From the clothes we wear to the food we eat to the things we do, we make choices all day, every day. Most of the time, they don’t impact the course of life. White shirt or blue? Paper or plastic? Delivery or carryout? Frankly, many of these choices don’t matter much in the scheme of things.
Conversely, there are points in our lives when the decisions we make will inform every moment of the rest of our lives. Like what to do after high school.
For many, that decision comes down to the military or college. But it doesn’t have to. The Army National Guard makes it possible to do both concurrently. You’ll be the better for it, too, because rather than conflicting with each other, college and the Army National Guard augment one another, resulting in a much stronger you. Consider this:
- You’ll get a degree and a degree of experience – A quick scan of job postings reveals that many positions require both a college degree and some kind of experience. Clearly, your time at college will be spent earning your degree. Your Guard training will consist of career training (i.e., experience) in one of 200 career fields. And whether it’s directly related to your eventual degree, any Human Resources executive looking at your resume will know that in addition to your degree, you have a degree of experience as well.
- Character matters – With the trends of transparency and corporate citizenship, having both a college degree and Guard service on your resume says a lot about your character. It says that you have the wherewithal to stick with two significant challenges at the same time. It says that you care about your country and your place in it. It says that you have integrity, honor, loyalty, and commitment. All are qualities any company would be pleased to be transparent about.
- Time to cash in – It’s been well documented that college graduates earn more money than those who do not attend college. In fact, those who get their bachelor’s degree earn nearly $1 million more over a lifetime according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The Guard can help you toward that in two ways: First, the Army National Guard’s generous compensation and education benefits package make college a lot more affordable while allowing you enough time to tend to your studies. In fact, depending on your service commitment and the state you live in, the Guard could pay for 100 percent of your education. Second, combine the leadership qualities developed in the Guard with a college education and you could be darn near unstoppable in your civilian career.
By joining the Army National Guard and going to school at the same time, you get the best of both worlds, the honor earned through service to your country and the respect gained by earning your degree.