Army 18E MOS: Special Forces Communications Sergeant

Lately, I have been writing about the various military occupational specialties within the Army Special Forces. When a soldier agrees to take on the duties and responsibilities of becoming a member of Army Special Forces, they do not necessarily know which MOS they will have until part way through Special Forces training. The MOS a soldier is tasked with can depend on many factors, but primarily how they react in training. But, prior civilian education and experience can also play a major role in the MOS a soldier is given.

In today’s post, we are going to examine the Army 18E MOS: Special Forces Communications Sergeant. I will provide a basic description of this Army job. I will also give you a list of the responsibilities and duties of the Special Forces Communications Sergeant. You will learn the requirements to become an Army 18E, and I will explain the training required.

Army 18E Special Forces Communications Sergeant Job Description

During any Army operation, communication is a must. There must be communication between team members, and there must be communication with support and command headquarters. The individual tasked with these responsibilities in a Special Forces unit is the Army 18E Special Forces Communications Sergeant.

At this point in time, Special Forces is closed to women, so he will know how to communicate using new technologies as well as old school methods. The Army 18E has the responsibility to find a way to communicate even if the main methods are destroyed. I am sure that an 18E is so knowledgeable in communications, he could use the Indian smoke signals, or even use an ancient Morse code transmitter.

Army 18E Duties and Responsibilities

First and foremost, the Army 18E is a trained and capable warrior. Not only does he have communication duties, he also is tasked to do what it takes to have successful missions and operations. This could mean taking on responsibilities that are not necessarily within the scope of his MOS.

The primary duties and responsibilities of the Army 18E are:

  • Organizes, maintains and trains in the installation, operation and maintenance of all forms of Army communications systems.

  • Advises Commanders and staff on anything related to communications.

  • Is proficient and always learning the employment and operation of radio communications using FM, AM, UHF, VHF, SHF to send and receive transmissions orally, in continuous wave and burst code radio nets.

  • The Army 18E plans, prepares and assists with communications studies. He participates in briefings and debriefings in regards to such.

  • Supervises communication functions during special operations or missions.

  • Plans, performs and supervises cross training of members in Special Forces communication duties.

  • Serves as frequency manager at Battalion level.

These are just some of the basic duties of the Army 18E Special Forces Communications Sergeant. Since so much of the communications are now performed via computer networks, he must also be quite computer literate.

Requirements to Become an Army 18E Special Forces Communications Sergeant

As I stated earlier, there is no guarantee you can become an 18E when joining the Army Special Forces. Your MOS will be chosen for you during training. But, the primary requirements are:

  • Be a United States citizen

  • Have a rank of E4 to E7

  • Must have at least 24 months Time in Service left or be willing to extend or reenlist

  • No court martial convictions or article 15 disciplinary actions

  • No terminations from Special Forces, Airborne or Rangers unless for extreme family issues

  • Not have over 30 days of lost time

  • Prior to the Special Forces Qualification Course, soldier must be able to swim 50 meters in combat uniform including boots

  • Must have a minimum score of 229 on the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), with no event having a score under 60

These are the primary requirements to become an Army 18E. If you know of any more that should be added here, please let me know in the comments area.

Training Required to Become an Army 18E Special Forces Communications Sergeant

When you choose to take on the training regiment to become an Army 18E, you will be going through rigorous physical and mentally challenging work. But, it is worth it.

To start, you will have to be Airborne qualified. You will travel to Airborne school at Fort Benning, Georgia. Once this is complete, you will end up at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The start will be 4 weeks of the Special Operations Preparations Course. Essentially, this is training you to be able to handle what is known as hell. You will get physically and mentally fit. The next step is Special Forces Assessment and Selection. This is when experienced Special Forces soldiers decide if you are capable of moving on. And then:

The 6 Phases of the Special Forces Qualification Course

  1. This is approximately 7 weeks of learning about the Army Special Forces. You will learn the history and will also delve into some leadership techniques.

  2. This phase may last as long as 24 weeks. It is the language and culture phase. You will learn the basics of various languages you may encounter as a Special Forces soldier. You will also learn the proper ways to use interpreters. Before you move on, you will have to pass the Oral Proficiency Interview.

  3. For the next 12+ weeks, you will be learning everything you can about Special Forces combat techniques. It is during this phase that you will complete SERE, which stands for Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape.

  4. Now you will know exactly what MOS you have. During this training phase, if you have been chosen as an 18E, you will be trained in all aspects of Army communications. In most cases, this phase will last for about 14 weeks, but do know, there could be more follow-up communications training.

  5. Phase 5 is known as the Robin Sage phase. During this stage, you will be using everything you have learned thus far in mock scenarios that take place in several counties of North Carolina. It will put your communication skills to the test.

  6. This is the graduation phase. This is when you receive what you have trained all this time for…the Green Beret.

At this point, you will be available to perform Special Forces missions and operations all over the world.

Final Thoughts

Well, there you have it. This is what I can find on becoming an Army 18E. We would love to hear from any who were, or are Special Forces Communications Sergeants. Please tell us more in the comment area below.

If you have any questions, you can also post those below. Thank you.

Other posts you may enjoy:

  1. Army 18F MOS: Special Forces Operations & Intelligence Sergeant
  2. Army Radio Etiquette: 10 Things You Should Know
  3. and, Army 18D MOS: Special Forces Medical Sergeant
  4. Most Needed Military MOSs
  5. Army 18B MOS: Special Forces Weapon Sergeant
chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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