The effect of MOS selection and placement on the retention of Marine company grade officers
Blackmon, Justin L.
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The purpose of this thesis is to assess the relationships between MOS placement and retention of company grade officers. An officer data file from the Center of Naval Analyses is augmented with Total Force Data Warehouse data to create the primary analysis data file. The data set contained officer cohorts from 1994-1999 and 2001 to 2002, a total of 5,922 newly commissioned officers. Several five- and six-year multivariate retention models are estimated to test the sensitivity of the retention effect of MOS preferences and to determine if including prior enlisted Marines in the data affects the basic effects. The objective is to isolate the effects on junior officer retention of MOS placement outside of an officer's top three MOS preferences. The findings indicate that MOS placement has a strong negative effect on the retention of NROTC, PLC, and OCC graduates. Among demographic groups, black and Asian officers are more likely to retain than white officers. Significant differences in retention do not exist between men and women; however, when prior enlisted officers are included in the samples, the sizes of the key coefficients fall in magnitude. The findings for the six-year model indicate no significant effects of MOS placement, gender, or race, with and without prior enlistees, on the retention decision of officers who graduate from USNA.
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