In Army Recruiting, we receive questions all the time about the programs we have going on. One of the biggest challenges that we face in responding to interest, is the simple fact that Army Recruiters have a bad reputation due to things that have happened in the past.
We run things a lot differently now, which is great for everyone. We don’t receive any type of bonus when we put people in the Army. I can put in 1-10 people in every month and my pay stays the same. The reality is that I’m here for customer service and to provide a solid plan to help young men and women reach their goals.
That’s what I’m here for
If you need my help, that’s what I’m here for. The great thing about how we do business now is that we can look at all the jobs you qualify for before you go to MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station). You get to choose your job, so depending on what you score on the ASVAB (Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery), that will determine how many jobs you qualify for.
When talking to a recruiter from any branch of service, you need know they have your best interest in mind. Ogden Career Center is one of the best around in customer service and willingness to help you find what will best suit you and your family. I helped both my little brother and sister join the Army; this was the day my little sister commissioned as an officer.
When I conduct appointments I always suggest they check out all their options. You won’t hear me talking down the other branches of service to get you to join the Army. Every branch has great opportunities and great people that want to serve their country. We all get paid the same. Do some fact checking if you’re ever told the pay is better with another branch. How the process starts in our center is we conduct an initial interview like you’re applying for a normal job.
We ask you about law violations, speeding tickets, traffic tickets and if you’ve ever been in the back of a police car. We have certain guidelines for law violations that could disqualify you from military service or certain violations that we have to get a waiver for.
Next, we talk about physical limitations. We ask you if you’ve ever had any broken bones or surgeries, history of asthma, ADD, ADHD or severe allergies. Again, we’re asking the questions that could be a potential disqualifier or if we need to do a waiver to get you in the Army. We want to make sure that you don’t have any prior conditions that could put your life or someone else’s life in danger.
We have a practice test that we use to get a rough estimate of what you’ll score on the ASVAB. EST (Enlistment Screening Test) takes about 25-30 minutes. Depending on your score and commitment to the Army, we then set you up on the Army PICAT. This test we enroll you under your social security number and it gives us the same line scores as if you take the actual ASVAB. You will take this test in our office and it can take up to 3 hours.
It can be very time consuming to get into the military due to the background checks, how big your family is or how many places you’ve live the past ten years. If you’re like most people, you probably can’t remember off the top of your head everywhere you’ve lived, worked, or went to school the past ten years, let alone a reference for all of them. I’m very patient when it comes to putting these young kids in the Army.
I’m not a salesman and not pushy at all; it’s just not my personality. Plus I know what a big decision it is to serve your country. The one thing I ask from my applicants is that they would always be completely honest and up front with me. Though it may be uncomfortable, any secrets or lies in this process will inevitably cause major problems in the entire enlistment and sometimes eliminate someone’s ability to join at all.
Nobody likes their time being totally wasted – yours, mine, and the government’s — so truly, honesty is the best policy here. There’s been situations where I’ve spent hours and hours leading up to weeks of processing to hopefully get what a recruit wants, and at the last minute something happens and they back out. It can be very emotionally draining on me when I invest so much time and energy into a recruit who may change their mind and disappear in the final hour.
Once all the processing is complete, you are test-qualified, and we found the job you want, it’s time to physical and enlist into the United States Army. I’ll send you to the Holiday Inn the night before you contract. You get up at zero dark thirty and get to MEPS. Now it’s line after line for the next couple hours getting your hearing checked, eyes checked, urinalysis and everything that goes into a sports physical.
If we find you a job that has Airborne in the contract, it will be a little more in depth. The doctor will check the curvature of your spine, your joints and flexibility to make sure on the outside you will be able to get through Basic Combat Training. Now the rough part is over. It’s time to sit down with the guidance counselors and go over your contract. Both Reserves and active duty are 8-year contracts. If you join the Reserves, you will work one weekend a month and two weeks a year for 6 years.
Upon completion of that you can either reenlist or go into the IRR (Inactive Ready Reserves) where you don’t have do drill, but in case another conflict comes up the government can activate you again. Active Duty contracts are usually 4 years. We do have 2,3,5,6 and 7-year contracts, but a lot of it depends on the bonuses or the job training you’ll be doing.
Once you swear into the United States Army, we need to prepare you to ship to basic training. There are ten modules at futuresoldiers.com that you need to complete before you ship. We will set up your direct deposit so that when you’re in training your money will transfer directly into your savings or checking. You have to complete the OPAT (Occupational Physical Assessment Test).
The OPAT will measure each recruit and Soldiers’ physical aptitude against validated physical demands and tasks in each MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) to help ensure the Soldiers are being placed in the right job. The OPAT standards are broken down into moderate, significant and heavy physical demands.
You must meet the demands that correspond with your MOS. Now it’s a waiting game until you ship off to Basic Training. Your plane ticket will be covered, courtesy of the US Army, and you’ll get meal vouchers for your travel days. Next stop is either Ft. Jackson, South Carolina; Ft. Sill, Oklahoma; Ft. Lenard Wood, Missouri; or Ft. Benning, Georgia.
Basic Training will be nine weeks and four days plus reception battalion. You will get shots and uniforms prior to going to your BCT site. It’s game on now, time to train. Basic will be the highlight of your career. It’s rough and can be exhausting, but it wasn’t meant to be easy. You will meet some life-long friends while you’re there. It’s one of those things; it sucks while you’re there, but you miss it when you’re gone.