Job Family: Combat Operations Infantry Officers
Services Offering this Occupation
Army  | Marine Corps

Supplemental Information
Profile  |  Career Path
Photo 1: Officer gives directions to troops. Photo 2:
Officer inspects target of German soldier.

Wayne Garvey
Occupation: Infantry Officer

Growing up in a small town in Texas, I enjoyed working outdoors and knew I would like the life of a soldier. During my ROTC training at the Vir…

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Short Description
In peacetime, the infantry stays ready to defend the country anywhere in the world. In combat, the infantry is deployed to capture or destroy enemy forces on the ground and to repel enemy invasions. Infantry officers direct, train, and lead infantry units.


What They Do
Infantry officers in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Gather and evaluate intelligence on enemy strength and positions
  • Develop offensive and defensive battle plans
  • Coordinate plans with armor, artillery, and air support units
  • Direct construction of bunkers, fortifications, and obstacles to support and camouflage infantry positions
  • Direct the use of infantry weapons and equipment, such as machine guns, mortars, rocket launchers, and armored personnel carriers
  • Develop and supervise infantry unit training

Helpful Attributes
Helpful fields of study include engineering, history, physical education, and business or public administration. Helpful attributes include:
  • Ability to motivate and lead others
  • Interest in land battle history and strategy
  • Willingness to accept a challenge and face danger

Training Provided
Job training consists of classroom instruction and field training under simulated combat conditions. Training length varies depending on specialty. Course content typically includes:
  • Infantry leadership roles
  • Infantry squad and platoon tactics
  • Modern offensive and defensive combat techniques

Work Environment
Because infantry officers must be prepared to lead their troops anywhere in the world that the infantry is needed, they work and train in all climates and weather conditions. During training exercises, as in real combat situations, infantry officers work, eat, and sleep outdoors and in tents. When not in the field, infantry officers perform administrative and management duties in offices.


Civilian Counterparts
Although the job of infantry officer has no equivalent in civilian life, the leadership and administrative skills it provides are similar to those used in many civilian managerial occupations.

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