Just because you have an interest in joining the National Guard does not necessarily mean that this is the best decision for you. Even if you know you want to serve your country, there are other branches of the military to consider.
For a better idea of what the National Guard has to offer, click here to request additional information.
Do I Qualify?
Before you decide that the National Guard is right for you, it makes good sense to determine if you are eligible to join. The last thing you want is to get excited, just to find that you are not qualified to join the Guard.
To qualify, you must meet all of the following requirements:
1. Be between the age of 17 and 35. The only exception to this rule is if you have prior military experience, or a specialty skill such as attorney, chaplain, or medical professional.
2. Be a United States citizen.
3. Be a permanent resident alien.
4. Meet medical requirements, including height and weight.
As a member of the National Guard you need to be in top notch shape. This includes falling within the acceptable height and weight range.
In addition to physical and age requirements, there are education requirements to be aware of. Most states require that you have at least a high school diploma, or that you are on track to graduate on time.
Note: every state has its own requirements for education. Check with a local National Guard recruiter for more information on your state?s education requirements.
Do you know anything about Split Training? In short, this allows you to join the National Guard while you are still attending high school. Along with this, there is also a GED program that gives you the chance to earn your GED so that you are able to enlist.
Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery
Before joining the National Guard you are required to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test ? there is no way around this. This test measures your skills in eight areas including electronics, word knowledge, math, science, and mechanics among others. The main goal of this exam is to help you find the National Guard career that is best for you.
What do I do now?
If you are still interested in joining the National Guard and feel that you qualify, there are a few more things you need to do.
1. Get in touch with your local National Guard recruiter. During this time you should be thinking about what you want to ask your recruiter and how he/she can help you make the best decision at the present time.
Just because you meet with a recruiter does not mean you have to join the Guard. This is an informational session during which you can learn more about yourself and the opportunities that lie ahead.
2. If after meeting with a recruiter you still think the National Guard is right for you, it is time to schedule a time to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery exam. While most people hate taking tests, this is one that you should enjoy. It will give you the chance to learn more about yourself, while getting a better idea of which career path suits you best.
3. Enlist in the National Guard. Once you are 100 percent sure that this is what you want to do, it is time to sign your enlistment papers and move forward. You are getting close to finishing the process, but still need to take care of a few more details. These include: scheduling a physical exam; deciding on a ship date for your Basic Combat Training; deciding on a career/job; approve any bonuses that come along with your job selection; and take the Oath of Enlistment.
4. Recruitment Sustainment Program. The day that you leave for Basic Combat Training is based on your job selection. You may ship out in a couple of weeks; you may ship out in a few months. Until you ship for training you are required to attend Recruitment Sustainment Program one weekend a month. This will teach you more about the structure and rules of the National Guard. Along with this, you will start your classroom and fitness related training.
5. Time to leave for Basic Combat Training. Soon enough your ship date will arrive and you will be well on your way. After 10 weeks of training you will realize that you are a better person, both mentally and physically. From here, you will move onto Advanced Individual Training based on your career path.
Once you go through all these steps and your training is complete, you are ready to serve your country. On top of this, you will be working a job that suits your personality and interests ? how many people can say that?
If you have a strong interest in joining the National Guard you should find this information interesting. Once you are ready to make a commitment, follow the steps above.
In no time at all you will be proud of your status as a new member of the National Guard!