Top 8 National Guard Careers: MOSs You Should Consider

In today’s post, I’m going to share the top 8 National Guard careers, as I see it. Keep in mind this is just my opinion and we can agree to disagree.

I have had young people ask me what is the best job to go after in the Army National Guard. That can be a difficult question to answer because so much depends on that person’s education, desires, and what he/she deems bad or good.

Listed below are MOSs and jobs with lots of upward mobility in the National Guard, room for promotion, and good pay in the civilian world.

Top 8 National Guard Careers


The Top 8 National Guard Careers

I will start at #8 and work up to #1.

# 8: 74D CBRN Specialist

They say CBRN which is shortened from Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Specialists. While not a sexy job if you have to clean up a spill, it is very high paying and the opportunities in the civilian world are numerous. Much of a CBRN’s job consists of training soldiers on safety when working with any of these types of weapons.

As a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Specialist, you’ll protect the country against the threat of CBRN weapons of mass destruction, and you’ll decontaminate hazardous material spills or accidents. You’ll employ the most advanced equipment and coordinate defense systems against these weapons of mass destruction in support of joint and combined arms operations. ~ Go Army

# 7: 92Y Unit Supply Specialist

While it carries a ton of responsibility, if you are a person who likes having power, this is the job for you. As HeMan would say: “I have the power!”

You receive and distribute Army supplies. I have spoke with many current and ex-supply specialists and they always say it is the best of all Army jobs.

The unit supply specialist supervises or performs duties involving request, receipt, storage, issue, accountability and preservation of individual, organizational, installation and expendable supplies and equipment. ~ Army Cool

# 6: 15Q Air Traffic Control Operator

The pay is fantastic and the opportunities in the civilian world are huge.

Air traffic control carries a lot of responsibilities, but you have set hours and you stay busy. This is not a job where you will be finding “busy work” to look like you are doing something for your pay.

The ATC operator supervises and provides air traffic services (ATS) for a variety of missions to include air traffic control tower (ATCT), ground control approach (GCA) radar and airspace information centers (AIC) utilizing visual flight rules (VFR), instrument flight rules (IFR) and special visual flight rules (SVFR), at both tactical and fixed-base locations. The ATC operator issues flight instructions and clearances to ensure proper separation is maintained and effective sequencing is provided for both military and civilian aircraft; formulates data for the development of terminal instrument procedures (TERPS); assists the Airspace Control Authority (ACA) in establishing and maintaining the Army Airspace Command and Control (A2C2) system, by planning, developing and implementing airspace control measures (ACM); ensures facility compliance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and DoD policy procedures; serves as Department of the Army Regional Representatives (DARR) at regional FAA offices for the purposes of coordinating special use, special operations and host-nation/joint use airspace requirements; maintains United States Air Force certification as a limited weather observer; serves as point of contact for emergency notification and assistance in the event of aviation accidents or incidents; compiles and controls information concerning aviation mishaps for accident investigation teams; coordinates and directs emergency response vehicles and aircraft. Serve as an Air Traffic Control Specialist (ATCS) or FAA control tower operator (CTO) examiner. ~ Army Portal Jobs

# 5: 88N Transportation Management Coordinator

Transportation management coordinators are primarily responsible for scheduling and selecting the modes of transportation for personnel and equipment.

Your duties will be similar to say a UPS or FedEX manager. And there you go when it comes to a civilian job. The Army experience will put you at the top of the pack when looking for civilian employment.

The Transportation Management Coordinator (TMC) supervises, monitors, controls and coordinates the movement of personnel, equipment, and cargo by air, rail, highway, and water; determines the most efficient mode of transport that accomplishes mission requirements; advises military and DoD civilians concerning the selection of sites for depots, truck terminals, railheads, beachheads, airfields, ports, and inland waterway terminals. The TMC supervises cargo documentation and movement control units for all transportation modes; formulates and reviews documentation on technical traffic management functions; devises and reviews movement programs for logistical support functions in a theater of operations; serves as the transportation liaison between other military services, commercial agencies, and host nation support elements; reviews DoD contracts and agreements with host nations; verifies the accuracy of movement control documents; performs as staff NCO in military traffic management agencies; monitors quality controls that ensure commercial transportation services meet contractual obligations; monitors and documents all customs discrepancies and reports them to appropriate authorities; ensures allocation of transport capability is appropriate to accomplish each mission in a cost-effective manner; serves as the primary operator of Standard Army Management Information Systems critical to moving the Army. The TMC also serves as a Contracting Officers Representative. ~ Transportation Army Website

