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Need advice regarding joining Army Nat. Guard

Discussion in 'US Army Forum' started by M_Dail, Jul 17, 2007.

  1. I have been interested in the military for as long as I can remember. I wanted to join the Army after high school but my only brother was already active Air Force. He & I talked it through and basically came to the conclusion it would be pretty hard on our Mom to have both her boys in the active military. So, instead, I went to college & got a degree but have never been able to shake my interest in the Army.

    I am 25 y/o & am interested in joining the nat. guard. I have a bachelor's degree so I've been told I'll be an E-4. Is that correct?
    I spoke with a local recruiter & he seemed reasonably straight forward regarding my questions. I go to meet with him face to face tomorrow night but I'd like to gather as much information as possible beforehand.

    FWIW, I am not stupid so (meaning no disrespect) I don't really want to drive a truck or guard a gate. I took my ASVAB in 8-06 & scored a 95 with zero study time. Basically, I walked into the recruiter's office & told him I was interested but wanted to know what my options would be. He said "First step is to see what you're qualified for by taking the ASVAB. There's a bus leaving right now if you want to go." So, I went.

    In the guard, can some of you give me an idea as to what MOS would be decent? I cannot go full-time, just as a weekend warrior because I can't leave my family's farm save for deployment. On that note, what is the standard length & interval of deployment for a guard unit?

    Any input is appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Michael
     
  2. Bren

    Bren NRA Life Member

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    Kentucky
    Yes, with a college degree you would go in as an E-4. There also seems to be a shortage of company grade officers (at least there is in the USAR), so you would probably have a pretty easy time getting commissioned as an officer if you want.

    As far as MOS, people don't necessarily pick them based on what "smart guys do." It's the Army - you are likely to find people doing computer stuff because the military is their best shot at ever doing it, while you may find some really high IQ/GT/QT types in the infantry for the adventure, since they aren't going to have a hard time doing the mental stuff in the civilian world later. Personally, I have a law degree and am a practicing attorney in civilian life - in the Army reserve I enlisted to be a drill sergeant and my primary MOS from active duty is field artillery cannon crewman. I have no interest or need for the career advancing options and would never consider a desk/office type of job. It just depnds on what you want out of it.

    The main reason I can see for joining the guard, instead of reserves, is that you can choose a combat arms MOS (infantry, artillery, armor, etc.). However, you will be away from the farm for training for a few months and you are fairly likely to get deployed, which I believe is running about 15 months at a time.
     


  3. nothing

    nothing Advertisement

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    Brandon, MS
    I can't speak for Reserve, but current National Guard deployment policy is 12 months including premob training and demob. That's 2 months premob, 9 months in country and 1 month demob. Keep in mind policies change like the weather. Previously we were doing 18 months start to finish.

    Ask yourself a few questions,

    What do you want to get from the military (job skills, adventure, play with cool toys, etc)

    What types of units are nearby?

    Do you want to do something related to what you do in the civilian world or something completely different?

    If you are looking for adventure combat arms is the way to go, it's job skills or just wanting to do really hands on technical stuff then go to service/support.

    You can do anything from being a cook, repairing radios, military intelligence to infantry or armor. Since you already have a degree you might want to consider OCS to become an officer.
     
  4. Sam White

    Sam White I miss you bud Silver Member

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    Good advice has already been given above but I suggest looking at MOS descriptions on usmilitary.bout.com or goguard.com. If you find something interesting you can ask about it here or join up at military.com. Something to keep in mind is that with the Army NG you will enlist for a specific vacancy in a specific unit. Each unit recruits for itself. In my area, we have Army NG field artillery units, transportation (trucks) units, a medical unit, and an RTI (MOS reclass instruction). If you want an artillery MOS, go to see the field artillery unit. If you want to be a medic, go talk to the medical unit. There are some MOS's that will probably be open in any unit, like personnel, supply, mechanics, or cooks. Re: officer- a lot of states have their own accredited OCS programs. This may or may not be of interest to you. In my state, you can do OCS as a combination of drill weekends and 2 annual training periods.
     
  5. 16vmkII

    16vmkII Whipped

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    Dude got a 95 on the ASVAB. Being an officer requires a 110. Even with his degree he's SOL unless he retests and does better. If he retests and does worse, they'll keep that score. :wavey:
     
  6. Sam White

    Sam White I miss you bud Silver Member

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    I took his post to mean that his AFQT score was in the 95th percentile, not that his GT score was 95. AFQT only goes up to 99. The GT score of 110 is the officer requirement.
     
  7. Sorry for the confusion, yes my afqt was 95. My GT was something like 136 or so. I have the sheet here some place. I know I did the best on the nuke section with a 140something, I think. Like I said, it's been almost a year since I even looked at the sheet. I know the army recruiter told me I could have whatever mos I wanted based on my scores.
     
  8. Bren

    Bren NRA Life Member

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    Kentucky
    With your scores and college degree, especially since you aren't set on some other option, becoming an officer would be your best choice. It requires a little more training, but it also gives you a status that will boost your civilian career and you will make a lot more money. I work with some attorneys who are JAG officers (Natl.Guard and Navy reserve) and they clear a lot more while on military duty than in their fairly high level state government attorney jobs.
     
  9. Currahee

    Currahee NRA Member

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    Nov 21, 2006
    NoVA
    The first decision is combat arms vs non-combat arms.

    Do you want to blow stuff up, or do you want to learn job skills?

    Once you decide that, then decide enlisted vs officer?

