The Marine Corps Manpower Management Enlisted Assignment Branch starts their Headquarters Marine Corps Special Duty Assignments Screening Team roadshow May 15 and will be traveling to Marine Corps installations across the globe through June 11.
As their name suggests, the purpose of HSST is to screen Marines for special duty assignments such as recruiting duty or embassy duty. These SDAs give Marines the opportunity to serve the Marine Corps in a capacity outside of their military occupational specialty and can give them the leg up they need for promotion.
Here are five things you (probably) didn’t know about the HSST list.
You’re Something Special
First things first. All SDAs are B billets, but not all B billets are SDAs.
B billets are any duties that a Marine is assigned to outside of his or her occupational field. This can be anything from security forces to being on the Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon, but there are only five billets that are considered SDAs. Those five billets are recruiter, drill instructor, combat instructor, Marine Security Guard and Marine Security Forces.
Along with the fact that these duties allow a Marine to help shape the future of the Marine Corps and ensure our nation’s security, Marines who successfully complete an SDA are considered to be best qualified and fully qualified for promotion.
The Game Chose Me
In previous years, about 14,000 Marines were placed on the HSST list, but this year, that number has been whittled down to a cool 3,500.
So how did they cut down so far? Well, think of it like applying filters to a Google search. The Marines over at MMEA created a list of requirements they need to assign Marines to an SDA from their rank and years in service, to whether they’ve had any disciplinary issues. The number of Marines the search turned up was about 7,000.
The five SDA monitors then took those 7,000 names and sat down with monitors from each occupational field and went through each name to determine if a Marine was able to do an SDA, and which SDA he or she would be best suited for.
Have It Your Way
See your name on the HSST list, but not entirely happy with what it says next to it? It’s not too late to ask for a change in duty or class date.
This is the first year commanders are required to send in a naval message in response to the HSST list, confirming the Marines who were selected have been properly screened. In this message, it’s possible for commanders to recommend a Marine for a different duty or a different class date.
And the good news is commanders have until May 18 to send that naval message in to recommend those changes.
Show ‘Em What You’re Worth
The naval message commanders send in has to certify that all of their Marines on the HSST list have been screened. That means Marines have to make sure they thoroughly and accurately complete a command screening checklist as well as the appropriate financial worksheets.
And don’t forget to bring your green-on-green to the briefings. Marines will have to conduct a height and weight certification as well as a tattoo screening, so make sure you’ve shed that winter weight and maybe think twice about getting that giant Eagle, Globe and Anchor on your forearms.
See You Soon
The roadshow begins on the East Coast, travels to Okinawa and Hawaii, then concludes in California.
Here’s the complete list of dates and locations:
15 May MCB Quantico
18-21 May Camp Lejeune
22 May MCAS Cherry Point
27 May Camp Hansen
28 May Camp Foster
1-2 June Kaneohe Bay
4-5 June MCAS Miramar
8-10 June Camp Pendleton
11 June 29 Palms