Question: Should I Reenlist in the Army National Guard?
Answer: That is a personal decision. There is no right or wrong answer. Each person is different and has a complete different set of circumstances. The best thing I can tell you is that YOU are the one who needs to make the decision about what to do. After all, it is your career and no one else cares about your career as much as you do. You can listen to others and get their input, but make sure you are the one to decide for yourself.
Let me share a few reasons you should consider reenlisting in the Army National Guard.
# 1 The Economy: With the state of our current economy, the job market is pretty bad. If you’re having trouble finding a job, your ARNG income might come in handy.
# 2 Your Education: If you’re still working on your degree, you can utilize scholarships, grants and tuition assistance for Army National Guard Soldiers. This can save you thousands of dollars.
# 3 An Extra Income: This goes hand in hand with # 1, but most people can use an extra few hundred bucks per month. I believe the ARNG is the best part-time job out there.
# 4 Potential Job Opportunities: One great thing about serving in the ARNG is the job opportunities. If you need full-time employment, you could apply for AGR, work on ADSW, or even volunteer for a deployment or school.
# 5 Build Up a Pension: If you haven’t saved much for retirement, you could continue your service to build up a pension.
# 6 Camaraderie: One of the things I really miss about the military is the camaraderie. It might not be a big deal now, but you will miss it when you become a civilian.
Those are some of the most basic reasons to reenlist in the Army National Guard. You should at least factor those things into your decision making process.
On the other hand, there are some potential drawbacks to reenlisting in the Army National Guard.
# 1 You Could Get Deployed: Of course, you could get deployed and be away from your family for a long time.
# 2 It Could Cause Family or Marriage Problems: If the military is creating problems in your marriage, or with your kids, you should consider leaving the military. Family should always come first.
# 3 The Time Commitment is Too Much: If you have a successful career or own a business of your own, you might have a problem with the additional “unpaid” responsibilities required of Army National Guardsmen.
Once again, these are the potential drawbacks to reenlisting in the Army National Guard.
Here’s what I recommend you do. Take out a sheet of paper and write down all the pros and cons to reenlisting as you see it. Talk with your spouse and kids to get their input. Talk with a trusted mentor and see what they have to say. If you are 100% certain you DO NOT want to reenlist, then you should ETS. If you are unsure, or somewhat unsure, you could either extend for one year or transfer to the IRR/ING Program until you make up your mind. And of course, if you know you want to reenlist, go ahead and do it!
Whatever you do, take some time and put some thought into it! The last thing you want to do is make a quick decision that you will later regret.
What are your thoughts? Please leave your comments or questions below.