Army Recruitment

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Jcleppe, Jan 4, 2019.

  1. Jcleppe

    Jcleppe 5-Year Member

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    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/02/us/army-recruiting-tech-industry-seattle.html

    This may be off topic because it deals with enlistment but living in Seattle this rings so true. Both my sons had to deal with the negative military attitudes at their high school when they decided to accept their AROTC Scholarships.

    Recruiters have a tough time here. I remember going to a district sponsored College/Career Fair while they were in high school. The Military recruiters were not allowed on the main floor, they had to set up in a stairwell behind doors. I suggested they leave one person back to watch the tables while the others took turns walking the floor. That did get a few to come back and talk with them, that is until the patents found them and quickly pulled then away.

    When recruiters were allowed to come to the school to speak, the school made sure they had someone opposed to the military there to speak as well, recruiters dreaded coming to the school because they knew what was coming when they did.

    For a region that has a large military presence, JBLM, Whidbey NAS, Naval Station Everett, Bangor Sub Base and Bremerton Naval Shipyard....all within driving distance, you would think there would be a better connection to recruiting. That is not the case here as it is with regions in the south and midwest that have military installations nearby. We have a very deep military history here, but you have to dig deep to learn about it, Seattle has a pretty big rug that they like to sweep things under.

    I wish them the best of luck in this new approach, it will be an uphill climb.
     
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  2. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator 5-Year Member

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    I saw some General on TV speaking about this on one of the Sunday news shows. Interesting article. Also the maps were very interesting. Seems like the Ft Drum area in NY is still drawing them in. Eastern NC is about what I'd expect. Big drop-offs in the Northeast and Midwest. Maybe this will also help more folks to understand the military a little bit better than now, whether they enlist or not. Community service by various units in these areas might be helpful so folks see more of the "humanitarian" side.
     
  3. Day-Tripper

    Day-Tripper 5-Year Member

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    In the past (yeah, I'm old), the Army wasn't so hesitant to enlist young men (and it was always males) who were high school drop outs, had a brush or two with the law, maybe presented a questionable birth certificate, etc. For the most part, it worked pretty well.

    Nowadays, it might work out also.

    Since America is now overwhelmingly overweight, the Army might want to relax its weight requirements. Make those recruits drop the excess pounds in basic training and afterwards.

    Given that more and more states are legalizing marijuana, lighten up on that disqualifier. At least usage prior to enlistment (the Air Force doesn't even care if you smoked pot prior to joining).

    Criminal background? Liberalize that too. Violent felonies shouldn't be overlooked, but waivers in other areas might be given a lighter look. God knows I served with Marines whom weren't exactly choirboys.

    High school dropouts aren't all idiots. A lot have intelligence enough to make a fine soldier. And if allowed to serve, a hitch in the Army might put them on the path to be a successful citizen for life and not working at the car wash while living in mom's basement playing video games for 4 hours a day. I got a nephew (18 years old) who fits this bill to a tee, but Army won't talk to him. His dad is a Boston policeman making $100K/year. Thing is, his dad was a high school dropout too, who joined the Army (1981), became an MP, got out and later became a cop. Now has a nice home in the 'burbs with a nice lawn and a nice pool. Army made that possible.

    How many stupid 18 year olds get a tattoo on the neck in a moment of immaturity, whom might make excellent soldiers at age 20 if given the chance?

    DACA kids? Give 'em citizenship in return for four years active duty.

    How about greater advertising or recruiting using the GI Bill as an enticement? Benefits are great, but I rarely see them in Army recruiting ads. What with the cost of college, this might bring in more recruits.
     
  4. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    Don't entirely disagree with @Day-Tripper , but we did do that (flinging open the recruitment doors, that is) to some extent during the early post 9/11 years. Now we are dealing with consequences-- high PTSD, sexual number of sexual assaults, integrity violations, suicide rate rising--that may be related. Don't jump down my throat-- I said may. :)

    When you get less selective, you wind up with a lot of folks coming in-- some of whom are bad news and some of whom are not suited for combat stress.

    As for advertising all the free bennies for joining the super-awesome military club, that drives me nuts. All I see in Army recruiting ads is advertisement of the benefits. Maybe that's just in my part of the country though.

    But yeah, I'm onboard with letting HS dropouts and "rougher" teenagers join. However, that means we need to move back towards a Basic training experience that can handle folks with rough backgrounds and minor criminal histories. That also means we need to better train (and trust) our NCO's to lead these new privates/seaman/airmen coming in that might be more "assertive" in challenging leadership.
     
  5. StPaulDad

    StPaulDad Member

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    I don't mean to knock this thread off-topic, but I would like to hear more about these sexual numbers. I have a math degree, but I think I might have gone on to grad school if I'd known more about them. :D
     
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  6. hornetguy

    hornetguy 10-Year Member

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    I agree and I think there's in issue in both directions. A lot of young adults who grew up very isolated in traditional military recruiting country (mostly conservative areas) also benefit from living and training next to people with thoughts and ideas they would likely never meet either. Makes for a stronger and more effective military as well as a better citizenry.
     
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  7. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    Yeah, that's an unfortunate typo. Shouldn't have input so much via my phone. Always happens.

    Either way, the point stands. DoD had an issue with sexual assaults for awhile there, mostly due to a giant blind spot associated with rank, remote locations, and no clear or safe reporting mechanism. Made it pretty easy for predators to have a safe space to operate with impunity. Thankfully, we are working to resolve it.
     
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  8. Old Navy BGO

    Old Navy BGO 5-Year Member

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    My neighbors son is a USMC recruiter., and I was talking to him at a Wedding this summer. He confirmed that the recruiting business is hard now -- its a combination of a good job market and the physical qualification of kids these days.
     
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  9. AROTC-dad

    AROTC-dad Moderator 5-Year Member

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  10. Day-Tripper

    Day-Tripper 5-Year Member

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    Higher PTSD and suicides may be a consequence of war - not quality of recruits. Hey, it's a dangerous job when you're getting shot at.

    As for advertising? Well, the Navy has probably been saying "Join & see the world" since about 1898. The Army has probably been saying "Join & learn a trade" since, well, 1898.

    Unless the US wants to reinstate conscription (which I have advocated ad nauseum), recruitment of a volunteer force will have to "sell" the military experience no less than those ambulance-chasing ads on day-time and late-night TV ("Get what you deserve!")*




    * = Furloughed federal worker watching way too much TV. But also reading a lot more in lasts 3 weeks (Bernard Cornwell's "Sharpe's Rifles" novels) and posting a helluva lot more on this forum.
     
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  11. Tbpxece

    Tbpxece Member

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    Fair enough.