Army Officers

Lead the future.

Find out what it takes to stand among fearless leaders as an Army Officer.

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Succeed as a leader.

A uniformed Officer sitting at a desk with his hands clasped

As a commissioned Officer, you’re not only a leader who guides, problem-solves, and plans for upcoming missions, but you’re also empowered to make decisions that can have impact across the globe.

  • Lead with authority and respect
  • Apply leadership skills and expertise
  • Conduct real-world missions
  • Train and mentor junior Soldiers

Ways to become an Army Officer.

If you’re pursuing a college education or already have your degree, you have options to earn a commission as an Officer.

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Graduate college as an Officer with ROTC.

Earn college scholarships, develop leadership skills, and advance your military career while on campus with the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

  • Graduate with a secure career as a commissioned Officer
  • Start at the rank of second lieutenant
  • Complete Officer training and other certifications during the summer
Two female West Point cadets celebrating at a large graduation ceremony

Attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Prepare to lead while earning a degree from the prestigious U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

  • Earn a Bachelor of Science degree in an immersive military environment
  • Receive a funded college education and annual stipend of $10,000+
  • Enter the Army as a values-driven leader 
A female Officer Candidate is pinned during an Officer Candidate School graduation ceremony

Train in Officer Candidate School.

Officer Candidate School (OCS) is an intensive program designed for enlisted Soldiers and civilians with college degrees to earn a commission to become an Officer.

  • Join the Army’s 12-week Officer training program
  • Utilize your undergraduate degree to advance in rank
  • Refine your leadership skills and gain the opportunity to lead Soldiers


Apply your knowledge and skillset to a career with meaning. A direct commission appoints civilians with professional experience directly to an Officer rank.

  • Utilize your professional expertise to become a leader in the Army

  • Join a mission with a purpose

  • Work in state-of-the-art facilities around the world

A female Army surgeon using a surgical robot on a patient during a procedure


As an enlisted Soldier, you have endless opportunities to rise through the ranks and advance your career. If you want to become a technical expert in your field and a highly-respected leader, the Army Warrant Officer path could be right for you.

  • Demonstrate expert technical skills

  • Get recruited to apply to Warrant Officer Candidate School (WOCS) after two years of service

  • Serve as an advisor on specialized and strategic missions as a Warrant Officer

Army Cyber Soldiers in front of computers, working inside a Cyber center


When you’re an Officer in the Army, the ability to grow your career doesn’t stop. You can have a fulfilling lifelong career with many opportunities for training and advancement. Becoming an Officer will also help you if you decide to enter the civilian workforce, as employers place a high value on workers who can lead others in challenging situations.

Three Army Soldiers in uniform wearing headsets looking at screens in front of them


Find out more about becoming a Soldier and if a career in the Army is right for you.

Common questions about Army Officers.

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How long does it take to become an Officer?

It depends on which path you choose. If you choose to become an Officer through the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) or the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, you’ll become an Officer after completing four years of college. Through Officer Candidate School (OCS), you’re commissioned as an Army second lieutenant after completing a brief enlistment period and the 12-week course, but you’ll still need to earn a four-year degree from an accredited university.

If you join through direct commission, you’re automatically an Officer when you enter the Army, but your commission may still be dependent upon completion of specific courses and certifications related to your specialty.

What is the salary like for Army Officers? Are there additional benefits?

Army Officer salaries are generally comparable with mid- to senior-level corporate executives. However, when you consider additional benefits like free health care for full-time Soldiers, as well as allowances for housing and food, opportunities to get an advanced degree without incurring debt, 30 days paid leave every year, and more financial benefits, the Army is more competitive than similar civilian careers.

Do I need a college degree to become an Army Officer?

Yes, the one basic requirement to become an Officer is that you must have a bachelor’s degree—not necessarily at the start of the process, but by the time you’re commissioned as an Officer. If you don’t have a degree yet, the Green to Gold program is a way for enlisted Soldiers to earn a commission as an Army Officer after completing a bachelor’s degree or a two-year graduate degree.

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