The fire support specialist is primarily responsible for the intelligence activities of the Army’s field artillery team.
Moving with the fastest of the army units, fire support specialist are the eyes of the artillery. From a forward position, the soldiers spot the target, determine their coordinates and send this information back to the battery so the guns and rockets they fire can precisely hit their targets. Because artillery operations are sensitive you must qualify for a secret clearance in this MOS.
Then the army will train you at Fort Sill Oklahoma in map reading and land navigation and in using the units fire support vehicle. You’ll also be trained to operate various communication devices and be trained to operate the laser rangefinders that are unique to this specialty – in addition training to prepare and maintain fire support situation maps.
After your initial entry training and advanced individual training you work long hours in the field day or night supporting the army’s artillery. Here you may operate with the mechanized unit inside a FIST vehicle, or on foot with the light unit. You may also be assigned to maintain your units fire support situation maps, prepare daily staff journals or do periodic maintenance on your radios and other equipment.
Serving in this MOS can help you transition from the military to the civilian employment sector because your skills in leadership, teamwork and problem-solving are skills in demand by civilian employers. This MOS provides critical aiming support to the field artillery, the king of battle.
- Set up and operate communications systems
- Encode and decode messages
- Assist in the preparation of fire support plans, coordinates and targets
- Operate laser range finders and target devices
- Determine target location using computers or manual calculations
Those who want to serve must first take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, a series of tests that helps you better understand your strengths and identify which Army jobs are best for you.
Job training for a fire support specialist requires 10 weeks of Basic Combat Training and six weeks of Advanced Individual Training with on-the-job instructions. Part of this time is spent in the classroom and part in the field under simulated combat conditions.
Some of the skills you’ll learn are:
- Computing target locations
- Ammunition techniques
- Operating gun, missile and rocket systems
- Artillery tactics, techniques and procedures
- Interest in cannon and rocket operations
- Physically and mentally fit to perform under pressure
- Ability to multi-task
- Capable of working as a team member
Required ASVAB Score(s)
Field Artillery (FA) : 96