Whats My Obligation If I Join The National Guard Or Military Reserves
Joining the military reserves or National Guard is a significant time commitment. This is true, especially at the beginning. You will get settled in your permanent unit. Then, you can expect to attend unit assembly, known as drill, one weekend per month. You will also participate in a two-week annual training each year.
- Initial training: As a new military member, you will attend your branchs basic military training. That may last from eight to 12 weeks. Depending on your job, you may also attend an advanced training course.
- Monthly drill: Youll need to drill for 48 periods or units per year. Most units drill one weekend per month. A typical weekend drill has four periods. Some military units have additional drilling requirements, which may include the weekday.
- Annual training: Youll also need to participate in annual training for two weeks per year.
- Activations: You may be activated to full-time service in a voluntary or involuntary status. This can be with your unit or individually. These activations may vary in length and location. They may include 30 days in a unit near your hometown. Or up to a year supporting a mission outside of the United States. Generally, you cannot opt out of involuntary action. This is because the military has ordered you to active service.
- Length of commitment: Your total contract may range from three to eight years. This depends on the branch of service and your specific occupation/job.
Requirements For Joining The Military
The U.S. military has six branches of service: the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Space Force. The requirements to join are similar for all six. The main differences are in age limits, test scores, and fitness levels. Men and women meet different fitness standards. Besides the requirements listed here, a branch may have other requirements.
Age Limits for Enlisting
You must be at least 17 to enlist in any branch of the active military. The oldest you can be to enlist for active duty in each branch is:
Coast Guard: 31
Space Force: 39
Some branches have different age limits for their part-time Reserve and National Guard. Visit each service’s recruiting website for its part-time age limits.
Requirements for Enlisting If You Are Not a U.S. Citizen
You do not have to be a U.S. citizen to enlist in the military, but you may have fewer options. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you must:
Have a permanent resident card, also known as a Green Card
Currently live in the U.S.
Speak, read, and write English fluently
Educational and Testing Requirements for Enlisting
You must take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test. The ASVAB has 10 subtests.
Your scores on four of those make up your Armed Forces Qualification Test score. This score determines which branch you may join. Each branch has its own lowest score for joining.
Your scores on all 10 subtests determine which job specialties you qualify for.
Health and Fitness Requirements for Enlisting
Joining The Air Force At 25
If you’re interested in joining the Air Force at 25 years old, or any branch of the military, you’re in luck. All branches, the U.S. government says, impose a minimum enlistment age of 17. The maximum age varies between the six branches:
- Space Force: 39
If you’re interested in the Reserves or the National Guard, the maximum age may be slightly different. The same is true for various specialties within the different branches. If your heart is set on being a Navy SEAL, for instance, the Navy says you can’t be older than 28.
Likewise, the question “At what age is it too late to join the Army?” depends on your career plans. Army National Guard Special Forces, for instance, must be at least 20 and no older than 36, the Army National Guard says. If you want to enter the military as an officer, you need a college degree, which can add several years to the 17-year-old minimum age, Today’s Military says.
Also Check: Build My Rack Army Medals
Do I Have To Be A Us Citizen To Join The Marines
- FAQ Answer
You must be a United States citizen or legal resident to enlist in the Marine Corps. If you meet these requirements, you can contact a recruiter here. This page is managed by the Marine Corps Recruiting Command. For more information about acquiring a Permanent Resident Visa please visit the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services website: .
Do I Need A High School Diploma To Join The Marines
- FAQ Answer
You will need to receive your high school diploma before beginning Marine recruit training however, you can talk to a Marine recruiter or sign your enlistment contract before graduating high school. A recruiter can answer any questions you have, including discussing case-by-case options for those with nontraditional high school diplomas or completion certificates.
Read Also: Colorado Army National Guard Recruiter
Prior Service + Prior Military Commitments
Those with prior service or prior military commitments can apply to be military medical students, residents or physicians, although some individuals may need to fill out extra applications. For example, Reserve Officers’ Training Corps cadets must be approved for an educational delay because of their existing military commitments before they apply to HPSP or USU. Likewise, cadets and midshipmen in Service academies and ROTC must be approved by their respective Service before accepting admission to medical school.
If you are an active-duty service member, you must receive permission from your Personnel Command to leave your current assignment and apply to medical school and scholarship programs. In that case, any preexisting service obligation for your military education and training will be added to any obligation related to your participation in a medical scholarship program.
Benefits Of Joining The Military At 30
The military is more appropriate for younger people as most recruits enlist after graduating from high school or in their early 20s.
