This post was inspired by a search term that brought someone to my blog where they wanted to know “Enlisted Vs. Officer Vs. Reserve” This post is going to stay rather generic and not have tons of facts. I am going to share a question my recruiter had me answer.
‘Why are you going into the reserves instead of active duty?”
My recruiter said that often times people cannot give him a good answer. He will get answers that people are just unsure, or think they might want to go to school, or maybe want to work this job. Those answers aren’t good enough, if school is an uncertainty or you are not passionate about your job, my recruiter usually recommends active duty over the reserves. I am inclined to agree, don’t pass up on a chance for a good steady career and paycheck for things you might do. You can still attend school on tuition assistance, you also can pick an MOS that matches a job you might want to work at, and in the end your first contract is 4 years, you hate it that much don’t sign again.
However, there are valid reasons why one might want to join the reserves. Here is what I said when I answered that question. I am joining the reserves because I want to utilize the masters degree I am earning in a civilian career field I am passionate about. I have worked too hard and invested to much not to. I am joining the reserves so I can earn a way to pay for my Phd to further my civilian career. He seemed alright with this answer.
Please keep in mind both enlisted and officer positions are available for reservists and active duty members. Reservists benefits differ from active duty, and some MOS selections are not available.
So far, everyone that I have met who enlisted into the reserves without much going on back home regret their decision and are trying to go active.
I personally do not regret my decision for the reserves. I still very much love my masters program, I like my teaching job, but as mentioned above I am passionate about it.