So, you want to be a soldier? Joining the Army is a great way of acknowledging your debt of gratitude to those who have kept us free in the past, but the Army has specific requirements for new recruits. Don’t be blindsided and disappointed when you meet a recruiter; instead, know the requirements to join the Army before you go to sign up.
Basic Requirements TO Join The Army
Today’s Army is an educated force of young men and women in great physical shape. You need a high school diploma to be accepted. If you have just a GED, that’s great, but you will lose out on some promotions. If you have a GED plus at least 15 college credit hours, your degree will have the same value as a diploma. Street smarts are important in the Armed Forces, but you also need the academics to do many jobs available in today’s Army.
The Army is not looking for super men and women, but you must be in good health and pass a standard physical to be considered. Although basic training will put you in the best shape of your life, you must have good physical conditioning when you join. In contrast to the common misconception, you do not need perfect vision to join the Army even for aircraft work
You must be at least 18 to join the Army, although the corps accepts 17-year-olds with parental approval. Other age requirements apply to servicemen too: active-duty soldiers must be between 18 and 42, reservists need to be between 17 and 40 and guard soldiers need to be between 17 and 35.
Who Is Eligible
Surprisingly, you do not need to be a citizen of the United States to meet the requirements to join the Army. Anyone who is a legal resident of the US can come to the recruiting office, green card in hand. Though some Army jobs are off-limits to US noncitizens, recruits can apply for citizenship and undergo a streamlined process towards naturalization while in the Army.
Doing Well On ASVAB Tests
When you join the service, you may be doing so to serve your country, but you can also receive training that will help you throughout your career. To see where you fit, you will have to do well in the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB.) Like many standardized tests, these tests measure your verbal and reading skills, along with your math skills and your knowledge of electronics and auto and shop information.
While you need a minimum score for any branch of the Armed Forces, there is no passing or failing the ASVAB tests. How you do determines your assignment and career path. If you’re interested in becoming an accounting specialist, you’ll need to do well on Mathematics Knowledge, Arithmetic Reasoning, Word Knowledge and Paragraph Comprehension. To be a machinist, you need good reading comprehension but the most important scores will come from tests in areas such as Auto and Shop Information, General Science, Mathematics Knowledge, and Electronics Information. The tests can help you decide your direction, but if you are aiming for certain jobs you need to prepare very hard in those areas on practice ASVAB test. When you are ready to take the test, you can do so online, at your high school, or with the recruiter.
Before you enlist, knowing the requirements to join the Army will save you some trouble and disappointment. By being prepared to meet the recruiter, you will assure that you can give your best contribution to our country, while receiving the best possible training for your interest and aptitude.