Nonetheless, some recruits arrive at boot camp in their 30s or early 40s.
What are the benefits of joining the military at 30?
In general, older recruits pursue the military for the same benefits as someone half their age.
The U.S. Armed Forces is a terrific organization to consider joining if you want a steady paycheck, dependable benefits, as well as the opportunity to meet new people and see the world.
Moreover, the military is exceptional at building character and teaching discipline which can help you in any avenue you pursue.
Service members train for a variety of professions and additional financial aid is available to those that want to pursue a college degree before or after serving their country.
These benefits are often more appreciated by service members in their 30s since theyve already had real-world experience.
Consequently, joining the military at 30 may help you expand on job skills and training you already have, or introduce you to a brand new profession.
Don’t Miss: Flags Of The Us Military
How Old Is Too Old To Join The Military
Fact checked by Brain Bartell
Most people know you must be at least 17 years old to enlist in the military, but they are now aware that there is also a maximum age cap for applicants. Yes, you read that right.
You can be too old for the military. So, how old is too old to join the military?
The short answer is 42 to 59 years old, depending on whether or not you have been in service. The maximum age to join the military varies by branch as well. If you are looking for the age limit to decide whether you can enlist, continue to read for the details. Go on happy reading!
Downsides Of Joining The Military At 30
Life is a drag which is why more and more adults look to radically change their life after being out in the real-world for a considerable amount of time.
The idea of joining the military at 30 may sound tempting, but before you do anything rash make sure you also consider the disadvantages.
The first and most obvious concern for older adults that join the military is physical fitness.
Military physical fitness standards are created more to accommodate younger adults in their 20s.
Consequently, youll need to train harder and spend time preparing for PFTs compared to younger recruits.
Youll likely need to spend extra time preparing and recovering from fitness activities to avoid injury.
Its not impossible to meet military physical fitness standards in your 30s, just make sure you are prepared to put in a little extra effort.
Additionally, older adults need to consider what they are leaving behind if they enlist.
Many adults in their 30s are already parents or have an established family.
You May Like: Can You Join The Military With Diabetes Type 1
More People Are Joining The Air Force In Their Late 30s
Yoko Holdren wants to work.
She tried to find jobs for more than a decade but seemingly hit a roadblock at every turn. First it was the frequent moves with her husband, Master Sgt. Donovan Holdren, and the cost of child care for their three kids.
Then it was German employment and citizenship rules at Ramstein Air Base, where the family is stationed. Her green card neared expiration. And, just as she looked to get a job when her youngest son started school, the coronavirus pandemic hit.
Holdren turned to the Air Force and enlisted two weeks before her 40th birthday.
I thought, If I join the Air Force, they can train me from zero, she told Air Force Times. Whatever job is available, I will take it.
Threats to the free world must be met with mature individuals who know what is to be lost, say the authors of this commentary.
Now an airman first class in security forces technical school, Holdren is one of hundreds of people who have joined the Air Force in their late 30s since the service raised its age limit for new recruits nearly a decade ago. The career change has offered new challenges and second chances while offering the service another way to grow and diversify the force.
In 2014, the service increased the age cutoff from 27 to 39 for those without prior military service to enlist on active duty. The Air Force Reserve changed its age limit from 34 to 39 as well.
Veterans: See What You Can Afford In 2022
In 2012, U.S. Rep. Paul Broun Jr. , tried to push through legislation that would allow people of any age to join the military as long as they could meet the minimum health and fitness requirements. The House voted 256-164 against the military age restrictions measure.
Broun introduced the bill after speaking with an unnamed ultra-marathon runner who was denied enlistment in the Army for being a few months over the maximum age. He was also petitioning on behalf of his Congressional colleague and fellow Georgia Rep. Phil Gingrey, who tried to volunteer as a military doctor and was rejected despite his experience as an obstetrician. Gingrey will turn 70 in July.
Those still serving in the military are not exempt from their VA Loan benefits. Learn more: How to Get a VA Home Loan While Still Serving
Recommended Reading: Army Reserve Units In Virginia
How To Join The Military At 30 Years Old
There are two ways to join the military at 30, with or without a college degree.
First, you need to make sure that you qualify for the military branch you seek to join based on age.
The age cutoff is far younger for active-duty members of the U.S. Coast Guard and Marine Corps compared to the Army and Air Force.
Secondly, make sure that you meet all other eligibility criteria for the military branch.
Thirdly, you should consider meeting with a military recruiter before you get too deep in the process.
