This is called the Two Year Call to service, and it is one of the different methods that is available through the military where you can sign up and spend a relatively short time in the service and receive a number of different military benefits. The participants in the program serve a relatively short time in Active duty service, normally between 16 and 24 months including boot camp, active duty training and active duty time, and then spend 6 or 8 years in Reserve Services.
Many young people seek to join the military to help fund their education, and there are a large number of programs that are designed for this very purpose. One of the programs that allows a young person to get educational assistance is the Two Year Education Program for Enlistment. It is a program that was first created by Congress to aid in both attracting young people to participate in the military as well as creating a method for educational help that is not requiring a long term enlistment contract. With the active duty action in Afghanistan and Iraq of Reservists, this program can currently entail more active duty service than in normal peacetime, but it is still a good way to get military supported educational benefits. At the end of the initial two-year service commitment many people choose to extend on a regular military enlistment, and some even choose to make a career out of the military. The Five military Service branches are not thrilled with the program because in the two years a significant investment is made in the personnel in time effort and money, and they feel that it is too short a commitment period, but it is still supported at least currently by US Army. A person can sign up in the program and receive one of the following benefits; a five thousand dollar cash bonus after the initial 2 year active duty time is up, a student loan repayment of up to $18,000 dollars, a possible one year educational allowance to be used for schooling for $9,000 dollars, or a three year possible allowance for education for up to $15, 000 dollars.
This program also allows the prospective Servicemember to enlist for 2 years and to then be a veteran and to be able to access the Montgomery GI bill. Some of the provisions are limited depending on the individual enlistment situation, but it is still a great way to enter the military and to try it out, and some people find that it is something that they enjoy and make it into a military career.