Three-fourths of 17- to 24-year-olds today are not eligible to join the military

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by NorwichDad, May 17, 2014.

  1. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    The Army says more than three-fourths of 17- to 24-year-olds today are not eligible to join the military because they aren't fit enough or don't meet other basic requirements, such as having a high school diploma or being able to read or write properly.


    http://www.cnbc.com/id/101656954
     
  2. currey

    currey Member

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    That is so very sad.


    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  3. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    +1 to currey, but not surprising either.
     
  4. Full Metal Bulldog

    Full Metal Bulldog Citadel Class of 2016

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    As a kid smack in the middle of that age group, I have to affirm that everything that article states is true. My high school's senior classes are routinely about half the size of it's freshman class. And while I am by no means a stellar athlete, the simple concept of me going for a run that lasts over a mile on a regular basis leaves many of my peers and old friends simply dumbfounded. Many folks I know, both at school and at home, find the passing APFT requirements as something that's very, very difficult and many that went into the military (actually, myself included) had to engage in some serious diet/exercise to have a hope of even obtaining a minimum score.
     
  5. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

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    I also would take that statement with a whole bunch of grains of salt. Just get into another ground war and watch as the Army's standards miraculously loosen way up. All of those things that now make the 3/4 of the population ineligible were waived for recruiting just a couple of years ago and the Army seemed to fight its war ok with the Soldiers that they waived to enlist . So I predict that if the Army has to expand significantly in the future: Suddenly overweight kids will not be ineligible to enlist - they will be "training needs" to be dealt with in Basic and at the unit. HS dropouts who can get their degree via GED will suddenly be enlistable. Even Felonies were waived, and the tat policy became a farce quickly. So I wouldn't put a whole lot of stock in that comment.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2014
  6. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    True and many of them would be fitted into places in the military that may not require physical gifts or academic prowess as in WW2.

    Although maybe this is a true observation of society in something we need to work at. Went for a long walk at a park today with two of my children in that age group. We hardly saw any kids out on this beautiful day.

    I think most were inside playing video games, texting, listening to the Ipod while eating chips and drinking soda. And I imagine pacified and content, out of sight & out of mind. Perfectly free to do that but I wonder what they gained today?
     
  7. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    They got to level 22.
     
  8. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    +1 and another drone operator is ready
     
  9. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    And before we get too excited about today's youth... this has been going on for awhile.

    A ferry capsized a number of years ago. The ferry had been loaded with the max allowable riders, but what wasn't taken into consideration was the max load had been calculated many years earlier, when the average weight of an adult was 150 lbs. With the new average, the weight was too much and the stability of the vessel decreased.

    It's not a new story but it is an interesting concept.
     
  10. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    This statistic doesn't really mean anything to me. There's no context provided in the article for it at all. What are the historical levels of qualified individuals? Under what standard? How many in the past would qualify under current standards?

    I mean, it sounds really bad but I have no way of putting this into context. Obesity and metabolic diseases are a nation-wide public health problem so it wasn't exactly a stretch to find out a lot of kids and young adults are not medically qualified. It's not just 'sitting in front of a TV all day' or 'endless video games.' The food supply today looks nothing like it did 50 years ago or even 30 years ago.

    To me, it's just a number. Without a way to put it into context, I don't know if its truly bad, ok, or none of the above.
     
  11. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    http://www.usarec.army.mil/hq/apa/goals.htm

    The context is how many new recruits Army need each year.

    During the height of the GWOT, Active Army's goal was 80,000

    For FY 2014, the goal is 57,000.

    Since, there is no significant population shift, so the military service age group, total number wise, shouldn't have increased or decreased significantly. And probably no significant shift in high school graduation, criminal record, and fitness level among the military service age group.
     
  12. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    There are about 35 million 17-24 year olds in the US. If only 25% are eligible, that makes 8.75 million. The Army needs 57,000, which is roughly a half of a percent of those eligible. In that context, it doesn't seem so bad.
     
  13. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    Well, there you go again. Trying to look for context and perspective when someone tries to use statistics and alarmism in an effort to shock people with a "news story".

    You spoil-sport, take your calls for logic and perspective elsewhere! We're trying to show shock and alarm here as we wring our collective hands about the dire straights we are facing....:frown:
     
  14. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    In my JROTC corps, it's very disappointing when my teaching partner, a retired MSGT, hollers at the kids during PT...

    OMG...are you telling me that the OLD MAN, the Colonel, is going to BEAT YOU children? He was your age back when they flew B-17s! OMG...ya'll are doomed...he's outdoing you when he should be using a walker!!

    OMG!!!

    Always upsets me...but I think it upsets the kids more!

    But I will confirm; most kids (50% of my corps at least) can't pass the entrance physical fitness exam.

    But we're working on it!

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
    NOT on a walker
     
  15. NorwichDad

    NorwichDad Member

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    Recruit quality highest in 40 years

    Recruit quality highest in 40 years
    The quality of military recruits today is the highest it has been in 40 years. Ninety-nine percent are high school grads; but the military expects more, including higher ASVAB test scores and clean court records. A past misdemeanor could disqualify a potential recruit.

    Tatoos are out for recruits. Also a mention of the Air Force plans for force management.

    http://www.pnj.com/story/news/military/2014/05/18/recruit-quality-highest-years/9195623/
     
  16. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Need to look deeper (which can't captured in a simple news article or a forum discussion),

    Other services are also targeting the same demographic, so just for the sake of the argument let us say about 100,000 total enlistment per year. That's more than 1% of the 17-24, not "a half of percent." So there is competition for the age group.

    I am pretty sure less older folks in the 17 - 24 group enlist, less recruitable population.

    Contrary to a popular belief, the majority of Army recruits come from middle class, again this shrinks the target population.

    Again a guess, but it is reasonable to assume that the military is competing against civilian sector for that 25%. Yes, a civilian employer might not care about how fat an employee is, but she will care about education and criminal record.

    On the surface saying why is it so hard to recruit 1% of eligible population seems like a reasonable question. I think the reality is that the denominator is not as big as we think we are just based on a raw number
     
  17. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    My nephew is in my NG unit, I beat him on the PT test run and I am twice + his age.
     
  18. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    And we can assume that as the job market gets better, enlistments will decrease and retention will be more difficult.
     
  19. hornetguy

    hornetguy USAFA Cadet

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    Exactly, everything leads to more questions. I would also ask about what constitutes medically qualified? I sure wasn't qualified medically for the Air Force (and my med qual is still questionable) but I got waivers. I know the medical requirements for the AF border on the absurd and I know more people with waivers than without. Does that 25% account for waiverable conditions? Don't know.

    The more I think about it, the more ridiculous the article gets. As Bullet alluded to, it was reporting for the sake of sensationalism. I have to believe there's a better report out there or actual study on the topic...but I could be wrong.
     
  20. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    That's why ASSUMPTION was invented. If we just keep on asking questions, we won't be able to get nothing done. At a point, need to stop asking questions and starting acting on decisions made.
     

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