Special Warfare: SEALs
"The only easy day was yesterday"
The newly commissioned officer from the NROTC program may elect to pursue a career in Naval Special Warfare, which is the smallest of the unrestricted line communities. The Special Warfare Officer concentrates on the development of skills in the areas of unconventional warfare, counter-insurgency, coastal and riverine interdiction, and tactical intelligence collection. To enter this career area, the officer must meet the various physical prerequisites, volunteer for hazardous duty, and request to be selected to receive Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL (BUDS) Training.
BUDS Training is a 6-month course that is both physically and mentally demanding. Prospective SEAL officers and enlisted personnel are required to successfully complete the course before being admitted to the SEAL community. It is specifically designed to provide the necessary basic physical and technical skills needed by the Special Warfare operator, and its requirements are sufficiently demanding so only those who are highly motivated will complete the course. In BUDS Training officers receive instruction in the planning and conduct of all phases and forms of Naval Special Warfare, including the various forms of hydrographic reconnaissance, land and underwater demolitions, individual and crew served weapons, small unit tactics, land reconnaissance, and various types of SCUBA.
Successful completion of BUDS Training signifies that an officer has attained the necessary skills to be assigned to a SEAL or SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team and this initial assignment marks the start of a SEAL officer's professional development. A first-tour SEAL officer can expect to be assigned as an assistant Platoon Commander, receiving advanced instruction that will expand upon the basic skills obtained during BUDS Training. Additional training in new areas such as parachuting and SEAL Delivery Vehicle Operations will also be included. A new SEAL officer will also receive pre-deployment training prior to a first deployment to a forward deployed Naval Special Warfare Unit or with an Amphibious Ready Group.
To some people, comfort is a warm spot under the covers or a favorite couch. To a SEAL, comfort is more likely to be that warm fuzzy feeling that comes from a job well done; even if the job requires you to jump from a hot airplane into a cold ocean.