    Keep in mind that if you choose to enlist in the combat arms (which I did) you will probably get assigned to do staff work because since you have a degree you can type (yes this is Army logic). This happened to both my father and I when we enlisted. It took me a year to get out of staff work and to a line company to do what I had joined to do.

    Post back and give us all a better idea of what you are looking for. Feel free to PM me if you have specific questions about the infantry MOS and anything else.

    Most importantly, talk to a vet that you trust carefully about the recruiting process before you go and sign anything. Your recruiter may be a decent guy but you have to assume otherwise. Decide on what you want before you go in, do your own research. Then just let your recruiter know what you want and that you will not accept anything else. Make sure it is all in writing before you sign. If it ain't there, you ain't getting it. Good luck!
     
  10. 16vmkII

    16vmkII Whipped

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    ...well, with my 88GT score, I didn't know what was going on. :thumbsup:

    <--blows stuff up in dreams
     
  11. I am limited in my choices because I don't want to go full-time & I do want to stay close to home. Without trying to sound conceited, the job skills available don't apply to what I do. I am the 4th generation on my family's farm and we run ~10K acres here in central KS & I fully intend to make this my life's career. I love what I do here but for some reason I have a desire to participate in something more.

    I spoke with the recruiter last night and we discussed a myriad of topics, all of which I took notes upon. I was blatantly honest with him & told him that I want to do something interesting & challenging but with a reasonable amount of safety (possibly an oxymoron?). There is an MLRS group an hour away from my home which has an opening currently. After doing some research on it, it does look interesting to me. If I had less responsibility here at home with taking over the farm & such, I'd do something different & in my mind more beneficial such as a combat medic.

    I'm still weighing options & I do appreciate the input. I'm sure that, to those who've been & done, I sound green as a gord. I don't know what I don't know so I'm trying to convey my thoughts as succinctly & effectively as possible to you.

    Thanks..

    Michael
     
  12. Currahee

    Currahee NRA Member

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    NoVA
    Mike-

    any military experience is going to be good life experience, even if it is just basic training and the different kinds of people that you get to meet.

    It sounds to me like you want a job that is non-deployable. If that is true, you may want to reconsider joining. The jobs that are truly non-deployable are not very interesting IMO but most of the time they will still find a way to ship you over to Iraq doing a job you weren't training to do. Perhaps join a fire or police department instead. This will let you get that action (an EMT instead of a medic for example) but stay close to home. And you'll be helping other people.

    From what I say, the "safer" jobs are either really boring because you never leave the FOB or not really "safer" at all because you end up out on the streets with a bunch of people around you who aren't really that well trained and don't want to get in a fight.

    I'm really biased. I say join the combat arms so you can go blow stuff up and kick in doors or don't even bother. But you have to go with what is really in your heart. Try to think about how you will feel when you are 40 - will you regret not taking a riskier job with the military or does that not matter to you?

    Best of luck to you-
     
  13. Currahee

    Currahee NRA Member

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    NoVA
    I guess what I mean to say is that you can plan on things not going to plan if you join. For example, let's say you join a rocket artillery unit because it is "safe". Next thing you know you will be patrolling the streets on foot and on Humvees and your MLRS systems will be back in the States. So you might as well do what you really want and forget about what is "safe" because the Army has a way of turning your plans upside down. :)
     
  14. nothing

    nothing Advertisement

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    That's the truth, just ask a few artillery guys what they did overseas, our entire artillery battallion had a total of 4 guns. Everyone else was in uparmored humvees doing convoy escort and training police.
     
  15. I understand exactly where you are coming from & this may be the most sage piece of advice I've gotten on this topic to date. For what it's worth, I'm already a firefighter & am slated to take the EMT course in January '08.

    Good words to consider & it's something I'll chew around on for a while.

    Thanks
     
  16. Bearcat06

    Bearcat06

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    Honolulu, HI
    Just a follow-up on what was already stated.....

    My hometown guard unit is Field Artillery.....they are currently on a 12 month tour in Afganistan doing force protection (being gate guards/towers) and doing convoy escorts.....

    They have no big guns there.....

    Before that, they were asked (a bunch volunteered) to get re-trained and worked as MPs right after 9-11 in Germany.......

    Just some thoughts.....

    Have you thought about the KS Air Guard....? They have a couple of units (one in Topeka and one in Wichita).....
     
  17. Sam White

    Sam White I miss you bud Silver Member

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    FWIW, I sent him a pm recommending the Air Guard (or Air Force Reserve). I switched to the Air Guard last year and think it's a good choice for someone like him. Besides the Air Guard units already mentioned, there's an Air Force Reserve unit at McConnell Air Force Base by Wichita- 931st Air Refueling. The Air Guard is also located at that installation.
     
  18. snakeman

    snakeman

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    That is funny that you are in Kansas. I am home on leave right now in Wichita before I head to Ft Sill in Aug. I am a 13M (MLRS). If it is a job that you are thinking of doing I will be more than happy to answer questions for you. The others are right about deployments. We did alot of door kicking, gate guard, and driving trucks.


    snakeman
     
  19. md2lgyk

    md2lgyk

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    Have you considered the Air National Guard?? I was in one of the units at McConnell for a while until I moved East. ANG units usually have a greater variety of jobs. And the way they treat their people is head and shoulders above the Army.
     
  20. Currahee

    Currahee NRA Member

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    NoVA
    What ever are you talking about?!?!! The Army got me a nice new pegleg - made from cedar, not the cheap stuff!!!

    (OK just kidding)