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Army Warrant Officer Selection


Virginia Guard Warrant Officer Recognition Ceremony
Virginia Guard Public Affairs/Flikr/CC BY 2.0
Warrant Officers are technical and tactical leaders who specialize, throughout an entire career, in a specific technical area. The Army Warrant Officer Corps comprises less than three percent of the total Army. Although small in size, the level of responsibility is immense and only the very best will be selected to become Warrant Officers. Benefits include extended career opportunities, worldwide leadership assignments, and increased pay and retirement benefits.


With the exception of Warrant Officer MOS 153A (Aviator), all other Warrant Officer (WO) Military Occupational Specialties (MOSs) require you to be at least pay grade E5 or higher with 4-6 years experience in a skill that is closely associated with a WO MOS. Review the Prerequisites and Duty Descriptions in our WO Job Description Pages to determine if you are doing very similar work to one of the WO MOSs.

To apply for any WO MOS you must meet the minimum prerequisites or ask for a prerequisite waiver. You must submit a separate waiver for each prerequisite you do not meet. In your prerequisite waiver(s) you must explain how you obtained the equivalent knowledge or experience required by the prerequisite through training or experience in your service. You can gauge the training/experience required by a prerequisite by first reviewing the WO MOS duty description. If you have been doing very similar work as that described in the WO MOS duty description, then you probably have good justification for requesting a waiver. Approval is granted only if the Army proponent for that MOS feels you have the skills and experience that justify approving the waiver.

The prime candidate for WO has 5 - 8 years of active federal service (AFS) and meets all other prerequisites. You can apply regardless of AFS but require a waiver if you have 12 years or more of AFS. The standard for approving an AFS waiver is more stringent than for a prerequisite waiver.

If either of these two waivers apply - prerequisite or AFS - you must submit them with your application to determine if the waivers will be approved. You cannot submit the waiver first and wait for the outcome to determine if you should submit an application. If any of the waivers are not approved, then you are not qualified and your application will be returned.

Download the Sample Application package from the Army's Warrant Officer Recruiting Web Site. This will give you a good idea of what they are looking for and what information you will need to apply.

If requesting MOS 153A (Aviator), you will need to Schedule an Alternate Flight Aptitude Selection Test (AFAST) and a Class 1A Army flight physical. You should first try to schedule the AFAST through your education services officer. Next option is to schedule at a Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) through an Army recruiter. The physical is scheduled and completed at your servicing hospital, but must be approved by the Aeromedical Center at Ft Rucker before you can include a copy in your application.

Non-Army Personnel

A joint service agreement allows service members who are selected for this program to be discharged from their component and enlisted in the Army. Applicants must apply for this program while on active duty and must have two years remaining on their enlistment contract; civilians must contact their local Army recruiter. Applications are forwarded from the individual to Headquarters United States Army Recruiting Command, USAREC. After screening, the application is forwarded to the appropriate proponent who evaluates the applicants' technical experience and determines if the applicant is qualified to compete against other qualified applicants for the limited warrant officer positions. Applications from those who are not technically qualified will be returned to the applicant without further processing.

The most common MOS that personnel from other services are eligible to apply for is 153A (Aviator) because this MOS requires no prior skills or training.

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