Military Enlisted Job Options

The color guard presents the flags of all service branches during the opening ceremony of Fort Jackson's Armed Forces Day celebration.. Official Army graphic; Photo Credit: SUSANNE KAPPLER

There are more than 800 different types of jobs available in the various branches of the United States Armed Forces. There are three different ways to say the word "job" in the military.  The enlisted jobs in the Army and Marine Corps are known as MOS's (Military Occupation Specialties). Enlisted jobs in the Air Force are known as AFSCs (Air Force Specialty Codes), and the term for enlisted jobs in the Navy and Coast Guard is "Rating."

The duties of a particular enlisted job, where you will train / live, how will you qualify, in what capacity will you deploy are all issues you need to consider when selecting a military job.  You also need to know the academic requirements you must achieve on the ASVAB.  There may also be extended fitness requirements for a job you are seeking (Special Ops, Rescue Swimmer, etc)  You may also need a security clearance or U.S. citizenship in order to be selected for some jobs in the military. The comprehensive military enlisted job lists below will provide you basic details of the jobs available and the requirements to obtain them:

Army Enlisted Jobs is a list of job fields within the Army. Click on each field to see a list of MOS's that fall under that branch, as well as links to complete information about that MOS.

Air Force Enlisted Jobs - The Air Force divides their AFSCs (enlisted jobs) into the following overall categories: Operations, Maintenance & Logistics, Support, Medical & Dental, Legal & Chaplain, Finance & Contracting, and Special Investigations.

Navy Enlisted Jobs - The Navy calls their enlisted jobs "ratings". Similar ratings are placed into various "Naval Enlistment Classifications (NEC) or "communities".  For example, ratings that are administrative in nature, are placed in the Administration Community. Ratings that deal with aircraft are placed in the Aviation Community.

 The related links above are to the various Navy enlisted communities. 

Marine Corps Enlisted Jobs - The Marines group MOS's with similar functions together into groups called "Occupational Fields" and are represented by the first TWO digits of the MOS. The link shows the first two digits of the MOS grouping. These identify related MOSs. Job codes are identified in the last two digits and represent a specific job within that field. The first job you receive in the Marine Corps will be earned after boot camp, and may involve advanced operator training and education.  This will be called the Primary Marine Occupational Special (PMOS).

Coast Guard Enlisted Jobs - The Coast Guard Ratings consists of similar jobs as the Navy with a focus on shipboard maintenance and operation as well as aviation repair and maintenance.  Other physical ratings such as Coast Guard diver and rescue swimmer are similar in fashion to the Navy jobs. However, the Coast Guard are the Police Officers of the sea and have legal jurisdiction and arrest authority when confronting criminal activity.

 See link for list of jobs in the Coast Guard.

    Continue Reading...