No military force can operate without a keen set of eyes and ears such as those provided by a U.S. Navy intelligence officer. The Navy intelligence community contributes to the strategy and operations developed and undertaken by the U.S. Navy. An important part of a Navy Intelligence officer's job is to thoroughly analyze top secret data. For example, Navy intelligence officers are trained to examine foreign military weapons systems and identify enemy targets for combat commanders.
Navy Intelligence Officers
The Navy intelligence officer community draws its strength from the men and women serving within its ranks. Applicants for the Navy's intelligence officer community must be college graduates or those graduating in the near future. You also have to be at least 19 but no more than 42 years of age to be commissioned as a Navy intelligence officer. The Navy is always looking for exceptionally qualified individuals to serve within its intelligence officer ranks.
Navy Officer Training
To be selected for a Navy officer commission, you'll need to do well on certain aptitude tests. No specific college major is needed to become an intelligence officer, but Navy aptitude tests screen for a variety of verbal, analytical and reasoning abilities. If you're selected for a Navy officer commission, you'll head to the Navy's Officer Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island. Navy OCS lasts for 12 weeks; it's designed to train and prepare college graduates to become commissioned officers.
Intelligence Officer Training
Once you've graduated from OCS and been commissioned, your career as a Navy intelligence officer begins in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Hopeful Navy intelligence officers go through a five-month basic course of instruction at the Navy and Marine Corps Intelligence Center, Dam Neck. Navy intelligence officers are trained in a wide range of skills such as face-to-face interviewing of people for intelligence purposes. Because of the training received, new Navy intelligence officers must commit to a four- to five-year active duty service obligation.
Your Initial Assignment
Graduates of the Navy's intelligence training course serve an initial 24-month tour in one of several types of Navy commands. New Navy intelligence officers are typically assigned to aviation squadrons, aircraft carriers or amphibious command ships and with special warfare Navy SEAL units. As a Navy officer, you'll lead enlisted sailors and supervise the collection, analysis and dissemination of intelligence critical to your command's success. Your sustained superior performance will help to ensure your chances for promotion to higher officer ranks.
Tony Guerra served more than 20 years in the U.S. Navy. He also spent seven years as an airline operations manager. Guerra is a former realtor, real-estate salesperson, associate broker and real-estate education instructor. He holds a master's degree in management and a bachelor's degree in interdisciplinary studies.