# 4: 63 Dental Corps Officer

You will be responsible for running an Army dental clinic. If need be, you are considered medical personnel in combat situations. The pay is fantastic and the opportunities after the Army are numerous. In many cases, the Army will even reimburse you for your dental school tuition.

An Army Dental Corps officer is responsible for the dental health of Soldiers and their families. They are also responsible for providing health care to Soldiers’ families and others eligible to receive this care in the military community. During combat, the Dental Corps officer assists in the emergency medical management of casualties. ~ Go Army website

# 3: 15 Helicopter Repair

Depending on which helicopter is your specialty, that will determine the letter behind your MOS number. A Blackhawk repair person is a 15T and an Apache is a 15R… Etc…

This is a great job and pays quite well. The Army uses many helicopters and this is a highly needed MOS.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Mechanic (Airframe) credential is for mechanics who perform or supervise the maintenance, preventive maintenance or alteration of airframes. Airframe mechanics are authorized to work on any part of the aircraft except the instruments, power plants, and propellers. Airframe mechanics work in hangars, repair stations, or out on the airfield on the “flight lines” where aircraft park. Mechanic (Airframe) applicants must be at least 18 years old, be able to read, write, speak and understand English, and meet education, training and experience requirements. Applicants must also pass written, oral, and practical exams. ~

# 2: 12B Combat Engineer

If you are a person who has a desire to blow things up, this may be the perfect job for you. Do keep in mind this is a dangerous MOS because you will be in the midst of battle.

The combat engineer has the duties to clear the way so infantry and cavalry can move forward in the battle. You will build defensive structures as well as offensive ones.

Army Combat Engineers are part fighter, part builder of defense systems.

The purpose is to create an easier method for your fellow soldiers to engage the enemy while also becoming a destroyer of enemy defense positions and obstacles.

As a result, there are several important qualifications and training you need to become MOS 12B. ~ Operation Military Kids

dangerous army mos

# 1: 42B Human Resources Officer

You are the middle person between command and the Soldier. This job is about ensuring the personal welfare of each Soldier and their family.

This job has a great chance of opportunity after Army. With this experience, you could land a job with a huge corporation in their Human Resources department.

An Adjutant General Officer is responsible for providing personnel support that affect Soldiers’ overall welfare and well being, while assisting commanders by accounting for and keeping Soldiers combat-ready. In many cases, the duties of an Adjutant General Officer are very similar to the function of a high-level human resources executive in the civilian world. ~ Army Portal

One More Golden Nugget

Before I close out this article, I’d like to share some wisdom with you. While the National Guard Careers listed above offer plenty of upward mobility, there is one additional important consideration. If you’re going to spend three years, five years, eight years, even twenty years in the National Guard, why not pick a MOS or job you will be passionate about and naturally excel at?

If you pick something you enjoy, that aligns with your personality, talents, and skills, chances are you will excel at it and do well in your career.

Regardless of your MOS, if you are good at what you do, and are squared away, there are ENDLESS possibilities in the National Guard and military for career advancement. Even if promotions are slower in one MOS compared to another MOS (or officer branch) at least you will have the passion for what you are doing. When you pick your officer branch or MOS, keep that in mind.

If you are already in the National Guard, but are looking for a career change, there are normally opportunities to reclass or get a new MOS or officer branch. Talk with your Retention NCO or S1 to learn more about that.

Follow the advice from one of my former mentors:

Do what you love and you will never work a day in your life!

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, these are the top National Guard Careers, as I see it. If you are considering joining the National Guard, any of these careers would be a wise choice.

