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National Guard • Cause Magazine


A Variety of Ways to Learn and Earn


The National Guard has several enlistment options for a variety of situations. It is a good option for students who want to serve in the military part-time and earn money for college. National Guard Scholarships may also be available for qualified applicants. You can also learn a career and travel across the U.S. or overseas, and when your Active Duty commitment is over, return to part-time Guard service with your local unit and pick up your great Guard benefits. The National Guard serves both state and federal govern- ments. The difference between the Guard and other branches is that while Guard units are combat-trained and can be deployed overseas, they are just as likely to serve in their home communi- ties—training just one weekend per month, and one two-week period each year. This part-time service allows those with other careers or educational goals to serve their country as well as earn money for college or other expenses.


During local emergencies, Guard units assist residents endangered by storms, floods, fires and other disasters. Guard companies deployed overseas may see combat, but are often found building schools and hospitals, training local peacekeepers or teaching local farmers more efficient techniques and better uses of their land.


The Guard pays well. But for civilians and Soldiers with skills and experience, it pays even better, with incentives up to thousands of extra dollars. Serve full-time now in


certain jobs, and qualify for more money. Certain high-demand jobs and critical specialties pay you a bonus up to $5,000 when you enlist in the military for the first time. Check out the Cash Bonus Jobs list, and if you have the skills, or want to learn them, you can earn extra cash to work in one of these exciting and specialized positions. For certain career specialties, particularly medical professions, the Guard will reimburse up to $65,000 in student loans. You may be able to pay off student loans with the Student Loan Repayment Program. For Soldiers with existing student loans, the Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) can pay up to $50,000* for certain jobs, with a six- or eight-year enlistment as a member of a deployable unit. This incentive is also available to applicants enter- ing Officer Candidate School (you must have at least 90 college credit hours and agree to an eight-year commitment). Total enlistment period will be eight years, but you can serve as little as three or six years, and spend the remainder in IRR (Individual Ready Reserve) which means you won't train with a unit, but you can emergency.


still be called up in the event of an


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