Reserve or Guard?

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by sheriff3, Oct 19, 2015.

  1. sheriff3

    sheriff3 Member

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    DS is an MSIII so he has some time to decide. If he chooses to not go AD can someone explain the difference between reserve and guard? I know with guard he will be attached to a state but I am unclear about the reserves. In going through the forum it looks like if one does not go AD then they go guard but there is very little info on the forum on reserves.

    Where would he be assigned? ( I know that's hard to answer...depends...)
    Realistically how often do they drill
    What does the deployment schedule look like.
    What are the training opportunities like.
    Can he live wherever he wants as long as he makes it to drill and training?

    Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    I have a gentleman that works for me that is in the Army Reserves, not an officer. He transferred from a unit across the state line.
    It is essentially just like the guard as far as drill and summer training. However there are not nearly as many reserve units so the location to drill might be further away from where your civilian life is. Reserve units are all support units if I am not mistaken.

    There is alot more information I'm sure that I am not aware of.
     
  3. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Just a dad

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  4. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    Pretty accurate here.

    The Reserves is very similar to the Guard as far as drill schedule goes, but they are a federal force and are not tied to a state. That could be good or bad.

    Yes, there are no "combat arms" branches in the Reserves with the exception I believe of some aviation and/or engineer units (don't quote me on that). There is also, unless it's been deactivated, an armor unit in Guam (I think it's Guam).

    So if they want to do the part time thing, but go IN, FA, AR, or combat EN they're pretty much going to have to go Guard.
     
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  5. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    Bull, do you know if since the reserve are a federal force, do they get deployed more often than the state guard forces?
     
  6. -Bull-

    -Bull- Member

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    I'll be honest, I know very little about the Reserves. Usually the Reserves have been used to fill gaps with the active force or deploy as sustainment forces. The Guard has actual BCTs and has been relied on pretty heavily in the past few years and is going to be asked to do more in the future. It's hard to say, but the days of "join the reserve component, you'll never leave home" haven't existed in a decade and though some things have slowed down, the reserve component is being asked to do a lot.

    Edit to add: the active force is pretty busy right now so I wouldn't be shocked if I was in the reserve component and told to deploy.
     
  7. wildcatmom

    wildcatmom Member

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    DS's enlisted Reserve unit (medical) recently got back from a year of mobilization in Texas, where they covered for a unit that was sent to Afghanistan. Of course, he did not go because he was contracted. They do deploy or mobilize as needed. I seem to remember a few years ago, that several in his platoon volunteered to deploy with a sister unit that was being sent out.
    Transferability is probably the benefit I recognize as the biggest difference between the Reserves and the Guard. The Reserves are a smaller component than the Guard, but you are not locked in to just one State.
     
  8. Aglahad

    Aglahad Member

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    I am in a medical reserve unit so I can answer some questions:

    1.It's pretty easy to transfer units or move then find a unit. Much easier than the Guard.
    2. Promotions are more like AD and less to do with slots. This can be god or bad.
    3. Reserves has the usual logistics branches, medical, EN, AV, MP, CM, SC, MI and even an IN unit in the Pacific.
    4. Rather than a BCT the reserves has a few MEB (Guard does as well) which support BCTs. Most other units are battalions, sustainment brigades, training "divisions".

    Drill or what is now referred to as BA/Battle Assembly is 2 days a month and 2 weeks a year, however I can guarantee you that the job is NOT only 2 days a month if you are an officer that is involved. I find myself doing Army work every day. There is a saying in the reserves that 10% of the people do 90% of the work and it is absolutely true.

    Units have mobilizations cycles just like active duty with refit and training years leading up to a mob year. If entire units don't deploy many units get taskers with individual mobilizations.
     
  9. QA1517

    QA1517 Member

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    I can attest to this with DS who is a 2nd LT in guard.

    He is the units readiness officer with the state (which meant taking a day to drive to state headquarters for a class), assistant XO and platoon leader. He has to arrange the phone meetings they have every month prior to drill to discuss the weekend plans and inform all people involved. He had to re-write their active shooter plan. Anything they do on a drill weekend that requires traveling he has to fill out the paperwork and submit to his CO to approve before sending to the state.

    I would say he probably spends an average of an hour a day doing guard work.
     
  10. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    My reply is mostly about NG, but I am sure many applies also to Reserves

    First duty location all depends on where DS can be accepted - so if he can find a unit that wants him, he has some control.

    Drills should be pretty predictable, one weekend - four assembly a month and 15 days of annual training. It the unit supposed to get deployed, overseas training, or training center rotation, possibly additional drills and Annual training days. The schedule should be well published ahead of time. For soldiers in leadship positions, maybe monthly training meeting (some units just teleconference) or additional day or two a month. For additional days, at least for Guard, retirements points at minimum.

    Deployment depends on the type of unit - looks like the trend is more for combat support and service support units and less for combat units. Appears the current trend is maybe every four years.

    Individual training will depend on funding and individual availability. 2LT with a full time job is less likely to volunteer for an optional individual training. Unit training depends on their mission.

    DS can leave any where he wants, but the travel cost for drill are not covered.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2015

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