How to Become a SEAL Officer

So you have made the decision to become a Navy SEAL Officer.  You have graduated from college and want to become one of America’s finest.  Your career as a SEAL Officer will be filled with adventure and is a great opportunity for those who desire a life filled with challenge and excitement.  The path to become a SEAL Officer will be extremely difficult, but I promise you that this decision will be one of the greatest you will make and will allow you many unique opportunities for leadership, responsibility, and advancement.  The men required to fill these critical leadership positions must be honorable men with vision of the future who can represent the nation well throughout the world.  Applicants must be dedicated to the Naval Special Warfare community, its mission and its people.

Future SEAL Officers must possess leadership skills, integrity, moral courage, teamwork, drive and a relentless pursuit of excellence in the face of adversity.  A SEAL Officer traditionally spends about five years leading platoon level operations.  After that, he moves into a broader leadership role, in which he plans large scale operations and troop movements. He then has options such as becoming a department head or a training officer in charge.  He can also work with allied or joint special operations forces.  Eventually, he will have the opportunity to become an executive officer and then the commanding officer of a SEAL Team.

During his career, a SEAL Officer will typically be stationed overseas at least once, be assigned to a command where special operations forces from all service work together, and command a unit that has at least two hundred people. Each year, Naval Special Warfare Command selects between 70 to 90 men to attend SEAL training as officers.  Because there are so few available officer slots, competition is extremely intense.  If successful during SEAL training, those officers then have the opportunity to lead SEALs in the full range of Naval Special Warfare missions.

Since SEAL Officers will be required to lead SEALs in challenging missions early in their careers, NSW is looking for men who possess proven leadership skills.  Men with the best chance of being selected have proven leadership, strong language and/or cultural expertise, superior academic performance in challenging majors and have succeeded in competitive sports.  Applicants must also have highly competitive Physical Screening Test scores.

All SEAL Officer candidates are asked to forward their inquiries to:

Email: [email protected]

In order to become a SEAL Officer, a candidate must first be commissioned through one of three sources: U.S. Naval Academy, Officer Candidate School, or the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps.

Naval Special Warfare Command also accepts a limited number of in-fleet transfers and officers from other services.  To be considered for an officer slot at BUD/S, you must prepare an application package for submission to a board of Navy SEAL Officers.   The board consists of one Navy SEAL Captain and at least three other SEAL Officers in grades Lieutenant through Commander.  There are a few different requirents depending upon the path you choose to become an Officer.  Contact the email above to discuss your particular situation and how you can best complete your package to become a Navy SEAL Officer.



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