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Advance Through Training as a Coast Guard Reserve Officer

Initial Training

Every officer candidate in the Coast Guard Reserve must complete a rigorous, three-week reserve officer candidate indoctrination (ROCI) course at the Coast Guard Academy in New London, Conn. This program is designed to prepare you to make split-second decisions and take charge in any situation.

When you graduate from the program, you will receive a commission as an officer in the Coast Guard Reserve. You can expect to gain further qualifications and training to allign with the mission at your first assignment. While transfers are based on the needs of the Coast Guard, you may receive assignments in additional mission fields and specialties throughout your career.

Ongoing Training:

The annual commitment for reservists is normally devoted to training during a two-week period. However, it is not uncommon for reservists to complete this training by being engaged in actual operational duty, side by side with active-duty Coast Guard men and women.


We rely on all reservists to do their jobs to the best of their ability every time they report to duty.

Selected reserve officers usually start as an ensign after completion of the reserve officer candidate indoctrination (ROCI). While the Coast Guard grants responsibility quickly to leaders in the officer corps, time is needed to truly gain the experience at each officer level.

Officer performance is documented via annual official evaluation reports (OER) along with a face to face review by your supervisor. The OERs, along with experience gained, help influence promotion opportunities. Promotion boards meet regularly and consider candidates that fit within the established experience criteria and commendable performance.

Promotions will increase your pay grade, basic pay and pension contributions, and will also lead to new opportunities in your career.