I would love to hear comments from other Soldiers, NCOs, and officers here. What do you think are the best National Guard Careers? Leave a comment below to let me know what you think. I look forward to hearing from you. Hooah!

Other Must Read Articles
  1. Army Supply Sergeant Duties & Responsibilities
  2. Most Needed Army MOSs
  3. Army Human Resources Command (HRC) Overview
  4. Military Career Tips
chuck holmes

Chuck Holmes
Former Army Major (resigned)

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7 thoughts on “Top 8 National Guard Careers: MOSs You Should Consider”

  1. I was reading your online post and commentaries in regards to military jobs. I am an army veteran as I served in the ’80s during the Reagan Administration. My MOS was a 64D and was cross trained in many other MOS Fields pertaining to mechanics in my battalion and Battery. I was a mechanic on m109s and m110s self-propelled field artillery pieces. I was trained as a turret mechanic which involves electrical and hydraulic systems. The training alone in hydraulic and electrical systems set you up in the future to be any type of mechanic dealing with hydraulic systems and or electrical systems. The military cross trains you to work on all the vehicles that are in your Battalion and Battery as this is essential during wartime. Not only was I a mechanic but I was also an operator
    Of an m578 which is roughly a tract tow truck or tow vehicle for self-propelled artillery pieces and that is another reason why they cross train you in everything so that if you can get the assignment to go out and recover a broken down tracked vehicle no matter if it is an artillery piece or a Troop Carrier such as an m113 or a m577 and you can repair the track vehicle that you are trying to recover then it saves you from having to tow the vehicle back to the motor pool and or assembly area which saves time for either the commanders in the field or in the motor pool. The quicker you can get the track up and running again the better off it is for the units in the field so that is why you are cross trained and everything even though you go to military schooling for one thing once you get to your unit they make sure that you are cross trained and whatever vehicles are in your Battalion and or battery which is very helpful to your unit and the military in general. You learned a lot more skills being cross trained which are helpful later on in life. To be honest when I was 18 years old and was in the military I truly did not like it at the time but when I look back on it now being a 55 year old man I think of it as some of the best times in my life because you get to meet all types of people from all walks of life and you get to meet and interact with them and that is how you become a strong and more cohesive unit. No matter what job someone picks before they go in they should be proud because not only are they serving their country they are also serving their self for later in life.

  2. My son is interested in going into aerospace engineering. Can you recommend good MOSs for this field? He got a 94 on ASVAB, does well in math and loves to game. He’s thinking of intelligence and of course something in engineering. Is 15W a good choice? The NG recruiter mentioned that the bad side of the MOS is possibility of getting a bad boss. Is there a way to find out beforehand fields populated with bad bosses? Would the recruiter know?

    1. Thanks for reaching out.

      To answer your question, picking a MOS is an important choice. I like to tell people to think about what they might want to do after military life. If they can learn a skill in the military that will help prepare them for that, it could be a good move.

      15W is a good MOS. What I would do is identify three or four MOSs your son qualifies for and then take a detailed look at each one to see which one he likes the best.

      As far as a boss goes, you never know who your boss will be. Regardless of your MOS, you will have good and bad bosses throughout your career, in the military and civilian world.

      I hope that answers your questions. Thanks.

      1. Thank you. His recruiter asked for 4 of his choices. Drone pilot or mechanic was top on his list I think. He got 35F. I agree on bosses… good and bad. Was just curious as to input recruiter had on placement or willingness to direct candidate away from problem boss. Thank you again.

  3. Are medical, specifically 68W, a good MOS? If not 68W then what other med one would be good? I’ve scored decently well on the practice ASVAB tests and I’m training to be a civilian paramedic too. We do get to choose the specialization if it matches with test/physical results right?

    1. Yes, 68W is a great MOS. Any medical field is a great MOS, especially if you are not looking to make a career out of the military. There are a lot of civilian jobs in the medical field.

    2. Johndel Callora

      Hi Abigail, choosing 68W is actually a wise choice. Combat medics are very special in their own way, they can help support and fight in the frontlines plus they can save a lot of lives. Desmond Doss was one of the most famous medics out there because of his heroic acts in Hacksaw Ridge.

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