Infantry officer

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Infantry officer


The infantry is one of the oldest sections of the military. These are the soldiers who advance on foot, using hand held or operated weapons to reach their objectives. They also use tanks, and work alongside members of the artillery and the airforce to gain control of land, locate enemy soldiers, and secure dangerous and volatile areas. The infantry works in battle situations, as well as in peacekeeping missions.

Infantry officers command and lead infantry troops. They are flexible, driven, and motivators to the members of their units. They make decisions regarding their unit's discipline, morale, and combat prospects. They analyze and assess which soldiers are ready for what work, as well as assess the equipment regularly to assure it is battle-ready. Officers must understand the role of other supporting military forces, as well as their own.

The role of infantry officer comes with many responsibilities. This important position is filled with competent, dedicated officers who understand that they have to handle new and greater responsibilities as the years go by.

Though they often use heavy and dangerous weaponry, the infantry officers' objective is not to go out there and kill and destroy the enemy, but to reclaim land and find and detain dangerous persons, without bringing unnecessary harm to soldiers or civilians.
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  Interests and Skills  
The military looks for people who are loyal, comfortable following rules and order, courageous, and proud of their country. An infantry officer must have integrity and be a good leaders, with excellent communication skills. They should be fair, honest, and diligent workers, who don't shy away from hard, messy work. They should have respect for other cultures and belief systems, and be able to adjust to change in environment easily and without complaint. A professional attitude, good observation skills, and a good memory are also assets to the officer, as is the ability to speak two or more languages. Above all, they must have a genuine interest in helping all members of the international community.

  Typical Tasks  
  • Supervise soldiers
  • Lead missions on foot and in tanks
  • Use hand held weapons and hand operated weapons
  • Navigate unfamiliar territory
  • Complete reports documenting activities
  • Maintain battle equipment
  • Direct weapon use
  • Supervise and direct officers in training
  • Assume responsibility for welfare, morale and discipline of units
  • Review and evaluate unit performance, prepare reports and provide briefings for superiors
  • The typical day involves directing and supervising their unit's soldiers. They can do this in war zones or even in places of peace, even on base in the US. They arrange for battle and peacekeeping actions. They travel around the world, but not always for pleasant reasons. They meet all sorts of people, from all walks of life.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Members of the military are at work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, and in active service anywhere and everywhere in the world. Depending on the military operations at the time, military officers may find themselves working within humanitarian operations, war, peacemaking or peace keeping missions. They could be living and working in a base community in southern Alabama or may be living and working away from their families, in traumatic, ravaged areas. They will work outdoors, in all kinds of weather and climate conditions. They will be indoors, working in nice offices or dark, cramped, bombed-out offices. The work environment can be stressful, and requires physical as well as mental fitness.

  Long Term Career Potential  
Infantry officers who want to leave the military for a more civilian existence can apply their knowledge and skill to work as police officers, firefighters, or any other high-adrenaline jobs. They can also advance to more senior positions within the army, should they choose to stay in service.

  Educational Paths  
Joining the armed forces requires completion of high school, passing a medical exam as well as a series of interviews and tests. Then, individuals may pursue a university degree on their own, or can attend university as an officer in training, which means the military sponsors their education. Then, they go through basic training, a thirteen-week course that teaches history, fitness, and leadership. The next step is to learn how to lead an infantry section. Individuals then learn basic weapons handling, navigation, leadership and communication strategies. Much of this training takes place outdoors.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition,
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2002,

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