From Specialists to Officers

Officer Cadet School
I managed to make it to OCS (Officer Cadet School) after the foundation term in SCS (Specialist Cadet School). To be honest, I have no idea how I actually managed to be one of the honored few to be selected for the cross over, though I am extremely happy about it since it’s been one of my goals to commission as an officer of the Singapore Armed Forces. Special thanks goes out to my section mates who supported me all the way and made the past 8 weeks such a great experience.

Next up: endure 7 months of training in OCS and successfully commission as a 2nd Lieutenant.

UPDATE – 25th July 2015
I noticed that quite a lot of my blog’s visitors found this blog after Googling about crossing over from SCS to OCS, so I decided to write something that might be useful to them. Note that I have completed my full time National Service over 3 years ago and some of the pointers below might be outdated.

  • You will be selected largely based on your performance during the foundation course, which is separated into a few components: Knowledge, Abilities, Quality and Physical – your PC/OC in SCS might go through how they assess each component, so pay attention.
  • It would be good to get Gold for IPPT. In my batch of about 20+ SCS crossovers, there were only 2 or 3 guys who got Silver. Moreover, you should aim for as high a raw score as possible, so that you can score higher in your Physical component and pull up your total marks. (Yes, you are graded for your performance in your courses, and it will be reflected on your ORD certificate)
  • Volunteer for Platoon and/or Company level appointments. Now, this is tricky – don’t do it too early in the course, volunteer sometime in the middle of the course after you have gotten the hang of things (but not too late because by then the assessment scores would have already been submitted). And don’t be an ass or wayang too much when you are an appointment holder – because your section mates and platoon mates WILL screw you over during peer appraisal, which brings me to my next point.
  • Peer appraisal is important. During the selection interview, there was a guy in my group who had terrible peer appraisal scores. The interviewers really grilled him about it. He didn’t make it in the end.
  • Once you are recommended by your PC and OC to cross over, there is just one interview board left. During my time, it was a group interview, so the interviewers will ask a question and we would take turns to answer. Make sure you know the SAF core values well and you really know why you want to cross over to OCS. Most guys selected for the interview pass, but I know there was at least one guy who didn’t make it because of poor academic results (He failed GP for his A Levels – the SAF really knows everything).

During my time, every company shortlists about 3 to 5 guys for the interview. So good luck and all the best!

To Lead, to Excel and to Overcome.

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