"Active Reserve Guard" ??

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by dunninla, Nov 5, 2012.

  1. dunninla

    dunninla 5-Year Member

    Jan 26, 2010
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    I was attempting to explain to a neighbor recently the Branching, etc. options open to an ROTC Scholarship Cadet upon graduating.

    - 4 years min. Active Duty in 15 Branches, or about 6 yrs. for Aviation Branch; + IRR to total 8 years
    - 8 years Reserves/Guard

    They asked if the Guard or Reserves also had full-time positions rather than part time (2 days/month, 2 weeks/year). Funny, I had never thought of that, but of course they must or who would be running the programs -- not weekend warriors! So I googled and came up with this article, among other things: http://www.army.mil/article/61541

    So it seems there are full time (active) assignments in both the Reserves and Guard, for all Branches except IN, AR, FA, AD. It does seem like the program was designed for AD soldiers who: 1) are trying to decide whether to stay in AD or transition into civilian life, and/or 2) want a longer term (3 yr. tour) state-site assignment.

    I read a few other things I found on google, and one requirement for a 2LT to be assigned to "Active" Reserve/Guard is the *prior* completion of BOLC.

    I assume b/c of the BOLC requirement, that Active Reserves/Guard is not something a cadet in ROTC can choose during the Accessions process to place into right out of college?

    Are there any Active Reserve/Guard members who post here, and if so, can you comment on it?
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2012
  2. khergan

    khergan Member

    Aug 9, 2012
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    AGR is a weird animal.

    The only really consistent AGR is Army Reserve, which is managed on a Federal level and therefore has some level of consistency.

    Being an AGR soldier with USAR is very similar to being active duty, except that you work for the Reserve and therefore have a much different lifestyle. USAR AGRs stay in a location for 2-3 years at a time, much like any normal active duty soldier, but have much less to do during the week. Most AGR positions are NCO positions, because they run the supply, S1 shop and S3 on a daily basis and set up things for drill. Officer slots are much harder to come by because most officer slots in USAR are TPU; the commander, XO, PLs, etc are all TPU part timers like everyone else. AGRs in the Reserve get PCS'd like any another active duty guy/gal.

    National Guard AGR is a different animal because it is state-limited. This is both a good and bad thing, depending on how you look at it, because you cannot get PCS'd outside the state. What that also means is that slots and duty locations are fairly limited, and there can be pretty severe glass ceilings for career opportunities because of that fact. For example, a state might not have any positions for an MI 0-4, precluding promotion opportunity for 0-3s.

    At the end of the day, it's a great way to go and very preferable for some people, but it's hard to get into. From my experience, it is much harder to get an officer slot in AGR. Likewise, I have never seen a 2LT AGR officer, although I'm sure it's possible at some level. All the AGR guys around here are CPTs, some WOs and mostly E-6 and E-7.

    Also - AGR can be pretty competitive. Most if not all TPU soldiers are aware of AGR slots in the unit, and many people are building packets to apply for the job up to a year in advance when they know a vacancy will become available. It would be very difficult if not impossible to walk into an AGR slot from ROTC because that unit will generally create an OML and preference list of people they already know from inside the unit who want that full-time job.
  3. -Bull-

    -Bull- 5-Year Member

    Mar 13, 2009
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    FWIW, there are AGR positions for IN, FA, AR, etc types. My former MSII instructor is an O-5 FA officer and now the state guards' G-1.
  4. Tgun

    Tgun Member

    May 15, 2012
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    Having spent over 12 years in the AIR National Guard (as opposed to Army NG), I can tell you that there are many full-time positions that are civil servant (non-AGR). These are "GS" type of Government paygrades. The GS full time slots vs. AGR were about 8:1.

    On our ANG base, we had over 1200 staff total, of which approximately 250 to 300 were full-time (either GS or AGR). The GS were actually STATE employees but their positions and pay were modeled after the Federal GS payrates. GS were not paid too well if I remember correctly (I made quite a bit more on the civilian side) and typically below AGR (AGR is also equivelant to "normal" active duty pay).

    AGR are VERY limited and difficult to attain. GS type are not so difficult, but there are limitations. Most folks in GS types of positions were mid-career (10-15 years time in service) and ran the gamut from enlisted (NCO to Sr. NCO) to Officers (O-1 to O-5 and even a few O-6s and O-7s at the Headquarters staff postion level: State Adjutant General for example).

    One thing to remember, as an officer in either the NG or Reserve, you will not be working only 1 weekend per month and two weeks per year. I regulary worked 3-4 days per month (including the weekend), and anywheres from 3-8 weeks per year depending on AEF (expeditionary force) status. We've also had deployments in excess of 6 months (I know, I know, the Army NG and Reserve units have had deployments in excess of 12 months...). So, the notion of traditional NG and Reserve "weekend warrior" duty is a relic now. Anyone remember the NG in "Southern Comfort" or "First Blood"??

    Try balancing a civilian career, family, and NG/Reserve deployments.

    Active Duty is in most cases a better starting point for your first service committment IMHO. NG and Reserve can come later in your career.

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