Careers & Education

Reasons for joining the army

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During World War II, women joined the U.S. Army Wac
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Reasons for joining the army are numerous, relevant and reasonable

"You're in the army now, you're not behind a plow, you'll never get rich by digging a dig, you're in the army now."

Why do men and women voluntarily join the army? There are many reasons for joining the army. For some, it's a family tradition. For others, it is an abiding need to serve their country. It's a matter of honor and devotion to duty.

During the Vietnam Conflict and World War II, men were drafted into the military. They didn't have option of saying 'no.' They went, unless there was valid reason they couldn't serve.

When joining or enlisting in the army, or any military branch, an individual learns new skills they can parlay post-military service into civilian jobs. There are certainly educational and financials benefits for those enlisted in the military.


Even though a solider isn't going to earn a fortune, he or she does receive educational benefits such as the GI Bill, tuition assistance, education on duty and other perks.

When a person enlists, he receives an enlistment bonus, which varies. An army recruiter can tell you specifics about enlistment bonuses.

Most enlistees start at the E-1 rank but some qualify for a higher pay grade, which is called Advanced Enlistment Rank. To qualify for this, the individual must get a high score on the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Battery) test a well as meet other criteria.

Depending on the kind of work done, a soldier can receive special pay, which is given in addition to the base salary. This type of pay may be hazardous duty pay. It is sometimes tax-free.

The soldier lives in tax-free housing and is given a food allowance or free room and board. Soldiers get a cost of living adjustment annually.

The longer a person is in the military and the farther he advances in rank, the more he gets paid.

The 30-day vacation each year is a nice perk.

Soldiers fly free between military bases and receive various discounts in the private sector.

Health care and insurance

Many civilians are unable to afford health insurance. Those in the army have TRICARE, which is medical insurance. Affordable life insurance is available to active service men and women.


If you love to travel, the military is the way to go. Soldiers can fly all over the world at no costs because they are eligible for 'space available' military flights. Additional military perks include discounts on hotels.

Long term benefits

After serving or retiring, soldiers are eligible for home loans and small business loans that aren't available to civilians.


One of the decided benefits of making a career out of the military is the military pension. The soldier gets retirement pay, health benefits as well as on-base shopping rights even though retired.

If a person joins the army right after high school and serves 20 years he can retire at the early age of 38. The average enlisted retiree receives more than $500,000 in total retirement pay.

Being a part of the military ensures your place in history. If you are an active person who likes challenges and hates sitting on the sidelines, a stint or career in the service may be your cup of tea. It can be demanding but it is also tremendously rewarding.

Women as well as men are taking advantage of the opportunities the military affords them to see the world, get an education and learn new and valuable skills.


Military Now: benefits at a glance

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