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Enlisting in the Army

Madhurjya Bhattacharyya

Thinking of serving the country by joining the army? It's a decision worth making, but there are several steps involved for enlisting in the army. Here is an attempt to give you more information on some of the requirements to enlist in the army.
You may have heard that a good score in ASVAB is the first significance in the long-drawn journey of finally being selected in the army. It's a significant step no doubt, but it's not the only step.
There are numerous qualifications which you must meet before being considered for enlisting in the army. Some of them are related to educational background and others are psychological and physical.

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Requirements for Enlisting in the Army

To enlist in the army you need to be at least 18 years of age, but if you have the permission of your parents, you can enlist at 17 as well. You must be a citizen of the country or must have a green card, and at least possess a high school diploma.
Once you fulfill all these requirements, you can take the ASVAB test which you must pass, after which you would also have to pass the Military Entrance Processing Station medical exam. At the time of your appointment, the number of dependents can't be more than 2.
As far as your physical health is concerned, you must be healthy enough to be included in the army. You will be required to go through a physical exam to see if you can handle the rigorous training, and your height, weight and body mass index would also be measured.
There are several documents which you would need to carry along during the application process like social security card, driver's license, birth certificate, passport, medical history and school diplomas are some of the documents which you will need.

Enlisting in the Army With a College Degree

Even though the basic educational qualification to enlist in the army is a high school diploma, you can still apply for a job in the army if you have a bachelor's degree.
If you are enlisting in the army with a bachelor's degree, you may earn higher salaries than those without one. The starting salary may be around USD 37,000 per year and increase upto USD 47,000 after four years. You may also be appointed to a higher rank if you have additional college credits to show.

Re-enlisting in the Army

If you want to continue in the army after the expiry of the term of service date, you can re-enlist within 15 months. You can re-enlist either by your own choice or if the army needs you.
In case you re-enlist by your own choice, you must commit a particular number of years to the army. Usually the number of years is between 3 to 6 years. There are bonus programs for re-enlisting which may feature a lump sum payment, and this amount is usually between US $3000 to 52,000.

Benefits of Enlisting in the Army

As far as the benefits are concerned, a job in the army is one of the best places to be.
Recognizing the necessity of caring for its men, the army has come up with numerous benefits which are tax free. With the kind of job you would be entailed to do, the leave policy in the army is generous. At the end of each year you get a leave of four weeks, and the best part is, it's with pay.
You can be off to anywhere you please, without worrying about your paycheck. In addition to that, you don't need to work on national holidays and weekends. However, this is applicable only if you are posted in a peace time zone.
If you are posted in a combat zone, you won't be able to get leaves, but would be compensated with combat pay.
You are entitled to health coverage for you and your dependents as well. The health care policy provides medical and dental coverage at very little or no cost for you. You can avail medical facilities in the Military Treatment Facility for you and family and those which pay for students debts and college besides admitting your children in military schools.

Enlisting in the Army With a Felony

Today, due to the increase in the zones of confrontation, there is an increase in the number of personnel required. There is tremendous pressure to fulfill combat needs, and as such, the Army has started enlisting people with felony convictions as well.
However, you need to get waivers before you are eligible for enlisting with the army. A stint with the army can give you a chance to redeem yourself besides giving you a chance to earn some handsome benefits.
Thus, a career with the army can be a lucrative option. Before enlisting in the army, you can speak with a recruiter of the army as they can answer your questions related to recruitment in the army.