed a career as an Army Officer.

How do I prepare to join ROTC?

When you're at least 16 years old and at least a high school junior, you can reach out to us, or even talk to your high school counselor. Together, we'll talk options and decide if ROTC is the right path for you.

Will I become an Officer if I complete ROTC?

Yes. After graduation, you are commissioned as a highly respected second lieutenant in the Army, entrusted with leading other Soldiers.

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