The military recruiter can help answer any questions or concerns, but make sure you arent pressured into making a decision at that appointment.
Considering enlisting in the U.S. Armed Forces takes time and feedback from family and friends, especially for older adults.
Leaving Behind Family The Ultimate Sacrifice
While serving the military will entitle you to outstanding benefits that provide housing, food, and healthcare to your family it also means that youll see them way less.
It can especially be hard on young parents who are going to miss out on several key life events because of service obligations.
Females encounter additional downsides as it might force a partner to put pregnancy on hold or avoid having children altogether.
Since most of the drawbacks are related to family, you need to make sure you have a supportive partner to help make the process easier.
Lastly, youll likely earn less working for the government compared to the private sector which means many adults joining the military at 30 take a substantial pay cut.
Related Article: 20 Reasons to Join the Military
Also Check: 24 Hour Fitness Military Discount
Military Enlistment Age Limits
The minimum and maximum enlistment age for joining the military differs by each branch of the military. The earliest is 17 with parental consent and the maximum is 39 but see below for the specific age limits by each branch of service.
This does not mean that the age requirements are not similar, but there is no Defense Department-wide standard. Each branch of service sets their own.
Here are things to know about military enlistment age limits and other criteria for joining the military.
Why Does The Military Impose Age Enlistment Restrictions
You might think that there should be no age limit on wanting to serve your country. However, the age enlistment limit ensures that every recruit has the time to satisfy minimal education requirements and are adequately fit.
Although we would not like to admit it, the human body tends to become less physically fit as it ages. Over a certain age threshold, it is difficult for a person to be in good physical condition to meet the necessary standard of fighting for a country.
You May Like: Fort Sam Houston Military Housing
Requirements To Become A Sailor
To join the Navy, you must:
- Be a U.S. citizen or Legal Permanent Resident
- Be between the ages of 17 and 39 to enlist or be between 19 and 42 to become an Officer*
- Have a high school diploma or GED equivalent or have a four-year degree from an accredited university
- Have a qualifying score on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test or the Officer Aptitude Rating and Aviation Selection Test Battery
- Pass the Military Entrance Processing Station medical exam
- Meet the physical, mental and moral standards of the Navy
*If you are not yet 18, you need parental consent to join.
Contact a recruiter to request more information about basic requirements.
The Maximum Age For New Recruits
For people who have never served in the US Army before, the maximum recruitment age is 35. This is 34 for the Navy, 32 for the US Coast Guard, and just 28 years old for the US Marine Corps. The US Air Force has the highest maximum recruitment age at 39 years old.
There are also different maximum recruitment ages for special branches and specific positions. It is possible to join the Army Reserve and the Army National Guard at 42 years old.
The maximum age is reduced to 40 years old for the Air Force National Guard and 35 for the Air Force Reserve. The maximum age is 39 years old for the Coast Guard Reserve and the Navy Reserve, and 29 for the Marine Corps Reserve.
Recommended Reading: Us Army National Guard Recruiter
What Is The Maximum Age To Enlist In The Military
- US Naval Academy
Stew Smith, CSCS, is a Veteran Navy SEAL Officer, freelance writer, and author with expertise in the U.S. military, military fitness, and its traditions.
One of the most frequently asked questions recruiters get asked is what are the maximum age limits to enlist in the military service. There is an age limit that disqualifies certain ages from joining the military. However, the age limit is higher that you may think. If you are over this age limit, you are not qualified for service. But, if you keep pushing and proving to the recruiters that your experience and physical fitness levels are acceptable, you could be eligible for an age waiver. The most frequently asked question is the following:
Whats The Difference Between An Enlisted Marine And A Marine Corps Officer How Do I Know Which Path Is Right For Me
- FAQ Answer
Enlisted Marines make up the majority of the Marine Corps and include ranks from Private to Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps. Marine Officers are leaders of Marines and include ranks from Second Lieutenant to Four-Star General. Whether you are interested in service as an enlisted Marine or as an officer, a recruiter will be able to discuss your options based on your education level, experience, and goals.
Recommended Reading: How To Sign Up For Army
Which Branches Of The Military Can I Join At 30
It is natural to think of most new recruits as young faces that are fresh out of high school or college.
However, some service members prefer to wait until later in life to serve their country.
Whether pursuing the military is a newly founded goal or something you have considered for years, there are pros and cons to joining in your 30s.
Members of the military that begin serving later in life are generally more mature and prepared for service.
In fact, you can join the military as late as the age of 42 though some branches have different requirements.